Indian Filipino

Indian Filipino refers to Filipinos of Indian descent who have historical connections with and have established themselves in what is now the Philippines. The term refers to Filipino citizens of either pure or mixed Indian descent currently residing in the country, the latter a result of intermarriages between the Indians and local populations.

Iron Age finds in Philippines also point to the existence of trade between the Indian Subcontinent and the Philippine Islands during the ninth and tenth centuries B.C.[5]

According to the National Geographic's DNA study, "The Genographic Project", 3% of the average Filipino's genes are of South Asian origin.[6]

Also, according to a Y-DNA compilation by the DNA company Applied Biosystems, they calcuated an estimated 1% frequency of the South Asian Y-DNA "H1a" in the Philippines. Thus translating to about 1,011,864 Filipinos having full or partial Indian descent, not including other Filipinos in the Philippines and Filipinos abroad whose DNA (Y-DNA) have not been analyzed.[3]

As of the year 2016, there are over 50,000 Punjabi Indians alone in the Philippines, not including illegal Indian Punjabi immigrants and other Indian ethnic groups in the Philippines.[7]

Indians in the Philippines
Total population
As of the year 2016, there are over 50,000 Punjabi Indians alone in the Philippines, not including illegal Indian Punjabi immigrants and other Indian ethnic groups in the Philippines.[1] In 2010, there were 8,963 Indian citizens living in the Philippines.[2] Furthermore, according to a Y-DNA compilation by the DNA company Applied Biosystems, they calculated an estimated 1% frequency of the South Asian Y-DNA "H1a" in the Philippines. Thus translating to about 1,011,864 Filipinos having full or partial Indian descent, not including other Filipinos in the Philippines and Filipinos abroad whose DNA (Y-DNA) have not been analyzed.[3][A]
Regions with significant populations


Ancient history

India had greatly influenced the many different cultures of the Philippines through the Indianized kingdom of the Hindu Majapahit, and the Buddhist Srivijaya. For at least two millennia before the arrival of the Spanish, Philippines was ruled by Hindu kings called Rajahs and Pramukhas. Numerous kings with written genealogies and Sanskrit names were found by Spanish warlords and friars.[8] Indian presence in the Philippines has been ongoing since ancient times along with the Japanese people, and the Han Chinese, and Arab and Persian traders, predating even the coming of the Europeans by at least two millennium. Indian people together with the natives of the Indonesian Archipelago and the Malay Peninsula, who came as traders introduced Hinduism to the natives of the Philippines. Indian migrants have been crucial in the establishment of several Indianized Kingdoms or "Rajahnates" in the Philippines, Rajahates such as that of Butuan and Cebu. Indian Bania converts to Islam brought Sunni Islam to the Philippine islands in the course of trade, which was later enhanced and strengthened by Arab Muslim Sea traders to Mindanao and Sulu Sultanate.[9]

By the 17th century, Gujarati merchants with the aid of Khoja and Bohri ship-owners had developed an international transoceanic empire which had a network of agents stationed at the great port cities across the Indian Ocean. These networks extended to the Philippines in the east, East Africa in the west, and via maritime and the inland caravan route to Russia in the north.[10]

Colonial Period

Sepoy troops from Madras (now Chennai, Tamil Nadu), British India also arrived with the British expedition and occupation between 1762 and 1764 during the Seven Years' War. When the British withdrew, many of the Sepoys (Army privates) mutinied and refused to leave. Virtually all had taken Filipina brides (or soon did so). They settled in what is now Cainta, Rizal, just east of Metro Manila.[11] As of 2006, between 70 and 75 percent of Indians in the Philippines lived in Metro Manila, with the largest community outside of Manila being in Isabela province.[12] The region in and around Cainta still has many Sepoy descendants.

