Looking to Play the Maharashtra Lottery Online? Read This First!
The Maharashtra lottery is 100% legit. Conducted by the Maharashtra Government, it is among the 13 lotteries in India that have been legalized. Despite this, you may be disappointed if you’re looking to play the Maharashtra lottery online. Let me explain why.
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The State Government runs at least one draw every day except on Sundays and the three national holidays – Republic Day (26 January), Independence Day (15 August) and Gandhi Jayanti (2 October). The lottery schedule has 10 draws in total, which includes 6 weekly draws and 4 mini draws. The government pays out 2,86,602 prizes worth ₹1,96,40,000 every week.
This makes it one of the safest and best Indian lotteries to play online, right? Wrong! The fact is that you can’t participate in the Maharashtra lottery online, which obviously is a big issue for those who are looking to play over the internet. Don’t worry though – there are many other online lotteries legal to play in Maharashtra which are much better.
Read on to know why I prefer international lotteries to state lotteries such as Maharashtra’s. If you, too, like playing world lottos, here is a list of online lottery sites you ought to check out:
You Can’t Purchase Tickets to the Maharashtra Lottery Online
While not the only one, this is the biggest reason to why I prefer international lotteries over the lotteries in Maharashtra and why you might too.
The Government of Maharashtra runs a paper lottery. You can’t buy tickets online. To participate, you must buy a physical paper ticket from an authorized outlet. In short, you won’t be able to play the Maharashtra lottery online no matter how much you want to.
Wondering why this is a disadvantage? Let me discuss two hypothetical situations that have all the possibilities of coming true.
The COVID-19 pandemic makes a good case in point.
If you are stuck in the middle of a global crisis as such, there is no way you would want to step out to buy lotto tickets. You would long to play the lottery online. This wouldn’t be remotely possible if you are a resident of Maharashtra.
Thankfully, we have trusted lottery sites like Lotto247, Lottoland, PlayHugeLottos, Lotto Smile and other international operators that are accessible pan India 24/7. You can buy official tickets to popular lottery draws such as EuroMillions, Powerball, Euro Jackpot and many others at your convenience without risking your life.
The second situation is security-related.
Since the Maharashtra Government has not made any effort to officially sell lotto tickets online, the market is teeming with conmen ready to scam you. You can buy the paper ticket directly from the Maharashtra State Lottery Office of Deputy Director (F.&A.) located in Sewree, Mumbai or from government-appointed agents.
So far so good.
The problem is no official list of these wholesale or retail agents is available online. The State lottery department needs them to strictly follow all issued instructions and sell tickets only from registered offices. They must display the Government Lottery logo prominently and actively promote the lottery to increase sales.
Despite all the measures, there is no dearth of scamsters purveying fake lottery tickets and innocent buyers falling into their trap. If you know the story of Suhas Kadam, you know what I am talking about.
A 44-year-old vegetable seller in Mumbai’s Nalasopara, Kadam had won a whopping ₹1.11 crore in one of the State lottery draws in Maharashtra in 2018. But his joy turned into ashes in his mouth when he visited the lottery department to claim his prize and discovered the ticket was fake.
Even more shocking was the fact that there were already three claimants of the same reward of which, only one was genuine.
Interestingly, Kadam had purchased the lottery from a government-approved center. Maharashtra lottery tickets are printed inside discreet units controlled by the RBI (Reserve Bank of India) amid high security. Each ticket carries a unique barcode which is extremely difficult to replicate.
Yet, people like Kadam get cheated every day. The irony is the lottery was initiated in 1969 to safeguard common people against illegal gambling activities like Satta Matka.
This incident case came to light because the poor fellow happened to win the prize. Now think about all those people who don’t even know they are buying fake lottery tickets.
In my honest opinion, buying tickets at an international lottery concierge website is far better and way safer. These sites are licensed and regulated by authorized bodies. If you pay for a ticket, a purchase is guaranteed. Also, they send you a scanned copy of the ticket as proof of purchase. Don’t believe me? Try your luck on these sites.
