10 Indians deported, barred from Singapore for violating circuit breaker rules



Singapore has deported 10 Indian nationals, including students, and barred them from re-entering the country for violating the “circuit breaker” rules enforced to curb the spread of the coronavirus, officials announced on Monday, warning that the government would not hesitate to take “strong action” against those blatantly disregarding
the laws.

The “circuit breaker” period in Singapore began on April 7 as part of which all non-essential work places were closed and residents were barred from leaving their houses except to buy food and groceries or to exercise alone in the neighbourhood. The period ended on June 2.

Singapore is currently in the Phase-2 of its reopening — starting from June 19 — with the gradual resumption of operations by more businesses. As on Sunday, the country reported total 45,961 coronavirus cases and 26 deaths.

The 10 Indians, holding student or work passes, were caught having a social gathering at a rented apartment on May 5, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) and the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said in a joint press release.

Last month, they pleaded guilty to their offences under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Act and penalties ranging between SGD 2,000 (USD 1,439) and SGD 4,500 (USD 3,237) were imposed on them.

As per the provisions of the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Act, first-time offenders can be jailed for up to six months and fined up to SGD 10,000 (USD 7,163). Repeat offenders can be jailed for up to a year and fined up to SGD 20,000 (USD 14,326).

“Their passes were cancelled after their convictions. They were deported to India between June and July 2020 and barred from re-entering Singapore,” the release said.

“The authorities will not hesitate to take strong action against anyone who does not comply with (safe distancing measures) or shows blatant disregard for our laws, and this may include the termination of visas or work passes, where applicable,” it stated.