Pakistan Ranks 4th Highest Source of Foreign Remittances to India

Pakistanis sent nearly $5 billion to help their relatives in India in 2015, according to data released by the World Bank. This makes Pakistan the 4th largest source of foreign remittances to India, putting Pakistan ahead of Kuwait and the United Kingdom. Only United Arab Emirates, United States and Saudi Arabia sent more money to India.

Source: Wall Street Journal 

With over 1.4 million Pakistanis born in India, there are literally millions of family connections between the two countries and millions of reasons a person in Pakistan might find a way to get money to relatives in India. The money could be sent for a brother in need, a cousin’s wedding, an uncle’s funeral or even to help educate a niece, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

Source: Hindustan Times

I personally know people in my own circle of friends and family in Pakistan who regularly send money to relatives in India to help them out in times of need. Such remittances are used to build homes, educate children, pay for health care or girls' weddings.

While Muslims in Pakistan have prospered, the Indian Muslims have become the new untouchables in their land of birth. They suffer widespread discrimination in education, employment, housing and criminal justice. Muslims make up 13% of India's population but 28% of Indian prisoners. Similarly, Christians make up 2.8% of India's population but 6% of India's prison population.  Meanwhile, the newly elected parliament has just 4% Muslim representation. Housing discrimination in India is so bad that an Indian MP Shashi Tharoor recently tweeted: "Try renting an apartment using a #Muslim name (In #India )".

The latest World Bank remittance offers yet another confirmation that the South Asian Muslims who migrated from what is now India to Pakistan have fared relatively better in terms of economic and other opportunities. Pakistani Muslims have the means to help their relatives in India. It reinforces my own anecdotal observation during my visits to both countries.  I see that my own relatives in Pakistan are much better off than those in India. My Pakistani relatives enjoy better opportunities for education and jobs giving them higher standards of living than those in India.

In fact, Pakistan has continued to offer much greater upward economic and social mobility to its citizens than neighboring India over the last two decades. Since 1990, Pakistan's middle class had expanded by 36.5% and India's by only 12.8%, according to an ADB report titled "Asia's Emerging Middle Class: Past, Present And Future.

Source: ADB
New York Times' Sabrina Tavernise described the rise of Pakistan's middle class in a story from Pakistani town of Muzaffargarh in the following words:

For years, feudal lords reigned supreme, serving as the police, the judge and the political leader. Plantations had jails, and political seats were practically owned by families.

Instead of midwifing democracy, these aristocrats obstructed it, ignoring the needs of rural Pakistanis, half of whom are still landless and desperately poor more than 60 years after Pakistan became a state.

But changes began to erode the aristocrats’ power. 
Cities sprouted, with jobs in construction and industry. Large-scale farms eclipsed old-fashioned plantations. Vast hereditary lands splintered among generations of sons, and many aristocratic families left the country for cities, living beyond their means off sales of their remaining lands. Mobile labor has also reduced dependence on aristocratic families.

In Punjab, the country’s most populous province, and its most economically advanced, the number of national lawmakers from feudal families shrank to 25 percent in 2008 from 42 percent in 1970, according to a count conducted by Mubashir Hassan, a former finance minister, and The New York Times.

“Feudals are a dying breed,” said S. Akbar Zaidi, a Karachi-based fellow with the Carnegie Foundation. “They have no power outside the walls of their castles.”

In yet another confirmation that Pakistani Muslims are much better off than Indian Muslims, the World Bank data has revealed that $5 billion were remitted by Pakistanis to help their Indian Muslim relatives in 2015 alone. Such remittances are used to build homes, educate children, pay for health care or girls' weddings. This flow will have to increase in the future given the Modi government policies of Hinduization that are adversely impacting Indian Muslims by worsening the depth of their deprivations.

