Golla in India

Photo Source:  Anonymous 
Map Source:  People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project.
People Name: Golla
Country: India
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 164,000
World Population: 164,000
Primary Language: Odia
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Complete Bible
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: South Asia Hindu - other
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The word "Golla" is derived from the Sanskrit word, "Gopal" which means keeper of cows. They are known by different names such as Yadav and Patra in Odisha. There are also other occupational subgroups such as Nunia, Haldia, Panera, Chelia and Kondar among others. They have other names such as Yadav, Ahir, Gop, Ashtandra, Monda, Pedditi, Yerra, and Mon.

Their speak Telugu but they are also conversant in Hindi and other regional languages. The Golla people are spread out different states of India, but they primarily live in Odisha.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The Golla are landowners and a community that rears sheep and goats. Child labor is prevalent among the Golla. Women are involved in agriculture and animal husbandry. The women are very good in tattooing and sing folk songs.

The men folk participate in folk-dramas. They also perform holding red hot iron balls in their mouths, hot iron plates in their hands and swallowing long knives. The Golla Pedditi performs magic in the villages and receives grain and money in return.

Bride price is a prevalent practice before a wedding. The women wear vermilion, a thali and toe rings as symbols of marriage. They have a naming ceremonies on the twenty-first day after a baby is born. They have a purification ceremony on the tenth day after someone dies.

What Are Their Beliefs?

They worship Krishna. They also have village deities such as Mangala, Thakurani Rajamma and Korallama. They celebrate festivals like Dol Purnima, Rathjathra, Ganesh Puja and Lakshmi Puja. The Golla worship their agricultural implements during the major festivals. The dead are buried, and they observe death pollution for eleven days.

What Are Their Needs?

Prayer Points

Pray that God may send many Christian workers among them and meet their spiritual and physical needs.

Pray that the Golla people may be freed from the practices of magic, child labor and other social evils.

Pray that the Golla community will be uplifted and empowered to live a dignified life through education.

Text Source:   Joshua Project