Migration | VOL. 10, ISSUE 58, January-February 2010

The India Migration Report 2009

Past, Present and the Future Outlook

Traditionally the cost of ‘brain drain’ has been the financial loss of investment in education and the skill loss to the country when highly educated Indian workers migrated and settled abroad. Conversely, the primary benefits are seen to be the monetary remittances, the transfer of technology, and the return migration of those Indians further educated and experienced abroad. Consequently, the wheels of perception in India have moved from ‘brain drain’ of the 1960-70s to ‘brain bank’ of the 1980-90s, and subsequently to ‘brain gain’ in the 21st century, currently giving a boost to temporary and circular immigration policies that have been increasingly put in place of the permanent immigration policies by the developed destination countries. The ‘India Migration Report 2009’, launched on the International Migrants’ Day, 18th December, 2010, spanning seven concise chapters, focuses on such issues of international mobility and highlights concerns such as remittances, gender and migration of health professionals apart from new issues of terrorism, security, and climate change. There are 25 million Indians (non-resident Indians and persons of Indian origin) living overseas. In terms of sheer numbers, that translates into a diaspora that is larger than the population of Australia. Over the last two decades, Indian migration patterns are beginning to shift. The new Indian emigrant is younger, seeks different destinations and professions, and returns for reasons other than sheer nationalism....

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