Guwahati, Wednesday, August 28, 2019
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Bangladesh approaches Meghalaya officials to check teer menace
Staff correspondent
 SHILLONG, Aug 27 - The popular gambling sport, teer, in Meghalaya has caught the fancy of people in the neighbouring country of Bangladesh. Bangladesh officials said a lot of their nationals have fallen for gambling in the form of teer, especially in Sylhet district, since the past few years.

 Teer results, which are declared around 4 pm every day by shooting arrows at targets by different ‘teams’ at Polo here, quickly travel across the border to Bangladesh through mobile phones and the Internet from agents in Meghalaya.

The prizes are the same in Bangladesh as in Meghalaya. This gambling sport is attractive as the returns are huge. In Meghalaya, teer is legal, and forms a good chunk of the State’s own revenue collection.

However, in Bangladesh, gambling is proscribed by Islamic law. But lure for easy money has made a large number of people addicted to this form of gambling.

“Young boys and girls have fallen victims to teer. We have been making arrests almost every day, but somehow the agents from Meghalaya still manage to reach people at our place,” Bangladesh’s Sylhet district Superintendent of Police, Md Fariduddin, told this correspondent here.

In fact, agents from Meghalaya have now developed mobile apps called Shillong Teer and others. Some of these gambling apps are also available on the Google Play Store. Many of these apps are, however, unstable and loaded with viruses.

The Sylhet SP said people in Bangladesh download these apps and place bets through online payment gateways. Once the results are declared in Shillong, payments are made through the same mode.

“Sylhet district is mostly affected by teer. There are several people who gamble daily through these apps and lose their hardearned money. The agents in Meghalaya should be stopped. We have sought cooperation from our Indian counterparts,” Fariduddin said.

Apart from young school and college students, people from poorer sections like rickshaw pullers and daily labourers, have been addicted to this form of gambling.

“From our end we are doing whatever is possible, but unless we get cooperation from our Indian counterparts, the situation may worsen which is a big concern for the entire society,” Fariduddin said.

Meanwhile, the issue of teer was raised by officials from Bangladesh during the recent Deputy Commissioner-level meeting held between India and Bangladesh here. Authorities in Meghalaya have assured their cooperation to Bangladesh in this regard, officials said.

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