Monday, December 9, 2013

Little India Riot in Singapore

The Little India Riot that took place yesterday is the hottest topic among all islandwide:

So what happened exactly?  The Straits Times has pieces together the sequence of events based on eye witness accounts, videos and the Police:

1. A riot broke out after a private bus knocked the 33-year old Indian national, Mr Sakthivel Kumaravelu, at the road junction between Hampshire Road and Race Course Road.  The police received a call about the incident about 9:32pm.
2. Police cars, an ambulance and a fire engine arrived at the scene.  One police car was overturned by the crowd.  The fire engine and ambulance moved away. A second police got overturned as well.
3. Third police car overturned.
4. Rioters turned over and burned the police cars and ambulance.  Then riot police arrived the scene.
5. Rioters dispersed upon the riot police's arrival on the scene.

Image Source: The Straits Time Twitter
Image Source: The Straits Time Twitter

Image Source: Mr Lawrence Chong

Image Source: Today Online Twitter

Image Source: Today Online Twitter

 Riot In Little India, Dec 8, 2013 (Credit: Today Online)

Aftermath of Little India Riot:

 Aftermath of Little India Riot, Dec 9, 2013 (Credit: Today Online)

The nearby areas are in a terribly mess and heavy police presence are in sight in the area, following last night's violence:
Image Source: Today Online Twitter
Image Source: The Straits Times Twitter
Image Source: Today Online Twitter

Image Source: Today Online Twitter
27 were nabbed and more are expected to be arrested. A total of 5 police cars and 1 ambulance were damaged, and 10 policemen were reportedly injured. Channel NewsAsia also confirmed 2 foreign workers are dead. SCDF had conveyed 18 casualties including 4 SCDF personnel to Tan Tock Seng Hospital; of which per latest update, all 4 have been discharged.

Wikipedia has promptly added the incident to its List of Riots in Singapore:
* December 11, 1950 - Maria Hertogh riots
* May 13, 1954 - 1954 National Service Riots
* May 12, 1955 - Hock Lee Bus Riots
* 1956 - Chinese middle schools riots
* July 21, 1964 - 1964 Race Riots
* 1969 - 1969 Race Riots of Singapore
* December 8, 2013 - 2013 Little India Riots

Someone has even set up a Pray For Singapore twitter account @littleindiariot

No one would ever thought that a bus accidentally would have lead to a riot.  However, this is definitely not the time to fan the flame and further ignite on the incident.  This indicent truly reminds all of the importance of "to think of danger in times of safety to be vigilant in peacetime". 

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