Family and friends vow to fight for her right to return to Britain
A high-profile campaign in Britain to keep a 19-year-old star student from being deported to Mauritius has inspired a Mauritian family to take her in, supporters claimed yesterday.
Yashika Bageerathi was deported on Wednesday night despite thousands rallying for her stay.
Ms Bageerathi, who has been kept in Yarl’s Wood detention centre since last month, boarded an Air Mauritius plane at 9pm on Wednesday night and flown back to Mauritius where a family member is said to be threatening her life.
Campaigners from #FightforYashika on social-networking site Twitter claimed yesterday that a Mauritian family had taken Ms Bageerathi in to live with them after watching one of the protests on TV.
The student of Oasis Academy Hadley in Enfield was set to have her A-level examinations in six weeks time and had been accepted at all five of her university choices.
Home affairs select committee chairman and Labour MP Keith Vaz said: “To interrupt her education at this late stage in order to (deport her) seems needlessly cruel.”
In a letter to Home Secretary Theresa May — who openly refused to get involved in the process — Mr Vaz argued that: “It would be a simple and uncontroversial act of clemency to release her from detention and defer her deportation for a few weeks so that she can complete her education.”
Unconfirmed reports suggest that Ms Bageerathi was denied food throughout the day and there were eight rows of empty seats in front of her, so she would not disturb other passengers with her cries for help.
“Air Mauritius regrets this situation, but as all airline companies cannot but abide by decisions taken by relevant authorities,” said a company spokesperson.
The teenager’s legal team had previously attempted to set an emergency 11th hour injunction to block her deportation.
A London Law Courts judge refused the application on Wednesday evening, moments before Ms Bageerathi was driven to Heathrow airport.
Family and friends have vowed to keep campaigning until she is allowed to return to Britain and safely continue her education.
A petition promoted by her school and lobbying the Home Office to let the young woman stay in the country had reached over 178,000 signatories yesterday.