Introduction / History
The Kasai or Qassab people are also known as Kassab, Bakar Qassab, Quresh, Gau Gowa or Guru Qussai, Shaikh, Chikwa and Gai Kassia, etc. Their community name Qassab in Arabic means "to cut." They claim that their origin is from Arabia. Kasai or Qassabs speak Urdu among themselves but are equally conversant with Hindi. Though they use the Perso-Arabic script, sometimes they also use the Devanagari script. They are found in different states of India and Pakistan especially in the big towns and cities. There are smaller numbers of them in Nepal and Bangladesh.
What Are Their Lives Like?
They are a professional Muslim caste of butchers and slaughterers of animals and selling meat. Many of them are now engaged in business or work as daily-wage labors. The Qassab people practice both child and adult marriage. They also perform group marriages at public places like the Idgah. Normally only the husband can divorce his wife, however the wife is also entitled to seek divorce through her parents. Like other Muslims, they circumcise the boys. They bury their dead and observe 40 days of mourning. The Qassab has a council known as Jamat, which constitutes of five chosen members. All types of disputes are referred to the Jamat. They adhere to the Islamic code of conduct with regard to marriage, divorce, remarriage and the inheritance of property. Their sacred specialist is the Qazi, who performs worship and other rituals.
What Are Their Beliefs?
The Qassab people belong to the Sunni sect of Islam. They have faith in Nasir Pir. The imam and Qazi impart religious teachings and perform the religious rites. Traditionally they do not accept water and food from Hindu communities. They share the burial grounds and mosques with other Muslim groups.
What Are Their Needs?
The Qassab people need to submit to Jesus Christ so they can experience the abundant life He offers them in John 10:10.
For the salvation of the Qassab people and that God may send several workers to work among them and meet their spiritual and physical needs. Pray for a powerful movement to Christ among the Qassab people in Pakistan. Pray that the practice of child marriages among the Qassab people may come to an end. Pray that they will soon embrace changes for the better through education and developmental programs and opportunities.
Scripture Prayers for the Qassab in Pakistan.