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Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS -

Di­pak and Bindiya Naran, 37 and 34 Mi­grated from: babwe Live: Hills­bor­ough

Zim- Vi­o­lence and ex­treme food and fuel short­ages prompted Di­pak Naran to flee Zim­babwe.

It was the time of fre­quent farm in­va­sions in the trou­bled coun­try, where war vets who had served in the 1964-1979 in­de­pen­dence war took land from white farm­ers as com­pen­sa­tion af­ter prom­ises from the gov­ern­ment.

Naran, an ac­coun­tant, had been sent to au­dit a mines and farm­ing syndicate in 2000.

‘‘I saw a mob of over 100 peo­ple, some with ma­chetes, walk­ing to­wards the of­fices.

‘‘I got a very bad feel­ing. I said to my team can you get into my car right now ... and I drove through this mob of peo­ple with­out tak­ing into ac­count what could have hap­pened.

‘‘I got home that night and said to my dad, ‘ I could have killed some­one to­day’.

‘‘Had one of them not moved out of the way, I most likely would have mowed them down.

‘‘That night I booked my ticket to New Zealand.’’

But his dreams of leav­ing were de­layed.

When he came to pay a few days later, hy­per­in­fla­tion had pushed the price up so much he was forced to stay on an­other year to save enough money.

There were fre­quent petrol and food short­ages be­cause the vet­er­ans who took over the farms no longer farmed for the coun­try and for ex­port, opt­ing to farm only for them­selves. ‘‘It made it re­ally hard,’’ Bindiya Naran says.

‘‘Do you want to live in a coun­try where you have to queue for ev­ery­thing?

‘‘Com­ing here we didn’t have to lock ev­ery­thing and jump into our car and lock all the doors be­fore you drive off.

‘‘The thing I like about New Zealand, what­ever you want to do, no mat­ter how big or small, you can do it,’’ Bindiya Naran says.

‘‘Peo­ple don’t judge. Peo­ple ac­cept you for who you are. You’re treated the same, with the same re­spect.’’

Di­pak Naran says the first year is the hard­est for new mi­grants.

‘‘But it does get eas­ier,’’ he says.

‘‘Once you de­cide where home is, it makes things a lot eas­ier.’’

Bet­ter liv­ing: Di­pak and Bindiya Naran, with daugh­ter Sonya, no longer have to queue for food.

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