Fijian Indian diaspora

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Fiji Indians
Total population
Regions with significant populations
Fiji 313,798(2007 census)[1]
Canada 24,441 (2004 figure)[2]
United States 30,890 (2000 figure)[3]
Australia 48,147 (2006 figure)[4]
New Zealand 37,746 (2006 figure)[5]
United Kingdom 5,571 (2001 figure)[6]
Fiji Hindi (lingua franca),
Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Other

The Fiji Indian diaspora developed with people of Indian origin leaving Fiji, mainly following the racially inspired coups of 1987 and 2000, to settle primarily in Australia, New Zealand, United States and Canada. Smaller numbers have settled in other Pacific islands, the United Kingdom, and other European countries.[7]

Origin of the Fiji Indians[edit]

Indians (mostly from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar) were initially brought to Fiji as indentured laborers to work on sugar cane plantations. Between 1879 and 1916, a total of 60,000 Indians arrived in Fiji. Approximately 25,000 of these returned to India. From 1900 onwards, some Indians arrived as free immigrants, who were mostly from the provinces of Gujarat, Sindh, and Punjab.

Early Fiji Indian emigration[edit]

Fiji Indians have been emigrating to United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom since the early 1960s. These were mainly economic migrants and their number gradually increased in the 1970s and 1980s to reach approximately 4000 per year.

The exodus following the military coups[edit]

Following the military coup of 1987, many Indians saw little future in staying in Fiji and tried to find any means to leave the country. Professional, middle class and business found it easier to emigrate. It has been estimated that more than 100,000 Fiji Indians have emigrated since 1987. This represents a third of the existing Indian population in Fiji.[8]


  1. ^ "Fiji population up 50,000 in 10 yrs". Government of Fiji. 31 October 2007. Retrieved 2013-01-25. 
  2. ^ Migration facts, stats and maps
  3. ^ People born in Fiji
  4. ^ Ethnic Diversity – Country of Birth of Residents 2006
  5. ^ QuickStats About Culture and Identity
  6. ^ British residents born abroad
  7. ^ Microsoft Word – 05-05-ana1.rtf
  8. ^ 00 Upfront.pmd