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South Korea passes new ‘BTS Law’ to postpone military services

Singers can now serve in the army when they turn 30
The new bill was passed days before Jin, a member of the group, turns 28.
The new bill was passed days before Jin, a member of the group, turns 28.
File picture

Our Bureau, Agencies   |   Seoul   |   Published 02.12.20, 02:40 PM

The South Korean parliament, in a distinct move, has given its nod and passed a bill that will allow music sensation BTS and other singers to postpone their mandatory service in the army until the age of 30.

As per the laws of south Korea, all able-bodied men, who are aged between 18-28, are required to compulsorily serve in the military for two years, the New York Times reported.


The pop group was under threat as two of their members, Jin and Suga, will soon turn 28.

According to the revised Military Service Act, "a pop culture artist who was recommended by the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism to have greatly enhanced the image of Korea both within the nation and throughout the world" would be permitted to postpone their military service until they are 30, provided they do not have any extraordinary reason.

Before revision, the Military Service Act only gave deferral exceptions to athletes, classical musicians, and those who enrolled in Ph.D. programs abroad.

All seven members of BTS -- the full name being Bangtan Sonyeondan (Bulletproof Boy Scouts) or Beyond The Scene as their English branding -- meet that requirement as they were awarded the medal in 2018.

The BTS Army, who are the fans of the band, celebrated the new move, and dubbed it as a gift to Jin ahead of his birthday on December 4.

"Congratulations Jin. I can't tell you my happiness," one fan tweeted.

The seven-member group, comprising RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V and Jungkook, earned their first mainstream Grammy Award nomination for their son ‘Dynamite’ in the best pop/duo group performance category this year. They were previously up for an obscure best recording package Grammy in 2019 for 'Love Yourself: Tear'.

The group also topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart with "Life Goes On", the lead single of their recently released album 'BE' (Deluxe Edition).

The song, a soothing melody reflecting the state of life under the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, also topped the Billboard 200 chart.

On the Billboard Hot 100 chart, "Life Goes On" is closely followed by the Grammy-nominated ‘Dynamite’, the closing track of 'BE', on No 3 this week.

‘Dynamite’, which is the music group's first full-fledged English single, previously topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart in September, making BTS the first pop act from South Korea to achieve this feat.

According to Billboard, BTS is the first duo or group in history to have two No 1 Hot 100 debut songs.

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