Indian Students fighting for Justice

Indian students granted new visas two years after deportation

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We’re very pleased that 3 of the Indian Students we gave sanctuary from deportation in 2017 have been granted permission to return to this country; although saddened that 1 has had permission refused.

As reported by RNZ Checkpoint on 23rd April 2019.

Followed by an interview with immigration lawyer Alistair McClymont detailing the background to this.

Media Coverage

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Indian Weekender


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Unitarians Seeking Sanctuary

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Rev. Clay Nelson



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Rev. clay Nelson © 12 March 2017

Our recent experience with providing the Indian students with sanctuary has been a rich source of reflection for me since we said our farewells to them. And I know I’m not alone in that as I listen to conversations at morning tea. And not just for us, if comments of colleagues from other faith groups are any indication. Even the head of Auckland’s office of Immigration called this week to ask if we could have a coffee to unpack the experience. Continue reading Unitarians Seeking Sanctuary

Farewell Meeting

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On Saturday, 18 February the Indian students, having had confirmation that all legal and political avenues to challenge their deportation orders have been exhausted, held a final public meeting to thank all their supporters and members of the Auckland Unitarian Church for giving them sanctuary. They are currently making arrangements to return to India voluntarily. Continue reading Farewell Meeting

Indian Students facing deportation.

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On 5th February our church considered an emergency request by Indian students for support from the congregation. The students are facing deportation from New Zealand and were asking for “symbolic” sanctuary. The idea of sanctuary, where a religious building can be used to protect those sought by the authorities, is an ancient practice but has no standing in NZ law. So, more specifically, the students were asking to be provided a place to stay while they make their case in the court of public opinion. This request was made last Thursday through a Catholic deacon involved in peace and social justice matters. It was clear from our conversation that all their appeals to Immigration NZ had been exhausted and other options were not apparent. Continue reading Indian Students facing deportation.