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Kawar in India


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Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
1,185,000 Hindi Hinduism 0.12 % Unknown   

Kawar in India

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Introduction / History
The Kawar are primarily located in the states of Madhya Pradesh and Orissa, in central India, particularly in the cities of Raipur and Maharashtra. Their language, Kawari, is an Indo-Aryan language that is believed to be a dialect of Halbi. Today, some of the Kawar speak Chhattisgarhi and Hindi, the languages of their neighbors and have begun adopting their cultures as well.

Some of the Kawar tribes have become so absorbed by the cultures of the surrounding peoples that they are no longer considered to be true Kawar. They have completely lost their language and former culture and now speak a different dialect.

The Kawar are considered a scheduled tribe. Although they consider military service their traditional occupation, most have given up military life and have become farmers or wage-workers.

What are their lives like?
Many of the Kawar live in the northern plains, where they have settled and own farms. However, most still live in the hilly areas and depend on other sources of income such as road construction and agricultural labor. Irrigation facilities are not yet developed in the region. As a result, most of the fertile land is used for a single crop. A large portion of their farm land is mortgaged to the neighboring communities, and many Kawar work as farm servants of the mortgage holders.

The Kawar farmers are being encouraged to adopt a more settled type of farming. However, those in the hills still depend on slash and burn cultivation as well as gathering forest produce for survival. A major source of their cash earnings comes from selling firewood that is collected from the forest. The lower classes also weave ropes and make sleeping cots to sell in the markets.

The staple food of the Kawar is rice. They do not eat beef, pork, or any other foods that are considered unclean by Hindus. However, they love to drink rice-beer and other alcoholic beverages.

The Kawar have several endogamous divisions (only allow marriage within their own groups). These divisions are further divided into a number of exogamous sects called goti. The goti are "totemistic," which means they use symbols of plants and animals to represent their group. A group totem represents their bond of unity and is often considered the ancestor or brother of the group's members.

The Kawar goti are similar to the gotra of the high caste Hindus. Marriages within the same goti are unacceptable. A marriage begins with negotiations, usually initiated by the boy's father. Polygamy is permitted, but not common.

The Kawar who live in the city of Orissa, a predominantly Hindu area, live in spacious houses, but still wear clothing and ornaments similar to the lower caste Hindus. Women wear pewter rings as necklaces as well as silver earrings, but they never wear nose-rings. Also, tattooing is not unusual.

What are their beliefs?
The Kawar are almost exclusively Hindu. They follow Hindu practices, but still mix their traditional beliefs with their practice of Hinduism.

What are their needs?
Medical facilities among the Kawar are inadequate. Even where the medical personnel are available, medicines, instruments, and essential provisions for the patients are extremely lacking. Adequate medical equipment and staff are needed, especially for the control of sexually transmitted diseases, leprosy, and other communicable diseases. The funds are low in districts where the needs are the greatest.

There are only a relative few known Christians. There is a great need for Christian doctors, teachers, and pastors.

Prayer Points
Ask the Lord to send forth laborers into India to share the love of Christ with the Kawar.
Pray that God will call forth prayer teams that will begin breaking up the soil through worship and intercession.
Ask the Holy Spirit to complete the work begun in the hearts of the few Kawar believers through adequate discipleship.
Ask the Holy Spirit to soften the hearts of the Kawar toward Christians so that they will be receptive to the Gospel.
Ask the Lord to bring forth a strong and growing Kawar church for the glory of His name!

View Kawar in all countries.

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Country: India
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, South
Persecution Rank:11 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Population in Country:1,185,000
Largest States:
Chhattisgarh (1,083,000)Maharashtra (31,000)
Madhya Pradesh (22,000)West Bengal (15,000)
Jharkhand (12,000)Odisha (6,200)
Tripura (3,600)Bihar (1,600)
Assam (200)Andaman and Nicobar Islands (100)
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Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Kawar
People Name General: Kawar
Alternate People Names:
ROP3 Code: 112468
Joshua Project People ID: 17122
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 1,185,000
Population all Countries: 1,190,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
People Cluster: South Asia Tribal - other
People Name General: Kawar
Ethnic Code: CNN25
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Hindi (518,000 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): hin    Ethnologue Listing
Secondary Languages:
Chhattisgarhi (438,000)Bengali (15,000)
Marathi (9,700)Sadri (6,400)
Odia (3,400)Telugu (1,800)
Kurux (1,500)Halbi (1,200)
Bhili (1,100)Sadri, Oraon (600)
Note: Only 10 largest secondary languages listed
Total Languages: 47
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.01 % 
Christianity0.12 %(Evangelical: Data not available)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism99.33 % 
Islam0.12 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.04 % 
Unknown0.37 % 
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
GSEC Status:Level 3   Less than 2% Evangelical. Widespread church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: 1806-1962
New Testament:
Complete Bible: 1835-2022
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
Audio RecordingsDAVAR Partners recording, Old Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline Audio Scripture
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOral Bible stories
Audio RecordingsStory of Jesus audio
Film / VideoFollowing Jesus video
Film / VideoGod's Story video
Film / Video / Animation
Film / VideoJesus Film: view in Hindi
Film / VideoLove letter to you from scripture
Film / VideoLUMO film of Gospels
Film / VideoMagdalena video
Film / VideoMy Last Day video, anime
Film / VideoRivka video
Film / VideoStory of Jesus for Children
Film / VideoThe Hope Video
Film / VideoWorld Christian Videos
GeneralBible for Children
GeneralBible for Children
GeneralBiblical answers to your questions
GeneralFour Spiritual Laws
GeneralGospel resources links
GeneralGospel website in this language
GeneralZume Resources
GeneralZume Training
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app as APK file
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app as APK file
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app as APK file
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app from Google Pla ...
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app from Google Pla ...
Mobile AppDownload Bible from Google Play Store
Text / Printed MatterBible: Comic Book Version
Text / Printed MatterBible: Hindi
Text / Printed MatterChildren and youth resources
Text / Printed MatterChrist for the Nations
Text / Printed MatterHindi Bible
Text / Printed MatterJesus Messiah comic book
Text / Printed MatterLiteracy primer for Hindi
Text / Printed MatterOnline New Testament (Bibles India)
Text / Printed MatterThe Ancient Path
Text / Printed MatterTools for faith conversations
Text / Printed MatterTopical Scripture booklets and Bible stu ...
Ministry Activity
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Data Notes
Data Sources

Kawar in India

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    South Asia Tribal - other     Asia, South    
      Kawar India    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Kawar in India          
      Religion Language  
      Hinduism     Hindi  
    All Religions                              

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