How far would you go to make someone realise the importance of wearing a thing as normal and handy in today’s times like a face mask? Would you abuse someone, an absolute stranger? Would you swear at the person’s parents, whom you’ve never met? Would you hit their dog? Worse still, would you actually physically attack a total stranger whom you find breaking the most vital albeit the most basic among all COVID protocols?
In Singapore, perhaps it seems you can physically harm or hurt a person for not doing so. And this, it appears, you can do being a civilian. Not that it is, in any way dictated in the Singaporean law book but some people don’t apply their brains nor use basic civic empathy when freeing their hands or legs on someone.
Even if that could mean that the person who’s attacked happens to be a woman.
So fundamentally speaking, here’s the thing. A woman, who was wearing her face mask only upto the chin was approached by a man, a total stranger. He told her to pull her mask up.
Perhaps worked up that the woman, one of Indian origin, wasn’t adhering to the most fundamental social distancing protocol, the man lost his temper and attacked her.
As a matter of fact, he first abused her with the woman’s daughter by her side and then threw a volley of racial slurs at her!
Ever heard about hate crimes being perpetrated against Indians in other parts of the world? Well, you may have. And this incident goes on to prove that Indians are common preys to such violent or extreme acts that lack basic human empathy. For what else might you say?
What’s rather sad and shocking is that even as the man abused the woman, Hindocha Nita Vishnubhai, who was walking at Choa Chu Kang Drive, she didn’t rebuke the stranger; instead she said god bless you!
But what happened immediately after that is a total shocker. The man kicked the woman in her chest, the daughter of the lady who came under the attack shared.
“She explained that she was brisk walking but he didn’t care. He hurled vulgarities and racial slurs at her,” said the daughter.
Furthermore, the daughter of the attacked would add, “My mum responded with a ”God bless you” and the guy kicked her in the chest. My mum landed on her back and hurt herself.”
At all this time while the woman fell and bled, feeling absolutely helpless, the victim ran away. Thus far, the perpetrator’s identity is not known and is still at loose.
That being said, here is what a report published on the incident on the revered NDTV had to add:
According to Singapore’s health ministry guidelines, all people in the island nation aged six and above are required to wear masks as part of the safety measures against COVID-19 when outside their homes. They may remove their mask while engaging in outdoor or strenuous exercise, including brisk walking or walking up hilly terrain, but must put it back on after exercising.
The basic thing that we are forgetting, it must be kindly added, is that there’s a sense of humanity and basic ethos with which we must conduct ourselves even in these times where it’s so easy to lose one’s cool or composure.
What if the man had simply yelled at the woman instead of abusing her racially going as far as hitting her?