It has become necessary for people visiting or living in Singapore to be aware of racial discrimination. Reason- Rapid increase in the cases of racial discrimination. At the same time, to maintain harmony, the country is adopting a soft but effective approach. Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam said that a new law on racial harmony is being brought. The Racial Harmony Maintenance Act was announced by Prime Minister Lee Shen Loong at a National Day rally on 29 August.
According to Singapore’s law minister, ‘You don’t want to take everyone to court just because you talk to each other every day in the market or food center or elevator. Don’t want to put them in jail or fine them or treat them like criminals. I think this is an impossible situation. By doing this, instead of making things better, you will make them worse.’
Instead, the government will work closely with agencies such as the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth and One People.SG, a national organization promoting racial harmony, to consider non-punitive sanctions, Shanmugam said. Singapore has a population of 5.9 million, with the largest number of Chinese citizens, followed by Malaysians, Indians, and other citizens of Asian and Caucasian origin.
Appeal to the Chinese community living in the country to be sensitive
About two months ago, Senior Singapore Minister Lawrence Wang appealed to the majority Chinese community to be sensitive to minority communities. Speaking on Race and Racism at the Institute of Policy Studies, Finance Minister Wang expressed concern over racism in the country amid popular incidents in Singapore.
He had said- ‘First we have to accept that in any multiracial society it is more difficult to be a minority than a majority.’ Amidst all this, Prime Minister Li Shen Lung just a week ago dismissed claims that Chinese citizens enjoy privileges in the multiracial country.
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