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Indians in Bahrain

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The history of Indians in Bahrain dates back to the time of the Dilmun civilisation in 3000 BCE when the civilisation served as a trade link between Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley civilisation1 Proper immigration of Indians to Bahrain first started in the late quarter of the 19th century, with Banyan merchants arriving from the British Raj Today, Indians number at an estimated 400,000 people out of the country's total population of 13 million, making them the largest expatriate group in the country2

Contents

  • 1 History
  • 2 Culture
    • 21 Education
  • 3 See also
  • 4 References
  • 5 Further reading
  • 6 External links

Historyedit

Initially, Indian merchants in Bahrain traded dates, though most later entered the pearling business and helped to export pearls to the world market These merchant families originated from the Sindh province and the Kathiawad region of Gujarat1 By 1925, it was estimated that there were 2,500 Indian families settled in the country, most of whom were involved in the retail sector With the discovery and refinement of oil in Bahrain in 1932–1945, there was a demand for manpower in the oil sector, which led to greater number of Indian workers to immigrate to the country Following the Second World War and the subsequent expansion of Bahrain's economy as a result of the oil boom, greater number of Indians emigrated to the country to set up their own businesses and to fill in manpower demands as workers, managers and salesmen1 By the 1950s, the Bahrain Petroleum Company, which was the country's sole oil company, had employed more than 600 Indians A rough estimate suggested that the number of migrant workers, from the state of Kerala, in Bahrain increased from 1,000 in 1958 to almost 5,000 in 19813

Indians in the country have predominantly blue-collar jobs; 70% of the Indian community work in the construction sector of the country, with others working as barbers and carpenters Around 15,000 more Indians work as domestic workers; these are almost exclusively women1 Most Indian women in the country work as teachers in the country's private schools Despite the vast number of Indians working as blue-collar workers, white-collar Indian workers are present in the country, often working as pharmacists, physicians and accountants1 In recent years, a large number of Indians have committed suicide, leading to a public outcry in Bahrain and India, with community leaders asking for greater reach of counselling and support services4

The Indian embassy in the country was first opened in January 1973 Prior to that, India's Ambassador to Kuwait was concurrently accredited to Bahrain5

Cultureedit

There are 32 registered Indian cultural organisations, with a further 68 unregistered socio-cultural organisations and clubs1 There are multiple non-Muslim religious places of worship present in the country including a 60-year-old Hindu temple, five churches and six Gurudwaras1 The country's oldest and largest Indian social club is the Indian Club with over 4,000 members6 The club was first established in 1915 as the Bahrain Sports Club to serve the country's native and non-native inhabitants7 The Bahrain Keraleeya Samajam was established in 1947 Many of the Indian associations are under the umbrella group of the Co-ordination Committee of Indian Associations CCIA, which coordinates events for the Indian community such as the Indian Republic Day1 The CCIA also helped to provide relief for Indian workers in tragedies such as the Bahrain boat disaster, which killed 17 Indians1

Educationedit

There are multiple schools that were established in the country in the 20th century that offer the CBSE curriculum, the oldest of which is The Indian School which was first established in 195018 The list of CBSE curriculum schools in Bahrain are:-

  • Al-Noor International School
  • Asian School
  • Ibn Al-Hytham Islamic School
  • New Horizon School
  • New Millennium School DPS School
  • The Indian School
  • Bahrain Indian School Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan9
  • The New Indian School http://wwwthenewindianschoolbhorg/school-profilehtml

See alsoedit

  • Bahrain–India relations
  • City of Strangers: Gulf Migration and the Indian Community in Bahrain

Referencesedit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "History of the Indian Community" Indian Embassy, Bahrain Retrieved 5 February 2013 
  2. ^ "India Bahrain Bilateral Relations" Indian Embassy, Bahrain Retrieved 8 February 2013 
  3. ^ Zachariah, Matthew, Rajan, Kunniparampil, Elangikal, Sebastian 2003 Dynamics of Migration in Kerala: Dimensions, Differentials, and Consequences Orient Blackswan p 64 ISBN 9788125025047 CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list link
  4. ^ "Indians in Bahrain worried over rising suicides" Zee News 14 March 2012 Retrieved 5 February 2013 
  5. ^ "Embassy in Bahrain" Indian Embassy, Bahrain Retrieved 5 February 2013 
  6. ^ "Profile" Indian Club Retrieved 5 February 2013 
  7. ^ "History" Indian Club Retrieved 5 February 2013 
  8. ^ "The Indian School" Indian School Retrieved 5 February 2013 
  9. ^ new school to open in bahrain Template:Http://wwwgulf-daily-newscom/source/XXXVII/004/pdf/page16pdf

Further readingedit

  • Gardner, Andrew 2010 City of Strangers: Gulf Migration and the Indian Community in Bahrain PDF Cornell University Press ISBN 9780801476020 

External linksedit

  • Indian Club, Bahrain
  • Indian embassy in Bahrain

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