SINGAPORE - Alcohol consumption in public areas of Little India will continue to be banned on weekends, public holidays and the eve of public holidays, said the police on Wednesday.
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Here is the full statement from the Singapore Police Force, Land Transport Authority and Ministry of Manpower:
The Government introduced a series of cooling-off measures at Little India last weekend to calm and stabilise the situation and prevent further incidents following the riot on Sunday, 8 December 2013.
The measures, which included the suspension of alcohol sale and consumption and the suspension of the Little India Bus Services (LIBS), have been effective and no public order incidents were reported over the last weekend. Specifically for the alcohol-related measures, the various licence holders, including restaurants and shopkeepers, had cooperated fully. They understood that this immediate tightening was necessary to restore safety and security to that area.
Moving forward, the Singapore Police Force (SPF), the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and the Land Transport Authority (LTA) will introduce calibrated measures to maintain safety and security at the Little India area in a sustainable manner.
Sale and Consumption of Alcohol in Little India
The Police, in consultation with the Liquor Licensing Board, will be adopting a more calibrated and sustainable approach to manage the sale and consumption of alcohol at Little India and its surrounding vicinity, from this weekend onwards. These recalibrated measures will be in place for up to 6 months until the Committee of Inquiry has completed its work and made its recommendations. Measures for the longer-term will then take into consideration feedback from the ongoing public consultations on liquor sales and consumption in public places, and the COI's findings and recommendations. Where necessary, new laws and regulations will be enacted.
Police's principal considerations are as follows:
I. To maintain safety and security at the Little India area in a sustainable manner, over the longer term bearing in mind both residents' as well as commercial interests.
II. To strike an appropriate balance between the competing interests of the stakeholders, that is, the business and residential community in Little India; and
III. To adopt a calibrated and sustainable approach to manage alcohol consumption and sale, in view of the different risks posed by the various types of establishments and licenses.
To find the appropriate balance between the various competing interests going forward, Police also consulted with stakeholders, like the Little India Shopkeepers and Heritage Association, the Indian Restaurant Association of Singapore, and the grassroots representatives. Police have incorporated feedback from these stakeholders in coming up with the revised measures.