Bhil in India


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge
* From latest India census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.

Subgroups: 4

Subgroup Name Population
Barde 7,800
Maji Rana 7,200
Dindor Unknown
Kalara Unknown

Introduction / History

The Bhil are the third largest and most widely distributed tribal group in India. Although the Bhil were once thought of as a single tribe, it is now clear that they consist of many subgroups. There are two basic divisions of Bhil: the Central or "pure" Bhil, and the Eastern or part-Rajput Bhil. The Central Bhil live in the mountain regions of India, particularly in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Rajasthan. The name "Bhil" was probably derived from the word villu or billu, which in most Dravidian languages is the word for "bow. " The bow has long been a characteristic weapon of the Bhil because the tribesmen always carry their bows and arrows with them. Many years ago, Bhil rajas (kings) permitted immigrants from the plains to settle in the hill regions. To safeguard their independence and rule, the Bhil fought against powerful Empires: the Moghals, the Maratha and the British Raj. The Bhils are labeled a “scheduled tribe,” meaning that they have low status. Being part of a scheduled tribe means that they are given special privileges. Their language, Bhili, is a blend of Gujarati and Marathi, the two major languages in their region.


What Are Their Lives Like?

The Bhil tribes inhabit some of the most remote and inaccessible areas of India. Unfortunately, their scattered settlement pattern has hindered government efforts to provide services for the people. It has also facilitated their general distrust of government officials which is already thin since they have a long history of rebelling against powerful outside forces.


What Are Their Beliefs?

Almost all Bhils practice ethnic religions that have been highly influenced by Hinduism. They accept Shiva as their supreme god. Along with Hindu practices, they worship their deceased ancestors. They call upon shamans to offer sacrifices to their many gods and idols. Most of their Hindu and traditional practices are so intertwined that it is difficult to separate them. In the Hindu religious system, this is acceptable since they do not have a set of dogmas like Islam or Christianity.


What Are Their Needs?

There are three segregated classes: the Bhagat Bhil, the ordinary Bhil, and the lowest class-the Christian Bhil. To accept Christ is like becoming an outcast in Bhil society.


Prayer Points

* Scripture Prayers for the Bhil in India.

Pray for the Bhil people to have hearts that are open to the abundant blessings of Jesus Christ. Pray for Bhil families to prosper financially and spiritually as they experience a relationship with Jesus Christ. Pray for a movement among the Bhils that will spread joy, peace and salvation to other peoples in Rajasthan. Pray for the Bhil culture to be renewed and enhanced by a work of the Holy Spirit and shaped into a God-centered and God-honoring mold.


Profile Source:   JoshuaProject  

The Waiting World - The Bhil
Source:  The Waiting World      Download

Additional Info
Central Bhil profile for Children and Family Missions Activities
Global Prayer Digest: 2008-09-31
Global Prayer Digest: 2012-09-16
Global Prayer Digest: 2020-10-13
People Name General Bhil
People Name in Country Bhil
Pronunciation beel
Population this Country 16,909,000
Population all Countries 17,403,000
Total Countries 2
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 3  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 338
Alternate Names Arejo; Arijo; Bhil Garasia; Bhilala; Bhim; Bilalla; Billava; Billavaor; Billawa; Dholi Bhil; Dugri Garasia; Dungra Bhil; Dungri Girasia; Garasia; Pacima; Pascima; Pujari; Tulu Bhillava; भील
People ID 16414
ROP3 Code 111565
Country India
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 10  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file 23
Largest States
(only 15 largest shown)
Madhya Pradesh
5,975,000
Gujarat
4,219,000
Rajasthan
4,090,000
Maharashtra
2,597,000
Dadra and Nagar Have
12,000
Karnataka
6,300
Tripura
3,100
Delhi
1,800
Odisha
1,400
Chhattisgarh
1,000
Telangana
700
Jharkhand
600
Uttar Pradesh
500
Jammu and Kashmir
300
Uttarakhand
200
Specialized Website South Asia Peoples
Country India
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 10  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States 23  (only 20 largest shown)
  Madhya Pradesh 5,975,000
  Gujarat 4,219,000
  Rajasthan 4,090,000
  Maharashtra 2,597,000
  Dadra and Nagar Have 12,000
  Karnataka 6,300
  Tripura 3,100
  Delhi 1,800
  Odisha 1,400
  Chhattisgarh 1,000
  Telangana 700
  Jharkhand 600
  Uttar Pradesh 500
  Jammu and Kashmir 300
  Uttarakhand 200
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Language Hindi (3,991,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 84
Secondary Languages
(only 15 largest shown)
Gujarati
3,473,000
Bhili
2,767,000
Wagdi
1,692,000
Marathi
1,026,000
Vasavi
973,000
Nimadi
768,000
Dangi
406,000
Marwari
343,000
Bareli, Pauri
310,000
Mewari
240,000
Khandesi
187,000
Mawchi
152,000
Dungra Bhil
139,000
Bareli, Rathwi
106,000
Malvi
96,000
Primary Language Hindi (3,991,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 84
Secondary Languages (only 15 largest shown)
  Gujarati 3,473,000
  Bhili 2,767,000
  Wagdi 1,692,000
  Marathi 1,026,000
  Vasavi 973,000
  Nimadi 768,000
  Dangi 406,000
  Marwari 343,000
  Bareli, Pauri 310,000
  Mewari 240,000
  Khandesi 187,000
  Mawchi 152,000
  Dungra Bhil 139,000
  Bareli, Rathwi 106,000
  Malvi 96,000
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  (1835-2012)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching (Global Recordings Network)
Audio Recordings DAVAR Partners recording, Old Testament
Audio Recordings Online New Testament (Faith Comes By Hearing)
Audio Recordings Online Scripture (Talking Bibles)
Audio Recordings Oral Bible stories in Hindi
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video A Beautiful Hope (EngSub)
Film / Video Coconuts
Film / Video Creation to Christ
Film / Video Father's Love Letter
Film / Video Following Jesus (India, JF Project)
Film / Video God's Story Video
Film / Video Indigitube.tv Video / Animation
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Hindi
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels
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 The Hope Video
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
0.02 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
0.77 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
98.37 %
Islam
0.53 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.02 %
Unknown
0.30 %
* From latest India census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.
Photo Source Copyrighted © 2021  Arun Sambhu Mishra - Shutterstock  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source People Group Location: Omid. Other geography / data: GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project  
Video Source The Waiting World
Profile Source JoshuaProject  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


Avatar

Welcome. I’m a virtual assistant and will try to answer questions about Joshua Project, unreached people groups, the Great Commission and more. How can I help you?

For further help try our FAQ, Definitions or Contact Us pages.