Kharia Thar

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A language of India

Population

Less than 25,000 L1 speakers; many have shifted to Bengali [ben] or Oriya [ori]. Ethnic population: 25,500 (2007 survey).

Location

West Bengal, Purulia district, Bundwan, Manbazar, Purulia Muffasil, Puncha, Balrampur, Barabazar, and Hura blocks; Bankura district, Raipur, Ranibandh, and Indpur blocks; West Medinipur district, Binpur block; Jharkhand, East Singhbhum district, Potka, Dhalbhumgarh, Ghatsila, Musabani, Dumaria, and Chakulia blocks; a few in West Singhbhum district.

Language Maps
Language Status

6a (Vigorous).

Dialects

A Western subdialect of Bengali [ben] (Grierson and Konow 1901–1929). Lexical similarity: 57%–90% among varieties of Kharia Thar, 53%–63% with Bengali [ben], 51%–67% with Oriya [ory], 57%–75% with Lodhi [lbm].

Language Use

Spoken by some Hill Kharia. Ethnic Hill Kharia in Odisha speak Oriya [ory] as L1. Many in Jharkhand and West Bengal speak Bengali [ben] as L1. Home, village, private prayer. Most also use Bengal [ben] in outside domains; some also use Hindi [hin], Oriya [ory], or Santhali [sat].

Other Comments

Ethnonym: Kheria, Erenga, or Pahari. Ethnic autonym: Sabar. Traditional religion.