However, Indian business people started to arrive in larger numbers in The Philippines during the American colonial period (1898–1930s) - especially during the 1930s and 1940s, when many Indians and Indian Filipinos lived in Filipino provinces, including Davao. The longest serving Mayor of Manila, Ramon Bagatsing, was of Indian-Punjabi descent, having moved to Manila from Fabrica, Negros Occidental before the second world war.

A second surge of Indian businessmen, especially Sindhis arrived in Philippines during the 1947 India-Pakistan partition.[13]


Most of the Indians and Indian Filipinos in the Philippines are Sindhi and Punjabi as well as a large Tamil population. Many are fluent in Tagalog and English as well as local languages of the provinces and islands. Many are prosperous middle class with their main occupations in clothing sales and marketing. Sikhs are involved largely in finance, money lending (locally called Five - six[14] ), sales and marketing.

Over the last three decades, a large number of civil servants and highly educated Indians working in large banks, Asian Development Bank and the BPO sector have migrated to Philippines, especially Manila.[15] Most of the Indian Filipinos and Indian expatriates are Hindu, Sikh or Muslims, but have assimilated into Filipino culture. The community regularly conducts philanthropic activities through bodies such as the Mahaveer foundation, The SEVA foundation[16] and the Sathya Sai organization.[17]

Most Indians congregate for socio-cultural and religious activities at the Hindu Temple (Mahatma Gandhi Street, Paco, Manila), the Indian Sikh Temple (United Nations Avenue, Paco, Manila), and the Radha Soami Satsang Beas center (Alabang, Muntinlupa City, Metro Manila). The late "priest" (scripture reader in Sindhi and Gurumukhi) of the Hindu Temple, Giani Joginder Singh Sethi, was active in interfaith affairs, accepted visits by school students, and organised the first major translation of Guru Nanak's Jap Ji into Filipino (Tagalog), translated by Usha Ramchandani and edited by Samuel Salter (published 2001).

Many Indians have intermarried with Filipinos, more so than in neighboring countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore, mainly because their populations are largely Muslim, and the Indians there (with the exception of Indian-Muslims) are averse to marrying Muslims in those host countries.[18]

Indian Filipino companies with the largest work force include Indo Phil Textile (1,800 employees), Global Steel (950 employees and 8,000 in Iligan), Hinduja Global (3,500 workers) and Aegis People Support (over 12,000).[19]

Lots of Indian students mainly from southern part of India are studying in various parts of Philippines notably in Davao, where more than 5000 Indian students are currently doing their MD program from Davao Medical School Foundation.Other cities like Manila, Cebu, Legazpi also have considerable number of Indian students.

Filipino people of Indian descent

Beauty Pageant Winners

Movies & TV


  • Sam Y.G., Filipino-Indian radio disc jockey




Academics and Law

Army and Revolution


  1. ^ The number of Filipinos of full or partial Indian descent is unknown as a great portion of the community has merged with the rest of the population therefore making it impossible to gather accurate statistical figures within the Philippines.[4]

