Melbourne, March 9 (IANS) An Indian family that was asked to leave Australia due to their son’s Down Syndrome has now been offered permanent residency after Immigration Minister Andrew Giles intervened.
After living in Perth for seven years, Aneesh Kollikkara’s family was facing the prospect of being deported to India next week as their 10-year-old son Aaryan failed the visa health test, WA Today reported.
The Kollikkara couple said they were denied residency because their son was considered a “burden” on the health system.
After a three-year fight for the visa, the family received official word on Wednesday that Giles had intervened and granted them permanent residency.
“The department rang us this morning to say they were granting the family a bridging visa until the minister made his decision … and literally within half an hour of that call, the minister’s office rang and said we’ve decided to intervene and offer you a full permanent residency,” family advocate Suresh Rajan was quoted as saying in WA Today.
“The minister has applied complete human rights principles here, and we’re so grateful to him for that. It’s an incredible decision and incredibly quick,” Rajan said.
According to the Immigration Department, the cost of looking after Aaryan would be $664,000 over 10 years.
Aaryan’s mother Krishna had said that her son doesn’t rely on any disability support services.
According to 7News, the couple’s two children are privately schooled and the family has private health too. It said that the family has used Medicare for some of Aaryan’s appointments but has never claimed financial help through the National Disability Insurance Scheme.