The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Mystery city winner of Rs 17 crore
- Biggest jackpot in online lottery waits for claimant to turn up

Calcutta, May 26: Someone from this city ' possibly living in central Calcutta ' has won over Rs 17 crore in an online lottery but no one yet knows who the lucky person is.

The winner of the biggest-ever Sikkim Super Lotto jackpot in India worth Rs 17,29,15,375 was decided yesterday. As the news spread, everyone set out on a hunt today for the mystery person without success.

“We know the ticket (No. 030915262939) has been issued from our franchisee Shree Krishna Communication’s terminal but nobody knows who the winner is. There is a big mystery shrouding his identity,” said Sanjay Das, CEO, Playwin.

“Within the next 90 days he would have to come up and validate his ticket. Then, after filling up a form, he would get his prize money by cheque within the next month or so.”

The highest winner so far was from Delhi who had won Rs 11.86 crore in 2004 on a ticket he had purchased from Haryana.

Shree Krishna Communication, in 1 Hidaram Banerjee Lane off College Street, wore a festive look this evening, bedecked with flowers and very much the centre of attraction in the locality.

“I am very pleased that I will get a particular percentage of the total amount. But what I am really happy about is the fact that the ticket for the biggest jackpot in the country was issued from my terminal,” said Suresh Dey, the owner.

Of the Rs 17 crore-plus lottery, 40 per cent will be taken out as taxes and one per cent will go to Shree Krishna Communication.

“Who knows who has won the jackpot' Unless the person comes forward and claims it and shows his ticket there is no way we can find out who the winner is,” Dey said.

For winners of jackpots it is not safe to reveal identity for fear of extortion in a country where even management graduates who have landed eye-popping salaries are not spared.

There are precedents where winners have either gone underground after winning or sought police protection. “Normally individuals who win big amounts wait till everything settles down. Then they silently come forward and make the claim. It is a very big amount and the winner will like to keep it a secret,” said Dey.

He could provide only two faint clues that do not do much to decrease the distance between the money and the mystery person who has become the 61st crorepati created by Sikkim Super Lotto.

“The person who has won is most probably a local guy and the ticket was purchased either on Wednesday or Thursday. Thursday being the declaration day witnesses the maximum rush of last-minute buyers,” Dey added.

The real-life mystery around the winner is in sharp contrast to the recently released movie Malamaal Weekly where Paresh Rawal and Co. wait for the lottery inspector to come and verify and deliver the Rs 1-crore windfall.

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