See also


  1. ^ "Punjabi community involved in money lending in Philippines braces for 'crackdown' by new President". 18 May 2016.
  2. ^ Foreign Citizens in the Philippines (Results from the 2010 Census) Reference Number: "2012-094" Release Date: "Monday, November 19, 2012"
  3. ^ a b With a sample population of 105 Filipinos, the company of Applied Biosystems, analysed the Y-DNA of average Filipinos and it is discovered that about 0.95% of the samples have the Y-DNA Haplotype "H1a", which is most common in South Asia and had spread to the Philippines via precolonial Indian missionaries who spread Hinduism and established Indic Rajahnates like Cebu and Butuan.
  4. ^ Kesavapany, K.; Mani, A.; Ramasamy, P. (18 December 2017). "Rising India and Indian Communities in East Asia". Institute of Southeast Asian Studies – via Google Books.
  5. ^ "Tamil Cultural Association - Tamil Language". Archived from the original on 13 April 2015. Retrieved 24 July 2015.
  6. ^ "Reference Populations - Geno 2.0 Next Generation".
  7. ^ "Punjabi community involved in money lending in Philippines braces for 'crackdown' by new President". 18 May 2016.
  8. ^ "Pre Colonial Period", An Online Guide to Philippine History, geocities.comCollegePark/Pool, Archived from the original on 27 October 2009, retrieved 17 May 2008CS1 maint: Unfit url (link)
  9. ^ "2010/07/528/the-cultural-influences-of-india-china-arabia-and-japan". Archived from the original on 1 July 2012. Retrieved 24 July 2015.
  10. ^ Rajesh Rai, Peter Reeves, ed. (2008). The South Asian Diaspora: Transnational Networks and Changing Identities. Routledge. p. 1. ISBN 9781134105953. Retrieved 4 October 2013.
  11. ^ Rye 2006, p. 713
  12. ^ Rye 2006, pp. 720–721
  13. ^ K.Kesavapany,, A.Mani and P.Ramaswamy (2008). Rising India and Indian communities in East Asia. LSEAS Publishing. ISBN 978-981-230-799-6.
  14. ^ "Indians in the Philippines". Philippines Indian Business and Community guide. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  15. ^ "Departments and offices". Organisation. Asian Development Bank (ADB). Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  16. ^ "Community work". Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  17. ^ "International Sai Haiyan mission". Sathya Sai Organization. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  18. ^ Sandhu, K.S.; Mani, A. (1993). Indian Communities in Southeast Asia (First Reprint 2006). Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. p. 707. ISBN 9789812304186. Retrieved 24 July 2015.
  19. ^ Enriquez, march (15 October 2011). "Meet some of PH's Fil-Indian businessmen". Inquirer. Retrieved 18 March 2014.


External links

Asian Australians

Asian Australians are Australians who trace their ancestry back to Asia.

For the purposes of aggregating data, the Australian Bureau of Statistics in its Australian Standard Classification of Cultural and Ethnic Groups (ASCCEG) has grouped certain ethnic groups into certain categories, including East Asian (e.g. Chinese Australians, Korean Australian), Southeast Asian (e.g. Vietnamese Australians, Filipino Australian) and South Asian (e.g. Indian Australians, Sri Lankan Australian). Notably, Western Asian ancestries are separately classified by the Australian Bureau of Statistics and 'Middle Eastern and North African' and are not included in statistics for Asian Australians. While for statistical purposes, 'Asian Australian' includes East Asians, Southeast Asians and South Asians, in general Australian English parlance, 'Asian' generally refers to persons of East Asian and Southeast Asian ancestry, with persons of South Asian ancestry generally referred to by their specific national ancestral origin, e.g. 'Indian' or 'Pakistani'.

Notably, Australia does not collect statistics on the racial origins of its residents, instead collecting data at each five-yearly census on ancestry (i.e. national ethnic rather than racial origin). At the 2016 census, there were 3,514,915 nominations of ancestries classified by the Australian Bureau of Statistics as falling within the geographical categories of East Asia, Southeast Asia and Central and Southern Asia. This represents 11.82% of the total of 29,613,856 ancestry responses, or 16.15% of persons who nominated their ancestry. 2,665,814 persons claimed one of the six most commonly nominated Asian ancestries, namely Chinese, Indian, Filipino, Vietnamese, Korean and Sri Lankan, at the 2016 census. Persons claiming one of these six ancestries alone represented 12.25% of the total population who nominated their ancestry.The 2016 census was studied by the Australian Bureau of Statistics which has shed some light on a few notable changes in the Australian population. The Asian population increased from 32.9% to 39.7% from 2011 to 2016. The most common places of birth of the Asian population were China, India and Philippines.

Asian New Zealanders

Asian New Zealanders are New Zealanders of Asian ancestry. In the New Zealand census, the term refers to a pan-ethnic group that includes diverse populations who have ancestral origins in East Asia (e.g. Chinese New Zealanders, Korean New Zealanders, Japanese New Zealanders), Southeast Asia (e.g. Filipino New Zealanders, Vietnamese New Zealanders) and South Asia (e.g. Indian New Zealanders, Pakistani New Zealanders).

