Stranded abroad: The UK businessman who lost his passport in Bali

Home Office says it has no record of issuing Indonesian-born Agung Mantra leave to remain in UK with his family

Senior Reporter

A businessman from Cornwall who lost his passport in Bali has been stranded on the island for five months because the UK Government has refused to reissue documents granting him the right to live in the UK.

Agung Mantra, 38, was born in Indonesia but has lived in the seaside resort of Perranporth for 14 years, where he runs two gift shops with his British wife. The couple also have a 13-year-old son called Marley who attends a local school.

In February the family travelled to Bali to buy stock for their businesses. While they were there Mr Mantra lost his passport, which he says contained Indefinite Leave to Remain papers dating back to 2001 which granted him the right to live in Britain.

His family returned home without him so Marley could go back to school, leaving Mr Mantra to stay with relatives. But the Home Office has subsequently refused to reissue his papers, saying it has no record of granting them in the first place.

Lesley Bain, Mr Mantra’s wife, told The Independent she was “devastated” at being separated from him for so long. “We’re in contact daily on the phone but I haven’t been able to see him. We’re having to employ somebody to cover my husband’s job…I honestly don’t know [when he’ll be back].”

Rebecca Jay, a local businesswoman who knows the family, said Mr Mantra had “every piece of evidence going” to prove his citizenship and should be allowed back into Britain immediately. “What I think the Home Office should be doing is issuing him with a temporary six month visa in order that he is back here in the UK with his family and able to run his business, because the next two months are critical [for them],” she said.

A London bus carrying a message from campaigners seeking Agung Mantra's return to the UK A London bus carrying a message from campaigners seeking Agung Mantra's return to the UK More than 2,000 people have joined a Facebook group calling on the Government to allow Mr Mantra back into the UK, while a petition on the a Change.org website has attracted almost 1,500 signatures. It describes the businessman as a “hard working, tax paying contributor to the UK” and says his family are “valued, integrated, active members of the community”.

Mr Mantra’s situation has been taken up by his local MP Sarah Newton, who has tabled a parliamentary question on his case. “I very much share local concerns regarding Agung’s plight,” she wrote on her website. “I will be doing everything I can to reunite Agung with his wife and children as soon as possible. I have written to the Home Office to make his case and will keep up the pressure.”

A Home Office spokesperson said: “The onus is normally on the individual to provide all the necessary evidence to support their visa application. However we are working with Mr Mantra to conduct the necessary checks in order to establish his claim to hold Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Arts and Entertainment
Under the skin: Sarah Kane in May 1998
theatreThe story behind a new season of Sarah Kane plays
Arts and Entertainment
Preening: Johnny Depp in 'Mortdecai'
filmMortdecai becomes actor's fifth consecutive box office bomb
Sport
Bradford City's reward for their memorable win over Chelsea is a trip to face either Sunderland or Fulham (Getty)
football
News
Lars Andersen took up archery in his mid thirties
video
Voices
Focus E15 Mothers led a protest to highlight the lack of affordable housing in London
voicesLondon’s housing crisis amounts to an abuse of human rights, says Grace Dent
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Warehouse Operations & Logistics Manager

£38000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's best performing...

Recruitment Genius: GeoDatabase Specialist - Hazard Modelling

£35000 - £43000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our award-winning client is one...

Recruitment Genius: Compressed Air Pipework Installation Engineer

£15000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of Atlas ...

Recruitment Genius: Operations Coordinator - Pallet Network

£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Opportunity to join established...

Day In a Page

Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea