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Singapore enacted new law to maintain public order in Little India

A new law Public Order (Additional Temporary Measures) Act was approved by Singapore Government on 1 April 2014.

Apr 2, 2014 16:10 IST
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A new law Public Order (Additional Temporary Measures) Act was approved by Singapore Government on 1 April 2014. The law gives the Singapore police and authorities power to maintain public order and calm in Little India. The law will be effective for a year in the Little India.

According to the law, any public assembly held within a demarcated zone of Little India would require a police permit, even if held indoors.

imageThe indoor meetings held by places of worship, societies and other organisations involving their own members would be exempted from the revised law, given that the precinct has a number of temples and societies serving the local public.

With the Public Order (Additional Temporary Measures) Act in place, it would no longer be necessary for the government to invoke the Public Order (Preservation) Act to proclaim Little India as an area in a state of danger to public order during weekends, public holidays and their eves, which had been done since 8 December 2013 following the riot.

With the change, police would no longer be able to impose curfews, impose reporting requirements on persons or use deadly force on subjects who resist arrest, among other things.

The new law came after the Singapore witnessed the worst riot in 40 years in the Little India. On 8 December 2013 some 400 migrant workers from South Asia rioted when an Indian man was killed in a bus accident.

The riot of 2013 left 43 police officers injured and 24 emergency vehicles damaged in the worst outbreak of violence Singapore has seen in the last four decades.

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