Undocumented Indian Immigrants Surge in the US, Study Reveals

Undocumented Indian Immigrants Surge in the US, Study Reveals

A recent study by the Pew Research Centre has revealed that Indians constitute the third-largest group of illegal immigrants in the United States, numbering around 725,000. Following Mexico and El Salvador, this research also indicates that the total unauthorised immigrant population in the US stands at 10.5 million, comprising roughly 3% of the entire population and 22% of the foreign-born population.

The study highlights a rapid growth in the number of unauthorised immigrants from countries other than Mexico, reaching 6.4 million in 2021—an increase of 900,000 since 2017. Notably, Central America and South and East Asia witnessed the most substantial rises in unauthorised immigrants from 2007 to 2021.

Data from US Customs and Border Protection reveals a surge in undocumented Indian immigrants crossing the US borders, with 6,917 apprehensions, expulsions, or denials recorded between October 2022 and September 2023. The numbers escalated significantly following the opening of borders amid the COVID-19 pandemic, rising from 30,662 in the 2021 fiscal year to 63,927 in the 2022 fiscal year. With 97,000 encounters this year, 30,010 were at the Canadian border and 41,770 were at the southern border.

The study also points out that around 7.8 million unauthorised immigrants were part of the US labour force in 2021. Although there was a slight increase in 2019, it remained lower than every year from 2007 through 2015.

California, Texas, Florida, New York, New Jersey, and Illinois are the states with the highest numbers of unauthorised immigrants. Among them, Florida and Washington observed an increase in their unauthorised immigrant populations, while California and Nevada witnessed decreases.

Meanwhile, the lawful immigrant population experienced significant growth, exceeding 8 million—a 29% increase. In 2021, naturalised US citizens comprised 49% of the entire immigrant population, according to the research.


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