The Big March: Migratory Flows after the Partition of India
UC San Diego
Asim Ijaz Khwaja
Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)
Atif R. Mian
Princeton University - Department of Economics; Princeton University - Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs; NBER
HKS Working Paper No. RWP08-029
The partition of India in 1947 along ostensibly religious lines into India, Pakistan, and what eventually became Bangladesh resulted in one of the largest and most rapid migrations in human history. We compile district level census data from archives to quantify the scale of migratory flows across the sub-continent. We estimate total migratory inflows of 14.5 million and outflows of 17.9 million, implying 3.4 million "missing" people. We also uncover a substantial degree of regional variability. Flows were much larger along the western border, higher in cities and areas close to the border, and dependent heavily on the size of the "minority" religious group. The migratory flows also display a "relative replacement effect" with in-migrants moving to places that saw greater out-migration.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 29working papers series
Date posted: April 23, 2008 ; Last revised: August 22, 2008
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