Abu Dhabi: After getting the best possible Eid news — winning Dh10 million and becoming an instant millionaire in the latest Big Ticket Draw — Indian expat Sanjai Nath R says he doesn’t plan to let money change him, and will instead use his winnings on family and those in need.

Nath, 37, from Kerala, who won the big cash prize on Monday evening, purchased the winning ticket number 211711 on the last day of May, showing why it’s better to be late than never.

“It came as a huge surprise to me when I found out that I had won,” said the Sharjah resident, who works as a designer. “My mobile phone was initially switched off when the organisers were trying to reach me as I was in the hospital with my son. When I eventually turned my phone on I saw that I had received a ton of messages congratulating me.”

Nath added that the cash prize would be shared with a group of six friends who all contributed to the winning pot, which works out at Dh1.6 million assuming the split is equal.

“We always buy the ticket together as a big group, this was our ninth time taking part. We stopped checking the live announcements after around the second time because we didn’t really think we would get so lucky, buying the ticket became like a routine for us in the end.”

Asked on what he plans to do with his large share, Nath said he doesn’t plan on changing anything about his lifestyle.

“It’s still a lot to process at the moment but with this money I would like to use it to support my family and to also give whatever I can to people in need. Even before this win I used to donate money to people in need from my own salary, and so now I’ll be able to continue doing that with even more money.

“I firmly believe that we should do whatever good we can in life, money is just paper at the end of the day and there’s no use for me to keep all this money just for myself. Whatever good thing you do will eventually come back to you, and that’s how I look at this win,” he added.

As for other people who hope to one day win the big crash prize, Nath said that they should just keep trying.

“One day it can be their lucky turn, I tried many many times and eventually it was my turn, if I stopped after the fifth or sixth time I would never have won. So just keep going and believe, and soon they might be getting that phone call telling them that they have just won millions.”

Held at Abu Dhabi Airport every month, the Big Ticket Draw is the UAE’s largest and longest running monthly raffle draw with the cost of one raffle ticket coming at a cost of Dh500. With its large sums of cash prizes, the Big Ticket is one of the country’s most popular raffle draws and sees the participation of not only residents living in the UAE but many from abroad as well who purchase their tickets online or at Abu Dhabi Airport when travelling.

Next month’s Big Ticket Draw promises an even bigger cash prize of Dh12 million.