Tamil family released from detention returns home

STORY: The Tamil family of four, Priya and Nadesalingam Murugappan and their two daughters, Kopika and Tharnicaa, flew in to their adopted hometown of Biloela, and were greeted by friends and other locals who supported their release.

The family have been a cause celebre since being detained in the rural Australian town where they settled years earlier. The family was taken into the country's offshore detention system, designed to deter asylum seekers from entering by boat.

Amid growing public anger, the conservative government moved the family to mainland Australia last year when the younger daughter, Tharnicaa, needed urgent medical care for sepsis linked to untreated pneumonia. The family has since been in community detention onshore.

The new center-left Labor government, which won a national election on May 21 after nine years in opposition, said it would give the family bridging visas, allowing them to return to their adopted home town, Biloela, 370 miles northwest of Brisbane, until their asylum application is resolved.

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