Top 5 People Groups
Christian (Unspecified): 33,000
About Andaman & Nicobar Islands
Sometimes referred to as the A&N Islands, the Andamans and Nicobars are located in the Indian Ocean in the lower end of the Bay of Bengal. The 437–mile–long archipelago is comprised of 572 islands, the majority of which are in the Andaman group. The smaller Nicobars to the south include 22 islands. Only 38 of the A&N Islands are permanently inhabited.
As a Union Territory of India since the 1950s, the islands are nominally under the control of the Indian head of state. The territories are divided into two districts, each of which has a deputy commissioner and assistant commissioners who oversee local administrative service departments.
European colonization began with members of the Danish East India Company, who arrived in the Nicobar Islands in 1755. The following year they became a Danish colony, but frequent outbreaks of malaria led to periodic abandonment of the islands. Denmark sold the rights to the Nicobars to Britain and they became part of British India in 1869. With its second attempt, the British established a permanent colony at Port Blair on the Andamans in 1858. The primary objective was to set up a penal colony for dissenters and independence fighters from mainland India. The Cellular Jail built in Port Blair was considered the “Siberia” of British India. In 1872 the Andaman and Nicobar Islands were united under a single chief commissioner at Port Blair. After India received its independence from Britain, the islands became part of the Indian union in 1950 and were declared a union territory in 1956.
Six main tribes live on the islands, two of Mongoloid ancestry and four of African descent. The Andamanese peoples include the Greater Andamanese, the Jarawa, the Onge, and the Sentinelese (most isolated of all the groups). The Sentinelese still use spears or poison bow and arrows to attack outsiders. There are two distinct people groups on the Nicobar Islands, the Nicobari, who live on several of the islands, and the Shompen, who live in the interior of Great Nicobar.
Over 20 percent of the population on the islands is Christian, with the majority being Hindu. Among the indigenous Nicobari, however, more than 90 percent are Christian.
Recent Prayerline Posts
ANDAMAN ISLANDS. On the island of Baratang, frequent earthquakes have ruined a church building. The floor has sunk below ground level in the center and is broken in other places, discouraging some people from attending. Will 19 people provide $110 each for repairs? Pray that God will provide a spiritual and physical foundation for worship.
SOUTH ASIA. When the gospel takes root in South Asian villages, people tear down their altars to other gods; they worship the one, true Living God. Many are delivered from spiritual darkness. Thirty native missionaries reaching island tribes need support ($100 each per month) as they hold training seminars, youth camps and healing meetings in new areas. Pray for a great harvest. ...