Stranded New Zealand visa holders stage protest in Chandigarh
Chandigarh, June 21, 2021:
Hundreds of New Zealand valid student /work visa holders protested against the New Zealand government in front of Sector 10 museum here by making a human chain.
As per these protesters, there are more than 1000 people, who live in New Zealand, got stuck outside the country in March when the Labour Party-led government imposed draconian border restrictions in response to the COVID pandemic. They have been stuck in India for the last 18 months. Some have been separated from family members in New Zealand while many have lost their jobs and are in severe hardship.
The protesters were seen holding placards in their hands. They claimed that all their main documents are in New Zealand and visas of some of them have also been expired.
Protest organiser Jagdeep Dhillon said they called on the New Zealand government to give all temporary visa holders visa extensions equal to the duration of the border closure, and to allow all workers normally resident in NZ to return.
“Tens of thousands of New Zealand citizens have returned from overseas during the pandemic. On arrival, they are required to spend two weeks in a quarantine hotel. We have already been vaccinated and also agree to accept mandatory government quarantine on arrival. We can't get jobs in India as our all documents are lying at New Zealand,” said Dhillon.
The protesters said that if their demands are not fulfilled, they would stage another protest at the Jantar Mantar in Delhi in coming days.