Two more Indians charged in Singapore for rioting

Singapore, Dec 14: Two more Indian nationals were charged with rioting in a Singapore court Saturday, bringing to 33 the total number of those arraigned for the Dec 8 riots in this city-state.

Palanivel Dhasmohan, 27, and Karuppiah Chandrasekar, 31, are accused of being part of an unlawful assembly and throwing pieces of concrete at police officers, among other charges, following the death of an Indian worker in the Little India neighbourhood Dec 8.

Both the accused face charges of rioting and if convicted, can be jailed for up to seven years and will also confront the prospect of being caned, the Straits Times reported.

Just like the others who were charged, Dhasmohan and Chandrasekar have been told that they could apply for Law Society’s Criminal Legal Aid Scheme if they could not engage a lawyer on their own.

Earlier, 31 Indian nationals were charged in connection with the riots.

The riots, involving some 400 South Asian workers, broke out after an Indian worker, Sakthivel Kumaravelu, was killed after being run over by a bus in the Little India ethnic neighbourhood, known for its Tamil cultural elements and aspects of other Indian cultures.

The driver involved in the Dec 8 night’s accident was charged Dec 10 with causing death by negligence.

Mobs attacked officers who responded to the accident but police said they did not fire a single shot while trying to bring the situation under control.

It was the biggest riot in Singapore in some 40 years. Around 22 police officers who sustained injuries have been discharged after treatment in hospital.

Meanwhile, Singapore’s Home Affairs Minister Teo Chee Hean Friday appointed a committee of inquiry (COI) to investigate the riots, Today Online reported citing an official statement.

The four-member committee is expected to submit its report to the ministry within six months.

G. Pannir Selvam, former judge of the Supreme Court of Singapore, has been appointed the committee chairman.

Other members are former commissioner of police Tee Tua Ba, former president of the Singapore National Trades Union Congress John De Pavya and chairman of the West Coast Citizens Consultative Committee Andrew Chua Thiam Chwee.

IANS