Devastation as daughter is refused access to UK to attend mum’s funeral

Lakshmi Sinnaiah, 58, who was killed after being hit by a lorry in Petersfield town centre
Lakshmi Sinnaiah, 58, who was killed after being hit by a lorry in Petersfield town centre
  • Mum died in tragic accident in Petersfield town centre
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A DAUGHTER whose mother was killed after being hit by a lorry has been refused access to the UK to attend the funeral.

Friends of Lakshmi Sinnaiah have spoken of their devastation that her daughter, Ramani Pabu, was unable to attend the funeral.

The 58-year-old died last month following a collision with a lorry at a pelican crossing in Dragon Street, Petersfield. Her funeral took place on Tuesday at St Laurence Church, Petersfield, followed by a cremation at Havant Crematorium.

Thirty-year-old Ramani is studying at university in Malaysia and applied for a visa two weeks ago.

But her application was unsuccessful.

Lakshmi’s former employer Jay Sellahewa, who lives in Southsea, said he was ‘deeply disappointed’.

Lakshmi, who is originally from Sri Lanka, was Jay’s housekeeper for many years at his Petersfield home and helped to raise his two sons.

Jay told The News: ‘We are very disappointed with the outcome of the application.

‘We postponed the funeral for a week in order to fulfil her wishes to attend her mother’s cremation.

‘We are deeply dissatisfied. We don’t know the reasons.

‘The application was made for the sole purpose of attending her mother’s funeral.’

Lakshmi’s friend Sue Gallacher, from Horndean, said: ‘To stop a daughter attending her mother’s funeral, I think, is very cruel.’

She added: ‘She’s been very kind to me and my family over the years.

‘She was much-loved by a lot of people in the area.’

Jay said Lakshmi’s death had come as a total shock.

Lakshmi, who lived in Liss, had spoken of her pride in her daughter’s upcoming graduation and planned to move back to the far east to be with her.

Jay added: ‘She was a very hard-working, honest person who never put a foot wrong.

‘She looked after herself and supported the community when she could with charity work. We are absolutely devastated by her tragic death.’

A Home Office spokesman said: ‘All applications are considered on their individual merits, including any compelling and compassionate circumstances, and in line with the immigration rules.’

It is understood that not all the relevant information necessary to have a successful application was included in the documents.

An inquest will take place at a later date to determine how Lakshmi died.