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Indian Australian


Indian Australian

Indian Australians
Total population
Indian Australians
400,000+ (by birth)[1]
500,000+ (by ancestry)[1]
2.13% of the Australian population (2015)[2]
Regions with significant populations
Victoria 111,787[1]
New South Wales 95,387[1]
Queensland 30,259[1]
Related ethnic groups

An Indian Australian is an Australian of Indian descent or heritage. This includes both those who are Australian by birth, and those born in India or elsewhere in the Indian diaspora. They are one of the fastest growing ethnic groups in Australia today.[2]

In 2005-2006 India was the fourth major source of permanent migrants to Australia behind the United Kingdom, New Zealand and China. Between 2000–2001 and 2005–2006, the number of migrants who came to Australia from India increased from 4,700 to 12,300 people.[4] In 2011-12, Indians became the largest source of permanent migration to Australia forming 15.7% of the total migration programme. Australia's Indian-born population also recorded the fastest growth in the country in 2008-2009, increasing by 44,012 (17%).[2]

The largest Indian Australian concentration is found in the state of Victoria.[1]


  • History 1
  • Demographics 2
  • Religion 3
  • Notable Australians of Indian ancestry 4
    • Indian ancestry 4.1
    • Anglo-Indian ancestry 4.2
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7


The number of permanent settlers arriving in Australia from India since 1991 (monthly).

A study of DNA has found that Indian people may have come to Australia around 4000 years ago.[5] Indian immigration began early in colonial history. The first Indians arrived in Australia with the British who had been living in India.[6] From the 1860s, Indians (Sikh), 'Afghans' and Pacific Islanders were recruited as workers in rural and northern outback Australia. Many 'Afghans' actually came from India (as well as Iran, Egypt and Turkey). They were loosely called 'Afghans' due to their similar dress because mostly Sikh wear the turban, and they worked as cameleers to operate camel trains throughout outback Australia, as 'pioneers of the inland'.[7] As well as labourers and domestic help, Australia's early Indian population also found work as hawkers. The 1881 census records 998 people who were born in India but this had grown to over 1700 by 1891.[6]

Migration from India was curtailed after the Australian Government introduced the Immigration Restriction Act 1901, but following India's independence from Britain in 1947, the number of Anglo-Indians and Indian-born British citizens immigrating to Australia increased.[8][9]


People with Indian ancestry as a percentage of the population in Sydney divided geographically by postal area, as of the 2011 census

During the 2006 Census, 147,106 Australian residents declared that they were born in India, of which 79,025 held Australian citizenship. The states with the largest Indian-born residents were New South Wales (57,156), Victoria (52,853) and Western Australia (15,157). 64,968 declared they were Hindu, 49,975 declared they were Christian and 26,500 declared they were Sikh. Other minorities include Muslims and Zoroastrians.[2] 243,722 Australian residents declared that had Indian ancestry, either alone or in combination with another ancestry.[10]

The Indian-born community more than doubled between 2004 and 2009 to 308,542, making it the second largest non-European group in Australia after Chinese-born Australians.[2] In 2009 there were an additional 90,000 Indian Students studying at Australian tertiary institutions according to Prime Minister Rudd.[11]


Shri Shiva Vishnu Temple in Carrum Downs, Victoria. This temple is the largest Hindu temple in Victoria.

According to the 2011 census, most Indian Australians are Hindus with about 276,000 individuals who profess Hinduism, making it one of the fastest growing religions in Australia.[12]

Notable Australians of Indian ancestry

Indian ancestry

Anglo-Indian ancestry

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f
  2. ^ a b c d e Total responses: 25,451,383 for total count of persons: 19,855,288.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ [2]
  12. ^

External links

  • Packing To Leave: Saris, Suits and Spices
  • Indian migration to Australia: puzzles and potentials
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