Kerala, the Gods own country, added another first to its cap in 1967, when a lottery department was setup for the first time in India. The right idea came from the then Finance Minister of Kerala, the late Shri. P. K. Kunju Sahib, who envisaged revenue from sale of lotteries as a major source of non-tax revenue for the state, at the same time providing a stable income source for the poor and the common. Within no time, the department has grown throughout the length and breadth of Kerala by contributing to the needful.
It had the late Shri. P. K. Seydu Mohammed as its first Director, in fact its founder Director. The department which came into existence on September 1, 1967, released its first lottery ticket on November 1, the same year. The ticket valued at Re. 1 carried first prize money of Rs. 50,000. The first draw took place after more than 60 days i.e., on January 26.
With its humble beginning, the department was to set an example for the entire country. Soon many other states jumped into the bandwagon by starting their own lotteries. However, Kerala State Lotteries remains atop all of them, thanks to its credibility, transparency and reliability and its effective measures for agents’ welfare. Starting with just one lottery.
The department now rolls out seven weekly lotteries viz. Pratheeksha, Dhanasree, Win-Win, Akshaya, Bhagyanidhi, Karunya and Pournami lotteries and six bumper lotteries. The department, which started with a few personnel, now has around 465 employees under its Directorate located at Vikas Bhavan at Thiruvananthapuram, 14 District Offices and a Regional Deputy Directorate at Ernakulam. The department which was initially under the Department of Finance was later brought under the Taxes Department.