Indian Man jailed for 15 Weeks on charges of Little India Riots Singapore

Singapore: An Indian construction worker, the first of 25 men accused of taking part in last years’ riots at Little India to plead guilty, was jailed for 15 weeks by a court here on February 10, yesterday.

Chinnappa Vijayaragunatha Poopathi, 32, pleaded guilty to an amended charge of failing to disperse, Today Online reported.

He was initially charged with rioting.

The charge was amended after the Singapore attorney general’s chambers considered factors of his involvement in the riot.

The court heard that Chinnappa and a friend bought beer from a shop Dec 8, consumed it and later proceeded to Chander Road in Little India.

The pair decided to go to a food court called Kodai Canteen located at the junction of Kerbau Road and Chander Road around 11 p.m.

But as they were walking along Chander Road near where the riot first broke out, they saw people running away from the direction of the food court that they had decided to go to.

Ignoring advice not to go in that direction Chinnappa and his friend continued walking towards the canteen despite seeing Special Operations Command (SOC) personnel, armed with batons and shields trying to disperse people along Chander Road.

When Chinnappa and his friend entered the food court, where a ban on assembly of more than five people was in place, they joined a group of about 10 people. Police arrested them for rioting.