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 Friday, 10 January, 2003, 14:35 GMT
India's global community
India has announced plans to give some of its 20 million-strong diaspora dual nationality.

Click on the map below to find out more about Indian communities around the world.


The Gulf
Indian diaspora: 3 million

Most of the Indian population are non-resident migrant workers.

Large scale movement of both blue and white collar workers followed the oil-driven boom in the Gulf in the mid to late 1970s and continued through the 1980s.

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United States
Indian diaspora: 1.6 million

Indian immigration grew dramatically in the 1990s.

An annual influx of 30,000-45,000 primarily professional men and women and their relatives meant that between 1990 and 2000, the Indian community more than doubled.

Indians have established themselves in the IT, professional, commercial and academic sectors and enjoys growing economic influence and political clout.

The largest concentration is in California. New York, New Jersey, Illinois and Texas too have significant groups.

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Caribbean
Indian diaspora: 950,000

Some Indians were sent to the Caribbean in colonial times to work on sugar plantations. Today the community is fully integrated and has significant commercial and political influence.

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United Kingdom
Indian diaspora: 942,000

Colonial links meant that Britain was one of the first countries where the Indian diaspora gained a foothold.

Dadabhai Nauroji, a businessman turned politician, was elected to the House of Commons as a Liberal MP in 1892.

The Indian community, especially student groups in Oxford and Cambridge, played a key role in gaining popular support for Indian independence.

The arrival of Indians from Uganda in the 1970s reinforced the community's influence in the commercial sector.

More recently, Indian cuisine and films have established themselves as part of Britain's multicultural scene.

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Mauritius
Indian diaspora: 700,000

The country is almost entirely populated by People of Indian Origin - or PoIs - as a result of historical migration.

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Fiji
Indian diaspora: 333,000

A very established community is descended from plantation workers transferred by the British long before independence.

Today the community has significant commercial and political influence.

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Canada
Indian diaspora: 150,000

The country's Indian population expanded in the 1980s, mainly from Sikhs escaping troubles in India's Punjab state.

The biggest community is in and around Vancouver and largely consists of white collar and professional workers.

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Singapore
Indian diaspora: 90,000

Indians are the second largest ethnic group in Singapore after Chinese. Most Indians arrived in colonial times.

Now, the community is well established and commercially and politically very important. The president is one of the most prominent PoIs in the city state.

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Afghanistan
Indian diaspora: 45,000

A small community of traders and professionals was well-established since before independence in 1948.

The numbers declined in the 1980s and 1990s as some left during the war with the Soviet Union and the civil war which followed.

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South Africa
Indian diaspora: 1 million

The Indian community grew during colonial times.

Mahatma Gandhi is the most prominent PoI to have lived in South Africa.

The community is commercially and politically influential. Several members of the current ANC leadership are PoIs.

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East Africa
Indian diaspora: 200,000

Large, well established communities have existed since before independence, mostly businessmen and professionals, in Uganda and Kenya.

Uganda deported most of its Indian population in the 1970s, but some are now returning.

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Burma
Indian diaspora: 2.9 million

Burma's Indian population consists mainly of PoIs, many of them Bengalis, who lived there or went there before Indian independence.

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Malaysia
Indian diaspora: 1.6 million

Indians in Malaysia are mostly PoIs, many of them southern Indians, who went there during the British empire.

There are also some non-resident Indians who arrived in Malaysia in the 1980s during the economic boom.

See also:

09 Jan 03 | South Asia
09 Jan 03 | South Asia
08 Jan 03 | South Asia
24 Jul 02 | Country profiles
18 Jan 02 | South Asian Debates
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