Bhotia in India

The Bhotia have only been reported in India
Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge
* Data can be from various sources including official census, agencies, and local research. Data from these sources can sometimes differ even by orders of magnitude. Joshua Project attempts to present a conservative, balanced estimate.

Introduction / History

Essentially all Buddhist groups in India today are groups who migrated from neighboring Buddhist countries (through choice or to avoid conflict), or who live along the borders with these countries. The Bhotia are the majority people in nearby Bhutan and many live in Nepal as well. In India, they are mainly in Sikkim along the southern slopes of the Himalayas. Bhotia society was feudal in nature; there were serfs and landlords. The serfs and slaves that the Bhotias took were at the bottom of society while the landed aristocracy had the power and wealth.


What Are Their Lives Like?

In most ways, the lifestyles of India's Buddhist peoples are like those of their Hindu counterparts. However, sex roles are unusual for the Bhotia people. Women aren't forced to get married if they are not satisfied with the possible choices of husbands. Men are away for a good percentage of a year, usually on trading expeditions, so their influence on their children is far less than that of the mother. Bhotia women are noted for being competent mothers and home makers.


Descended from Tibetan immigrants, the Bhotia follow a version of Buddhism developed in Tibet that is based on the teachings of the Dalai Lama, blended with the shamanisticc Bon religion.
What Are Their Beliefs?

The majority of Bhotia are Tantrayana (Lamaistic) Buddhists. Lamaistic Buddhism was developed in Tibet and then spread among the Mongols and other minority groups in southwestern Asia. They follow the teachings of the Dalai Lama and believe that each person's well-being was determined by his behavior in previous lives. It is highly influenced by shamanism. They live in fear of their gods and constantly strive to appease them with religious chants, rituals and sacrifices. Like Hindus, Buddhists believe that existence is a continuing cycle of death and rebirth (reincarnation). As long as a person remains within the cycle of death and rebirth, he can never be completely free from pain and suffering. The cycle can only be broken by achieving nirvana, and only those who follow the Buddhist principles of the "middle way" and the "noble eight-fold path" can achieve that state.


What Are Their Needs?

The small number of Bhotia believers need discipleship materials to encourage and strengthen them in their Christian walk. They also need the power of the Holy Spirit to take Christ to their neighbors and families.


Prayer Points

Pray the hearts of the Bhotia people would be stirred to hunger after God, to drink of living water. Pray for family-based movements to soon transform Bhotia society, blessing them spiritually and economically. Pray for the Lord to move in the hearts of believers to give up their own rights and sacrifice their lives to see the Bhotia people blessed by the work of Jesus Christ, the only Savior.


Scripture Prayers for the Bhotia in India.


Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Bhotia
People Name in Country Bhotia
Pronunciation BOH-tee-ah
Alternate Names Bhotia of Bhutan; Bhotia of Sikkim; Bhutia; Dandzongka; Drukpa; Lachengpa; Lhori; Monpa; Rang; Ranks; Rongpa; Shauka; Sikkim Bhotia; Tibetan; Tibetan Bhotia; भोटिया, सिक्किम
Population this Country 136,000
Population all Countries 136,000
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 2  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 3
People ID 16449
ROP3 Code 111608
ROP25 Code 301167
ROP25 Name Bhotia
Country India
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 11  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country They inhabit all four districts of Sikkim, but they are concentrated in North Sikkim District near the Chinese border. A migrant community of Sikkimese has moved down into the Darjeeling District of West Bengal.   Source:  Peoples of the Buddhist World, 2004
Total States on file 10
Largest States
West Bengal
81,000
Uttarakhand
46,000
Uttar Pradesh
6,300
Delhi
200
Bihar
80
Chandigarh
60
Jharkhand
30
Tamil Nadu
30
Tripura
20
Punjab
10
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 11  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country They inhabit all four districts of Sikkim, but they are concentrated in North Sikkim District near the Chinese border. A migrant community of Sikkimese has moved down into the Darjeeling District of West Bengal..   Source:  Peoples of the Buddhist World, 2004
Total States 10
  West Bengal 81,000
  Uttarakhand 46,000
  Uttar Pradesh 6,300
  Delhi 200
  Bihar 80
  Chandigarh 60
  Jharkhand 30
  Tamil Nadu 30
  Tripura 20
  Punjab 10
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Religion: Buddhism
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
50.22 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
4.92 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
44.35 %
Islam
0.37 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.06 %
Unknown
0.08 %
* From latest India census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.
Primary Language Nepali (53,000 speakers)
Language Code npi   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 62
Secondary Languages
(only 15 largest shown)
Kumaoni
20,000
Sikkimese
14,000
Garhwali
6,200
Hindi
5,500
Tibetan, Amdo
4,500
Tibetan, Central
3,500
Rawat
2,100
Chaudangsi
1,500
Sherpa
1,000
Bengali
1,000
Tamang, Eastern
400
Darmiya
300
Sadri
200
Awadhi
200
Byangsi
200
Primary Language Nepali (53,000 speakers)
Language Code npi   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 62
Secondary Languages (only 15 largest shown)
  Kumaoni 20,000
  Sikkimese 14,000
  Garhwali 6,200
  Hindi 5,500
  Tibetan, Amdo 4,500
  Tibetan, Central 3,500
  Rawat 2,100
  Chaudangsi 1,500
  Sherpa 1,000
  Bengali 1,000
  Tamang, Eastern 400
  Darmiya 300
  Sadri 200
  Awadhi 200
  Byangsi 200
People Groups Speaking Nepali

Primary Language:  Nepali

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1850-1961)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1821-2010)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1914-2012)
FCBH NT (www.bible.is) Online
YouVersion NT (www.bible.com) 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 Online Audio Scripture Talking Bibles
Audio Recordings Oral Bible stories Story Runners
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video God's Story video God's Story
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Nepali Jesus Film Project
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels Bible Media Group/LUMO
Film / Video Magdalena video Jesus Film Project
Film / Video My Last Day video, anime Jesus Film Project
Film / Video New Way (Naya Goreto) Create International
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children Jesus Film Project
Film / Video The Hope Video Mars Hill Media
Film / Video World Christian Videos World Christian Videos
General Bible for Children Bible for Children
General Biblical answers to your questions Got Questions Ministry
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Scripture Earth Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
General YouVersion Bible versions in text and/or audio YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Android Bible app: Nepali YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Download audio Bible app as APK file Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App iOS Bible app: Nepali YouVersion Bibles
Text / Printed Matter Bible: Comic Book Version Super Bible / Comic Bible Society
Photo Source Indrajit Das - Wikimedia  Creative Commons 
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. Learn more.



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