In Maharashtra You Can’t Buy Tickets From Other State Lotteries Online Either
When it comes to lotteries in India, Maharashtra marches to a different drummer altogether. Along with its own online lottery, the State Government has also banned sales of all other Indian State lotteries within its boundaries.
It means when in Maharashtra, there is no way you can play your favorite Indian lotteries online. The typical ‘won’t do, won’t let you do’ crab mentality, I’d say. This step has been supposedly taken to support the State’s growth of paper lottery.
In other words, if you want to buy tickets to Sikkim lottery or that of Goa, Kerala, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Punjab or West Bengal, you can’t do it legally in Maharashtra.
Cross-selling is not allowed, but people from other states can still buy a ticket to the lottery in Maharashtra. I am not sure if they can claim the prizes they win.
Bigshots in the State’s top ministries believe online sale of lottery tickets leads to loss of revenue. The government is incapable of controlling how such transactions happen. There is no transparency either.
My concern is if a government cannot handle transactions as clear as digital payments, in what capacity would they monitor offline payments? Wouldn’t it lead to more Suhas Kadams losing money to frauds? Luckily, international online lotteries are still open to the people of Maharashtra. Since the sites are not subject to Indian gambling laws and operate abroad, playing on them is technically not a criminal offence.
3 Reasons Not to Play the Maharashtra Lottery Even if It Was Available Online
Even though I have already made a strong point to why international lotteries are preferred over the state lottery, there is more to it. There are several reasons to why you wouldn’t want to purchase a lottery ticket to the Maharashtra lottery online even if you could do it. Let me elaborate.
1. The Prizes Are Smaller Than Those of World Lottos
The Maharashtra State lottery has existed since 12th April 1969 to provide residents of the State an opportunity to win large prizes from small investments. At the time of writing this article, the State Government runs 10 draws which are as follows:
Maharashtra Diamond Mini
Maharashtra Platinum Mini
Maharashtra Gold Mini
Maharashtra Silver Mini
The sum of the first prizes is ₹44 lakh. Compare it to ₹146.6718 crores. That’s the advertised starting jackpot in Powerball. Yet again, the price of a ticket to the Maharashtra lottery would range between ₹30 to ₹100. A Powerball ticket, on the other hand, costs $2 (~₹150). Now do the math.
2. You Don’t Get to Choose Your Combo of Lucky Numbers
The real charm in playing the lottery lies in being able to choose your own lucky numbers. Unfortunately, you can’t do it when playing the Indian lottery of Maharashtra. All you can do is buy paper tickets on which a unique number comes pre-printed.
Once the tickets are sold out, the draw is conducted publicly in front of a panel of judges. An electric machine is used to select numbers. In some cases, it is done manually. If your number is chosen, you win.
Now, online lotteries work differently. You can select your own set of numbers before you purchase your entry. Another set of numbers is chosen during the draw by the lottery operators in public. If the two sets match, you win. If two people choose the same combination of numbers and win, they share the prize.
The advantage here is such lottos aren’t based purely on luck. You can work your own miracles and increase your probability of winning. You can choose or not choose to pick certain numbers depending on their chances of showing up in winning combos. The ball is almost always in your court.
3. You Can’t Play in Syndicates
Playing the lottery in groups is better than playing alone. Of course, you’d share the prize. But you would also share the cost and improve the chances of landing a win. Such groups are known as syndicates – a common feature in most international online lotteries.
Can you play the Maharashtra State lottery in syndicates? The answer is no. You can buy the tickets in bulk, but never share the cost with someone. And that’s a huge disappointment.
Thus, I Rest My Case!
I would always prefer international lotteries to the Maharashtra lottery or any other Indian State lottery for that matter. Fun and money – both are less in the latter. The chances of getting scammed by some hoodwinker are higher.
Needless to say, the cons outweigh the pros. Therefore, even if the Maharashtra State lotto carries the Government’s seal of approval, I wouldn’t waste my time, energy and money in playing it. Would you?