Introduction / History
Kota is one of the 19 indigenous people groups in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Their population is small, less than 1000 people. They live only in seven villages scattered around the Nilgiris District. Many of the Kota are unable to read and write. A small fraction of the Kota claim to be followers of Jesus Christ. The Kota have their own language of Kota. Some men speak Tamil and Kannada to be able to communicate with outsiders.
What Are Their Lives Like?
These rural people have millet and rice as their staple foods. Their diet also consists of tamarind juice, vegetables, eggs, chicken, and mutton. The main occupations of the Kota are agriculture and animal husbandry. They add to their diet by fishing and hunting. Elders settle legal disputes and promote their interests.
What Are Their Beliefs?
The Kota people have both a mother goddess and a father god who they worship. They have their own religious festivals. The Kota consider themselves to be Hindus. However, a Brahmin priest would see them more as animists than Hindu. Some Kota have shown interest in the gospel. Since the late 1840s the gospel was introduced to them by Basel German Evangelical Mission. The Church of England, the Zenana Missionary Society and (from 1935) Freewill Baptist missionary Miss. Laura Belle Barnard, from the U. S. tried to reach this particular people group around Kotagiri in the Nilgiris District. Though missionaries and Christian workers tried their best to present Christ for the past 175 years through various ways and means, the Kotas have been mostly unresponsive to the gospel.
What Are Their Needs?
The Hindu Kota people need to experience abundant life that only Jesus Christ can offer their community. They need to see God’s love demonstrated to them in practical ways. Many Kota lack access to modern medicine, electricity, indoor plumbing, and schools for their children.
* Scripture Prayers for the Kota in India.
Ask the Lord to provide the Kota with their physical needs by using God’s people. Pray for a disciple making movement among the Kota people this decade. Pray for the Lord to send out workers to the Kota people to show them God’s love for them.