Disabled man being deported to India despite living in New Zealand for 22 years

A disabled Indian man will be deported to India in April despite having moved to New Zealand more than 20 years ago.

He had his application declined because of a crime committed during a mental health episode eight years ago. There are now serious concerns for his health and safety.

Narinderjit Singh is 45 years old. He's in a wheelchair, paralysed from the waist down, a polio survivor, and a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic.

He lives with his extended and supportive family in Auckland - his home for 22 years. But in two months he's being deported back to India, no longer welcome here.

If he goes back to India, he doesn't anticipate he'll last even a matter of weeks.

Singh arrived in New Zealand with his family in 2000. They were on a visitor visa and applied for residency. It was accepted.

But in 2014 Singh was convicted of wilful damage of a car. He says a neighbour had been constantly bullying him, mocking his disability and taunting him with racist comments. Singh says he complained to the police but nothing happened.

Then, during a major mental health episode, he snapped, driving his car into the neighbour's car. No one was injured and Singh pleaded guilty to the offence.

"I don't believe he had adequate legal representation. He was encouraged to accept the charges as they were without putting forward a report about his psychiatric condition," said lawyer Alastair McClymont.

"If it was just up to me or if I was in the right mind, I wouldn't have done that, I wouldn't have done anything like that," Singh said.

The conviction impacted his residency visa and last June, two men arrived at his home and served him deportation papers. His benefit was also cut off.

Top immigration lawyer Alastair McClymont has tried to appeal and sent extensive submissions, including psychiatric reports, to the Immigration Minister and his local MP, but says it was all ignored.

"It seems baffling they won't look at it when it's a Government that claims to be ruling with kindness, compassion and empathy, yet they want to send a disabled human being to his death in what is basically a foreign country," McClymont said.

Singh needs the support and care of his family - they do everything for him - and his specialist medical team is in New Zealand.

In India, he has nothing. He'd live alone - no support, no help, no money.

"It will be hard to get the right treatment, the right medication, the right care, my life is pretty much over in India."

His family is distraught.

"It is not a death sentence for Narinder, it's a death sentence for us too," one relative told Newshub.

Green MP Ricardo Menendez March says the Immigration Minister needs to intervene and stop the deportation immediately. He wants the immigration policy changed to better support those with disabilities.

"Political inaction that is resulting in destroying people's lives," he said.

"So again we are looking at calling on the Minister to prioritise this sort of work so that disabled people don't have to go to the media to plead for humanity and a right to dignity to be recognised."

The Immigration Minister declined Newshub's request for an interview. 

If nothing is done, Narinderjit Singh will head to the airport on April 29 to what could be a death sentence.

Update: A petition has been launched to stop Singh's deportation