Why squash kampung spirit?

Why squash kampung spirit?

SINGAPORE - My hero in this World Cup finals has been kicked out.

I do not mean Luis Suarez and certainly not Cristiano Ronaldo.

It is an ordinary Singaporean man, Mr Rooban Kanth, who I am talking about.

The 26-year-old lives in a cul-de-sac known as Sing Avenue, which is just off the much busier Rangoon Road.

When the World Cup finals started earlier this month, he moved his 42-inch television screen from his bedroom to outside his family's landed property whenever there were matches on.

For Mr Rooban, the reason was simple: He loved football and he wanted those who were not as lucky as him to get a chance to watch The Beautiful Game.

But a handful of police officers clearly did not think so.

They probably did not realise this, but while they were enforcing the letter of the law in the interest of "safety", they put a real dampener on a truly ground-up community project.

Mr Rooban's spontaneous initiative had everything good about it.

He did not do it for money or fame, but to share the joys of a game he loves so much with others.

He even passed beer and energy drinks around, and brought out a fan to keep his audience cool.

It also brought back memories of the old kampung spirit where neighbours got together and bonded over a common activity.

Mr Rooban has probably also achieved more for the integration of foreigners into society than any event that the grassroots organisations have come up with so far.

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