Balai (Hindu traditions) in India

The Balai (Hindu traditions) have only been reported in India
Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The Balai or Balahi live in the central states of India. "Balai" means messenger in Hindi. Their traditional occupations were that of landless farm laborers, weavers and village watchmen. The Balahi are a Scheduled Caste, which means they are eligible for special benefits from the Indian government because of their poverty. This includes reserved places in education and public jobs.

Some Balai have risen in Indian society to careers as masons, carpenters and business owners. Unfortunately, many Balai are still illiterate.

The primary language of the Balai is Hindi. They also speak other regional languages such as Dhundari, Nimadi, Mewari and Malvi.


Where Are they Located?

The large majority of Balai live in the Indian states of Madhya Pradesh and Rajastan. Many also live in the Capital Territory of Delhi.


What Are Their Lives Like?

Most Balai people are very poor by Indian standards. Although they can eat meat except for beef and pork, they seldom can afford it. Their diet consists of rice, grains and whatever roots and vegetables they can obtain.

Balai do not marry members of their families such as cousins. They do marry within their gotra or clan and community. Brahmin priests perform the weddings. Adult marriage is the general practice. Brides go to live with the groom's family. Sons inherit family property. Women often work as domestic servants to supplement family income. The Balai live in multi-caste villages in their own areas. They bury their dead.


What Are Their Beliefs?

Almost all Balai are Hindus. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. Balai give special service and attention to Durga, the mother-warrior goddess. They visit her temples and travel to her shrines. Balai celebrate the traditional Hindu holidays such a Holi, the festival of colors, Diwali, the festival of lights and Navratri, the festival of the beginning of spring.

A tiny minority of Balai are Christians.


What Are Their Needs?

The Balai need to hear the life-changing gospel of Christ in a way they can understand. They need to see that true spiritual wealth is found in Jesus not in the gods of Hinduism. They need help in becoming literate so they can read the Bible in Hindi and raise their position in Indian society.


Prayer Points

* Pray that the small group of Balai Christians would be built up and trained to share the gospel with their brothers and sisters.
* Pray the Lord sends Christian workers to live among the Balai and demonstrate the love and care of our Father and Savior.
* Pray that God is honored by the planting of many Bible-believing churches in the Balai community.


References

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balai
indianetzone.com/50/balahi_caste.htm


Profile Source:   David Kugel  

Prayer / Resource Links:
Global Prayer Digest: 2017-10-08
People Name General Balai (Hindu traditions)
People Name in Country Balai (Hindu traditions)
World Population 2,284,000
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 46
Alternate Names Bakhoalhai, Balahi, Balai, Bulai, Meghbansi, Meghwal, Mehra, बलाई (हिंदू ट्रेडिशन्स)
People ID 16309
ROP3 Code 111438
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 11  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file 9
Largest States
Madhya Pradesh
1,351,000
Rajasthan
793,000
Delhi
114,000
Maharashtra
16,000
Chhattisgarh
4,300
Uttar Pradesh
3,500
Odisha
1,900
Uttarakhand
300
Goa
20
Specialized Website South Asia Peoples
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 11  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States 9
  Madhya Pradesh 1,351,000
  Rajasthan 793,000
  Delhi 114,000
  Maharashtra 16,000
  Chhattisgarh 4,300
  Uttar Pradesh 3,500
  Odisha 1,900
  Uttarakhand 300
  Goa 20
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Language Hindi (1,534,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 24
Secondary Languages
(only 15 largest shown)
Dhundari
208,000
Nimadi
147,000
Mewari
94,000
Malvi
92,000
Shekhawati
80,000
Marwari
43,000
Merwari
41,000
Haroti: Harauti
11,000
Khandesi
3,000
Wagdi
3,000
Chhattisgarhi
2,500
Odia
1,800
Punjabi, Eastern
1,100
Gujarati
600
Bagri
600
Primary Language Hindi (1,534,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 24
Secondary Languages (only 15 largest shown)
  Dhundari 208,000
  Nimadi 147,000
  Mewari 94,000
  Malvi 92,000
  Shekhawati 80,000
  Marwari 43,000
  Merwari 41,000
  Haroti: Harauti 11,000
  Khandesi 3,000
  Wagdi 3,000
  Chhattisgarhi 2,500
  Odia 1,800
  Punjabi, Eastern 1,100
  Gujarati 600
  Bagri 600
People Groups Speaking Hindi

Primary Language:  Hindi

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1806-1962)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1811-1998)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1818-2000)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
World Bibles
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching (GRN)
Audio Recordings Online New Testament (FCBH)
Audio Recordings Online Scripture (Talking Bibles)
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video A Beautiful Hope (Indigitube.tv)
Film / Video A Pilgrimage (Indigitube.tv)
Film / Video Aasha - Hope (Indigitube.tv)
Film / Video Coconuts (Indigitube.tv)
Film / Video Creation to Christ (Indigitube.tv)
Film / Video Father's Love Letter
Film / Video Following Jesus (India, JF Project)
Film / Video God's Story Video
Film / Video Haqeeqat Episode 6 (Indigitube.tv)
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Hindi
Film / Video Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime)
Film / Video Rivka (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)
Film / Video Ten Virgins (Indigitube.tv)
Film / Video The Final Prodigal (Indigitube.tv)
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
0.12 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
0.37 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
99.50 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.01 %
Unknown
0.00 %
Photo Source Anonymous 
Map Source People Group Location: Omid. Other geography / data: GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project  
Profile Source David Kugel  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more
* Religion Values From latest India census data.  Current values may differ.


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