People Groups India

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…a rich tapestry of cultures, ethnic mixes, languages and traditions. India’s landscapes span from the awe inspiring Himalayas, beaches, forests, the Deccan plateau and the Rajasthani desert. From North to South, East to West – there are changes to color of skin, clothing, food and language. These may appear to be superficial regional and language changes. Yet, varying religions, traditions, culture and caste add another layer to the complexity of Indian society. India’s caste system is intricately entwined with the people’s identities. The people group name denotes everything – it is a person’s occupation, religious beliefs, social standing, traditions and life story.

India – tradition and change

As India continues to grow, many people are drawn away from their traditional occupational groups into other professions and locations. A father and grandfather who are itinerant cattle herders have a grandson who works at a call centre in Delhi. Although he is an office worker, the community identifies this young man with his people group. Everything about who he is, his surname and who he will marry is entwined with the knowledge of this background.

People Groups of India

There are over 72 People Groups with a population of more than 100,000 each in Uttar Pradesh, North India. This site currently features 72 profiles of these groups from the Agaria to the Yadav. There are, of course, many hundreds more depending on how you define these groups. Here are 5 random profiles. You can find a full list on our profiles page:

Sonar- Who Are They? The Sonar are gold and silversmiths. They make jewelry and ornaments that are elaborately designed and inlaid with precious and semi-precious stones. Some Sonar cut and polish diamonds, while others engrave deities on pendants and gold and silver plates. Most Sonar own their jewelry shops and showrooms… ...Read More...
Saini- Who are they? The Saini is a community of traditional agriculturists and horticulturists distributed across the states of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Punjab and the Union Territory of Chandigarh. According to the ethnologist Ibbetson (Punjab Castes: Races, Castes and Tribes of the People of Punjab, 1916), the… ...Read More...
Halwai- Who are they? The Halwai are a caste of confectioners and sweet-makers. The name is derived from the Hindi word halwa, a popular sweet made of flour, clarified butter (ghee) sugar, almonds, raisins and pistachio nuts and saffron. The Halwai are known by different names in each state. They are… ...Read More...
Manihar- Who are they? The Manihar are a Muslim community who work with stones, glass and make tin foils. They migrated from the Sindh region of Pakistan about two hundred years ago. The ethnologist, William Crooke, states that the word manihar is derived from the Sanskrit words mani meaning a precious… ...Read More...
Lunia- Who are they? The Lunia were traditionally salt makers. They are also known as Nunia, Sambhri, Sambhri Chauhan and Jhumaria Parmer. Location They number more than 1.5 million in Uttar Pradesh and are said to have migrated there from the Sambhar salt lake region in Rajasthan. They live in the… ...Read More...

Community Forums


We have now also added a new forum feature to give members a space to communicate more freely around a broader range of topics. You can find a forum for each of the people groups and several others to discuss other topics. More will be added later.


 
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