Sun TV vows to read Riot Act to employee

Sun TV vows to read Riot Act to employee

An Indian Sun TV employee who got the facts of Sunday's Little India riot all wrong may be on his way to a suspension.

Speaking to MyPaper over the phone, Mr R. Umashankar, chief editor of Sun News which made the blunder, said that action will be taken against the person responsible for the error.

Meanwhile, the riot has sparked more misreporting elsewhere. A Taiwanese station used the incident to claim that riots in 1964 had prompted Malaysia to "kick out" Singapore, which was a "hellish place".

Mr Umashankar, however, is contrite about the Indian station's error.

"When we first got the news, it was correct. We knew that an Indian man was knocked down, there was a riot involving Indians, and police were at the scene," he said.

The station got the news from wire agencies, he added. But till now, he claims that even he does not know how the news got distorted.

In Sunday's incident in Race Course Road, Mr Sakthivel Kumaravelu, 33, was pinned under the rear wheel of a private bus, when he, in a drunken state, was stumbling towards it. He later died. This then sparked the riot involving about 400 workers.

But a news item on Sun TV on Monday twisted this to say that Mr Sakthivel was pushed out of the vehicle by the driver.

It also claimed that Indian nationals were hiding in their homes for fear of being attacked by Singaporeans and the local Chinese or harassed by the police.

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