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Sapna Nair with her family, holidaying in Serbia during the Eid break. Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: After winning the big cash prize of Dh12 million in the latest monthly Big Ticket Draw, Indian expatriate Sapna Nair says she wants to put that money to good use for her family and charitable causes.

Nair, who is married and has a five-year old daughter, won the jackpot on Wednesday evening with her winning ticket number 217892, which she had purchased online on June 9.

“I am still coming to terms with the news, it’s not even been 24 hours since I found out and so it’s a lot to take in,” said Nair, who works as a senior structural engineer.

“I made my way to the office as usual the following morning trying to put all my focus and attention on my work because it isn’t an easy job, I have to be fully concentrated and so I am trying to go on as usual as possible,” she added. Nair says she doesn’t have any plans on changing her lifestyle, admitting that she enjoys her job and wants to continue. “I haven’t really thought of everything that I am going to do, I love my job and so I don’t envision making big changes.”

Her husband meanwhile, Prem, was also shocked when he heard the news from her.

‘Huge surprise’

“I didn’t tell him that I had bought a ticket for the draw and so when I told him that I had won Dh12 million he was shocked by the news, it was a huge surprise for him.”

Nair said that she wants to use a portion of the winnings to help others, an idea she said was even shared by her young daughter Nakshaetra.

“When I told my daughter about the news and that I had won all this money she didn’t initially understand it, but when I explained it to her she told me that we should go and buy clothes and give it out to the people who need it. I couldn’t believe it when she said that, I was so happy and proud of her when I heard that, it’s amazing for such a young girl to be thinking with this mindset,” she added. “My daughter is my lucky charm, I want to also use the money for her and her future, as a mother I have to do that,” Nair added.

Nair’s advice for others hoping to also become a Big Ticket winner one day was to keep trying. “This was around my fourth time taking part so anything is always possible. I didn’t really plan it all out to buy a ticket, I just decided to randomly purchase it on that day and telling myself let’s see what will happen.

“I wasn’t even keeping track of the live announcement for the winner, and so when I got the phone call from the organisers I was so shocked and surprised, a part of me thought that this was a prank until I finally confirmed all the details,” she added.

Held at Abu Dhabi International Airport every month, the Big Ticket Draw is the UAE’s largest and longest running raffle draw. The monthly event has been proven to be hugely popular thanks to its high winning returns, with participants including both residents and people living outside the country whom can buy tickets online.