SEOUL, Dec. 18 (Korea Bizwire) — The South Korean government has decided to give permanent residency to a Sri Lankan who bravely saved an elderly woman in her 90s by rushing into a fire.
The Ministry of Justice said on December 13 that all members of a committee had agreed to give permanent residency to the Sri Lankan man Katabilla Ketiye Ge-Dara Nimal Siri Vandara.
He is the first foreigner to receive permanent residency in recognition of his contributions to protecting the lives and property of the people.
Nimal, who works at an orchard in Gunwi-gun, North Gyeongsang Province, saved an elderly woman who had been living near the orchard from a fire in February.
He was also recognized by LG Group in March as news of his courageous behavior spread.
The Ministry of Health and Welfare acknowledged him as a ‘righteously injured person’ in June although he was an illegal alien.
Righteously injured persons, who are defined as having been injured in the process of saving other people’s lives, can obtain compensation which is defined by law.
It was also the first time that an illegal alien has been acknowledged as a righteously injured person.
Nimal is still undergoing treatment since he suffered second-degree burns to his neck, head and wrist as well as lung damage from smoke inhalation.
Daegu Immigration Office issued a G-1 permit to Nimal in June so he could receive medical treatment in Korea and exempted his fine for illegal residency.
They also kept working to get him permanent residency so he could benefit from medical insurance and the opportunity to get a job.
Officials from the Ministry of Justice said, “The committee decided to give him permanent residency since he has no criminal record although he is an illegal alien, and he is a righteously injured person that the government acknowledged.”
His permanent residency ceremony was held on December 18 at the Daegu Immigration Office.
Lina Jang (email@example.com)