A post-graduate work visa holder stuck in India is appealing to the Government to ease restrictions on temporary visas saying he is "running out of money and hope".
Jijin Varghese, 29, returned to India on March 8 for his arranged marriage on March 18 just before the border closed because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The former Rotorua Caltex pump worker believes that he and other temporary visa holders will also be able to help with NZ's labour shortage.
New Zealand is set to face an acute labour shortage, especially in popular holiday destinations as summer approaches.
Varghese left New Zealand with a friend who also had to return to India for his father's first death anniversary - and both have been unable to return since.
"I left New Zealand with a plan of just being away for two months, all my personal belongings including my car are still in NZ," he said.
"I'm without income but still have to pay for insurance and other stuff in NZ for the last seven months."
Varghese said he and his friend are among thousands of temporary visa holders with the same story, many of whom were suffering from depression and mental health issues.
"Every morning we check NZ news in the hope for news that borders will reopen for post-study work visa holders, but there hasn't been any good news," he said.
Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi has been approached for comment.
"We are suffering through no fault of ours and the NZ Government is showing us no mercy ... I am running out of money and hope," Varghese said.
Varghese holds a three-year post-study work visa after graduating from the Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology in Rotorua.
The Government has recently eased restrictions to allow working holiday visa holders to extend their stay and work in horticulture and viticulture industries.
A supplementary seasonal employment visa will be automatically given to those with working holiday visas that expire between November 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021.
The border has also been opened for hundreds of specialist workers including veterinarians, deep-sea fishing crew, and agricultural and horticultural mobile plant operators.
However, the easing did not include letting temporary visa holders return. The hospitality and construction industries are also not included.
The New Zealand border is currently closed to all but New Zealand citizens and residents, with some exemptions.
More than 50,000 New Zealanders have returned home this year since the global pandemic started.