Punjabi in Fiji





Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

The British Raj had a big problem to solve in the 1870s. The Fijian Islands were willing to become part of their empire, but they had to have a stable economy. So Governor Sir Arthur Hamilton Gordon came up with a way to make money and finance this new colony. Finances would come from sugar plantations. The governor knew that the Fijians would be incensed if they were suddenly forced to work the plantations, after agreeing to become part of the British Empire. So he decided to bring laborers in from their South Asian colony, India.

South Asian sugar workers started coming to work at the sugar plantations in the 1870s. Sikhs from India's Punjab were relative latecomers. They came to Fiji from 1900-1930. According to one Sikh web site, "The Punjabis have established themselves irreversibly, firmly and successfully in Fiji." It would be unusual to see a Sikh working in the sugar fields today. Some have been elected to Fiji's Parliament, and many now own businesses.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Diaspora Punjabi reflect the three major religions of their homeland: Hinduism, Islam, and Sikhism. Most of the Diaspora Punjabi speakers are Sikhs who are mostly atheists.

Sikhism is a monotheistic religion that was founded in northern India during the sixteenth century. Its teachings have combined the elements of both Hinduism and Islam in an attempt to find one god who transcends all religious distinctions.

The founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak, was a man of strong convictions and high morals. Sikhs have been taught to defend the defenseless, thus the sword that they are required to have on their person. Their faith began in part as a rebellion against the inequality of the Hindu caste system. Thus, Sikhs believe in the equality of all humanity. They hope for one God who transcends all religions.

Those who have heard the words of Jesus have been drawn to Him. Since the 1970s, many Sikhs have put their faith in Christ, especially in Canada, and in their homeland, India's fertile Punjab State. But there are few Sikhs who follow Christ in Fiji, largely because there are few missionaries who have gone to them.

Prayer Points

* Pray for the Lord of the Harvest to thrust out workers specifically to the Sikhs in Fiji.
* Pray for these Sikhs to hear and respond to the Word of God, and turn to Jesus, the God who transcends all "religion."

Prayer Links
Global Prayer Digest: 2006-06-12
Video Links:
Eyes of the Heart
People Name General Punjabi
People Name in Country Punjabi
Population in Fiji 9,300
World Population 2,574,000
Countries 19
Progress Scale 2.2
Least-Reached No
Unengaged Yes (per Finishing the Task)
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Eastern Punjabi, Gurmukhi, Mirpur Punjabi, Panjabi, Sikh
Affinity Bloc South Asian Peoples
People Cluster Punjabi
People Name General Punjabi
Ethnic Code CNN25n
People ID 14483

No people group map currently available. Use the above button to submit a map.

Enthologue Language Map

Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Panjabi, Eastern: Punjabi
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Panjabi, Eastern: Punjabi
For Primary Language: Panjabi, Eastern

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1818-1954)
New Testament Yes   (1815-2011)
Complete Bible Yes   (1959-2002)
Audio Bible Online
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Bible-in-Your-Language Text / Printed Matter
Following Jesus (India, JF Project) Film / Video
Four Spiritual Laws General
God's Story Video Film / Video
Got Questions Ministry General
Jesus Film: view in Panjabi, Eastern Film / Video
Magdalena (Jesus Film Project) Film / Video
Online Bible (Bibles India) Text / Printed Matter
Online Scripture (Talking Bibles) Audio Recordings
Oral Bible Audio Recordings
Sikh Punjabi Language Film Film / Video
Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project) Audio Recordings
Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project) Film / Video
World Missionary Press Booklets Text / Printed Matter
Primary Religion: Hinduism

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.50 %)
6.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
50.00 %
14.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
30.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
15.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
25.0 %
Roman Catholic
60.0 %
Photo Source: Manny Pabla   Creative Commons  
Video Source: Create International
Profile Source: Global Prayer Digest / Keith Carey 
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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