According to a U.S. Census Bureau study, Patel is the most common Indian name in the United States, as of 2015. Other common names include Singh, Khah, Shah, Kumar and Desai.
Singh is the second most common Indian surname. Quite a number of people named Singh are Hindus. There are approximately 72,642 people named Singh in the United States as of 2015. Khan is the third most common Indian surname. However, a few people with the name Khan trace their origin to Afghanistan and Pakistan. Shah, Kumar and Desai take the fourth, fifth and sixth positions respectively.
Indian surnames are based on a number of aspects, which include the seasons, time of birth, characteristics, favorite pets and specific region of origin. Singh, for example, is a name common in most Indian regions among the north and east regions of India, while Desai is only common in the west region of India. Surnames do not necessarily run through the clan in the Indian culture. A child may not necessarily be named after a grandparent, but rather named after aspects that affect the child at the time of birth. This ensures that the grandparent's name is not carelessly uttered when addressing the child.