Far in Northeast India is a state nestled among the clouds called Meghalaya. In this scenically beautiful state in the northeast, every year a game of lottery called “Teer” is held with quite a fun fare with tourists from far of places thronging to this little northeastern state Meghalaya, also called the “Scotland of India”.
With little titbits about Teer: a unique lottery game for archers in Meghalaya, learn why this game so important in the lives of the people of Meghalaya.
Teer: Short History
The game of Teer is an archery game that was initially played in Shillong of Meghalaya state of India. Later the game gained its popularity in the other regions of the state and now more than thousands of Teer counters are there in Shillong, Khanapara and some other parts of Meghalaya. Now Teer is being played in Khanapara, Shillong, and Juwai.
Traditionally called “Thom Tim”, Teer is a lottery game based on interpretation of dreams and archery. The better a person can interpret dreams, more the chances of winning.
There are multiple theories about interpreting dreams but at the core, the aim is to translate these dreams into numbers and bet on them. One can bet on a number with as low as INR 1 but still stand a chance to win up to INR 80.
Considered as the most unique game of lottery in the world, about 20 archers session after session gathers around at the shooting ground every single day. First at 4 pm and then again at 4:30 pm.
The game of “Teer” dates back to the 20th century when various clubs from various localities and villages in and around Shillong gathered at a shooting range for an annual shooting game.
With time this archery game took a gambling turn and soon after 1950, “Teer” became an archery match cum gambling match.
“Teer” is a legal match legalized by the state government only in 1982, the sport now has an online presence as well.
How Teer is played
The game is very simple. You just have to predict the last two digits of the total number of arrows that hit the target. For example, if 1,050 arrows hit the target, then the winning number is 50, and if 1,075 arrows hit then the winning number is 75, and so forth.
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Though no official figures are available, it is estimated that there are over 5,000 “Teer” counters across Meghalaya. Every counter needs a license to operate. It is the owners of this counters who are the big fish of this business.
He daily archery game is conducted by the Khasi Hills Archery Sports Association, which is a group of 12 archery clubs from a particular locality of Shillong. Every day, 50 archers shoot 30 arrows each at 3.30 pm and 20 arrows in the second round at 4.30 pm.
The archers are paid Rs 250 to 300 a day. The traditional target is made of cane and is placed at a distance of 50 yards.
It’s a Win-Win situation
Two results are announced every day – for the first round at 3:30 pm and the second round at 4:30 pm. A person can win Rs 80 for every Re 1 gambled on a number in the first round and Rs 60 for every Re 1 spent on the second round.
If one is able to predict the number of both the first and second round, then the winning amount is much higher – as high as Rs 4,000 for every Rs 1 gambled.
This is why people are lured to “Teer”. Greed, dreams, luck, and tradition has kept the betting game alive and well in Shillong.
You can check out daily results on www.teerman.in
Important note: Teer is only legal in Meghalaya and only Meghalaya people of age above 18 years are allowed to participate in the game.