Indian Diaspora In Caribbean

  • Though numbering less than two million across Caribbean islands, they (Indians) occupy a position of considerable power and influence.
  • Trinidad & Tobago, Guyana and Dutch colony of Suriname constitute over 40%, 51% and 35% of total populations, respectively.
  • A large percentage of this population is concentrated in countries of Guyana, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.
  • During colonial era, after abolition of slavery in 1833, British faced extreme shortage of labour for sugar plantation in their sugar producing colonies of Caribbean. To overcome this problem, over half a million Indians were transported to the region as indentured workers (often called as Indian coolies) with false hopes and promises.
  • Most workers came from Eastern UP and Western Bihar, while a smaller number came from Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
  • Most migrants in Caribbean have retained significant elements of their cultural heritage, having resisted attempts at conversion to Christianity at considerable economic and social cost to themselves.
Indian Diaspora In Caribbean
  • Their social exclusivity and aloofness has set them apart from Indigenous populations, except in Jamaica where inter-racial marriages have taken place. They have built many temples and mosques and set up their own cultural and religious associations.
  • Many Surinamese Indians and other PIOs in Caribbean have emigrated to Canada, US and Netherlands where they have better opportunities.
  • Basdeo Panday became PM for two term in Trinidad & Tobago, Cheddi Jagan, first Indo- Guyanese President, Bharat Jagdeo who succeeded him, and J. Lachmon in Suriname are some prominent political personalities in the region.
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