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Villager pockets Rs 1.1cr jackpot

Durgapur, March 23: A man who bought lottery tickets for 13 years without ever winning a paisa has opened his account with a Rs 1.1-crore bumper.

Naba Kumar Roy, whose family of six earns Rs 2,000 together, was being shielded from attention by his brothers today lest he drew the attention of kidnappers.

At Jemua village on the outskirts of Durgapur town, about 200km from Calcutta, Naba, 29, is a small-time electrician.

Used to buying tickets and not winning, he often did not care to check results. Sipping tea at a local stall, his unemployed elder brother Ranjit, 35, found the magic number in a daily on Wednesday. He ran home. And went back to the tea stall with Naba to crosscheck the result of the Bengal government’s Holi draw.

Naba, the youngest of three brothers, has been buying lottery tickets since completing Class X. His other brother runs a small grocery in the village.

Hearing about the windfall, the first thing that came to his mind was to get out of their two-room tiled roof house. He wants to buy a flat in the tony part of Durgapur town — City Centre. A 1,000sqft flat there comes for around Rs 20 lakh.

That shouldn’t be difficult for Naba. He will be left with Rs 71 lakh after tax cuts.

“I also want to set up a stationery shop for my brother and open an electrical equipment store myself,” he said.

The siblings had lost their father 27 years ago. Mother Sandhya Rani brought them up through many hardships, which seemed endless till the other day.

However, fame and money can bring new trouble, Ranjit realises. “We were poor but living in peace. We are scared now that Naba might get kidnapped for ransom,” he said.

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