More than half of British Asians ‘toned down’ Asian identity to ‘fit in’


More than half of British Asians have toned down their Asian identity to “fit in,” a ComRes survey for the Asian Network said.

The survey, which had more than 2,000 British Asians as respondents, is part of the BBC’s Big British Asian Summer. The survey found that 54 per cent of British Asians had made concentrated efforts to fit in.

For instance, 25-year-old Chirag Asnani said he had changed his name to fit in with British culture.

He became Craig temporarily for he thought it was more of a “white name.”

“At the time I thought it would be cool because no-one else had the name Chirag – and also Daniel Craig was just becoming James Bond at that point,” he said, according to BBC. “I thought it would catch on. After I while I thought ‘this is dumb’ and my parents thought ‘this is dumb’. So I went back to Chirag and just made sure people were saying it right.”

About 1,197 of the 2,026 who took part in the survey were born in the UK, with their countries of origin being predominantly India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka.

A similar number of UK citizens were also asked similar questions to generate a reflection of the views of the wider population.

The surveys found that British Asians were more socially conservative than the rest of the UK population, with 43 per cent of them saying they were okay with same-sex relationships.

According to the surveys, about five per cent of UK-wide respondents said they would be offended if a relative had sex before marriage, but the percentage rose to 34 among British Asians.

Regarding same-sex relationships, while 15 per cent said they were not acceptable, this number rose to 36 per cent among British Asians.