Vanniyan in Sri Lanka


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge
* Data can be from various sources including official census, agencies, and local research. Data from these sources can sometimes differ even by orders of magnitude. Joshua Project attempts to present a conservative, balanced estimate.

Introduction / History

The terms Vanniyans and Padayatchi has been used interchangeably because of the same historical origin they claim. In reality, Vanniyars are descendants the medieval Pallava Kings who ruled the South Indian states of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Padayatchi and Vanniyan have minor differences as Padayatchi is a class within the Vanniyan castes. Most Vanniyan live in the three adjacent southern states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, mostly concentrated in the area where these three states intersect. Among the lower castes in the Tamil Nadu, they are the most populous and they are one of the earliest castes to be socially well organized. Today they are the most politically mobilized and well-informed caste in Tamil Nadu. Whether they live in India or Sri Lanka, the main language of the Vanniyan is Tamil.


What Are Their Lives Like?

The Vanniyans are officially in Kshatriya caste which gives them good status in the Hindu system. Most Vanniyan engage in agriculture and animal husbandry for a living. Rice is by far the most important crop grown in South India. Educated Vanniyan are politicians, government administrators, college professors, scientists and engineers. The Vanniyan generally marry within their group. Families arrange marriages with the consent of the young people. Sons inherit the property of their deceased father. Caste associations settle legal disputes and enforce social norms.


What Are Their Beliefs?

The overwhelming majority of Vanniyars are Hindu. Hinduism is a catch-all phrase for the local religions of South Asia, so it is very diverse. At the popular level, Hindus worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. They visit Hindu temples and offer prayers, food, flowers, and incense to their gods in hopes of gaining protection and benefits. They do not have a personal or familial relationship with their gods like Christians do.
A small fraction of them are followers of Jesus Christ, especially in Sri Lanka.


What Are Their Needs?

The Vanniyan need humility so that they can see themselves as sinners in need of a savior.


Prayer Points

Pray that God will raise up prayer teams to break up the soil in the Vanniyan community through worship and intercession.
Ask the Lord to call Indian believers who willing share Christ with the Vanniyars and help them begin their own disciple making movement.
Ask the Holy Spirit to soften their hearts of the Vanniyan towards Christians so that they will be receptive to the gospel.


Scripture Prayers for the Vanniyan in Sri Lanka.


Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Vanniyan
People Name in Country Vanniyan
Pronunciation VUH-nee-un
Alternate Names Agnikula; Agnikula Kshatriya; Agnikula Kshatriyas; Ambalavasi; Ekera; Ekere; Ekila; Gangaputra; Gangavamsam; Gangavara; Gangavaru; Gounder; Kampanamullu; Kounder; Marakallu; Naicker; Nayullu; Padaichi; Padaiyachi; Padaiyachi Christian; Padaiyaci Christian; Padaiychi; Pallapu Rajulu; Pallelu; Palli; Palli Kapulu; Palli Reddi; Pandamuttu; Penta; Perumal; Thigala; Tigala; Tilvi; Vanne kapulu; Vanne Reddi; Vanniakula Kshatriya; Vannikola; Vannikula Kshatriya; Vanniyan Christian; Vanniyar; Variyar; Vellaiyan; Vontikulgi; वन्नीयाँ
Population this Country 38,000
Population all Countries 15,326,000
Total Countries 2
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 2
Unreached No
Frontier People Group No
Pioneer Workers Needed
People ID 18323
ROP3 Code 113870
ROP25 Code 308558
ROP25 Name Vanniyan
Country Sri Lanka
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Total States on file 9
Largest States
Central
22,000
Uva
6,300
Sabaragamuwa
4,200
Western
3,200
Southern
600
Eastern
500
Northern
400
North Western
300
North Central
40
Country Sri Lanka
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Total States 9
  Central 22,000
  Uva 6,300
  Sabaragamuwa 4,200
  Western 3,200
  Southern 600
  Eastern 500
  Northern 400
  North Western 300
  North Central 40
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
12.06 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
87.94 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.00 %
* From latest Sri Lanka census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.
Primary Language Tamil
Language Code tam   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 2
Secondary Languages
Malayalam
Primary Language Tamil
Language Code tam   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 2
Secondary Languages
  Malayalam
People Groups Speaking Tamil

Primary Language:  Tamil

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1714-1956)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1715-1998)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1727-2024)
FCBH NT (www.bible.is) Online
YouVersion NT (www.bible.com) Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Audio Recordings General Ministry Resources General / Other
Audio Recordings Love letter to you from scripture Father's Love Letter
Audio Recordings Online Audio Scripture Talking Bibles
Audio Recordings Recorded oral Bible Oral Bibles
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Following Jesus video Jesus Film Project
Film / Video God's Story video God's Story
Film / Video Indigitube.tv Video / Animation Create International
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Tamil Jesus Film Project
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels Bible Media Group/LUMO
Film / Video Magdalena video Jesus Film Project
Film / Video My Last Day video, anime Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Rivka video Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children Jesus Film Project
Film / Video World Christian Videos World Christian Videos
General Bible for Children Bible for Children
General Biblical answers to your questions Got Questions Ministry
General Comprehensive list of Tamil Resources General / Other
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
Photo Source Anonymous 
Map Source People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project  
Profile Source Joshua Project 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.



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