Paniyan in India

Joshua Project has identified the Paniyan only in India
Population
117,000
Christian
Evangelical
Largest Religion
Main Language
Progress
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The name Paniya comes from the root word pani, meaning work. The word refers to a worker or laborer and in general, a member of the tribe Paniya. They were literally slaves to the landlords in Northern Kerala.

The famous Valliyurkavu festival in Wayanadu district is reminiscent of the resultant slave trade. During this festival, slaves were sold, purchased or even exchanged by landlords and local chieftains, in front of the Bhagavathi temple. Annual pacts were renewed binding the Paniya slave to work for another year. Cloth, oil or a nominal amount were exchanged, to seal the deal. This practice slowly died, when slavery became illegal. The scars of this practice are still visible in how the Paniya conduct their lives.


Where Are they Located?

Paniya reside mainly in Northern Kerala (Wayanadu district), with relatively few in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. With the government resettling them in housing colonies, Paniyas now reside mainly in colonies of between eight and twenty-five houses. Very few among them have any form of education and their main means of income is subsistence farming and daily wage labor. They prefer not to associate with others living in the area.


What Are Their Beliefs?

The Paniya do not have many religious practices. They tend to associate a spirit behind anything in their seen-world and include spirits of their dead for worship. Their main god is that of the forest, called kadubhagavathi, or kuli, which is neither male nor female. Its shrine is usually represented by one or more stones, placed under a tree. Their worship at this shrine is usually through offering boiled rice, half a coconut and a few coins. The Banyan tree is very significant in their unseen world as if they believe that spirits live on it.

A few Paniya have started following Jesus as a result of many years of ministry. These new Christians, though meeting together as a church, find it difficult to grow into maturity as the truths of the Scripture are not available to them in their language.


Prayer Points

* Complete freedom in their world view, from past scars of slavery and that they would become selfsufficient through education and economic development.
* The Paniya Christians to become strong in faith and reach their community through evangelism and church planting.
* The Word of God in their mother tongue to open their hearts to see Jesus and help them to grow in His love.


Profile Source:   Anonymous  
Expanded PDF Profile

Prayer Links:
Global Prayer Digest: 2008-10-02
People Name General Paniyan
People Name in Country Paniyan
Population in India 117,000
World Population 117,000
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Least-Reached Yes
Progress Scale 1
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Alternate Names Pannayar, Panniyar, पनियाँ
People ID 17834
ROP3 Code 113307
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 17  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file: 6
Largest States
Kerala (104,000) Tamil Nadu (12,000) Karnataka (900)
Puducherry (400) Delhi (100) Andhra Pradesh (60)
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 17  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file: 6
Kerala (104,000) Tamil Nadu (12,000)
Karnataka (900) Puducherry (400)
Delhi (100) Andhra Pradesh (60)
Primary Language: Paniya (79,000 speakers)   People group listing
Language Code: pcg   Ethnologue Listing
Written: Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages: 8
Secondary Languages:
Malayalam (22,000) Tamil (11,000) Kannada (300)
Kodava (40) Tulu (30) Telugu (30)
Hindi (20)
Primary Language: Paniya (79,000 speakers)   People group listing
Language Code: pcg   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 8
Secondary Languages:
Malayalam (22,000) Tamil (11,000)
Kannada (300) Kodava (40)
Tulu (30) Telugu (30)
Hindi (20)
Primary Language: Paniya

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions No
New Testament No
Complete Bible No
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching (GRN)
Primary Religion: Hinduism

Major Religion Percent
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
0.19 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
99.73 %
Islam
0.04 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.03 %
Christian Segments Percent
Anglican
Unknown
Independent
Unknown
Orthodox
Unknown
Other Christian
Unknown
Protestant
Unknown
Roman Catholic
Unknown
Photo Source: Philipose Vaidyar   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Map Source: Omid / Joshua Project / Global Mapping Intl  
Profile Source: Anonymous  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


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