A non-resident Indian (NRI) is an Indian citizen who has migrated to another country. Other terms with the same meaning are (somewhat self-deprecating in context) Desis, overseas Indian and expatriate Indian. For tax and other official purpose the government of India considers any Indian national away from India for more than 183 days in a year an NRI. In common usage, this often includes Indian born individuals (and also people of other nations with Indian blood) who have taken the citizenship of other countries.
A Person of Indian Origin (PIO) is literally, simply a person of Indian origin who is not a citizen of India. For the purposes of issuing a PIO Card, the Indian government considers anyone of Indian origins up to four generations removed, to be a PIO .
There is a huge NRI and PIO population across the world, estimated at around 30 million by 2011 (not including Pakistani, Bangladeshi or Sri Lankan diaspora, or Roma people). For examples of prominent NRIs see List of NRIs (or NRIs).
1 Moving on out
2 PIOs today
2.1 Indians in the US
2.2 Statistics on Indians in the US
2.3 Indians in the UK
2.4 Indians in Malaysia
2.5 Indians in the Middle East
2.6 Indians in South Africa
2.7 Indians in Canada
2.8 Indians in Mauritius
2.9 Indians in Singapore
2.10 Indians in Madagascar
4 Headline text
6 See also
7 Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
 Moving on out
The most significant historical emigration from India was that of the Roma (often known as "Gypsies"). Around the 11th century A.D, Muslim invaders in the subcontinent took many Indians as captives to Afghanistan. These people then went to Iran and other parts of the Middle East as wandering court musicians. They gradually became a class of their own, wandering to Europe, where they were known as the Gypsies, (based on an account of their origins lying in Egypt). They adopted local religions such as Christianity and Islam, but combined some of their Hindu practices with the new faiths. The cult of Romani Christian saint Kali Sarah may have been a Christianization of the Hindu goddess Kali. They also speak a distinct Indo-Aryan language of their own, Romani. Another major emigration from the subcontinent was to South East Asia. It started as a military expedition by Hindu, and later Buddhist, kings of South India and resulted in the settlers' merging with the local society. The influence of Indian culture is still strongly felt in South East Asia, especially in places like Bali (in Indonesia). However, in such cases, it is not reasonable to apply the label 'PIO' to the descendants of emigrants from several centuries back, especially since intermixture is so great as to negate the value of such nomenclature in this context.
During the nineteenth century and until the end of the Raj, much of the migration that happened was to other colonies under the indenture system. The major destinations, in chronological order, were Mauritius, British Guyana, the West Indies (Trinidad and Jamaica), Fiji and East Africa. There was also a small amount of free emigration of skilled laborers and professionals to some of these countries in the twentieth century. The event that triggered this diaspora was the Slavery Abolition Act passed by the British Parliament on August 1, 1834, which freed the slave labour force throughout the British colonies. This left many of the plantations devoid of adequate work force as the newly freed slaves left to take advantage of their newly found freedom. This resulted in an extreme shortage of labour throughout many of the British colonies which was resolved by massive importation of workers engaged under contracts of indentured servitude.
An unrelated system involved recruitment of workers for the tea plantations of the neighboring British colonies of Sri Lanka and Burma and the rubber plantations of British Malaya (now Malaysia and Singapore). like Australia and New Zealand.
After the 1970s oil boom in the Middle East, a large number of Indians emigrated to the Gulf countries. However, this was on a contractual basis rather than permanent as in the other cases. These Gulf countries have a common policy of not naturalizing non-Arabs, no matter if they are even born there.
 PIOs today
 Indians in the US
Main article: Indian American
Indians in the USA are one of the largest among the groups of Indian diaspora, numbering about 2.5 million, and probably the one of the most well off - their median income is 1.5 times that the host country. They are well represented in all walks of life, but particularly so in academia, information technology and medicine. There were over 4,000 PIO professors and 33,000 Indian-born students in American universities in 1997-98. The American Association of the Physicians of Indian Origin boasts a membership of 35,000. In 2000, Fortune magazine estimated the wealth generated by Indian Silicon Valley entrepreneurs at around $250 billion.
There appear to be class differences within the Indian American community, with earlier professional immigrants looking down upon working-class communities who are later first generation immigrants. Gujarati shopkeepers and Punjabi cab drivers are common stereotypes of the latter community. Many older generation Indians are people who came to the US for higher education and settled down. While a significant proportion of the current-generation Indians are doctors, the vast majority are involved in the IT industry in one way or the other.