Colloquial usage of Asian in New Zealand is often more specific than the Statistics New Zealand definition and excludes Indians and other peoples of South Asian descent.In the 1860s, Chinese workers migrated to New Zealand to work in the gold mines. The modern period of Asian immigration began in the 1970s when New Zealand relaxed its restrictive policies to attract migrants from Asia. At the 2013 census, 471,708 New Zealanders declared that they had an Asian ancestral background. This represents about 12% of all responses. Most Asian New Zealanders live in the Auckland Region.

Cassandra Ponti

Cassandra "Cass" Ponti (born Lejanie Palma Anigan; 1 March 1980, in Tagum City, Davao del Norte) is a Filipino actress, dancer, model, and reality TV contestant. After spending 112 days inside the house on Pinoy Big Brother, Ponti garnered 214,188 votes, 18.9% of total votes, to place third in the Big Night finale.

Ponti was an FHM model with the screen name Honey V. She's well known for her passion in cooking, Visayan accent, and her caring for others, especially inside the Pinoy Big Brother house. She was the cover model of the October 2006 issue of Maxim Philippines and the November 2008 issue of Playboy Philippines.Cassandra Ponti studied at Saint Mary's College in Tagum City, Davao del Norte and was an entertainer in Japan before she became model and actress.

Daragang Magayon

Daragang Magayon (English: Beautiful Maiden) is the heroine that appears in the legend of Mt. Mayon in Albay, Philippines.

Datu Sikatuna

Datu Sikatuna (or Catunao) as the Datu (chief of the Indianized Philippine polity) in the island of Bohol in the Philippines. His real name was "Katuna" but "Si" was added to his name as this is a nominative marker for a Filipino. He made a blood compact ("Sanduguan") and alliance with the Spanish explorer Miguel López de Legazpi on March 16, 1565 near the modern town of Loay.There is a monument commemorating this pact called The Sandugo Blood Compact Site, which is located in the Bohol district of Tagbilaran City.

Eglinton East

Eglinton East, historically known as Knob Hill, is a residential and commercial neighbourhood in Scarborough, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It is bounded by Stansbury Crescent, Citadel Drive, and West Highland Creek to the north, Midland Avenue to the west, the CNR rail line, Brimley Road, and Eglinton Avenue to the south, and Bellamy Road North to the east.

Eglinton East is a working-class neighbourhood with a high percentage of immigration to the area. Sri Lanka has produced the most immigration to the area over the past decade and correspondingly the most spoken (non English) language is Tamil. There is a large number of East Indian, Filipino and Jamaican people living in this neighbourhood. While there is an equal number of Chinese the other figures are above average.

The residents of this neighbourhood primarily live in high rise buildings with only 22% of people owning their place of residence.

Ethnic groups in the Philippines

The Philippines is inhabited by more than 175 ethnolinguistic nations, the majority of whose languages are Austronesian in origin, then Han Chinese, then Japanese, Indian Filipino, then European (mostly Spanish) as well as a small number of Americans. Many of these nations converted to Christianity, particularly the lowland-coastal nations, and adopted many foreign elements of culture. Ethnolinguistic nations include the Ivatan, Pangasinan, Kapampangan, Tagalog, Bicolano, Visayans (Masbateño, Hiligaynon, Cebuano, Waray, Butuanon, Romblomanon, Kamayo, Cuyonon, and Surigaonon), Zamboangueño, Subanon, and more.

In western Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago, there are ethnolinguistic nations who practice Islam. The Spanish called them Moros after the Moors, despite no resemblance or cultural ties to them apart from their religion. In the Agusan Marsh and the highlands of Mindanao, there are native ethnic groups collectively known as the Lumad. Most maintain their animistic beliefs and traditions, though some of them have converted to Christianity as well.

The Negrito migrated from Africa and were among the earliest human beings to settle the Philippines. The first known were the people of the Callao Man remains. The Negrito population was estimated in 2004 at around 31,000. Their tribal groups include the Ati, and the Aeta. Their ways of life remain mostly free from Western and Islamic influences. Scholars study them to try to understand pre-Hispanic culture.

Majority of the Filipinos are related to Malay people, a major family within the Malay language family. Other ethnolinguistic nations form a minority in the Philippine population. These include those of Japanese, Chinese particularly the Hokkien and Cantonese, Indians particularly the Punjabi, Tamil and Keralites, Spanish.

Filipinos in India

Filipinos living in India consists of migrants from the Philippines to India. As of March 2013, there are about 3,500 Filipinos living in the country.

Gat Pangil

Gat Pangil was a legendary Tagalog ruler whom legends say ruled in the area now known as Laguna Province, Philippines.Pangil plays a part in the town founding myths for the municipalities of Bay, Laguna, Pangil, Laguna, Pakil, Laguna and Mauban, Quezon, – all of which are said to have been part of his dominions.


Gudaibiya (Qudaibiya) is a neighbourhood in Manama, the capital city of Bahrain.An older part of the city, yet a busy area, Gudaibiya is a bustling and highly cosmopolitan area, home to many new arrivals in the Kingdom. Gudaibiya houses embassies and the National Assembly (Bahrain). It has large numbers of Indian, Filipino, Ethiopian and Pakistani residents. It is the site of the Ebrahim Al-Arrayedh Poetry House, a leading cultural centre, which is the house of the late Bahraini poet, Ebrahim Al-Arrayedh. It contains the Al-Qudaibiya Palace.

Hinduism in the Philippines

Recent archaeological and other evidence suggests Hinduism has had some cultural, economic, political and religious influence in the Philippines. Among these is the 9th century Laguna Copperplate Inscription found in 1989, deciphered in 1992 to be Kavi script (Pallava alphabet) with Sanskrit words; the golden Agusan statue (Golden Tara) discovered in another part of Philippines in 1917 has also been linked to Hinduism.

Hong Kong people

Hongkongers (Chinese: 香港人), also known as Hong Kongese and Hong Kong people, are people who originate from Hong Kong. These terms are a special identity for those who hold the legal residency in Hong Kong. Most of the Hongkongers were born and bred, or at least bred in Hong Kong sharing the same set of core values of Hong Kong. The terms itself have no legal definition by the Hong Kong Government; more precise terms such as Hong Kong Permanent Resident (Chinese: 香港永久性居民; Cantonese Yale: Hèunggóng Wínggáusing Gēuimàhn) and Hong Kong Resident (香港居民; Hèunggóng Gēuimàhn) are used in legal contexts. However, the word "Hongkonger" was officially added to the Oxford English Dictionary in March 2014.Hong Kong people do not comprise one particular ethnicity, and people that live in Hong Kong are independent of Chinese citizenship and residency status. The majority of Hongkongers are of Chinese descent and are ethnic Chinese (with most having ancestral roots in the province of Guangdong); however there are also Hongkongers of, for example, Indian, Filipino, Nepalese, Indonesian, Pakistani, Vietnamese and British descent. Expatriates from many other countries live and work in the city.

During the years leading up to the 1997 handover of sovereignty from Britain to China, many residents left Hong Kong and settled in other parts of the world. As a result, there are groups of Hongkongers that hold immigrant status in other countries. Some who emigrated during that period have since returned to Hong Kong. Due to China's "one country, two systems" policy, Hong Kong is a highly autonomous region and operates largely independently of China, having its own passport, currency, flag, and official languages (Cantonese and English instead of Mandarin). Furthermore, due to increasing social and political tensions between Hong Kong and Mainland China and desinicisation in the territory, a recent poll found that most Hong Kong people identify themselves as Hongkongers, with an estimated figure of over 40 percent, while less than 27 percent identify themselves as Hongkongers in China and less than 18 percent as solely Chinese.

