Mahesri Bania in India


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge
* From latest India census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.

Introduction / History

The Maheshwari are one of the Bania trading and business communities. They have high status in India, especially since most earn at least a middle-class wage. However, many people in India feel threatened by any community involved with commerce or money lending, and that includes all Bania groups like the Maheshwari. Some consider them to be one of the Rajput peoples, another community with high caste status. The Maheshwari Banias live in Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, and many other states in northern India. Smaller groups live in Nepal and Sri Lanka. The Maheshwari speak Hindi, English and other local Indian languages. Many resources are available in Hindi including a complete Bible, the JESUS Film and radio programs.


What Are Their Lives Like?

Trade and commerce are their main professions of the Bania. Some of them work for the government and some work in private business. The Maheshwari are one of the better educated peoples of India and most speak English as well as Hindi. Families arrange marriages with the consent of the young people. Weddings take place at the home of the bride with a Brahman priest performing the ceremony. Sons inherit the property upon the death of the father with the oldest son becoming the new family head. They have caste councils to look after their needs, promote their interests and to settle legal disputes. Maheshwari parents encourage both their sons and daughters to receive a college education.


What Are Their Beliefs?

The Maheshwari practice Hinduism, the ancient religion of India. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. They pay special devotion to Shiva, the destroyer god. Hindus believe that by performing rituals and good works that they will attain moksha or freedom from the endless cycle of birth, death and rebirth. The Maheshwari visit Hindu temples and offer prayers, food, flowers, and incense to their gods in hopes of gaining protection and benefits. They do not have a personal or familial relationship with their gods as Christians do. There are many forms of Hinduism, each with its own deities and beliefs. The main yearly holidays of the Maheshwar people are Holi, the festival of colors and the start of spring, Diwali, the festival of lights, Navratri, the celebration of autumn and Rama Navami, Rama's birthday. The caste system divides Hindus into four main categories. Dalits and tribal peoples are outside of the caste system. The Maheshwari fit into the Kshatriya or Vaishya castes.


What Are Their Needs?

The Maheshwari people need to experience the abundant life that only Jesus Christ can offer. As educated and relatively wealthy Indians, the Maheshwari take pride in their Hindu tradition and high status in society. Pride can often prevent a group from seeking the Lord and His grace.


Prayer Points

* Scripture Prayers for the Bania Mahesri in India.

Pray that the Maheshwari caste council leaders will come to Jesus Christ and lead others among them to Him. Pray that written and online gospel materials will lead them to begin their own disciple making movement in this decade. Pray for higher caste Indian believers to befriend them and tell them about Jesus Christ.


Profile Source:   Keith Carey  

Additional Info
Bania profile for Children and Family Missions Activities
Global Prayer Digest: 2010-09-01
Global Prayer Digest: 2011-08-31
Global Prayer Digest: 2017-09-19
People Name General Bania Mahesri
People Name in Country Bania Mahesri
Natural Name Mahesri Bania
Population this Country 432,000
Population all Countries 433,000
Total Countries 2
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
GSEC 3  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 9
Alternate Names Maheshwari; Mahesri; Maheswari; Marwadi; बनिया, महेसरी
People ID 19712
ROP3 Code 115164
Country India
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 10  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file 24
Largest States
(only 15 largest shown)
Rajasthan
102,000
Uttar Pradesh
84,000
Madhya Pradesh
63,000
Maharashtra
34,000
Andhra Pradesh
28,000
Gujarat
28,000
West Bengal
27,000
Assam
20,000
Telangana
9,800
Chhattisgarh
7,000
Delhi
6,600
Uttarakhand
4,500
Odisha
3,500
Punjab
3,200
Tamil Nadu
2,600
Specialized Website South Asia Peoples
Country India
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 10  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States 24  (only 20 largest shown)
  Rajasthan 102,000
  Uttar Pradesh 84,000
  Madhya Pradesh 63,000
  Maharashtra 34,000
  Andhra Pradesh 28,000
  Gujarat 28,000
  West Bengal 27,000
  Assam 20,000
  Telangana 9,800
  Chhattisgarh 7,000
  Delhi 6,600
  Uttarakhand 4,500
  Odisha 3,500
  Punjab 3,200
  Tamil Nadu 2,600
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Language Hindi (203,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 28
Secondary Languages
(only 15 largest shown)
Marwari
67,000
Gujarati
19,000
Telugu
15,000
Dhundari
12,000
Bengali
10,000
Marathi
9,300
Bagri
7,800
Assamese
5,600
Mewari
4,100
Bhojpuri
3,700
Shekhawati
3,100
Kanauji
1,800
Malvi
1,600
Saurashtra
1,300
Awadhi
1,300
Primary Language Hindi (203,000 speakers)
Language Code hin   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 28
Secondary Languages (only 15 largest shown)
  Marwari 67,000
  Gujarati 19,000
  Telugu 15,000
  Dhundari 12,000
  Bengali 10,000
  Marathi 9,300
  Bagri 7,800
  Assamese 5,600
  Mewari 4,100
  Bhojpuri 3,700
  Shekhawati 3,100
  Kanauji 1,800
  Malvi 1,600
  Saurashtra 1,300
  Awadhi 1,300
People Groups Speaking Hindi

Primary Language:  Hindi

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1806-1962)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1811-1998)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1835-2012)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching
Audio Recordings DAVAR Partners recording, Old Testament
Audio Recordings Online Audio Scripture
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Oral Bible stories
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio
Film / Video A Beautiful Hope (EngSub)
Film / Video Coconuts
Film / Video Creation to Christ
Film / Video Following Jesus video
Film / Video God's Story video
Film / Video Indigitube.tv Video / Animation
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Hindi
Film / Video Love letter to you from scripture
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
99.91 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.09 %
Unknown
0.00 %
* From latest India census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.
Photo Source (Representative photo)
Copyrighted © 2022  Isudas  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project.  
Profile Source Keith Carey  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


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