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Riaz Haq said…
Cultural event at #India's Jadavpur University defends #Kashmir’s right to #Azadi #FreeKashmir via @htTweets …

Jadavpur University (JU) students defended Kashmiri people’s ‘right to seek Azadi’ during a cultural event held on the campus on Tuesday, setting the stage for another confrontation with members of right-wing parties who have recently equated such views as anti-national.
Singer-turned-politician and former Trinamool Congress MP Kabir Suman performed at the event that was attended by more than 500 students and faculty members.
Recently a section of JU students put up alleged anti-national posters and chanted slogans in support of Afzal Guru and Yakub Menon, both of whom were hanged for their involvement in separate terror attacks.
The event was organised to protest the arrest of Jawahar Lal Nehru students Kanhaiya Kumar, Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya. Filmmaker Aniket Chattopadhyay and human rights activist Sujato Bhadra were among those who participated.
“India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru had promised to hold plebiscite in Kashmir. That has not been fulfilled yet. The people are still being bombarded and killed. What else would they do other than seek ‘Azadi’ from the miserable lives they have been forced to live?”, said Sushil Mandi, a spokesperson of Leftwing student outfit Radical, which organised the programme.
He also defended certain JNU students who raised slogans demanding ‘azadi for Kashmir’ and eulogising Afzal Guru, the Parliament attack convict who was hanged.
“A lot of people in Kashmir consider Afzal Guru a martyr. Even the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) considers him a martyr. What’s wrong if JNU students, or any other person in this country, felt Afzal was a martyr?” Mandi asked.
Kabir Suman, a JU alumnus, performed a number of songs, including those that he composed protesting the killing of Australian missionary Graham Stuart Staines, encounter deaths of Ishrat Jahan and Fulmoni Tudu and the suicide of Rohith Vemula. One of his songs, “Afzal Guru shono, Srinagar-a hobe dekha,” roughly translates to “See you in Srinagar, Afzal.” Suman also said that he is sympathetic to the Maoists’ cause.
Riaz Haq said…
Only 27% of Pakistanis identify themselves as Pakistanis first while 51% of Indians see themselves as Indians first. On the other hand, 43% of Pakistanis (vs 17% of Indians) say their religious identity comes first.

Three countries stand out in the way their populations think about self-identity. Spaniards are by far the most likely to identify with world citizenship (54%). For 56 per cent of Indonesians, belonging to their local community is the strongest defining identity. And for Pakistanis, a strong plurality (43%) identify first as a member of their religion.

The poll, conducted by GlobeScan among more than 20,000 people worldwide between December 2015 and April 2016, is being released as part of the BBC World Service Identity Season—a Spring season of broadcasts on the World Service’s 27 language services exploring stories about how people identify themselves around the world.

Among all 18 countries where this question was asked in 2016, the poll suggests more than half (51%) see themselves more as global citizens than citizens of their country, against 43 per cent who identify nationally. This is the first time since tracking began in 2001 that there is a global majority who leans this way, and the results in 2016 are driven by strong increases since 2015 in non-OECD countries including Nigeria (73%, up 13 points), China (71%, up 14 points), Peru (70%, up 27 points), and India (67%, up 13 points).
Riaz Haq said…
Hindu Nationalist explanations of India Muslims' deep deprivation remind me of Swedish sociologist Gunnar Myrdal's study of "implicit bias" in America.

He found that White America oppresses Black Americans and keeps them poor, unemployed. ill-educated and backward. Then it points to their lack of education and backwardness as proof of their inferiority.
Riaz Haq said…
#Muslims in #India at bottom of higher education ladder, alongside backward tribes. #Modi #BJP

