The Evacuation and Repatriation of ‘British Indians’ Resident in Japan, 1940–42

Publication Name

South Asia: Journal of South Asia Studies


In 1940, the Indian population resident in Japan was estimated at over 500. With the potential for war with Japan increasing, the British embassy in Tokyo advised locally resident British subjects to leave in October 1940 and again in February 1941. However, some, including a number of Indians, chose not to leave. This article considers the evacuation of the Indian population from Japan before December 1941 as well as those who departed as part of the wartime Anglo-Japanese Civilian Exchange. In doing so, it discusses the use of the SS Anhui to evacuate British subjects and also the lack of safe conduct for the City of Paris, which carried the Indian repatriates back to Bombay.

Open Access Status

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Link to publisher version (DOI)