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New Westminster woman reunites with husband stranded in India due to COVID-19

Citynews 1130 Vancouver

Last Updated Jun 16, 2020 at 1:07 am PDT

FILE - In this file photo dated Tuesday, June 5, 2018, a plane takes off over a road sign near Heathrow Airport in London. Heathrow (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, file)
Summary

Tanushree Pillai's husband was stranded in India for more than three months

Now that her husband is back, he is quarantined at an Airbnb

NEW WESTMINSTER (NEWS 1130) — A New Westminster woman is breathing a sigh of relief as she is reunited with her husband after months apart due to COVID-19.

Tanushree Pillai’s husband is back in B.C.after he was stranded in India for more than three months following worldwide lockdowns caused by the pandemic.

“It’s been a rollercoaster. It’s been really difficult not knowing when he’s going to be back. I think that was the biggest question mark. Just not knowing what it means to us as a family,” she said.

RELATED: New Westminster woman says husband stranded in Mumbai amid coronavirus pandemic

He travelled to India in early March for a photography gig, but when the virus began to spread in the country, travel was quickly shut down.

She says he couldn’t catch a repatriation flight because he’s a permanent resident, not a citizen. Pillai says, there were so many hurdles, there just didn’t seem to be an easy path home.

He eventually flew via Air India to London, and caught a connecting Air Canada flight to Vancouver.

“I don’t think there’s a word to describe how I feel. I was waiting to process all of the emotions until he actually got into a taxi from the airport. So that’s when it actually sunk in that he’s actually home,” Pillai said.

Pillai says she’s happy, but it’s not over yet as her husband will have to quarantine away from her and their son for 14 days.

“He’s really grateful to be back but I think it’s just really hard for him because he’s at an Airbnb. He’s close to us. He’s in the country. But he’s still away from us and now he’s alone all by himself.”

Cancelled flights, an Airbnb ,and a mandatory hotel room in London means the trip cost the family about $4,000.

But Pillai says it was worth every penny.