New Delhi, July 22: Despite almost trebling in the decade ending 2010 — from 5.2 per cent to 13.8 percent — the rate of Muslim enrolment in higher education trailed the national figure of 23.6 per cent, other backward classes (22.1 per cent) and scheduled castes (18.5 per cent). Scheduled tribes lagged Muslims by 0.5 per cent.
In proportion to their population, Muslims were worse-off than scheduled castes (SCs) and scheduled tribes (STs). Muslims comprise 14 per cent of India’s population but account for 4.4 per cent of students enrolled in higher education, according to the 2014-15 All India Survey on Higher Education.
The situation has worsened over the last half century, according to the 2006 Sachar Committee, appointed to examine the social, economic and educational status of the Muslim community.
In the decade since then, the gross enrolment rate of Muslims doubled from 6.84 per cent to 13.8 per cent. Despite this, they trail the national average.
The 147 per cent increase in SCs and 96 percenet increase in STs in higher education enrolments — which still lags their proportion in the general population — since 2001 is the outcome of affirmative action, as we explained in part one of this series. The second part described how the proportion of other backward classes (OBCs) in higher education is now almost the same as their corresponding share of the general population.
So, should reservation be extended to Muslims?
That is not an easy question to answer. In a nation declared secular by its constitution, educational institutions are disallowed from discriminating between students on religious grounds. However, states can tweak constitutionally-mandated reservation provisions to provide “for the advancement of any socially and educationally backward classes of citizens or for the scheduled castes and the scheduled tribes”.
Where such reservations have been made for Muslims over and above the few Muslim castes included in the OBC list, such as in Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, their representation in higher education is three times the rate in non-minority institutions up North, according to Indian Muslims and Higher Education: A Study of Select Universities in North and South India, a 2013 comparative analysis.
Affirmative action has allowed many families to see their first-generation of graduates, post-graduates and doctorates. It has spurred progressive families to widen their horizons.
Poverty holds back Muslims from higher education — but not in south India
There is little doubt that Muslims are among India’s most economically disadvantaged communities. Hindus who are not classified backward and other minorities spent 60 per cent more than Muslims, according to the Sachar Committee.
No more than 81 per cent of urban male Muslims are literate, the lowest literacy rate among urban males from Indian religious groups — Hindus (91 per cent), Christians (94 per cent), Sikhs (86 per cent) and Others (95 per cent) — according to Employment and Unemployment Situation among Major Religious Groups in India, a 2010 National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) report.
In higher education, Muslims (13.8 per cent) trailed all the major religions in gross enrolment rate in 2010 — Hindus (24.2 per cent), Christians (36.9 per cent) and others (Jains, Sikhs et al) (28 per cent).
Among Muslims, the work participation rate, another key determinant of socio-economic well-being, representing the workforce per 1000 population, was the lowest of all the major religions-536, below Sikhs (568), Christians (540), Hindus (563) and Others (573), also according to NSSO 2010.
Riaz Haq said…
One In Every Four 'Beggars' In #India Is #Muslim: Report …

Nearly 25 percent of the 3.7 lakh Indians categorised as "beggars" in the 2011 Census are Muslim, according to data released last month, reported The Indian Express. That's a total of 92,760 Muslim beggars in India.

While most of beggars in India are Hindus—about 72.2 percent—Hindus are also the majority religious group in India, accounting for almost four-fifths of the country's population. The number of Muslim beggars is significant as compared to their overall population in India, which stands at 17.22 crore as per the last Census.

A majority of the Muslim beggars are women, which is contrary to the national trend, where there are fewer women beggars compared to men.

Earlier, reports have indicated that Muslims have the lowest living standard in India, and spend less than ₹33 every day. The steadily increasing Muslim population in India is neglected, reported The Economist.
Riaz Haq said…
75% of #India's #Muslims live below the poverty line. #Modi #BJP via @CatchNews

In another effort to counter the anti-minority image of the Modi government, Union Minister of State for Minority Affairs, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi visited Muslim-dominated Mewat in Haryana last week for a "progress panchayat". Recently, Mewat had witnessed a communal flare up.

Naqvi said that minority empowerment is 'Raj Dharma' of his government while he inaugurated a 100-bed girls hostel and laid the foundation stone of a higher secondary school.

Poverty is the biggest challenge for the minorities as 75% of Muslims live below the poverty line and discrimination based on caste, religion and region still exist in India, admitted Naqvi.

When a minister admits to a problem, it is time for some introspection. So here is a reality check:


- Number of Muslim students who appeared for the bi-annual basic literacy assessment test in August 2015.

- Of this, only 36,84,253, or 69% successfully passed the test.

- In Punjab, which is soon going to elections, only 49% could pass the test.

- The literacy rate of Muslims in India.

- The national average is 64.8%.

- Additionally, 1 in 4 Muslim students in the age group 6-14 years either never attended school or dropped out.

