2 June 2020, Dubai: A 39-year-old Indian national and UAE resident, Neeraj Tiwari, is one of the winners who shared the Emirates Loto AED 1 million prize with six others last weekend, but his story is perhaps a sign of the times. Having lived in the UAE for 12 years, Neeraj decided to take a trip home to India to see his wife and two children and subsequently ended up following quarantine procedures while there.
Planning to share his winnings with his family, he said: "Shortly after the live draw, I received an email notification followed by a call congratulating me on the win. I had to check my numbers about 100 times before I even believed I had won! I feel so lucky and blessed. If I can win, anyone can win."
Another six UAE residents including four Indian nationals, a UAE national and a Syrian also each took AED 142,857 home after matching five out of six numbers in the draw.
Muhand Nwaf Rezk, a 40-year-old executive director from Syria who has been residing in Abu Dhabi for the past ten years, was overwhelmed to find out that he had won. "This is the first time I have ever won anything," said the father of six. "With my winnings, I am going to help my family back in Syria and I will donate to Emirates Red Crescent charity as I have been supporting them for some time."
Sukhjinder Singh, a 44-year-old mechanic supervisor from India and resident of the UAE was thrilled to win the prize. Married with three children, it was the first time he had entered the Emirates Loto draw and plans to build a new home in his native Punjab and donate to Gurudwara, a local charity. "I was initially nervous when I found out I had won. When it later became a reality I felt overjoyed and incredibly emotional. Everybody has a wish in life, but fortune makes wishes a reality."
Arun Unnikrishna Pillai, a 35-year-old Indian quality control inspector who resides in the UAE, was another lucky winner of the second cash prize. "I feel truly blessed. I am going to look after my family and make some plans with the amount I have won." Muneer Kunnath, a 40-year-old office administrator, also from India and a Dubai resident said, "It feels so great. My wife and I still cannot believe it. I plan to use the funds to build a new dream home."
"During these unprecedented times being able to bring real cheer and smiles to the faces of the winners is vital. It is immensely rewarding to be able to help every draw winner pursue their dreams. To have as many as seven lucky winners share the AED 1 million last week was great, and it is fantastic to hear about winners’ plans to help loved ones and charity efforts both in the UAE and in their home countries. This generosity is a true reflection of what we stand for - changing lives for the better," said Paul Sebestyen.
The remaining two winners, an Indian national and an Emirati, have asked that their anonymity be respected.
With no jackpot winners to date, AED 50 million is still up for grabs this coming weekend. The next live draw will take place at 9.00PM on Saturday, 6 June, and can be watched live on www.emiratesloto.com, Emirates Loto’s social media platforms, and on Asianetnews Facebook page.