Maharadia Lawana

The Maharadia Lawana (sometimes spelled Maharadya Lawana or Maharaja Rāvaṇa) is a Maranao epic which tells a local version of the Indian epic Ramayana. Its English translation is attributed to Filipino Indologist Juan R. Francisco, assisted by Maranao scholar Nagasura Madale, based on Francisco's ethnographic research in the Lake Lanao area in the late 1960s.It narrates the adventures of the monkey-king, Maharadia Lawana, whom the Gods have gifted with immortality.Francisco first heard the poem being sung by Maranao bards around Lake Lanao in 1968. He then sought the help of Maranao scholar Nagasura Madale, resulting in a rhyming English translation of the epic.Francisco believed that the Ramayana narrative arrived in the Philippines some time between the 17th to 19th centuries, via interactions with Javanese and Malaysian cultures which traded extensively with India.By the time it was documented in the 1960s, the character names, place names, and the precise episodes and events in Maharadia Lawana's narrative already had some notable differences from those of the Ramayana. Francisco believed that this was a sign of "indigenization", and suggested that some changes had already been introduced in Malaysia and Java even before the story was heard by the Maranao, and that upon reaching the Maranao homeland, the story was "further indigenized to suit Philippine cultural perspectives and orientations."

Parul Shah

Parul Quitola Shah is an Indian-Filipino model and beauty pageant titleholder who represented her province of Pangasinan and was crowned Binibining Pilipinas Tourism 2014 at the Binibining Pilipinas 2014 pageant held on March 30, 2014 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, Quezon City, Philippines. Parul was awarded the title with Mary Jean Lastimosa, Miss Universe Philippines 2014; Mary Anne Bianca Guidotti as Binibining Pilipinas International 2014; Yvethe Marie Santiago as Binibining Pilipinas Supranational 2014; and Kris Tiffany Janson as Binibining Pilipinas Intercontinental 2014. In 2015 she is now as Binibining Pilipinas Grand International 2015.

Rajah Lontok

Rajah Lontok (Baybayin: ᜎᜓᜈ᜔ᜆᜓᜃ᜔) (r. 1430–1450) was the husband and co-regent of Dayang Kalangitan of the indianized Kingdom of Tondo and Namayan. During his reign, Tondo had many achievements and became more powerful; his reign also saw the enlargement of the state's territory.

Ramon Bagatsing

Ramón Delaraga Bagatsing (August 19, 1916 – February 14, 2006) was the longest-serving Mayor of Manila. He is the only Indian Filipino and person with disability (as an amputee) to serve as Mayor of the City of Manila from 1971 to 1986. Bagatsing also holds the unique distinction of being the only person to survive both the Bataan Death March and the military hero for the Liberation of Manila during the Second World War and the Plaza Miranda bombing in 1971.

Before occupying the city's highest office, Bagatsing also served as a Representative to Congress for Manila, member of Cabinet, lawyer, lay minister, and policeman. He earned the moniker "The Incorruptible" for his clean record in public service and for his unwavering anti-graft and corruption stance.

Sharmaine Arnaiz

Sharmaine Arnaiz (born Sharmila Velasco Pribhdas-Shahani; November 1, 1974 in Davao City, Davao Del Sur, Philippines) is a Filipino-Indian actress.

Von Pessumal

Von Rolfe Villaseñor Pessumal (born February 12, 1993) is an Indian-Filipino professional basketball player for the San Miguel Beermen of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).

Zia Marquez

Izabella Krizia Dayot Marquez, more popularly known as Zia Marquez (born May 10, 1992), is a Filipina actress. She is currently a member of ABS-CBN's elite circle of homegrown talents collectively known as Star Magic.

or Expatriates
See also

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