Khamiyang in India

Joshua Project has identified the Khamiyang only in India

Population

1,700

Christian

Evangelical

0.00%

Largest Religion

Main Language

Progress


Identity

Approximately one thousand Khamiyang people live in the north-east Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, inhabiting communities near the Khamtis in the Lohit and Tirap districts. 'They dwell in the plains drained by the Tengapani and Noa-Dihing rivers and within the vicinity of dense tropical moist and deciduous forests.' A small number of Khamiyang live in the Rowai Mukh village within Assam State. The total population of the Khamiyang was listed at 812 at the time of the 1981 census. Out of this number, just three individuals lived in an urban area and 809 were from rural areas.

Few sources have ever mentioned the Khamiyang, although one described them as 'a small Buddhist peasant community with a close affinity with the Khamtis of Arunachal Pradesh and the Aiton and Tai Phake of Assam. They are also called Khamjang and use Shyam as their surname.'


History

The name Khamiyang means 'a place where gold is available'. This name probably comes from their homeland. They are believed to have originally lived in the Patkai mountains, but they left because of oppression from the Singpho (Kachin) and moved to Assam between 1807 and 1814. 'Some of them recall that they subsequently migrated from the Jorhat and Dibrugarh districts of Assam during the great Assam earthquake in the year 1950 and settled down in the plains of the Lohit and Tirap districts of Arunachal Pradesh, where they are now distributed.'


Customs

The Khamiyang originally spoke a Tai language, similar to Khamti. Over the centuries, however, the Khamiyang have gradually lost the use of their mother tongue and most have adopted Assamese, which is spoken by more than 15 million people in north-east India. They also use the Assamese script for reading and writing. Their original Tai script is now used only for Buddhist rituals. Despite losing their linguistic identity, the Khamiyang retain their cultural and ethnic distinctiveness, which qualifies them as a mission-significant people group.

Since they live in a place with abundant natural resources, the diet of the Khamiyang includes 'a large variety of wild and domestically grown vegetables, roots and tubers such as pumpkins, brinjals, ginger and onions; mustard leaves; chilies; flower of plantains; mushrooms; shoots of bamboo and cane and many types of leaves.... They eat a variety of fish ... fowls, pigs, goats, wild bears, deer and tigers, but abstain from taking beef.'


Religion

Theravada Buddhism is the religious choice of an overwhelming number of Khamiyang people. Each village has its own temple or monastery. The 1981 Indian census records 805 of the 812 Khamiyang as followers of Buddhism. Four individuals listed their religion as Hinduism, and three as followers of 'other religions'. The Khamiyang have been Buddhists since long before their migration from the Shan State area of northern Myanmar many centuries ago. Buddhism forms a major part of their identity and few seem open to change. Consequently, there are no known Christians among the Khamiyang people of India today.


Profile Source:   Peoples of the Buddhist World, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Khamiyang
People Name in Country Khamiyang
Population in India 1,700
World Population 1,700
Countries 1
Progress Scale 1.1
Least-Reached Yes
Unengaged or Unknown Yes
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Khamjang, Khamyang, Nara, Nora, Sham, Shyam
Affinity Bloc Tibetan-Himalayan Peoples
People Cluster South Himalaya
People Name General Khamiyang
Ethnic Code MSY50r
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 28  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution rankinging, )
Location in Country Approximately one thousand Khamiyang people live in the north-east Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, inhabitating communities near the Khamtis in the Lohit and Tirap districts.

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Ethnolinguistic map from University of Texas or other map

Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Assamese (700) Telugu (600) Naga, Tase (30) Tibetan, Central (Unknown)
Naga, Tangkhul (Unknown) Miju-Mishmi (Unknown) Anal (Unknown) Kurux (Unknown)
English (Unknown) Urdu (Unknown)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Assamese 700 Telugu 600
Naga, Tase 30 Tibetan, Central 10
Naga, Tangkhul 10 Miju-Mishmi 0
Anal 0 Kurux 0
English 0 Urdu 0
Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1822-1974)
New Testament Yes   (1819-1993)
Complete Bible Yes   (1833-1995)
Category Resource
Audio Recordings Assamese Bible stories
Audio Recordings Global Recordings
Audio Recordings Online scripture (Talking Bibles)
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video Assamese Language Film
Film / Video God's Story Video
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Assamese
Film / Video Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)
General Four Spiritual Laws
General Gods Simple Plan
General Got Questions Ministry
Printed Matter Christ for the Nations
Scripture World Missionary Press Booklets

Major Religion Percent
Buddhism
96.97 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.58 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
1.92 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.52 %
Photo Source: Peoples of the Buddhist World, Paul Hattaway   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Profile Source: Peoples of the Buddhist World, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more
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