Introduction / History
"Bairwa" means brave. They come from the Hindu trader caste. The Bairwa are divided into different exogamous clans, namely Mehar, Jatwa, Marmat and Tatwara. They are associated with animal husbandry and agriculture. They have diversified into other areas such as agribusiness, mining and academics.
Where Are they Located?
The Bairwa are located in the fertile regions of the Indo-Gangetic plains of North India in the states of Rajasthan, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand.
What Are Their Lives Like?
The Bairwa are influential despite their relatively smaller population. Feeling exploited by the higher castes, they have been involved in the struggle for social rights for the poor and farmers. Education has become an important means of progress so the Bairwa emphasize education for their children.
They follow Hindu marriage practices. However, widows are allowed to marry, there is no child betrothal and polygyny is allowed. Vermilion, bangles and toe rings are some symbols of marriage for women.
Bairwa are non-vegetarian but do not eat beef like other Hindus. Rice and wheat are staple cereals.
They generally speak the Indo-Aryan language of Rajasthani. Hindi is also spoken by them.
They are known for their skill in making mats and ropes.
What Are Their Beliefs?
The Bairwa are Hindu and worship many gods, goddesses and saints. They have had Hindu reformists among them.
What Are Their Needs?
The Bairwa have the view that they will be exploited by the higher castes or classes. Despite their focus on education, the Bairwa need to send more children to school (particularly females) and attain higher levels of education. There are hardly any Christians among the Bairwa.
* Pray that God will raise workers and send them to preach the gospel to the Bairwa.
* Pray that the word of God is provided in the language and in a way the Bairwa will understand the gospel of Jesus.
* Pray that the Holy Spirit will work among the Bairwa convicting them of sin and the need to repent and be saved.
* Pray that all Bairwa children are educated and that Christians have a hand in the effort to educate the Bairwa.
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