- "Muslim parents are not averse to modern or mainstream education and to sending their children to affordable Government schools. They do not necessarily prefer to send children to Madarsas. However, the access to Government schools for Muslim children is limited. Schools beyond primary level are few in Muslim localities. Girl schools are fewer," said the government in Lok Sabha in May 2016.

- Or more, is the share of Muslim male workers who are engaged as street vendors to earn their livelihood.

- The national average is less than 8%.

- "Self-employment (which falls under the unorganised sector of the economy) is the main source of income for the Muslim community," says the government.

- Out of all socio-religious categories, Muslims participate more in production (especially textile, tobacco), sales related activities as against professional, clerical, managerial and technical jobs. This leads to vulnerable job conditions for the community.

Rs 1,000
- The amount of money the union government spent in modernising madrasas in the past seven years, according to data-journalism website IndiaSpend.

- There are also nearly 24 schemes/initiatives for educational empowerment of Muslims run by the ministry of Minority Affairs.

- However, unspent funds, sometimes due to refusal to take part in initiatives or lack of project proposals, is a major problem in the path of the minority, caste and tribal development.

- For instance, according to Right to Information filed by IndiaSpend, about Rs 2.8 lakh crore of Dalit/tribal development fund remained unspent for the past 35 years.

Clearly, Naqvi has a lot of work to do ahead to change the situation.
Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan has 2nd largest population of migrants from #India. More #Indian #Muslims, minorities migrate than #Hindus

India is the top source of international migrants, with one-in-twenty migrants worldwide born in India. As of 2015, 15.6 million people born in India were living in other countries. India has been among the world’s top origin countries of migrants since the United Nations started tracking migrant origins in 1990. The number of international Indian migrants has more than doubled over the past 25 years, growing about twice as fast as the world’s total migrant population.

Nearly half of India’s migrants are in just three countries: the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan and the United States. About 3.5 million Indians live in the UAE, the top destination country for Indian migrants. Over the past two decades, millions of Indians have migrated there to find employment as laborers. Pakistan has the second-largest number of migrants, with 2 million.

Almost 2 million more live in the U.S., making up the country’s third-largest immigrant group. Among Indian Americans, nearly nine-in-ten were born in India. As a whole, Indian Americans are among the highest educated and have some of the highest income among racial and ethnic groups in the U.S.

India is also one of the world’s top destinations for international migrants. As of 2015, about 5.2 million immigrants live in India, making it the 12th-largest immigrant population in the world. The overwhelming majority of India’s immigrants are from neighboring countries such as Bangladesh (3.2 million), Pakistan (1.1 million), Nepal (540,000) and Sri Lanka (160,000).

India’s religious minorities have been more likely to migrate internationally. Religious minorities make up a larger share of India’s international migrant population than they do among the nation’s domestic population, according to 2010 Pew Research Center estimates. For example, about 19% of the Indian international migrant population was Christian, compared with only 3% of the population in India. Similarly, an estimated 27% of the Indian international migrant population was Muslim, compared with 14% of the population in India. The reverse is true for Hindus: Only 45% of India’s international migrant population was Hindu, compared with 80% of the population in India.
Riaz Haq said…
There are more Indian migrants living in Pakistan than the United States,now%20live%20in%20the%20US.

While many Indian migrants move to far-flung, wealthy countries like the US, Canada, and the UK, a large number of them ends up right next door in Pakistan. According to a new study by Pew Research, in 2015, Pakistan was home to the second-largest number of Indian migrants after the United Arab Emirates.

In the past 25 years, the number of international Indian migrants has more than doubled, growing nearly twice as fast as the world’s total migrant population. In 2015, 15.6 million people born in India were living in another country; that means one in every 20 migrants globally was born in India.

In a 2010 study, Pew Research found that India’s religious minorities were migrating at a much higher rate than Hindus, who made up 80% of the country’s population. About 19% of the migrants from India are Christian, though they form only 3% of the country’s population. Also, Muslims made up 27% of the Indian migrant population living abroad, compared with roughly 14% of the population in India.

By far the largest numbers of Indian migrants—about 3.5 million— live in the United Arab Emirates. Pakistan is the second-most common destination with two million, while 1.97 million Indian migrants now live in the US.

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