Singaporte Little India Riot: Police report against Sun TV [Video]
The report said that the riot was triggered by a female bus driver who had pushed an Indian male passenger off the bus, causing his death in the process.
Sun TV reported this in its bulletin on Monday evening.
The news anchor then said in Tamil that when the other Indians at the scene saw it, they got angry and started to attack the bus driver and the bus. It added that Singaporean authorities and Chinese persons started to attack the Indians, and in the process, two vehicles were torched.
When contacted, police could only confirm that a report was made, but did not elaborate if they will be investigating.
A copy of the report seen by The Straits Times had the details of the person who lodged the report blanked out.
When The Straits Times contacted Sun TV, a man who gave his name as Mr Uma Shankar and claimed that he is the editor in charge of the news section, said he was unable to comment at this point, as he needed to check the facts with the sub-editor who had written the report.
Lawyers in Singapore whom The Straits Times spoke to said it would be difficult to take the television station to task.
Mr Ravinderpal Singh of Kalco Law said: "They are not maligning any individuals. Just reporting incorrect facts alone do not attract any legal liability."
Singapore's High Commissioner to India Lim Thuan Kuan has written to India's Sun TV Network to ask for immediate corrections to its "erroneous" coverage of Sunday's riot in Little India.
In its news bulletin on Dec 9, the television station said the Indian national who was knocked down by the bus on Sunday 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.
These claims were "entirely false", said Mr Lim in a letter dated Dec 10.
"The deceased had boarded the bus when it was already full. The deceased also appeared to be drunk and he was causing trouble on the bus, even dropping his trousers whilst on the bus," said the letter. "After the deceased was assisted off the bus, he proceeded to walk/run alongside the bus in an unsteady manner while holding onto his pants . He stumbled and fell onto the path of the back wheel of the bus and was run over."
"The inaccurate and sensationalist coverage clearly shows that Sun TV did not even bother to check the facts before reporting on the incident," said the letter. "We are requesting an immediate correction (both online and on broadcast) and for Sun TV to provide the full facts of the case so that your viewers have an accurate understanding of what really happened."
A police report has also been filed here against Sun TV by an unknown person. When contacted, police could only confirm that a report was made, but did not elaborate if they will be investigating.
Credits: Straits times