By SAT News Desk
MELBOURNE, 24 November 2021: The Indian Diaspora is one of the the largest Diaspora in the world and it has ‘influence’ on domestic politics, despite not having ‘dual citizenship’, says Robi Rado, a Fellow at the Melbourne Law School. His Phd thesis examines international legal frameworks that govern Indians’ movement abroad. He was today speaking at a webinar, ‘Asian States and Their Diasporas’, organised by the Asia Institute of the University of Melbourne. The webinar examined the Diasporas of India, China and Indonesia.
Robi explained that the word ‘Diaspora’ itself was not clear in the Indian context and its exact global strength are different in a UN Report (18 million) and the Indian government saying there were 32 million ‘overseas Indians’.
India is interested in its Diaspora was reflected when in 2004 a separate Ministry was formed for the Indian Diaspora, which was in 2016 merged with the Ministry of External Affairs.The main factor of interest being using them for India’s development engagements, he said.
“Despite this they do not have ‘dual citizenship’, and the current Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) does not give Indian citizenship or voting rights.
India is reluctant to grant ‘dual citizenship’ because of ‘national security’ concerns,” Robi said.
About the role of the Indian Diaspora in domestic Indian politics, Robi says, PM Modi went to the US and organised big rallies. But India’s primary aim is to get money and knowledge to benefit the economy. So, with no voting rights the Indian Diaspora has influence in Indian politics.