Bahelia (Hindu traditions) in India


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge
* From latest India census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.

Introduction / History

The Hindu Bahelia people live in India and Bangladesh. Before the coming of the Muslim Moguls, they were part of Rajput armies. Some Bahelia decided to join the Mogul armies while others ran away to the forests and became hunter-gatherers. They survived by catching birds and animals and extracting honey. Taking such jobs led to them losing their Rajput status to become Dalits, people outside the Hindu caste system. Dalits are discriminated against in Hindu society. The Bahelia were active in the Indian independence movement.

The primary language of the Bahelia is Hindi. Many resources are available in Hindi including a complete Bible, radio programs and the JESUS Film. There are few if any Bahelia believers.

Most Bahelia people live in Uttar Pradesh, an Indian state where few that follow Christ. There are smaller numbers of them in Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal.


What Are Their Lives Like?

Since they do not own land, many Bahelia work as day and farm laborers. They have a tradition of making fans with peacock feathers and selling the birds they catch in the forest. Government policy is to limit the catching of birds and animals since their numbers have drastically declined in recent years.

India's development programs are improving the lives of the Bahelia people. They are taking advantage of their educational opportunities, and their literacy rate is improving, especially among boys. Their health care is also improving with the introduction of modern medicine.

Bahelia marry within their group. Families arrange marriages with the consent of the young people. Bahelia couples tend to have a large number of children. Sons are required to take care of elderly relatives. Village elders make judicial decisions and deal with cases of divorce. Some young people are leaving the villages and moving to Indian cities in hope of the better life.


What Are Their Beliefs?

The Bahelia people practice Hinduism, the ancient religion of India. Hinduism is a catch-all phrase for the local religions of South Asia, so it is very diverse. At the popular level, Hindus worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. They visit Hindu temples and offer prayers, food, flowers, and incense to their gods in hopes of gaining protection and benefits. They do not have a personal or familial relationship with their gods like Christians do. There are other Hindus who are much more philosophical, especially among the Brahmins.

Almost all Hindus participate in yearly celebrations like Holi, the festival of colors and the start of spring / Diwali, the festival of lights / Navratri, the celebration of autumn / and Rama Navami, Rama’s birthday.


What Are Their Needs?

The Bahelia need good schools for their children. They need new job skills to prosper in modern Indian. Most of all, the Bahelia must hear the good news about Jesus Christ. He alone can forgive their sins and give them a bright hope for the future.


Prayer Points

Pray that God will send workers to the Bahelia who will show them the way to Jesus Christ.

Pray for the Holy Spirit to work on the hearts and minds of Bahelia leaders to make them open to the gospel.

Pray for a disciple making movement among the Bahelia in this decade.

Pray that the Lord will move the Bahelia to listen to gospel radio programs.


Scripture Prayers for the Bahelia (Hindu traditions) in India.


References

http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/issue/day/dusadh-bahelia-in-india/

wikipedia.org/wiki/Baheliya


Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Bahelia (Hindu traditions)
People Name in Country Bahelia (Hindu traditions)
Population this Country 215,000
Population all Countries 218,000
Total Countries 2
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 4
Alternate Names Ahuliya; Bahelia; Baheliya; Bahila; Baila; Bailia; Boila; Chirimar; बहेलिया (हिंदू ट्रेडिशन्स)
People ID 16288
ROP3 Code 111413
Country India
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 10  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file 13
Largest States
Uttar Pradesh
169,000
Madhya Pradesh
22,000
Chhattisgarh
10,000
West Bengal
6,800
Uttarakhand
4,200
Maharashtra
500
Delhi
400
Chandigarh
200
Haryana
100
Punjab
100
Odisha
70
Tripura
30
Himachal Pradesh
20
Districts Interactive map, listing and data download
Specialized Website South Asia Peoples
Country India
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 10  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States 13
  Uttar Pradesh 169,000
  Madhya Pradesh 22,000
  Chhattisgarh 10,000
  West Bengal 6,800
  Uttarakhand 4,200
  Maharashtra 500
  Delhi 400
  Chandigarh 200
  Haryana 100
  Punjab 100
  Odisha 70
  Tripura 30
  Himachal Pradesh 20
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Language Hindi (133,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 13
Secondary Languages
Kanauji
19,000
Awadhi
13,000
Chhattisgarhi
5,500
Bengali
5,500
Bhojpuri
3,000
Bundeli
1,500
Kumaoni
700
Garhwali
300
Nimadi
100
Braj Bhasha
70
Odia
70
Pahari, Mahasu
20
Primary Language Hindi (133,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 13
Secondary Languages
  Kanauji 19,000
  Awadhi 13,000
  Chhattisgarhi 5,500
  Bengali 5,500
  Bhojpuri 3,000
  Bundeli 1,500
  Kumaoni 700
  Garhwali 300
  Nimadi 100
  Braj Bhasha 70
  Odia 70
  Pahari, Mahasu 20
People Groups Speaking Hindi

Primary Language:  Hindi

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1806-1962)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1811-1998)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1835-2019)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Audio Recordings DAVAR Partners recording, Old Testament DAVAR Partners International
Audio Recordings Online New Testament Faith Comes by Hearing
Audio Recordings Online New Testament Faith Comes by Hearing
Audio Recordings Online New Testament Faith Comes by Hearing
Audio Recordings Online New Testament Faith Comes by Hearing
Audio Recordings Online New Testament Faith Comes by Hearing
Audio Recordings Online New Testament Faith Comes by Hearing
Audio Recordings Online New Testament Faith Comes by Hearing
Audio Recordings Oral Bible stories One Story
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video A Beautiful Hope (EngSub) Create International
Film / Video Coconuts Create International
Film / Video Creation to Christ Create International
Film / Video Following Jesus video Jesus Film Project
Film / Video God's Story video God's Story
Film / Video Indigitube.tv Video / Animation Create International
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Hindi Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Love letter to you from scripture Father's Love Letter
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels Bible Media Group/LUMO
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
0.07 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
99.89 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.03 %
Unknown
0.00 %
* From latest India census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.
Photo Source Anonymous 
Map Source People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project  
Profile Source Joshua Project  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more