A history of the Indian settlement in Christchurch
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
This study is concerned with the origins and consequent settlement of the Gujarati community in New Zealand, and, in particular, in Christchurch. Gujaratis are not the only Indians who have come to live in this country. Punjabis have also settled here. However, Gujaratis have constituted approximately 90 per cent of the population of Indian descent at any one time. Although various studies have been made of the Auckland and Wellington provinces respectively, no such specialised study has been made of the South Island. So as partially to fill this gap I have decided to undertake a study of the Christchurch Gujarati community. Secondly, I am interested in Christchurch as I was born here. Incidently, I am of Gujarati origin. Possibly the major reason why a study for Christchurch has not been attempted is that the number of persons of Indian descent is small. In fact census figures taken of statistical areas of New Zealand from 1961 to 1969 illustrate that Christchurch runs fourth in terms of the number of people of Indian descent, behind Central Auckland, South Auckland-Bay of Plenty and Wellington. Today there are fewer than two hundred inhabitants of Gujarati origin in Christchurch.