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Puroik in China


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Puroik in China map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
500 Puroik Ethnic Religions 0.00 % 0.00 % No No   

Puroik in China

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The Puroik are officially counted as part of the Lhoba nationality in China. All people in Arunachal Pradesh in India know the Puroik as the Sulung, a Bangni term meaning "slaves." Arunachal Pradesh is one of the most ethnically diverse regions in the world. "With a total population of less than one million, 70% is tribal, containing 21 major tribal groupings with over 100 ethnically distinct subgroupings."

Although the Puroik claim to be the original inhabitants of the area, for centuries they have been virtual slaves of the larger Nishi tribe. The Nishi formerly had intermediaries called gingdungs who arranged for the ransom of Puroik people, and in that way kept them trapped in dire poverty. Puroik legends "tell of the great journeys they made over the wild and lonely hills and of the heroic pioneers who made the first clearings in the forest. It is part of their reverence for the dead, whose spirits they believe still haunt the countryside."

The Puroik live in very small groups comprised of just a few families living together. They are a secretive and furtive people who prefer to be left alone. The Puroik are renowned as mighty hunters. The primitive mountains contain ten species of pheasants, as well as tigers, leopards, snow leopards, and goat antelope.

The primary religion among the Puroik is called Donyi-Polo (The Sun and the Moon). They also worship a complex hierarchy of spirits, gods, and ghosts. "Not only do particular parts of nature (plants, animals, celestial bodies, etc.) carry a divine presence, but there is a notion that spiritual energy can be exchanged between humans and these spiritually charged natural phenomena."

There are a handful of known Puroik believers on the Indian side of the border, but none in Chinese territory. Unlike other tribal areas in northeast India which have been heavily Christianized, Arunachal Pradesh remains largely animist. One secular anthropologist reported, "The handful of Christians I met in Arunachal Pradesh all spoke of the importance of maintaining traditional rituals as a way of preserving their ethnic identity, despite the strong pressure against this on the part of fundamentalist Christian missionaries."

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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 4,500 members of the small Puroik tribe inhabit mountainous jungle terrain in the East Kameng District in the northeast Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. The region has a "drastic terrain thrown up by the sharp twisting of the Himalayan ranges as they turn suddenly from a southeasterly to a southerly direction and drop precipitously to the tropical forests of southern China and northern Burma." A few hundred Puroik are also located in Longzi County on the Tibetan side of the border. Traditionally the border region was controlled by India, but the Chinese took considerable territory from India after armed border clashes in 1959 and 1962.
(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: Puroik
People Name General: Puroik
Alternate People Names:
ROP3 Code: 113699
Joshua Project People ID: 18186
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 500
Population all Countries: 4,900
Least-Reached: Yes
Engagement Status:Unengaged (per Finishing the Task)
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
People Cluster: South Asia Tribal - other
People Name General: Puroik
Ethnic Code: CNN25
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Puroik (500 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): suv    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity0.00 %(Evangelical: 0.00 %)
Ethnic Religions99.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious1.00 % 
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: 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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Data Notes
Data Sources

Puroik in China

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    South Asia Tribal - other     Asia, Northeast    
      Puroik China    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Puroik in China          
      Religion Language  
      Ethnic Religions     Puroik  
    All Religions                              

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