Indians among top asylum-seekers, says global study

A recent global study on migration found that India has topped the list among countries whose citizens acquire foreign nationality. A tiny bit of this migration is driven by asylum-seekers from home who count among the biggest groups seeking refuge from “persecution” in countries as far-flung as New Zealand (NZ) and Latvia. Top asylum-seekers to New Zealand between 2012 and 2016 were from China, India, Fiji, and Iraq, according to the International Migration Outlook 2017 report on OECD member-nations.

TOI further reports that as per the country note for NZ in 2015-16, 340 people sought asylum in NZ. Among these, India and China were the largest source countries of asylum-seekers (11% and 9%), followed by Fiji (8%), Iraq (7%) and Pakistan (6%). Refugee status was granted in 110 cases (35%) in all. India was also among the top countries for asylum requests in 2016 for Australia, Finland, Japan, Latvia, Slovak Republic, UK and US, according to statistics.

A small country in Europe, Latvia, had 6,200 registered international students in 2015-16, of which the largest proportion was from India and Uzbekistan at 18% each. Indians requesting asylum there were either students who wanted to outstay their visas or others who were intercepted trying to enter the country. The office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) data revealed that Indians have sought asylum in more than 40 countries for several years now. Europe has historically seen a large number of applications from Indian asylum seekers -6,300 in 2012 and 2013. The refugee crisis in Syria and Iraq.

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