Gond in India






Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

A crude gate on the mud road, the wooden poles on both the sides and the beam across it stands high enough for any one to enter. There are remains of bundles and ropes hung on it. Among them you may find a new bundle of shrinking animal skin. If you see these before a village, you can be sure: you are entering a Gondi village.

Gonds celebrate their legacy every year during the Dasara. On that occasion, all the living heirs of the crown in each generation are honored by carrying them on a pallak (royal cart carried on shoulders).

What Are Their Lives Like?

Gonds are agriculturists and choose to live on the riverbeds close to forests. Most of them possess agricultural land. Those who have a god portion of the land cultivate rice, javar (cereals) and green dal (pulses). Tending goats and cattle are also common. Poorer Gonds work in the fields of the richer Gonds. There is not much work available for them except in farming seasons. If at all there is any work, men get about Rs. 25 and women Rs.20 as a day's wage. They love hunting and wild meats are their favorites.

Southern Gonds live in clusters. Each village will have 25 to 30 huts and is surrounded by their fields. Villages will be two to four kilometers away from one another. From one village to another or to the near by town, they travel by bullock-carts. All farmers offer sacrifices at the end of each harvest. The size of the yield determines the size of the animal offered. A good harvest may demand a goat and poorer, a chicken. Pigs are also sacrificed for a moderate harvest. For them, monsoon not only brings showers but also sicknesses.

Girls are married of between the age of 13 and 15. Marriages will be in summer. A girl and a boy in love, running away is an accepted custom. Once they come back, the Panchayat meet together to discuss the terms and conditions of the marriage. Marriages are also arranged by the parents. Depending up on the financial conditions of the families the bride groom's parents have to give the bride's parents some amount of money.

Among the Southern Gond tribes, there are seven clans. Each clan has gods numbering form one to seven. They maintain their identity and distinguish one clan form another based on the number of gods each has. People of the same clan can not get married. When one meet someone, he asks, how many gods the other person has in his clan. This is how they know whether they belong to the same clan or not. Clans with the same number of gods will not get married together. This is observed strictly. If the financial condition permits, one is allowed to have more than one wife.

What Are Their Beliefs?

They believe that evil spirits are the causes for sicknesses. Sacrifices are believed to be powerful to keep away these evil spirits. Perumal, the high-priest, responsible for three or four villages together, offers these sacrifices for every village. The sacrifice will be followed by a social dinner. The sacrificial goat has to give permission for the sacrifice by nodding its head! The people will wait till the animal does it.

The sacrifice is witnessed by the whole of the village. But the dinner made by cooking the animal will be enjoyed only by the men. All the men gather at the riverside to prepare the dinner. White toddy from palm or the country liquor called, black toddy may supplement the diner. Drinking, in general, is not just the right of men. The sacrifice animal's skin is stuffed with hay and hung on the village gate. This is to frighten the evil spirits and give courage to the villagers. The Southern Gonds prefer witch doctors even when a Public Health Centre is accessible. They will have to carry a chicken along. Gonds think that enemies' witchcraft brings them ill health. Chanted herbs or water is given by the witch doctor as remedies.

Profile Source:   Philipose Vaidyar  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

Prayer Links
Global Prayer Digest: 2008-09-09
Global Prayer Digest: 2014-09-04
Video Links:
A Pilgrimage
People Name General Gond
People Name in Country Gond
Population in India 14,308,000
World Population 14,314,000
Countries 2
Progress Scale 1.1
Least-Reached Yes
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Arakh, Asur, Chorgujar, Gondar, Gondaru, Gonr, Gulwar, Hadi, Koi, Koitur, Koytor, Maria, Muria, Nagpuria, Naikpod, Raj Gond, Rajgond, Southeastern Kolam, Tamria
Affinity Bloc South Asian Peoples
People Cluster Gond
People Name General Gond
Ethnic Code AUG06b
People ID 16855
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:  24  (up to 20 largest shown)
Madhya Pradesh (5,507,000) Chhattisgarh (4,476,000) Maharashtra (1,652,000) Odisha (1,038,000)
Assam (620,000) Uttar Pradesh (329,000) Telangana (311,000) Karnataka (193,000)
Bihar (88,000) Jharkhand (63,000) West Bengal (9,300) Uttarakhand (7,700)
Arunachal Pradesh (7,500) Gujarat (2,800) Andhra Pradesh (1,300) Delhi (700)
Andaman and Nicobar (700) Tamil Nadu (400) Tripura (300) Rajasthan (100)
Total States on file:  24  (up to 20 largest shown)
Madhya Pradesh (5,507,000) Chhattisgarh (4,476,000)
Maharashtra (1,652,000) Odisha (1,038,000)
Assam (620,000) Uttar Pradesh (329,000)
Telangana (311,000) Karnataka (193,000)
Bihar (88,000) Jharkhand (63,000)
West Bengal (9,300) Uttarakhand (7,700)
Arunachal Pradesh (7,500) Gujarat (2,800)
Andhra Pradesh (1,300) Delhi (700)
Andaman and Nicobar (700) Tamil Nadu (400)
Tripura (300) Rajasthan (100)
Languages & Dialects on file:  103  (up to 20 largest shown)
Hindi (5,261,000) Gondi, Northern (2,573,000) Chhattisgarhi (2,039,000) Marathi (947,000)
Oriya (810,000) Assamese (440,000) Bhatri (311,000) Gondi, Southern (261,000)
Halbi (232,000) Maria (223,000) Koya (190,000) Kannada (183,000)
Telugu (163,000) Duruwa (107,000) Bhojpuri (70,000) Muria, Western (44,000)
Bengali (42,000) Ho (34,000) Sadri (26,000) Santhali (17,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Hindi 5,261,000 Gondi, Northern 2,573,000
Chhattisgarhi 2,039,000 Marathi 947,000
Oriya 810,000 Assamese 440,000
Bhatri 311,000 Gondi, Southern 261,000
Halbi 232,000 Maria 223,000
Koya 190,000 Kannada 183,000
Telugu 163,000 Duruwa 107,000
Bhojpuri 70,000 Muria, Western 44,000
Bengali 42,000 Ho 34,000
Sadri 26,000 Santhali 17,000
For Primary Language: Hindi

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1806-1962)
New Testament Yes   (1811-1998)
Complete Bible Yes   (1818-2000)
Audio Bible Online
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Bible Visuals General
Bible: Hindi Holy Bible Text / Printed Matter
Bible: Hindi Holy Bible Text / Printed Matter
Bibles, Bible League Text / Printed Matter
Christ for the Nations Text / Printed Matter
EasyBibles Text / Printed Matter
EasyBibles Text / Printed Matter
Fathers Love Letter Film / Video
Following Jesus (India, JF Project) Film / Video
God's Story Video Film / Video
Gods Simple Plan General
Got Questions Ministry General
Hindi Bible Text / Printed Matter
Hindi Bible stories Audio Recordings
International Bible Society Text / Printed Matter
Jesus Film: view in Hindi Film / Video
Magdalena (Jesus Film Project) Film / Video
My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime) Film / Video
Online Bible (Bibles India) Text / Printed Matter
Primary Religion: Hinduism

Major Religion Percent
0.03 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
1.03 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
93.78 %
0.07 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
5.09 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
0.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source: COMIBAM / Sepal  
Map Source: Joshua Project / Global Mapping International  
Video Source: Create International
Profile Source: Philipose Vaidyar  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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