Abstract: the article aims to examine the phenomenon of direct and indirect migration contacts between ethnic groups and peoples of Central and South Asia at the earliest (initial) stages of relations between these two regions. A brief analytical review of Kazakh, Russian, and foreign (primarily Indian) historiography was carried out; the theoretical positions on migration interaction were compared with its real practice in the context of the considered space and period. It is shown that in the era of one of the first historically significant migrations – the Aryan migration – both regions were drawn into its orbit for a long time, which affected the ethnic, social and cultural features of their further development; during the period of inter-regional “external” empires, along with direct trade and economic interaction, there was also indirect migration of representatives of the two regions in different centers of these empires, which influenced the further development of the Central Asian and South Asian areas themselves, as well as neighboring middle Eastern state entities. Thus, already in early antiquity, the migration interaction of representatives of Central and South Asia was long, versatile, intensive, productive and, consequently, had significant consequences. This allows us to apply modern migration theories to it, and most importantly, makes it possible to consider the initial contacts between the two regions as a significant, and sometimes even a determining factor in their subsequent historical development. The information presented in the article can be used as a source or intermediate material for further research on this topic, as well as when writing textbooks and in the process of training specialists in historical and Oriental disciplines.
Keywords: Central and South Asia, ethnic groups, pre-Aryan and Aryan periods, Achaemenid and Macedonian empires, migrational interaction