The family is due to arrive in Biloela by 2.30pm AEST, where they will be greeted by supporters, many of whom have campaigned for years for their release.
“The overwhelming feeling I have is relief really,” he told SBS News.
Priya and Nades married in Australia after fleeing Sri Lanka’s civil war, arriving separately on people smuggler boats in 2012 and 2013, before going on to have Australian-born children Kopika and Tharnicaa.
“I think there is going to be a long healing process, but they will be surrounded by people who love them.”
Mixed feelings in Biloela community, resident says
“I think the people that were anti (the family returning) were anti in the beginning. The people who were passionate about their return remained so.”
“I’ve heard some second-hand stories. And from what I’ve heard, it sounds like they’ve sort of tried to come to Australia and didn’t really do it through legit reasons. If they want to come across, that’s fine, just do it the right way. Because what about the people who still are in the bloody camps waiting to come to Australia?”
With the family’s legal options exhausted, a decision on the issue of permanent visas would need to come from the immigration minister or home affairs minister.