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:

Arakh - Who are they? The Arakh are a small community of cultivators of about 250,000 in number.  It is believed that they migrated from Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh, which is one of seven sacred cities for Hindus.  The Arakh have two endogamous subgroups, namely, Suryavanshi Arakh (of the sun’s lineage) and Mooti… ...Read More...
Gadaria - Who are the Gadaria? The Gadaria are also referred to as Baghela or Pal, are a community of shepherds. The word Gadaria is derived from the Hindi word gadar meaning sheep and denotes "one who keeps or tends sheep". Ethnologists, Russel and Hiralal (1916), describe them as "an occupational shepherd… ...Read More...
Shaikh - Who Are They? The Shaikh are a large Muslim community of around 45 million who are primarily cultivators but also rear buffaloes, cows, goats and sheep in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. Business, trade, service, weaving, woodwork, masonry are other sources of livelihood. Location They are settled in… ...Read More...
Pasi - Who are they? The Pasi are engaged in settled cultivation in Uttar Pradesh but work in a variety of jobs in other states. This people group can be found in 52 districts of the country as a whole, primarily in Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Orissa, Maharashtra, Haryana and Punjab. They… ...Read More...
Gond - Who are they? The Gond is a very large tribe of Central India, numbering 12.7 million. Traditionally they have been cultivating land, producing crops, and raising livestock. They grow rice, wheat, and different types of lentils, sesame, millet and cotton. Location They live spread out in Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Orissa,… ...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.