25-year-old Indian National Faces Six Months in Jail for Violating Covid-19 Guidelines in Singapore

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A 25-year-old Indian national working in Singapore was charged on Wednesday for violating COVID-19 guidelines, according to a media report. Parthiban Balachandran was charged with three counts under the Infectious Diseases Act, Channel News Asia reported.

If convicted, Parthiban faces a fine of up to SGD 10,000, up to six-month jail or both, it said. During Singapore's circuit breaker on May 23, Balachandran, who was a suspected coronavirus case, allegedly left a car park at Singapore General Hospital where he was to wait for the result of his COVID-19 test, took a public bus and then a taxi to the airport where he loitered for about four hours, the report said.

According to the charge sheets, Balachandran had also left his Jurong Penjuru Dormitory 1 on June 16 to travel to Changi Airport by taxi. The dormitory was at the time gazetted as a COVID-19 isolation area. At the airport, he spoke to staff about buying a plane ticket to India and slept there, the charge sheets stated.

He is also accused of travelling to Tampines housing estate, where he entered a flat belonging to one of his relatives. According to the charge sheets, Balachandran was out of the dormitory for approximately 30 hours, from about 5:50 am on June 16 until about noon the next day. Parthiban will return to the State Courts at a later date for a pre-trial conference due to a pending investigation against him.

Earlier this year, amid a rising number of COVID-19 cases, all migrant worker dormitories were gazetted as isolation areas to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

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