Channel NewsAsia
Updated: 03/19/2014 15:46 | By Channel NewsAsia

More drunk & incapable persons arrested in Little India in 2013

More drunk & incapable persons arrested in Little India in 2013

More drunk & incapable persons arrested in Little India in 2013

SINGAPORE: The number of people arrested for being drunk and incapable in Little India last year was 60, up from 35 cases in 2011.

A drunk and incapable person is defined as someone who is drunk, is unable to take care of himself and behaves in a disorderly manner.

Police Deputy Superintendent Ho See Ying revealed this as she took the stand on Wednesday at the Committee of Inquiry (COI) hearing into the Little India riot.

The number of major offences in Little India may have been on a downward trend, but the number of drunk and incapable persons arrested has been on the rise.

Major offences include murder, rape, outrage of modesty and motor vehicle theft. The total number of major cases reported in Little India was 234 in 2009, and the number dropped to 157 last year.

Based on feedback from residents and shopkeepers, the committee questioned if the numbers reflect the reality on the ground.

DSP Ho replied that there could be a lot more people who were drunk in Little India.

But due to limited resources, the police might not have been able to pick up every drunk and incapable person.

The topic on foreign worker resentment against police was also highlighted and DSP Ho said that in the past five years, there were only two cases of substantiated complaints of rudeness against auxiliary police officers.

Also taking the stand was Deputy Assistant Commissioner Daniel Tan, who said additional police resources have been put in place in the area after the riot.

For example, when the area is proclaimed under Public Order (Preservation) Act, 20 to 35 additional officers are deployed on Saturdays, Sundays, eve of public holidays and public holidays. There are also more cameras in the Little India area now.

Security manager at Jurong Penjuru Dormitory, Saffarullah Abdullah, also testified and refuted a report by Hong Kong tabloid Apple Daily that had described the Jurong Penjuru Dormitory as prison-like.

The report also stated that foreign workers at the dormitory were squeezed into cramped conditions and had their movements monitored by CCTV cameras, and barbed wire was used at the dormitory.

Mr Saffarullah said it was not true that barbed wire was used anywhere in or around the dormitory.

He also said it is not true that foreign workers in the dormitories were being monitored on closed circuit TV as the cameras are pointed outwards, at the perimeters.

When asked about the living conditions of foreign workers in dormitories, dorm operator Willy Ng said foreign workers are generally happy with where they are housed and it is a step up from where they have come from.

However, he said he has received occasional complaints, but they are usually centred around cultural differences that foreign workers face in their dormitory.  - CNA/xq

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