Introduction / History
The Rajbhar people are among the original peoples in South Asia. Some would regard them as "scheduled castes" while others believe they are "other backward castes." In either case, they have low status in Hindu society.
Where are they located?
Most of the Rajbhar live scattered throughout India's eastern states, but a smaller number live either in Bangladesh or Nepal. One report says they also have a large community in India's state of Uttar Pradesh.
What are their lives like?
Agriculture is their main work. Many of them work for other people, especially Muslims. The more fortunate ones among them are shop owners. They are not vegetarians, but rice is their staple food. The only meat they will not eat is beef because of their Hindu beliefs.
Like other peoples in South Asia they have birth and marriage rituals, and they cremate their dead. On the death of the father, sons inherit the property. They do not use family planning. They do not condemn sexual immorality. Marriages are usually monogamous, unless the first wife approves him taking a second wife. When a spouse dies, the widowed is allowed to remarry. They have a community council to look after their needs and to settle their disputes.
What are their beliefs?
Almost all are Hindu. Traditionally they were especially devoted to the Hindu god Shiva. Today they worship many Hindu gods and participate in festivals like Holi and Diwali. They fear evil spirits so much that some will sacrifice a pig to protect themselves from harm.
What are their needs?
The Rajbhar people need to have the chance to live life to the full through a relationship with Jesus Christ (Jn 10:10). They need freedom from fear of evil spirits.
* Pray for a "Book of Acts" type of movement to Christ among the Rajbhar people.
* Pray for the Rajbhar people to understand and embrace that Jesus wants to bless their families and neighborhoods.
* Pray for Holy Spirit anointed believers from the Rajbhar people to change their society from within.
* Pray for a movement in which the Holy Spirit leads and empowers disciples to make more disciples.
* Pray for a movement of Jesus to heal and strengthen Rajbhar communities in India and Bangladesh.
Text source: Keith Carey