In the early 1950s the Conservative Health Minister, Enoch Powell recruited a large number of doctors from the Indian sub-continent.The second wave occurred in the 1970s mainly from East Africa.In Britain, the word "Asian" usually refers specifically to people of South Asian ancestry (Pakistanis, Indians, Bangladeshis and Sri Lankans).This usage contrasts to that in the United States, where it is used to refer to people of East Asian origin.There was also a tick box, as well as a general "Any other ethnic group (please describe)" option for those not wishing to identify with any of the pre-set tick boxes.For the 2001 Census, in England and Wales, "Indian", "Pakistani" and "Bangladeshi" and "Any other Asian background (please write in)" options were grouped under an "Asian or Asian British" heading, with appearing under a separate heading.Studies have shown 95 per cent of Bangladeshis originate from the Sylhet region, one of the 8 divisions in Bangladesh, located in the Northeastern part of Bangladesh.
The reason for this is because they do not expect outsiders to be well informed about dialects.
The most significant wave of Asian immigration to and settlement in the United Kingdom came following World War II, the breakup of the British Empire and the independence of Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka and later Bangladesh, especially during the 1950s and 1960s.
An influx of Asian immigrants also took place following the expulsion or flight of Indian communities (then holders of British passports) from the newly independent Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania in the early 1970s.
Immigration of small numbers of South Asians to England began with the arrival of the East India Company to the Indian subcontinent in the 17th century.
Indians came to Britain, for educational or economic reasons, during the British Raj, with most returning to India after a few months or years, and in greater numbers as the Indian independence movement led to the partition of 1947, eventually creating the separate countries of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.