AN elderly Iranian couple who faced being thrown out of Scotland and being separated from their extended family have now been told that they can remain in the UK.

Mozaffar Saberi, 83, and his 73-year-old wife Rezvan Habibimarand, who have lived in Edinburgh on and off since the late 1970s, were granted leave to remain last night after their case was raised in the House of Commons and more than 127,000 people signed a petition supporting their fight to stay.

The couple have four children, 11 grandchildren and a great-grandchild who are all British citizens. They also look after a severely autistic grandson to allow his mother to carry on her work as an NHS nurse.

John Vassiliou, the couple’s lawyer, said last night he was delighted to advise that the Home Office had confirmed the couple could remain.

However he was critical at the “eye-watering” fees they would have to pay for the privilege.

He said: “If Home Office application fees remain at their current levels, the couple will be faced with the following costs (excluding legal fees) over the duration of their future visa journey: £1033 UKVI fee + £1000 Immigration Health Surcharge fee per person per application; They will need to pay this for their next three visa renewal applications to get themselves up to the ten year mark. Total cost (excluding initial visa application in October 2016) by year 10: (2033 x 2) x 3 = £12,198.

“Then the applications for indefinite leave to remain will cost them £2389 per person (£4778).

“Grand total to indefinite leave to remain: an eye-watering £16,976.

“If they want to go on and apply for British citizenship a year after that? Add a further £1330 per person. That brings the total up to £19,636, just shy of £20,000. And this does not account for the annual Home Office fee increases.

“This is the price of a human rights visa … the above calculation actually excludes the price of Mr Saberi and Mrs Habibimarand’s application in October 2016 on which this Home Office decision is predicated – that cost £2,622 combined excluding legal fees – and this is the price that all those granted leave to remain in the UK on human rights grounds must face.

“This cost is under-reported in the media and is worthy of attention, particularly when set against the recent uproar over the £65 EU settled status fee. Over the last few years, costs have risen to a level tantamount to binding “successful” applicants to ten years of indentured servitude to the Home Office; all in the name of continuing to remain in the UK after it has already been accepted that their removal would breach the UK’s human rights obligations.”

A Home Office spokesperson confirmed: “Following a review of the case, during which supplementary evidence was provided and considered, Mr Saberi and Mrs Habibimarand have been granted 30 months' leave to remain.”

Writing on Facebook, their son Navid Saberi said: “You did it folks, you did it, thank you does not sound/feel enough but thank you. My parents will not be deported, just received the confirmation. Thank you for all your efforts, likes, shares and signatures.”