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People of Myanmar

Myanmar People

Republic of the Union of Myanmar, also known as Burma, is a Southeast Asian country, on Bay of Bengal and Andaman sea coast, with India and Bangladesh to its west, China to its north and Thailand to its east. If you delve into Myanmar’s history you will find that it had been invaded by various countries, the most prominent of them being the British Empire reigning over 62 years (1824-1886). The country has also been under military rule from 1962-2011. As you may find, people of such soils are an amalgamation of diverse cultures and ethnicities. They also develop a certain character after going through these rigorous struggles for over centuries.

There are around 135 different ethnicities of people but the most dominant one is Bamar, from which the name Burma was derived. They constitute of around 68% of the population and are mainly Buddhists by religion. History says, Bamars were migrants from Tibet and Central Asia during the 9th and 10th centuries, who are now settled in Myanmar and grown over the millennium, residing on valleys and plains of the country.

Bamars have seven races based on the seven states of Myanmar, which are Kachin, Kayah or Karenni, Kayin or Karen, Chin, Mon, Rakhine or Arakanese and Shan. Mons and Pyus are believed to have migrated from India; however, Chins are the people who are also found in the Northeastern states of India. Chin is one of the major ethnic populations of Myanmar counting to around 1.5 million.

The other significant groups of people you will encounter in Myanmar are ethnic tribes and minorities like Lisu, Akha, Padaung, Palaung, Rawang, Salone, Wa, Lashi, Lahu, Intha, Danu, PaO, Yaw and Naga. Mostly the ethnic tribes reside in places a little remote from mainland Myanmar but are interesting people with intriguing traditions. The beauty of this country lies in the harmony that exists despite the diversities in traits, customs, traditions, language and religion.

People of Myanmar are religious and are predominantly Buddhists (89%) and a minority of Christians (4-5%), which is well understandable due to the Tibetan and British invasions in the past. The culture, however, bears strong Indian and Chinese influences. The languages spoken by people are mainly Burmese and also English, Hindi, Tamil other than the local Shan, Kayin and Mon dialects and Chinese dialects.Myanmar, being a significant tourist destination, people here are warm, friendly, polite with welcoming attitude towards the tourists.

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