A Sharjah resident who scooped Dh1 million in the recent weekly Mahzooz draw says it will help pay off his mounting debts.
Baranidaran Cannappane, 40, said the win has brought him financial relief as he has more than Dh200,000 in loans to pay off in the UAE.
The Indian father-of-two, who earns less than Dh9,000 a month as an IT professional, was one of two people to take home half of the Dh2 million grand prize on August 7.
“I play every week and sometimes win Dh35 but this time I felt something would happen, I felt my luck would change,” he told The National.
“My lucky number is seven and guess what, I won the big prize on August 7 in draw number 37.
“I bought seven lines for that draw and when I was checking my numbers, nothing, then I got to line six and matched five numbers.
“I was with my wife and children and we were laughing, screaming, jumping. We were so excited.”
Living in the UAE for 10 years, Mr Cannappane lives in a small, one-bedroom apartment in Sharjah with his wife and two children; a daughter, 8, and a son, 3.
As the sole breadwinner, he said a "huge weight has been lifted" off his shoulders as he has been supporting his elderly parents in India as well as his mother and father-in-law back home.
“I have debts here and in India because I had to pay for things like my wedding, medical bills and education expenses for different members of my family,” he said.
“I always worry about money because when I pay one loan off another mounts up.
“With this money, I can now settle the full debt, about Dh200,000, and a similar amount in India.”
Due to the pandemic, Mr Cannappane said he has not been home for two years and plans to surprise his parents with the news when he visits at the end of the year.
Deepa Kalathil, 50, was the second lucky winner to bag Dh1 million in Saturday’s draw and she received the news after landing for a vacation in India.
“It is great to finally reunite with our parents after a long time, but this time it was a unique moment to cherish forever as I was a brand-new millionaire,” she said.
“I am speechless and really don’t know how to explain the overwhelming joy I felt. I saw my parents and won Dh1 million on the same day.”
The 50-year-old, who works for a market research company, has lived in the UAE with her family for 18 years and has participated in Mahzooz from day one.
“My husband and I participate in the draw on a weekly basis, and we would always tease each other whose door luck would knock on first,” she said.
“We are so thrilled that I finally became a lucky Mahzooz millionaire.”