Bania (Muslim traditions) in Afghanistan

The Bania (Muslim traditions) have only been reported in Afghanistan
Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The Vania people are also called Bania or Mahajan. The word Vania is derived from Vaniji, which means "trader" in Sanskrit. The Vania community has gotras or clans. Many of their clan names are based on the names of the place they are from. Though most Banias are in India, there are a fair number of them in other nearby countries including Afghanistan. Those in Afghanistan are Muslim, which is unusual for this people group with Hindu roots.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Money lending, business, trade, jewelry-making, and agriculture are the traditional occupations of the Vania. Floor painting and folk songs represent the Vania's art and culture. Social interactions and personal relationships among the Banias revolve around extended families and caste connections. This is complicated by the fact these Banias are Muslim, which separates them from the Hindu Banias.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Most Vanias are Hindu by religion, but those in Afghanistan are Sunni Muslims. At one time in their history, they were converted to Islam by Muslim saints. PrayerPray for a Disciple Making Movement among the Banias in Afghanistan in the 2020s. Pray for them to have hearts that long for true spiritual nourishment that can only come from Jesus Christ. Pray for the Lord to pave the way for the gospel to move among the Banias in Afghanistan. Pray for Bania community leaders to open the door to allowing Jesus Christ to bless their families.

Prayer Points

* Scripture Prayers for the Bania (Muslim traditions) in Afghanistan.

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

Additional Info
Bania profile for Children and Family Missions Activities
People Name General Bania (Muslim traditions)
People Name in Country Bania (Muslim traditions)
Pronunciation BAHN-yuh
Population this Country 6,600
Population all Countries 6,600
Total Countries 1
Indigenous No
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
Pioneer Workers Needed 1
Alternate Names बनिया (मुस्लिम ट्रेडिशन्स)
People ID 19423
ROP3 Code 115168
Country Afghanistan
Region Asia, Central
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 1  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Country Afghanistan
Region Asia, Central
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 1  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)

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Ethnolinguistic map or other map

Primary Language Urdu (6,600 speakers)
Language Code urd   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Urdu (6,600 speakers)
Language Code urd   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Urdu

Primary Language:  Urdu

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1747-1894)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1758-2000)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1843-2007)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching (Global Recordings Network)
Audio Recordings Online New Testament - Pakistan Bible Society (Faith Comes By Hearing)
Audio Recordings Online Scripture (Talking Bibles)
Audio Recordings Oral Bible
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)
Audio Recordings Urdu Online Audio Bible
Film / Video God's Love Story
Film / Video God's Story Video
Film / Video Video / Animation
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Urdu
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels
Film / Video Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime)
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)
Film / Video The Hope Video
Film / Video The Prophets' Story
Film / Video The Savior 6 - The Lord's Prayer
Film / Video The Savior 8 - Jesus is Risen
General Four Spiritual Laws
General Gospel resources links (Scripture Earth)
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.20 %)
0.23 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
0.00 %
95.00 %
2.77 %
Other / Small
2.00 %
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
100.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Profile Source Joshua Project  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


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