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Birjia in India


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Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
13,000 Bijori Hinduism 15.38 % Unknown Not available Not available   

Birjia in India

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Introduction / History
"Oh, this hand of mine!" said the young Birjia woman. She went on to explain in a matter of fact way, tenderly lifting her limply hanging left hand with the right one: "Last year I met with an accident and broke this hand. I don't have enough money to go to the town hospital. Initially there was pain, but now, not much, and I got used to working with one hand. You see, as well as that my husband passed away a few months ago, and I'm earning for the whole family." This Birjia woman, not in a position to afford medical treatment for her broken hand, had managed to live with it!

Where are they located?
Birjia, or Birgia, people are also known as the Bijori. They number about 5,500 and live mainly in Jharkahand, and some parts of Chhattisgarh. They basically live in the interior of the forests and do not have proper access to the outside world; as a result they lack education and proper medical facilities. Their forest territory is inhabited by a lot of wild animals. The wild animals constantly pose a threat to their crops and their lives.

What are their beliefs?
Despite such a small population of Birjia, there are about 1000 Christians, the reason being their receptivity to the Gospel message. There are more than 10 churches, which include house churches. It is good to see some Birjia Christians working as pastors, reaching their own people with the Good News. There are also some cross-cultural evangelists. The people are very positive towards any Christian activity. One Birjia Christian is very interested in translating God's Word into his mother tongue. These people are in need of education, medical help and community development. A strong Birjia Christian community would be established only if God's Word is given to them in the language they can best understand - Birjia.

What are their needs?
Birjia people are economically very poor; most of them still depend on forest products for their livelihood now. They are short-statured and not very healthy, due to malnutrition. The literacy rate is also very low among them. However the people are very good-natured, and are happy to see outsiders. They warmly welcome even a stranger, and offer to help in every possible way.

Prayer Points
* The often neglected Birjia people to be given benefits from the government.
* Christian workers to go as educationalists, medical workers, Bible translators and literacy workers.
* The growing number of Birjia Christians to be rooted in God's Word.

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Country: India
Continent: Asia
Region: South Asia
Persecution Rank:11 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Population in Country:13,000
Largest States:
Jharkhand (6,700)Odisha (3,900)
West Bengal (1,100)Maharashtra (500)
Assam (400)Bihar (200)
Tripura (20)
Total States on file:7
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Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Birjia
People Name General: Birjia
Alternate People Names:
ROP3 Code: 111627
Joshua Project People ID: 16463
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 13,000
Population all Countries: 13,000
Least-Reached: No
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
People Cluster: Hindi
People Name General: Birjia
Ethnic Code: CNN25g
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Bijori (7,400 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): bix    Ethnologue Listing
Secondary Languages:
Hindi (2,800)Odia (1,800)
Bengali (300)Assamese (300)
Munda (200)Santhali (100)
Bhojpuri (70)Magahi (50)
Marathi (40)Mundari (30)
Note: Only 10 largest secondary languages listed
Total Languages: 15
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.11 % 
Christianity15.38 %(Evangelical: Data not available)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism61.13 % 
Islam0.30 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.01 % 
Unknown23.08 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent0.00 %
Protestant0.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic0.00 %
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Evangelicals have only a very small representation among all who claim to be Christians.
Least-Reached: No
GSEC Status:Level 2   Less than 2% Evangelical. Initial (localized) church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: Help start a Bible Translation
New Testament: None Reported
Complete Bible: None Reported
Ministry Resources [7]
Audio RecordingsMegaVoice Audio Bible and Stories
Audio RecordingsAudio Bible teaching (GRN)
Ministry Activity
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Networking: Visit for networking possibilities.
Description: Register your ministry activity among this people group. Contact the Adopt-A-People Clearinghouse and Unleashed for the Unreached to learn about others that might be focused on this people group.
Data Notes
Data Sources

Birjia in India

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Hindi     South Asia    
      Birjia India    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Birjia in India          
      Religion Language  
      Hinduism     Bijori  
    All Religions                              

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