AN Indian woman who is married to a Scot has had her passport confiscated at Inverness Airport and faces being deported, leaving the couple’s two young daughters in the care of their elderly grandparents.

Gloria Macleod was returning to Dingwall from Dubai – where her husband Robert works – after the visa office there advised her travel to the UAE to complete her application process for a UK visa.

However, on her return she was refused entry into Scotland, despite holding a valid UK C – Visit passport issued in 2009, which is valid for 10 years.

Now Ian Blackford, the couple’s MP, is in urgent talks with the Home Office to stop her being deported, which looked likely to happen as soon as Saturday.

But late last night, Blackford secured a stay of removal until UK immigration minister Robert Goodwill responded to him on a formal basis regarding the case.

The couple were married in 2003 and have two daughters Siobhan, 11, and 10-year-old Meaghan, who are both British citizens.

In July, the family returned to Robert’s home town of Dingwall, where the girls were enrolled in the local primary school.

The Macleods made an application to enable Gloria to remain here to look after their daughters while their father – a former lance corporal in the Black Watch 3rd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland – continued to support them through his work as a security manager in Dubai.

She was advised by the Visa Office, acting on behalf of the UK Immigration Service, that the application had to be lodged in person in Dubai, after which she would be able to return to the UK.

But when she returned she was refused entry, despite having a pending application for clearance to care for her children and holding a valid visa. She was finally conditionally allowed in on temporary admission, but faces being deported to Dubai tomorrow.

“I have travelled extensively all over the world, even before I met my husband and have never had a problem like this before,” she said.

“I couldn’t take in what the immigration officer in Inverness was telling me and I thought I can’t believe this is happening. The fact that I am being threatened with deportation and that my passport has been taken away is just so upsetting, I can’t sleep at night for thinking about it.”

Blackford has raised the case with the Home Office, asking that the removal order be suspended until he and the family receive a full explanation. “Mrs Macleod followed exactly the instructions given to her by the Immigration Service and is now being penalised for this. Her visa is still current and has not been violated in any way. I have yet to fathom any reason why these actions have been taken,” he said.

“The family clearly want to live in Mr Macleod’s home town and he intends to return at every opportunity to be with his wife and daughters. He has a good job in Dubai and it is quite understandable that he wants to continue with this to support his family.

“What is beyond understanding is the attitude of the Home Office, who are removing a mother from her family, leaving two young girls in the care of elderly and infirm grandparents for no apparent reason.

“This must not be allowed to happen and I will do all I can to stop this madness immediately”.

He said Gloria had been following advice she had been given by the visa office, and he has written to immigration minister Robert Goodwill, urging him to reconsider the case. “She was resident in the UK and only left to comply with the instructions of your department and it seems insensitive to say the least that she has been treated in such a manner particularly in the light of her two children being resident in Scotland. Not only resident in Scotland but under her active care here,” he wrote.

A Home Office spokesman said: “A visitor visa cannot be used to enter the UK for the purpose of permanent residence. It is the responsibility of those seeking to enter to ensure they hold the correct type of visa. Mrs Macleod was granted temporary admission to the UK and we are considering further representations in relation to her case.”