A man was deported over drink driving convictions as his Kiwi wife suffered a difficult pregnancy.

The baby died and the couple blame the stress of his deportation.

Sundeep Mall, 29, and Erica Herewini, 29, have been battling Immigration New Zealand for nearly two years, pleading with them to have a heart.

Sundeep Mall (right) has been fighting Immigration NZ for a visa to return to live with his wife Erica Herewini. Photo / Supplied.
Sundeep Mall (right) has been fighting Immigration NZ for a visa to return to live with his wife Erica Herewini. Photo / Supplied.

Mall failed in his deportation appeal in April 2017 and left the country in July. On Aug 29, Herewini gave birth to a stillborn child.

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"Erica's pregnancy was complicated, she was in and out of hospital, but Immigration coldly forced me to leave the country," Mall said.

"Immigration would not consider how critical the condition was ... We were not ready for it at all. It broke our hearts."

Sundeep Mall (right) has been fighting Immigration NZ for a visa to return from India to live with his wife Erica Herewini. Photo / Supplied.
Sundeep Mall (right) has been fighting Immigration NZ for a visa to return from India to live with his wife Erica Herewini. Photo / Supplied.

Herewini flew to India three months after her baby died and the couple got married on November 11.

Tragedy struck her family again in January 2018, when Herewini's elder brother died of a heart attack.

"Erica is unable to leave NZ because of her health, which went downhill since INZ declined my residency application, and my heart sank when I heard she tried to take her own life after hearing the bad news," Mall said.

"Since 2016 we have been suffering because of Immigration. They show no remorse and humanity towards us."

Mall's work and residence visas were declined because he had three convictions for drink driving, according to INZ.

The convictions meant he did not meet character requirements for a temporary visa and a character waiver was not approved.

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Mall first came as an international student in 2009 and was subsequently granted further visas, but remained here unlawfully after the last one expired in January 2017.

Despite having a New Zealand partner who was expecting their first child at the time, the Immigration and Protection Tribunal found there was no exceptional circumstances of a humanitarian nature for him to remain.

"I understand I've committed a crime, but I am not a terrorist and never wanted to hurt anyone so why do we have to go through this harsh treatment?" Mall said.

He claimed to have done "everything possible" including completing courses in drinking rehabilitation and created a Facebook page to warn others about the dangers of drink driving.

INZ general manager border and visa operations Jock Gilray said Mall first applied for a partnership work visa in 2016 which was declined in 2017. He became liable for deportation when his visa expired on January 9, 2017.

He requested a work visa under section 61 in May 2017, this was also refused and he left New Zealand on July 16, 2017.

Mall's most recent application was for a residence visa under the partnership category.

"All residence visa applicants are required to meet the rules and criteria, these include requirements in relation to an applicant's character and health. Mr Mall's application was declined in 2019 as he was not granted a character waiver," Gilray said.

Mall could take the declined decision to the Immigration and Protection Tribunal.

"If the IPT upholds INZ's decision but finds that Mr Mall has special circumstances, it may make a recommendation to the Minister of Immigration that he be granted residence as an exception to instructions," Gilray added.

Mall met Herewini in 2013 while working for her mother, Rena Barnett, in their contracting company in Opotiki.

"It's been hard for us to spend even a single day without each other," he said.

"I am trying as much as I can through WhatsApp to support her by calling every day and night, but we want to be together as we love each other more than anything."

Barnett slammed INZ as being "racist" and "inhumane".

"I feel Immigration is being racist to my son-in-law because he is Indian," she said.

"They are married and should be allowed to stay together ... they need to understand this is causing stress to people and affecting lives."