In Silicon Valley, California, a significant percentage of entrepreneurs are of South Asian origin, specifically Indo American. The names that crop up among successful Indo Americans in the technology field are Vinod Khosla, Kim Singh, Kanwal Rekhi among others.
Americans of Indian descent have, in the past, been targets of racism by members of all ethnic groups--though it has dissipated substantially. Some of it is overt, perhaps the worst example being the New Jersey dot busters - groups of thugs who sought ethnic Indians and mugged them or attacked their property in the late 80s and early 90s, the "dot" referring to the bindi worn traditionally by Hindu women on their forehead. These attacks were racially motivated, and alienated the Indian population from the American mainstream. This lack of assimilation has created many problems for both ethnic Indians as well as non Indians.
Indo Americans in particular Sikh Americans and Indo Americans of Muslim origin, were targeted after 9/11/01. A significant number of Sikh Americans were killed, the most significant being the Sodhi family which lost two brothers. Non-profit agencies such as the Asian American Public Policy Institute sprang into action, working to help create awareness among Americans about Islam and Sikhism.
Another peculiarity are most children of these immigrants - also called as "ABCD" - American Born Confused Desi. This term (usually used as something of an insult) reflects the fact that these first generation Americans find themselves stuck between traditional parents and upbringing at home and the more liberal and open community outside. This "in-between-ness" can leave them with uncertainty about their own role in society - neither Indian nor American.
 Statistics on Indians in the US
In the year 2002, of the entire total 1,063,732 immigrants to USA from all the countries, as many as 66,864 were from India. According to the US census, the overall growth rate for Indians from 1990 to 2000 was 105.87 per cent. The average growth rate for the whole of USA was only 7.6 per cent.
Indians comprise 16.4 per cent of the Asian-American community. They are the third largest in the Asian American population. In 2000, of all the foreign born population in USA, Indians were 1.007 million. Their percentage was 3.5 per cent. From 2000 onwards the growth rate and the per cent rate of Indians amongst all the immigrants has increased by over 100 times.
Between 1990 and 2000, the Indian population in the US grew 113% - 10 times the national average of 13%. Source: US Census Bureau
Today, Asian Indians are the second largest Asian group (2,226,585) in the US, behind only the Chinese (2,762,524). Source: 2003 American Community Survey
Indians own 50% of all economy lodges and 35% of all hotels in the US, which have a combined market value of almost $40 billion. Source: Little India Magazine
One in every nine Indians in the US is a millionaire, comprising 10% of US millionaires. Source: 2003 Merrill Lynch SA Market Study
A University of California, Berkeley, study reported that one-third of the engineers in Silicon Valley are of Indian descent, while 7% of valley hi-tech firms are led by Indian CEOs. Source: Silicon India Readership Survey
Indians along with other Asians, have the highest educational qualifications of all ethnic groups in the US. Almost 67% of all Indians have a bachelor’s or high degree (compared to 28% nationally). Almost 40% of all Indians have a master’s, doctorate or other professional degree, which is five times the national average. Source: The Indian American Centre for Political Awareness.
 Indians in the UK
Main article: British Asian
Bollywood movies are released commercially in the United Kingdom
The Indian emigrant community in the United Kingdom is now in its third generation. As an immigrant group, people of Indian origin have been remarkably successful.
A remarkable collection of the oral history of the British NRIs is available on Britain's leading NRI website History Talking.com. It's a web radio where you can listen to some of the leading NRIs living in the UK.
Stereotypes about Indians have now moved from their being bus-conductors, waiters, and small shopkeepers to their being doctors, lawyers, accountants and successful businesspeople. Increasingly, the second and third generation of Indians has started inter-marrying with the rest of the population, to the point where this has in itself become a stereotype.
In a few local areas, ethnic tension has resulted in ill-feeling and racist violence against immigrants, and groups such as the British National Party have exploited this. However, in general, racism towards people of Indian origin has greatly reduced from the early days of mass immigration after Partition and the expulsion of the Ugandan Indians.
Indian culture has been constantly referenced within wider British culture, at first as an "exotic" influence in films like My Beautiful Laundrette, but now increasingly as a familiar feature in films like Bend It Like Beckham. Indian food is now regarded as part of the British cuisine.
According to the April 2001 UK National Census  There are 1,051,800 people of Indian origin in the UK.
They are the best educated and most economically successful of the South Asian immigrant communities, also exceeding the indigenous White/English. 
