Queensland Sri Lankan Tamil family lose final bid to avoid deportation

A Queensland family taken from their home and placed in a Melbourne detention centre more than a year ago have lost their final bid to stay in Australia.

The Tamil family were removed from Biloela in March 2018 during a dawn raid, angering the central Queensland rural town and leading to nationwide protests by refugee advocates.

The Home to Bilo campaign was established in an attempt to overturn the family’s impending deportation and they lost their Federal Court appeal to remain in the country in December.

On Tuesday, the High Court refused Priya, Nades and their two Australian-born daughters, Kopika and Tharunicaa, special leave to appeal the Federal Court ruling that they could not remain in the country and were to be deported.

The couple came to Australia separately by boat in 2012 and 2013 following Sri Lanka’s civil war, but have been in detention for 14 months after their bridging visa expired.

In January, rallies were held across the country, including outside Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton’s office in Strathpine, north of Brisbane.

Family friend and Home to Bilo spokesperson Angela Fredericks called on Prime Minister Scott Morrison to stand by his values and give the family a “fair go”.

“After living, volunteering and working in Biloela for over four years, Priya and Nades have had more than a ‘go’ at contributing to the little town that became their home,” she said.

“Biloela wants this family back.”

Smaller gatherings were also held outside federal MP offices in Gladstone, Sydney and Melbourne as well as in a Canberra park.

The family were issued with a deportation notice in June last year after the federal government ruled they couldn’t stay.

But their removal from Australia was put on hold after they made an 11th-hour appeal to the Federal Court in August.

Ms Fredericks has previously described the family’s ordeal as “pure psychological torture”.

“Each time they’re getting more and more exhausted. It’s just the psychological drain of not knowing and the constant fear [of returning to Sri Lanka],” she said.

Almost 190,000 people have signed a petition urging Mr Dutton to return the family to Biloela. (Courtesy Brisbane Times)


  1. Scott Morrison’s strategy to join with Indians to undermine the dragon is becoming a disaster.

    Australia was quick to exclude Huawei equipment from its 5G network, several major allies including the UK and Germany are not convinced that a ban is warranted. Consequently, China has discouraged Chinese people investing in Australan property and higher education. The Australian universities are reaching out to Indians to meet their budgets. Chinese are asset, they bring money to Australia. Most of the Indians are liability, they will take more than what they give. They will take Australians’ jobs and make more money than what they pay for their education. Majority of the Indian students’ English language skill is very poor. It is very clear why they are in Australia.

    Melbourne taxi ranks and Restaurants are full with Indian students. As international students they are only allowed to work twenty hours per week but the immigration does not follow up on the rule. Enforcement of twenty hours work will help those students to focus on their studies. In fact Australian authorities are uncomfortable to enforce the strict rule, because they need to please Indians to tackle the dragon. However, this strategy will backfire on Australia. I saw few fights among the Indian taxi drivers at the taxi ranks just for few dollars. This is not new, because Indians have been breeding as rabbits and fighting among themselves due to lack of resources.

    The worse thing is, they are on student visas, working 7 days, hardly attending classes and getting their assignments done in India for money. Notably, not even one Indian university rank within 200 in the world, because of the corrupt system. Eventually, Indians will bring the Australian education standards to the same level of Indian standards. Scott Morrison has stopped the boats, but bring corrupt people and they don’t know anything better other than how they brought up. People who came by boats did not damage the Australian education system but Indians do. This is truly a disaster for Australia.

    • I agree with you I would much rather see Chinese students, workers pretty much everything over indians its not being racist I just feel indians / pakistanis are not interested in becoming part of Australia’s fabric there only interested in GREED, the chinese bring color a vibrancy great food, thousands of years of culture those from the subcontinent bring nothing other than bad hygiene and men who do not respect women children anyone who is not one of them and believe their gods gift.
      Just like this tamil family they have done everything in their power the try to con the Australian courts with their lies and ploys in an attempt to remain in Australia where most accept their fate, this lot has cost the Australian taxpayers million for their selfish desire they have used their children a pawns in their deception even a judge said why bring a child into the world when you had no idea what you could provide or were, its child abuse on a epic scale. If I had my way we would be canceling all the indians visas and sending them back their not our problem tamils have been lying to us for to long they created the problem in sri lanka why do we have to pick up the pieces?


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