Lottery tickets are no less than a jackpot. While they are lucky for some; for others, they’re just a waste of time and money. Unlike prize bonds, a lottery ticket is useless after the draw if you don’t win. Not to mention, lottery draws seldom take place here in Pakistan. In fact, it won’t be wrong to say that the lottery culture has nearly died. No state lottery has been introduced in Pakistan unlike the United States of America, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, and Malaysia which have been successfully running state lotteries and generating significant revenue by selling lottery tickets. Although recently it was making rounds that the Government of Pakistan had been considering introducing state lottery schemes, no actions have been taken so far. Given the ailing economy of Pakistan, a state lottery would be no less than a balm to Pakistan’s economic wounds. It’s no secret that the country is drowning in debt and the common man is suffering more than ever. That being said, the point to note here is that buying lottery tickets isn’t entirely illegal in the country. While a petition was filed several years ago in the Federal Shariat Court to ban lottery schemes, no amendments were made to the Constitution of Pakistan as well as the Pakistan Penal Code. Due to that, many people sell and buy lottery tickets in Pakistan but because of the failed law and order system, draws rarely take place, and those who purchase lottery tickets lose their money. In this way, millions are lost every year. On the other hand, purchasing prize bonds is also a trend in Pakistan. Though prize bonds aren’t known as lottery tickets, they’re more or less the same as the process is similar. It requires you to purchase a bond and whenever a draw happens, a few lucky people win the prize money. The only difference is that nobody really loses the money as the worth of the prize bond remains as is and it can be sold anytime. Facts and Figures: The Money That Goes to Waste As mentioned earlier, the money that people spend on purchasing lottery tickets often goes to waste. It isn’t just true for Pakistan but the entire world, even for countries like the United States of America that successfully runs lottery schemes. According to Lottery ‘n Go research, $77.3 billion are spent annually on lottery tickets in the US. The American Census Bureau further reports that gambling on lottery tickets is more common among men than women. It reports that the age of people who purchase lottery tickets is usually between 35 and 69. What makes it more interesting is the fact that 20% of the people who purchase lottery tickets win 70% of the prize money while for others, the money goes to waste. Sadly, it doesn’t stop people from buying lottery tickets and the lottery culture continues to grow in the US. Not just that, the United Kingdom and India also stand tall among the countries where lottery culture remains at its peak. As quoted by the Lottery Commission in the UK, £14.4 billion was spent on purchasing lottery tickets in the UK from 2017 to 2018. The same goes for India, even though lottery schemes are banned in many Indian states under section 419-A of the Indian Penal Code, which states that anyone found guilty of running lottery schemes could face up to 10 years in prison as well as a hefty fine shall be imposed. However, lottery schemes aren’t banned in all the Indian states. 13 Indian states, including West Bengal, Sikkim, Punjab, Nagaland, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Manipur, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Kerala, Assam, and Arunachal Pradesh allow lottery schemes. Among these Indian States, Kerala remains the hub of lottery schemes. Thousands of people travel to Palakkad, Kerala, every day to purchase lottery tickets. Moreover, it is said that there are approximately 40,000 authorized lottery agents in the State of Kerala. As of now, the Indian lottery industry is worth INR 50,000 crore, which makes it one of the vital state income sources. One reason these states are making so much money out of lottery schemes is that the draws taking place aren’t fair and 80% of the people involved are losing money. Suffice it to say, these lottery schemes are like a zero-sum game where one benefits from the other’s loss.