 Indians in Malaysia
Main articles: Indian Malaysian, Chitty
Most Indians migrated to Malaysia as plantation laborers under British rule. They are a significant minority ethnic group, making up 7% of the Malaysian population. Most of these are Tamil but some Malayalam- and Telugu- speaking people are also present. They have retained their languages and religion -- 80% of ethnic Indians in Malaysia identify as Hindus. Hinduism in Malaysia diverges from mainstream (post-Vedantic) Hinduism: its main feature is Mother-goddess (Amman) worship; caste deities, tantric rituals, folk beliefs, non-Agamic temples, and animal sacrifice are its other characteristics. Deepavali and Thaipusam are the main festivals. However, there is an increase in agamic worship in Malaysia, due to the efforts of the Malaysian Hindu Sangam and several notable Hindu organitations in Malaysia. There is also a small community of Indian origin, the Chitty, who are the descendants of Tamil traders who had emigrated before 1500 AD, and Chinese and Malay women. Considering themselves Tamil, speaking Malay, and practicing Hinduism, they number about 2,000 today.
 Indians in the Middle East
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There is a huge population of Indians in the Middle East, most coming from Kerala and other south Indian states, especially in the oil rich countries neighboring the Persian Gulf. Most moved to the Gulf after the oil boom to work as labourers and for clerical jobs. Indians - all foreigners, in fact - in the Gulf do not normally become citizens however. They retain their Indian passports since most of the countries in the Gulf do not provide citizenship or permanent residency. One of the major reasons why Indians like to work in the Gulf is because it provides incomes many times over for the same type of job back in india and its geographical proximity to India.The Indian Disporsa makes up a good proportion of the working class in the GCC.
 Indians in South Africa
Main article: Asians in South Africa
Most Asians in South Africa are descended from indentured Indian labourers who were brought by the British from India in the 19th century, mostly to work in what is now the province of KwaZulu-Natal (KZN). The rest are descended from Indian traders who migrated to South Africa at around the same time, many from the Gujarat area. The city of Durban, has the largest Asian population in sub-Saharan Africa, and the Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi worked as a lawyer in the city in the early 1900s.
 Indians in Canada
Main article: Indo-Canadian
According to Statistics Canada, in 2001 there were 713,330 people who classified themselves as being of Indian origin. The term “East Indian” or Indo-Canadian is most commonly associated with people of Indian origin, since the term Indian in Canada has commonly been used to refer to the Aboriginal Canadians and still continues to be used to describe them, causing much confusion. In addition, the term Indian is also occasionally applied to people from the Caribbean (West Indians). Out of this population, 42% are Hindu, 39% are Sikh, and the remainder are Muslim, Christian, Jain, Buddhist, or no religious affiliation. The main Indian ethnic communities are Punjabis (which account for more than half of population) as well Gujaratis, Tamils (Indian as opposed to Sri Lankan), Keralites, Bengalis, Sindhis and others.
The first Indians began moving to Canada in small numbers to British Columbia, and were mainly male Sikh Punjabis who were seeking work opportunities abroad. These first immigrants faced widespread racism by the local white Canadians. There were race riots that targeted these immigrants, as well as new Chinese immigrants as well. Most decided to return to India, while a few stayed behind. The Canadian government prevented these men from bringing their wives and children until 1919, which was the main reason why they decided to leave. Quotas were established to prevent many Indians from moving to Canada in the early 20th century. These quotas allowed less than 100 people from India a year until 1957, when it was increased to 300 people a year. In 1967, all quotas were scrapped in Canada, and immigration was based on a point system, thus allowing many more Indians to immigrate in large numbers. Since this open door policy was adopted, Indians continue to come in large numbers, and roughly 25,000 - 30,000 arrive each year (which is now the second highest group immigrating to Canada each year, behind Chinese immigrants).
Most Indians choose to immigrate to larger urban centers like Toronto and Vancouver, where more than 70% live. Smaller communities are also growing in Calgary, Montreal, Edmonton and Winnipeg. Indians in Toronto are from diverse locations in India, such as Punjab, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala. Brampton, a suburb of Toronto has many Indian residents, and the town of Springdale in Brampton is commonly referred to as “Singhdale” because of the many Sikhs that live there. Indians in Vancouver mainly live in the suburb of Surrey, but can also be found throughout Vancouver. The vast majority of Vancouver Indians are of Sikh Punjabi origin and have taken leading roles in politics and the professions, with several Supreme Court justices, three Attorneys-General and one provincial premier coming from their community.
