Bangladesh Emigration and Immigration

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Dark thin font green pin Version 4.png Prior to 1947, Bangladesh was part of British India. For emigration and immigration information, history, and links to records prior to 1947, go to India Emigration and Immigration.

Online Records For India Including Bangladesh[edit | edit source]

For online records prior to the partition of India into Pakistan, Bangladesh, and India:

Almanacs and Directories[edit | edit source]

At the back of the Bombay Calendar and Almanac and the Madras Almanac, there are lists of shipping departures from India to various ports in England. The lists include the name of the British passengers and notes the presence of a native servant. However, they do not usually give the name of the servant. Occasionally free native passengers may be named. Published lists of passages to and from India are also included in the Bengal Directory of 1815-59.

1813 HathiTrust Digital Library; 1815; 1832 1834 1839 all HathiTrust DL; 1839 Google Books.

Offices and Archives to Contact[edit | edit source]

The British Library, India Office[edit | edit source]

Asian and African Studies enquiries
The British Library, India Office
96 Euston Road
London NW1 2DB
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7873
Fax: +44 (0)20 7412 7641

They offer a remote Ecclesiastical Search Service and Certified Copies for enquirers who cannot find required information on this database, and those who are unable to visit our reading room.
Use this website to search:

  • 300,000 births, baptisms, marriages, deaths and burials in the India Office Records
  • biographical notes from a variety of sources
  • for mainly British and European people in India c.1600-1949
  • for people in other countries connected with the history of the British in India

The information included in the India Office Family History Search website is taken from a card index hitherto available only at the British Library. The card index was compiled by members of staff at the India Office Records from the mid-1970s onwards to meet the growing interest in genealogy. Users should note that probably less than 10% of the biographical sources available in the India Office Records was incorporated into the index, although future additions to this website are planned. As the biographical information included in this website is only a small part of the total available in the archives, users may need to search elsewhere in the records – see India Office Records: Family History Sources.

Passport Records[edit | edit source]

Duplicate identity certificates of natives of India proceeding to Europe 1900-17 (when their issue ceased) and duplicate passports from 1907 were sent to the British Library, India Office. Identity certificates 1900-1917 and passports for 1907-15 are at the British Library under reference L/P and J6. The duplicate passports for 1916-31 appear to have been destroyed.

National Archives, Kew[edit | edit source]

The National Archives
Ruskin Avenue, Kew
Richmond, Surrey TW9 4DU
Guide: Immigration and Immigrants

Finding the Town of Origin in Bangladesh[edit | edit source]

If you are using emigration/immigration records to find the name of your ancestors' town in Bangladesh, see Bangladesh Finding Town of Origin for additional research strategies.

Bangladesh Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

"Emigration" means moving out of a country. "Immigration" means moving into a country.
Emigration and immigration sources list the names of people leaving (emigrating) or arriving (immigrating) in the country. These sources may be passenger lists, permissions to emigrate, or records of passports issued. The information in these records may include the emigrants’ names, ages, occupations, destinations, and places of origin or birthplaces. Sometimes they also show family groups.

Immigration into Bangladesh[edit | edit source]

  • Two decades after Vasco Da Gama's landing in Calicut, the Bengal Sultanate gave permission for the Portuguese settlement in Chittagong to be established in 1528. It became the first European colonial enclave in Bengal. Portuguese ships from Goa and Malacca began frequenting the port city in the 16th century.
  • The Bengal Sultan after 1534 allowed the Portuguese to create several settlements at Chitagoong, Satgaon, Hughli, Bandel, and Dhaka.
  • After the 1757 Battle of Plassey, Bengal was the first region of the Indian subcontinent conquered by the British East India Company.[1]

Emigration From Bangladesh[edit | edit source]

  • First generation migrants may have moved abroad from Bangladesh for better living conditions, to escape poverty, to support their financial condition or to send money back to families in Bangladesh. With a total of 13 million Bangladeshis living abroad, the country has ranked 4th among top 20 countries of origin for international migrants.
  • There is a large Bangladeshi diaspora population in Saudi Arabia.
  • There are also significant migrant communities in various Arab states of the Persian Gulf, particularly the United Arab Emirates and Oman, where Bangladeshis are mainly classified as foreign workers.
  • The United Kingdom's 2011 census found 451,529 people of Bangladeshi ancestry living in the UK. British Bangladeshis are mainly concentrated in east London boroughs (Tower Hamlets and Newham). The migration to Britain is mainly linked with chain migration from the Sylhet Division.
  • In the United States, the number of Bangladeshis are 800,000 with 250,000 of them living in New York. Jackson Heights and Jamaica house most of the Bangladeshis in the USA. Bangladeshi also live in Paterson, New Jersey.
  • Others live in Malaysia, South Africa, Singapore, and in other Western countries such as Italy, Canada, and Australia.

Records of Bangladeshi Emigrants in Their Destination Nations[edit | edit source]

Dark thin font green pin Version 4.png One option is to look for records about the ancestor in the country of destination, the country they immigrated into. See links to Wiki articles about immigration records for major destination countries below. Additional Wiki articles for other destinations can be found at Category:Emigration and Immigration Records.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Bangladesh", in Wikipedia,, accessed 10 July 2021.