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Purik in China


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Purik in China map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
800 Purik Islam 0.00 % 0.00 % No No   

Purik in China

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Few sources list the existence of the small Purik people group in China. It is not known what nationality, if any, they have been classified under by the government. "The name Purig-Pa [Purik] is given by the people of Ladakh and Baltistan to the inhabitants of the Kargil area in Jammu and Kashmir. Purig-Pa means 'Of Tibetan Origin'."

The Purik language, called Purig-Skad, is a hybrid of Ladakh Tibetan and the Balti language. "Since their conversion to Islam, their language has been influenced by Balti. All the religious sermons, hymns (Qasidas), and cultic mourning (Natam) are sung in Balti or Persian." In its original form, Purik was a Western Tibetan language related to Ladakhi and the Lahuli varieties.

The Purik are one of the ancient peoples of northern India. They are a rare example of Tibetan Buddhists who recanted from their faith and embraced another religion - in this case, Islam.

Before their conversion to Islam, the Purik people held Tibetan Buddhism as their main religion. "Food and fodder were plentiful because a check on population was kept through such practices as polyandry, primogeniture and sending boys and girls to the monastery. With the introduction of Islam, the people started practicing polygamy, Muta (temporary concubinage) and division of the land among the children. As a result there has been a big increase in the population."

With the exception of half a dozen villages, all the Purik population in India are Muslims of the fanatical Shi'a sect. It is uncertain if the small number of Purik in Tibet have reconverted to Tibetan Buddhism, or if they are practicing Muslims.

The only outreach to focus on the Purik in India was undertaken by the Central Asian Mission, which worked in Kargil from the early 1900s until 1956. In addition to operating an orphanage and a medical clinic, missionary Daniel Berger translated the New Testament into Purik in 1950. Other laborers included the Mazzoni family, Nina Drew, and Betty Hall. Presently there are only three known Purik Christians in India; all live outside Kargil. There are no known Purik believers in Tibet. The Purik are considered extremely resistant to the gospel.

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Country: China
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, Northeast
Persecution Rank:27 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Total Provinces on file:1
Location in Country:A small number of people belonging to the Purik people group live in Gar County on the Tibet-India border. The vast majority of Purik inhabit the Suru Valley in the Kargil District of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The area is surrounded by Ladakh on the east and Baltistan (now controlled by Pakistan) to the north and northwest. The Purik's homeland is one of extremes. They live on the westernmost flange of the Himalayas - with peaks as high as 7,088 meters (23,250 ft.) and valleys as low as 265 meters (870 ft.) above sea level. Six months of the year Kargil is cut off from the rest of India; winter snows can accumulate up to 1 meters (40 ft.). Temperature between November and February often plummet to minus 45° Celsius (-49°F). The few Purik in Tibet live near the Bunan and Lahuli Tinan.
(Source: Operation China, 2000)
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Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Purik
People Name General: Purig-Pa
Alternate People Names:
BurigPurig Bhotia
ROP3 Code: 113383
Joshua Project People ID: 17903
Indigenous: No
Population in Country: 800
Population all Countries: 41,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Engagement Status:Unengaged (per Finishing the Task)
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
People Cluster: South Asia Tribal - Other
People Name General: Purig-Pa
Ethnic Code: MSY50r
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Purik (800 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): prx    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Islam
Religion Sub-division:Shia
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity0.00 %(Evangelical: 0.00 %)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam100.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
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]   Few evangelicals and few who claim to be Christians. Little, if any, history of Christianity.
Least-Reached: Yes
Engagement Status:Unengaged (per Finishing the Task)
GSEC Status:Level 1   Less than 2% Evangelical. Some evangelical resources available, but no active church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: 1938-1940
New Testament:
Complete Bible: None Reported
Possible Bible Sources: Forum of Bible Agencies
 World Bible Finder
 World Christian Resource Directory
 Gospel Go
Ministry Resources [7]
Audio RecordingsMegaVoice Audio Bible and Stories
Audio RecordingsAudio Bible teaching (GRN)
Ministry Activity
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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

Purik in China

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    South Asia Tribal - Other     Asia, Northeast    
      Purig-Pa China    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Purik in China          
      Religion Language  
      Islam     Purik  
    All Religions                              

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