 Indians in Mauritius
Main article: Indo-Mauritian
Outside of India itself, Mauritius is the only country where people of Indian Origin form the vast majority (not including Trinidad & Tobago where Afro-Trinidadiand and Indo-Trinidadians have equal populations, or Fiji where the Indo-Fijians once formed the majority but don't today). The people are known as Indo-Mauritians, and form about 70% of the population. The majority are Indo-Aryan Hindu, the largest minority Tamil and Telugu and the smallest significant group are Muslims. There are also some Christians, Baha'is and Sikhs, but the Baha'i and Sikh populations do not add up to even 1% of the population. Various Indian languages are still spoken, especially Tamil, Bhojpuri, Hindi and Urdu, but most Indo-Mauritians now speak a French-based Creole language at home, as well as French in general fields. Finding an Indo-Mauritian who exclusively speaks an Indian language is very rare.
 Indians in Singapore
Main article: Indian Singaporean
The term Indian Singaporean refers to any Singapore citizen of South Asian ancestry including, most notably, India. Most Indian Singaporeans are second, third or even fourth generation descendants of migrants from the Indian subcontinent to Singapore and Malaysia, which were then known collectively as British Malaya in the pre-World War II colonial era. A small and shrinking number of older Indian Singaporeans are first generation migrants from the subcontinent. The vast majority are Tamil, but there are also some Telugu, Malayalam and Hindi peoples.
 Indians in Madagascar
Indians in Madagascar are descended mostly from traders who arrived to the newly-independent nation looking for better opportunities. The majority speak Hindi, and though some Indian dialects are spoken, nowardays the younger generations speak French or Malagasy.
Some information in this article or section has not been verified and may not be reliable.Please check for any inaccuracies, and modify and cite sources as needed.
Region / Country
Overseas Indian Population
Indian Malaysian, Chitty
950,000 (2006) 
1,400,000 (2005) 
United Arab Emirates
South Asians in Hong Kong
People's Republic of China
2,850,000 (2000) 
South America and the Caribbean
950,000 (2000) 
East African Community
Asians in South Africa
470,000 (2000) 
 Headline text
Adnan==Bollysthan: The Global India==
As the Indian government's own Singhvi commission notes, "the sun never sets on the Indian diaspora." Yet the cultural transmission model is rapidly transforming from a one-way street, in which the Motherland gives and the diaspora receives, to a two-way street, in which the diaspora is as confidently Indian, sometimes more so, than India itself. Bollystan ("Bolly-" for Bollywood, and "Sthan", the Sanskrit suffix for "land" comprise this term) is a neologism which recognizes this changing balance of power between the home country and its diaspora. Technology has enabled the diaspora to manufacture "Indian-ness" as competently as their home-bound relatives through film, dance, music and even religious practices. These externally produced symbols of Indian-ness have in many ways become the primary representation of India in the West and around the world. The term was first used by Parag Khanna, when he guest edited the UK's ethnic lifestyle magazine Another Generation in Fall 2004 (www.anothergeneration-mag.com). The entire issue was based on the theme of Bollystan, This was subsequently then used in an article in The Globalist . The London-based Foreign Policy Centre think-tank has also recognized Bollystan as a form of "diasporic diplomacy" . In the January/February 2005 issue of Foreign Policy magazine, Mitra Kalita of the Washington Post writes, "Finally there is a name for where I live: Bollysthan." 
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Following are some consider issues for India when Indians migrate to other countries
"Brain drain" (The exodus of educated workers and academics).
Foreign exchange inflow (Though the government gets inflow of money, it is not liable)
Cultural exchange (Indian culture is under threat, when NRIs return home they bring other culture)
Identity crisis (Their identity is lost, Indians at home fail to recognize them when they return; in their adopted country they are still considered as Indians)
"X = X + 1 Syndrome" (Syndrome of postponing returning to India every year)
"NRI Syndrome" (Talking ill of India and Indians, once having exposure to other countries. A major criticism of this attitude by native Indians is that the NRIs fail to act on these criticisms. However, a few educated NRIs tend to take a holistic view of the entire issue and many have formed NGOs and are taking steps to tackle the problems)
Related to the above is the concept of "England Returned," from an old Bombay film of that name, a description allegedly once used by those who went back to India after a period of study or work in the UK. The concept resembles that of adding "BTA" (Been To America) to a British CV.
American Born Confused Desi (ABCD) is a term that refers to people of Indian origin, born and living in the United States.