Bedar, Hindu traditions in India






Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

The Bedars are a Dravidian tribe in origin. "Bedar" comes from the word "bed" or "bedaru" meaning a hunter. Hindus are known as Bedar and Muslims as Berad. They prefer to be called Naikwadi because they serve as village policemen or Talwar (watchmen) or Naikmakkalu (chief's children).

The Bedar language is a corruption of Kannada and Marathi languages. They have six social divisions. They work as servants, traders, messengers, police and soldiers. Their tradition states that Kannayya was a fowler and hunter and a devout worshipper of god Shiva who was pleased with his devotion and appeared to him, granting two wishes. Kannayya prayed that his descendants would be true shots and their land would grow much corn with little labor or water.

Men and women wear silver and gold jewelry. Some traditionally shave their heads, wear waist girdles (uddurs), gold and silver bracelets (khade) and gold earrings (muruva). Women tie their hair in a loose knot, wear nose-rings, a gold necklace and on their head they have a hooped silver ornament (dhora).

At the age of four or five girls are tattooed on the forehead, corners of the eyes, temples and forearms. Unmarried girls can be made into prostitutes. The girls are taken to a guru (spiritual leader) who brands them with a stamp, and then takes them to a temple where a necklace is tied around their neck in the name of the god, and they are now known as Basavi. The boy's parents initiate marriage proposal. Child marriage is common but the girl does not live with her husband until after puberty. Marriage cannot be within the same sub-division. Widow remarriage and divorce are allowed. The Bedar have headmen (kattimani) to solve community disputes.

The dead are buried or cremated. Their images are usually made from silver, copper or brass. They are non-vegetarian and drink alcohol. Hindu Bedar will take food from Muslims but Muslims will not eat Bedar food. Bedar have faith in soothsaying, sorcery and astrology. Brahmins act as priests and in some places Lingayat Mathpati's serve as priests. Hindu festivals such as Diwali, Dussera, Holi, etc. are celebrated. Hindu Bedar identify all their gods with Rama. In Pune, Janai, Jokhai, Khandoba are the main deities. In Dharwad, the main deity is Hanmappa. In Solapur, the main deities are Ambabai, Jotiba and Khandoba. In Bijapur, the main deities are Durgava, Maruti, Venkatesh, Yellamma and Mallikarjun, which are often made into silver, copper or brass images. They observe Hindu festivals and have a hereditary guru. The Durgamuri Bedar carries the image of Durgamurgavva around in a box on their head.

Alternative Names: Beda, Berad, Boya, Bendar, Berar, Burar, Ramoshi, Talwar, Byadar, Valmiki

Occupation: Agricultural Laborers, Watchmen, Laborers, Stone Cutters, Herdsmen

Prayer Points

* For the transformation of this community, thereby influencing the society through their profession as traders, messangers, police and soldiers.
* A mighty impact of the "Jesus" film and Christian radio broadcasting among this people.
* Christian workers among them to resist the evil works of sorcery, soothsaying and witchcraft and demonstrate instead the power of the Holy Spirit.
* The practice of child marriage to be abolished.

Profile Source:   India Missions Association - Edited by Philipose Vaidyar  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

Prayer Links
Global Prayer Digest: 2012-08-18
People Name General Bedar, Hindu traditions
People Name in Country Bedar, Hindu traditions
Population in India 2,502,000
World Population 2,503,000
Countries 2
Progress Scale 1.1
Least-Reached Yes
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Balanjika, Bawasi, Beda, Bendar, Berad, Berar, Boya, Burar, Chhatriya, Chundinayakulu, Dasa Balenjika, Dasa Palanjikar, Dasapalanjika, Dora, Dungar, Gavara Naidu, Jyali, Jyayi, Kannada Chettiar, Kannada Saineegar, Kannada Sainigar, Kannada Veera Saiva Saineegar, Kannadaiyan, Kannadia, Kannadiar, Kannadiyan, Karelivaru, Machi, Mahratta, Myasa, Naidu, Nishad, Pindari, Ramoshi, Sabaru, Saineegar, Sainik, Seniar, Siviar, Talwari, Tamil Kannadaiyan, Tamil Kannadiyar, Telari, Unar, Valmiki
Affinity Bloc South Asian Peoples
People Cluster Telugu
People Name General Bedar, Hindu traditions
Ethnic Code CNN23a
People ID 16365
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 21  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file:  17  (up to 20 largest shown)
Karnataka (2,245,000) Tamil Nadu (151,000) Maharashtra (50,000) Andhra Pradesh (22,000)
Telangana (21,000) Gujarat (4,700) Kerala (4,200) Goa (1,300)
Delhi (1,100) Madhya Pradesh (400) Uttar Pradesh (100) Daman and Diu (90)
Chhattisgarh (70) Dadra and Nagar Have (40) Pondicherry (40) West Bengal (30)
Odisha (20)
Total States on file:  17  (up to 20 largest shown)
Karnataka (2,245,000) Tamil Nadu (151,000)
Maharashtra (50,000) Andhra Pradesh (22,000)
Telangana (21,000) Gujarat (4,700)
Kerala (4,200) Goa (1,300)
Delhi (1,100) Madhya Pradesh (400)
Uttar Pradesh (100) Daman and Diu (90)
Chhattisgarh (70) Dadra and Nagar Have (40)
Pondicherry (40) West Bengal (30)
Odisha (20)
Languages & Dialects on file:  15  (up to 20 largest shown)
Kannada (2,000,000) Telugu (280,000) Tamil (70,000) Marathi (59,000)
Konkani (23,000) Hindi (4,900) Gujarati (4,800) Konkani, Goan (2,800)
Tulu (2,400) Malayalam (300) Ahirani (300) Bellari (300)
Khandesi (200) Chhattisgarhi (40) Bundeli (30)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Kannada 2,000,000 Telugu 280,000
Tamil 70,000 Marathi 59,000
Konkani 23,000 Hindi 4,900
Gujarati 4,800 Konkani, Goan 2,800
Tulu 2,400 Malayalam 300
Ahirani 300 Bellari 300
Khandesi 200 Chhattisgarhi 40
Bundeli 30
For Primary Language: Kannada

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1812-1988)
New Testament Yes   (1823-1995)
Complete Bible Yes   (1831-2000)
Audio Bible Online
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Bible-in-Your-Language Text / Printed Matter
Bibles, Bible League Text / Printed Matter
Fathers Love Letter Audio Recordings
Following Jesus (India, JF Project) Film / Video
Four Spiritual Laws General
God's Story Video Film / Video
Got Questions Ministry General
International Bible Society Text / Printed Matter
Jesus Film: view in Kannada Film / Video
Kannada Bible stories Audio Recordings
Magdalena (Jesus Film Project) Film / Video
My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime) Film / Video
Online New Testament (FCBH) Audio Recordings
Online Scripture / Bible Audio Recordings
Oral Bible stories in Kannada Audio Recordings
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 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
99.93 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.07 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
0.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source: India Missions Association   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Map Source: Omid / Joshua Project / Global Mapping Intl  
Profile Source: India Missions Association - Edited by Philipose Vaidyar  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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