People-in-Country Profile

People Selector:
Print version:
Step 1 - Select a Country:   Send us your updates!
Step 2 - Select a People:  

Bunan in China


Send us a photo of this people.  [1]

Bunan in China map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
2,200 Gahri Buddhism 0.20 % 0.20 % No No   

Bunan in China

Profile Text
Submit Profile Text:

The Bunan are a little-known people group. They are not mentioned in Chinese literature, so it is uncertain how they are officially classified. They may have been included in the Tibetan nationality because of linguistic and religious similarities. The area of China where they live is so remote that it is possible they were not counted at all in the Chinese census.

Numerous small ethnolinguistic peoples live along the Tibetan border with India and Nepal in very sparsely populated locations. China and India had several armed border clashes in the 1950s and 1960s. China has since claimed thousands of square miles of territory from India, including the area inhabited by the Bunan.

Bunan culture has been heavily influenced by their devotion to Tibetan Buddhism. Their lives are a long struggle against harsh winters. Because very little fruit or vegetables can grow in the Bunan region, their diet is comprised almost entirely of meat, fat, and yak yogurt.

Many Bunan make annual pilgrimages to Lake Manasarovar and Mt. Kailas - two holy Buddhist sites in western Tibet. The Bunan are trapped in an endless cycle of doing good works, a vain bid to ensure a better reincarnation in the next life.

The Bunan's isolated homeland is so remote that few outsiders have ever traveled there. The Indian government, who also claim the territory inhabited by the Bunan, did not find out that the Chinese had built a road there until two years after it was completed. The Bunan in India had parts of the Bible translated into their language by missionaries in 1911, but these have been out of print since 1923. Currently the Christians located closest to the Bunan are the small number of Moravian believers found among the Ladakhi people of northern India.

View Bunan in all countries.

Prayer Links
Global Prayer Digest: 2010-08-10
  Submit Update:
Country: China
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, Northeast
Persecution Rank:23 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Location in Country:Approximately 6,000 Gahri (Bunan) people live on both sides of the remote India-China border in the western Himalayan mountains. The Ethnologue lists a 1997 estimate of 4,000 Gahri living in the Gahr Valley in the north Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. A further 1,500 Gahri people live across the border in an extremely isolated area of western Tibet.
(Source: Peoples of the Buddhist World, 2004)
Submit Map:
Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
Submit Update:
People Name in Country: Bunan
People Name General: Bunan
Alternate People Names:
Keylong BoliLahaula
Lahuli of BunanPoonan
ROP3 Code: 114018
Joshua Project People ID: 18423
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 2,200
Population all Countries: 2,200
Least-Reached: Yes
Engagement Status:Unengaged (per Finishing the Task)
Affinity Bloc: Tibetan-Himalayan Peoples
People Cluster: Tibetan
People Name General: Bunan
Ethnic Code: MSY50r
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
Submit Update:
Primary Language: Gahri (2,200 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): bfu    Ethnologue Listing
Primary Dialect:Bunan
Dialect Code:2424
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
Submit Update:
Primary Religion: Buddhism
Major Religions:
Buddhism99.80 % 
Christianity0.20 %(Evangelical: 0.20 %)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent100.00 %
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
Submit Update:
Bible Portions: 1911-1923
New Testament: None Reported
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
Register Ministry Activity:
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

Bunan in China

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Tibetan     Asia, Northeast    
      Bunan China    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Bunan in China          
      Religion Language  
      Buddhism     Gahri  
    All Religions                              

Direct link: