India Abroad Acronyms – NRI, Desi…!

This post is intended only for the readers who are not familiar with the terms commonly used with respect to people from India living abroad. Others can scroll down to other posts and more interesting material. 🙂

Here is the primer on the commonly used acronyms or abbreviations on this site:

NRI – Non-Resident Indian, a citizen of India living abroad. NRIs receive special treatment in Indian society as well as in many Indian government rules, because their status symbol is closely associated with wealth and prosperity.

PIO – Person of Indian Origin, similar to NRI, but may not have Indian citizenship; e.g. second generation Indians born abroad.

Desi – Means native of India or a countryman; sometimes refer to those with rural backgrounds; no negative meaning implied

Indian – On this website, Indian means ‘from or related to India’ – Indian American or British Indian or Indo-Canadian or Indian American….depending on the foreign country of residence; not American Natives, who are commonly called Indians.

Homeland and Back-home – refers to India as the home country.

ESL – English as a second language; English learning process for those whose mother tongue is not English

Paji or Paaji – A Punjabi term, used to address a Punjabi person informally. It is sometimes pronounced as ‘Bhaaji’. It literally means ‘ brother’; similar to in some American/Western culture where colleagues address each other as ‘bro’.

FOB – Fresh off the boat; an unpleasant and a derogatory term used to refer to new immigrants -Indians or otherwise – who are not adjusted/blended into the local culture.

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2 Replies to “India Abroad Acronyms – NRI, Desi…!”

  1. Haha yeah, i have some friends who are just middle class. But their respect in society started to flourish once they returned back.

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