Koshti in India

Joshua Project has identified the Koshti only in India
Population
1,097,000
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The Koshtis are a Maratha and Telugu caste of weavers of silk and fine cotton cloth. Their standard occupation is weaving fine silk-bordered clothe, which are worn by well-to-do persons. The cloth is usually white with borders of red silk. They dye their own thread with lac or flower of the "palas" trees. They are located in Nagpur and Chhattisgarh area. They consider themselves to be descendants of a famous saint, named Markandi Rishi. It is said that he wove cloth from the fibers of the lotus flower to cover the nakedness of the gods. In appreciation for clothing them, he was married to the daughter of Surya, the sun and received a giant named Bhavani and a tiger as a dowry. The giant was disobedient so, Markandi killed him and from his bones fashioned the first weaver's loom. The tiger remained obedient, so Koshtis think that the tiger still respects them as his descendants. For this reason a Koshti will never kill or injure a tiger. The caste has several subdivisions of different types such as Halbis, Lad Koshtis, Gadhewal, Deshkar, Onkule and Salewars.


What Are Their Lives Like?

In Nagpur, during the marriage ceremony, the bride and the bridegroom sit in a circle with their parents, and around them a long hemp rope is drawn seven times. The bride's mother holds a lamp, while the bridegroom's mother pours water from a vessel on to the floor. Widow remarriage is freely permitted. Divorce is allowed but is very rare, as a wife is a big help to the man at his loom. A wife is in reality a factory hand and a well-to do Koshtis will buy or occasionally steal as many women as he can. The Lingayat and Kabirpanthi sects bury their dead while the others cremate them. Mourning is observed for five days for a married person and three for unmarried person. They do not have "shraddh" ceremony, instead on the Akhatij day (commencement of agricultural year); the family will invite a member of the same sex as the deceased person and feed him/her with good food in the name of the dead. A few of them wear the sacred thread. Women have a half-moon tattooed on the forehead, between the eyebrows. Their cheeks are marked with a small dot and arms adorned with a representation of sacred basil.


What Are Their Beliefs?

The main deity is Ganpati whom they revere on the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi. They clean all their weaving implements, worship them, and make an image of Ganpati in cowdung to which they make offerings of flowers, rice and turmeric. On this day, they do not work and fast till evening when the image of Ganpati is thrown into a tank and they return home and eat delicacies. Some of them are followers of a saint named Koliba Baba. Other sects worship Vishnu, Shiva, Shakti and Mata Mai. They have several superstitious beliefs.


Prayer Points

* For Church-planting teams to work among them as there are no known mission agencies/churches working among them.
* For setting up of income-generating projects.
* For Christian community development and literacy workers.
* For a good response to the Christian radio program and the "Jesus" film.


Profile Source:   India Missions Association  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Koshti
People Name in Country Koshti
Population in India 1,097,000
World Population 1,097,000
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Unreached Yes
Pioneer Workers Needed 22 to 26
Progress Scale 1
GSEC 3  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Alternate Names Chaudhri, Cheda, Chetti, Chettiar, Dakunsali, Devanga, Devanga Brahman, Devanga Brahmin, Devangulu, Devra, Dewang, Halba, Hutgar, Jadra, Jandra, Jed, Julaha, Kashkoti-Devanga, Koli-Keskati, Koraga, Kosh, Koshta, Koshtha, Koskati, Kosti, Kusata, Kushta, Kushti, Kushtia, Kusta, Kustha, Lad, Lera, Nesevallu, Padampari, Sakuna Pakshi, Salewar, Sali, Sangunsali, Sedu, Seniar, Suler, Swakulasali, Togata, Togri, कोष्टी
People ID 17275
ROP3 Code 112646
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 15  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file 16
Largest States
(only 15 largest shown)
Maharashtra
(503,000)
Chhattisgarh
(263,000)
Gujarat
(90,000)
Karnataka
(88,000)
Madhya Pradesh
(56,000)
Tamil Nadu
(53,000)
Odisha
(28,000)
Andhra Pradesh
(8,800)
Telangana
(4,100)
Uttar Pradesh
(1,000)
Delhi
(300)
Kerala
(200)
Jharkhand
(200)
Rajasthan
(90)
Dadra and Nagar Have
(40)
Specialized Website South Asia Peoples
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 15  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States 16
  Maharashtra (503,000)
  Chhattisgarh (263,000)
  Gujarat (90,000)
  Karnataka (88,000)
  Madhya Pradesh (56,000)
  Tamil Nadu (53,000)
  Odisha (28,000)
  Andhra Pradesh (8,800)
  Telangana (4,100)
  Uttar Pradesh (1,000)
  Delhi (300)
  Kerala (200)
  Jharkhand (200)
  Rajasthan (90)
  Dadra and Nagar Have (40)
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Language Marathi (455,000 speakers)
Language Code mar   Ethnologue Listing
Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 20
Secondary Languages
(only 15 largest shown)
Chhattisgarhi
(166,000)
Hindi
(154,000)
Telugu
(127,000)
Gujarati
(76,000)
Tamil
(28,000)
Odia
(23,000)
Khandesi
(15,000)
Ahirani
(3,500)
Kannada
(2,900)
Nimadi
(2,800)
Malvi
(900)
Pengo
(700)
Kui
(200)
Konkani, Goan
(200)
Kanauji
(100)
People Groups Speaking Marathi
Primary Language Marathi (455,000 speakers)
Language Code mar   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 20
Secondary Languages (only 15 largest shown)
  Chhattisgarhi (166,000)
  Hindi (154,000)
  Telugu (127,000)
  Gujarati (76,000)
  Tamil (28,000)
  Odia (23,000)
  Khandesi (15,000)
  Ahirani (3,500)
  Kannada (2,900)
  Nimadi (2,800)
  Malvi (900)
  Pengo (700)
  Kui (200)
  Konkani, Goan (200)
  Kanauji (100)
People Groups Speaking Marathi

Primary Language:  Marathi

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes   (1807-1957)
Bible-New Testament Yes   (1811-1982)
Bible-Complete Yes   (1821-2002)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
Forum of Bible Agencies
Gospel Go
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 Online Scripture / Bible
Audio Recordings Oral Bible stories in Marathi
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video Following Jesus (India, JF Project)
Film / Video God's Story Video
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Marathi
Film / Video Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime)
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)
General Bible Visuals
General Four Spiritual Laws
General Gods Simple Plan
General Got Questions Ministry
Text / Printed Matter Bible-in-Your-Language
Text / Printed Matter Bibles, Bible League
Text / Printed Matter EasyBibles
Text / Printed Matter Fathers Love Letter
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
0.23 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
99.12 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.65 %
Unknown
0.00 %
Photo Source India Missions Association   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Map Source Omid / Joshua Project / Global Mapping Intl  
Profile Source India Missions Association  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more
Religion Values * From India census data.  Current values may differ.


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