UPDATE: There is a New Paper report that gives more details about the story. It was less one sided that the original letter by the victim's sister. The woman involved did fight back and the attacker wanted the bus driver to detour to a hospital for treatment of his 'wounds'. The bus captain did contact the operations centre and the incident was reported to the police and the strategy was for the police to intercept the bus on its route - unfortunately the attacker escaped before the police got to him. So the truth depends on who tells it....and what she is trying to convey. But at the end of the day, the fact remains that a man attacked a woman on a bus in front of a group of passengers that did not step forward to help. Benjamin Tan, the only protagonist in the story, told the News Papers the 'gawkers were blocking the way' when he tried to help. When things happen, we should try to do more to help. A few commenters suggested the woman could have been abusive, rude and provoked the man in some way...and that I've jumped into conclusions. In the 'good old days', people will have enough common sense to separate the people fighting so that they don't end up strangling each other ...then it will really be too late to do something. Regardless of who started the fight or for whatevever reason how does sitting around and doing nothing help to make things better?
Part 1 is found here.
Rather sad to hear about the incident in which a girl was attacked on a double decker bus and no one bothered to help her not even the bus driver (oops, I mean bus captain) who just drove on. Only one young man by the name of Benjamin Tan tried to help.
Have we become such an uncaring so society that everyone just minds his own business and can't be bothered with what happens to others. When you see no reaction on the part of Singaporeans to things that happen around them, it doesn't mean all is well.....things can be falling apart and everyone is just sitting around apathetically....
We teach our young maths, science, languages etc and the intense competition in schools is suppose to be part of education system that produce a high standard - parents pay money to send their kids for tuition so they can score higher than other kids But what is the use of all that if we produce people who don't give up their seats for the old and pregnant women on the bus - we need special seats and signs to remind them to do it. The 1stt thing we should teach our children is to care about others and be aware of the needs of others....you can forget about the rest of the stuff if we can't get this done right.
Attacked but they just stared
My sister and I have lost faith in the kindness of Singaporeans - except for one
Letter from Irene Teo 05:55 AM Jul 08, 2010
July 8th, 2010
ON SATURDAY evening, my sister boarded SBS bus No 30
along West Coast Road, heading for the Esplanade.
She took a seat on the upper deck.
A male passenger took the seat next to her, positioning
himself very close to my sister. She asked him to give
her a little space. In response, he inched even closer.
Then, to her utter surprise, he punched her several
times on her head.
My sister tried to defend herself, but she was no match
for this man. He held her wrists and continued his attack,
hitting her on the head and in the stomach.
As a result of the attack, my sister sustained bruises
on her head, neck and arms.
The struggle lasted for 30 minutes and was witnessed by
all the passengers seated on the upper deck, but during
the entire incident, not one of them tried to intervene
and stop the attack.
None of the passengers even bothered to help my
sister pick up her belongings.
Only one passenger – Benjamin Tan Wei Kiong –
who had been seated on the lower deck came to her aid.
Benjamin heard the commotion and headed upstairs.
He asked the bus driver to stop the bus and call the police.
But the driver refused to, saying that the SBS command
centre had told him to drive on.
After this shocking incident, there are a few crucial
issues I want to highlight:
- Why didn’t the bus driver stop the bus?
Driving on meant my sister, as well as other passengers
on the bus, was put at risk of another attack.
- Why didn’t the bus driver contact the police?
Surely all bus personnel have been trained as to
.what to do when a passenger is assaulted.
Even if he had been instructed to drive on and not
stop, couldn’t he have assessed the severity of the
situation and taken action?
- Most importantly, why did no one on the upper
deck come forward to help my sister? Thanks to the
inaction and apathy of the spectators on the bus,
my sister is nursing not just her physical bruises
but also the emotional hurt from the fact that
no one bothered to help her.
This incident has made me lose faith
in the kindness of Singaporeans.
The only glimmer of hope is the existence of
Good Samaritans such as 22-year-old Benjamin,
who helped my sister and who later spent his
Saturday night at the police station with us.
Thank you, Benjamin.