Dubai granted two Indian orphaned girls and their grandparents 10-year golden visas, Dubai Police said in a statement on Monday.
The two young sisters were orphaned after their parents died in a “criminal incident,” according to the statement.
The young girls were also given full school and university scholarships as well as paid-for accommodation.
Foreigners in the UAE usually have renewable visas valid for only a few years tied to employment. The government in the past couple of years has made its visa policy more flexible, offering longer residencies for certain types of investors, students and professionals.
The UAE began in mid-November granting a 10-year “golden” visa to holders of a doctorate degree, medical doctors, and computer, electronics, programming, electrical, and biotechnology engineers.
After first announcing a long-term visa plan in 2018, the UAE in 2019 started granting 5- and 10-year renewable visas to certain foreign investors, entrepreneurs, chief executives, scientists and outstanding students.
The two girls will receive free education at Repton School and the Canadian University Dubai.
David Cook, Headmaster of Repton School Dubai, said: “Schools are first and foremost communities of support, welfare, and pastoral care. When we heard of the tragic news about what had happened to the family of one of our pupils, we wanted to do all that we could to help during this very difficult time.”
At a ceremony to mark the occasion, Lieutenant General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri said: "Granting the two golden visas to the orphan sisters is in line with the humanitarian approach embraced by the UAE’s wise leadership to ensure the happiness of all community segments in the UAE, as a haven of happiness to all community members."
- With Reuters