Introduction / History
The Kadu Kuruba are a tribal people who live in south India. Their name means "tribal people of the forest" in the language of Kannada. Since medieval times they served as soldiers in the armies of south India. Up until recent times they collected and sold honey as their main source of income. They weaved baskets and items from bamboo as another way to get income.
Where Are they Located?
In the 1970s the Kadu Karuba were removed from their forest homes by the Indian government. The trees were cut down for lumber and the land cleared for cultivation. The Kadu Kuruba must now work as day agricultural laborers. As low as their previous standard of living was, it has become lower. These days they suffer from malnutrition, poverty, unemployment and repression. Their forest homeland was distributed to businesses and individuals favored by the government.
The Kadu Kuruba speak Kannada as their primary language. They also speak other regional languages of south India.
The Kadu Kuruba live in the south Indian states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
What Are Their Lives Like?
The removal from their forest homes has drastically changed the lives of the Kadu Kuruba for the worse. For hundreds of years they gathered honey and food in the forest. They favorite food was yams with honey. They drank their own homemade liquor.
What Are Their Beliefs?
The Kadu Karuba lived in small but clean wooden huts. A fire pit filled the center of the hut. Girls were married as early as age 12. Modern conveniences like electricity, indoor plumbing and access to clean water were unknown to them. They practiced traditional medicine. Literacy was low. They had no concept of private property. Their own priests not Brahmins performed important life rituals.
Now the lives of the Kadu Kuruba are in a state of flux. They have not adjusted well to their new lives. Their children do now have more access to more educational opportunities, but their poverty forces children to work in the fields with their parents.
The Kadu Kuruba are Hindus. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. They worship Shiva and Shakti or energy in the form of a stone. They see stone as the source of all life. As a tribal people they are often excluded from Hindu temples. They also worship their ancestors who they ask to protect them from evil spirits.
What Are Their Needs?
The Kadu Kuruba participate in the yearly Hindu holidays of Holi, the festival of colors, Diwali, the festival of lights, Navratri, the nine-day celebration of autumn and
Maha Shivaratri, the great night of Shiva.
The needs of the Kadu Kuruba are overwhelming. They need a regular source of basic income and food. They need homes to live in, access to clean water and modern medicine. Most of all, they need to hear about Jesus Christ who has promised to meet all their needs if they receive him as their Lord and Savior.
* Scripture Prayers for the Kadu Kuruba in India.
Pray that the Lord uses the hardships of the Kadu Kuruba to drive them away from Hinduism and into the love of God in Christ.
Pray the Lord sends Christian workers to help the Kadu Kuruba in both their spiritual and physical needs.
Pray the tiny number of Kadu Kuruba Christians might grow into large Bible believing churches.