A man originally from India has been allowed to stay in New Zealand, despite his wife being convicted of causing 40 fractures, brain bleeds and a “deep brain injury” to their two-month-old child. The man's visa was attached to his wife’s partnership visa, which was revoked when she was sentenced to two years and seven months in prison. The woman will be deported back to India once she has completed her jail-term, but the man's own visa was also liable to be revoked.
However, the New Zealand Immigration and Protection Tribunal decided it would be “unjustly or unduly harsh” to deport him while he fights for custody of his daughter, who is currently in foster care. In November 2018, their daughter was taken to hospital in a critical condition with multiple injuries, including subdural haemorrhages, a deep brain injury, 18 rib fractures, two leg buckle fractures, multilayer retinal haemorrhages in the right eye, further fractures in her left arm and toes. The couple had suggested that the injuries “may be the result of a bone or other medical disorder, such as rickets,” but medical experts determined the injuries were non-accidental.
The woman was sentenced to two years and seven months in prison.
The man, who had entered into an arranged marriage in April 2017, was charged with ill-treatment or neglect of a child but was later acquitted. He has since lodged proceedings with the Family Court to regain custody of his daughter from Oranga Tamariki.
The man had taken two days of annual leave on November 7, 2018 during Diwali and spent most of his time out of the home, shopping and at the temple. His wife continuously called and texted him, threatening self-harm if he did not return. The man did not respond and stayed out until 10 pm. The next day, their daughter “seemed to be unwell” leading to them taking her to their family doctor, who promptly referred her to the hospital.
The man worked night shifts at a supermarket while his wife was on maternity leave to look after their daughter. The couple had moved from India to New Zealand, and the man entered the country on a partnership visa with his wife. Despite his wife's conviction and pending deportation, the Tribunal found that the man's situation constituted “exceptional circumstances of a humanitarian nature” and cancelled his liability for deportation. He has been granted a 12-month work visa to stay in New Zealand.
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