ON 'RIOT ZONE'
There is now far too much negativity towards Little India.
This area is a gem, one of the most outstanding places in Singapore.
I have lived, in what has come to be known as the riot zone, for 17 years, and feel that its people, customs, architecture, food and character are second to none.
Yes, for two or three hours on Sundays it gets crowded with foreign workers congregating to meet friends, buy food and have a laugh over a beer or two - usually nothing but harmless fun.
Yes, there are prostitutes, but this is certainly not the only area in Singapore where they operate. I have never been solicited by a prostitute in Little India, whereas I have been elsewhere.
I often see extremely casually dressed women, both locals and tourists, but I have not observed them attracting unwelcome attention from the foreign workers.
I am always treated with politeness and a smile by the foreign workers, though it helps to reciprocate that smile and politeness. It is also a surprise to see how well dressed these workers can be, considering their circumstances.
Yes, there are a few who make a bit of a racket, but that is nothing unique to Little India. People do that in Orchard Road, Clarke Quay and elsewhere.
The way Little India transforms from a relatively quiet backwater into a thriving, noisy, extremely crowded area on a Sunday can be a challenge for some, but this is real life right before our eyes.
Unfortunately, it appears we are fast becoming people who will do all they can to avoid real life.
So, instead of using the recent riot as an excuse to scold Little India, let us take a step back and learn to appreciate and love it for what it is - an absolute gem.
FROM READER PETER DEAN
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