Coronavirus: Holland Village restaurant ordered to close after crowds gather at eatery

Crowds were seen at the British Indian Curry Hut on June 19, 2020.
Crowds were seen at the British Indian Curry Hut on June 19, 2020.PHOTO: FACEBOOK

SINGAPORE - A restaurant in Holland Village was ordered to close by the authorities after crowds gathered at the eatery on Friday evening (June 19), the first day of phase two of Singapore's reopening.

The road where the restaurant is located was also reopened to traffic to prevent people from gathering on the street, said the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Saturday.

URA said that the authorities observed people gathering around the outdoor refreshment areas and on the road in Lorong Mambong on Friday evening.

Crowds were seen at the British Indian Curry Hut, which URA said failed to ensure that safe management practices were adhered to.

"We have therefore ordered the restaurant to close with immediate effect. The restaurant will only be allowed to do takeaways next week and open for dining in from June 29, provided it has shown that it is able to implement safe management measures for its customers," said the authority.

Lorong Mambong will also be reopened to traffic to prevent people from gathering on the street, and the outdoor refreshment areas along the sidewalks will also be removed.

All eateries along this stretch will have to ensure that their customers dine only within their premises, and are not loitering or drinking outside.

URA said enforcement officers also did checks around the area and fines were issued to five people for violating safe distancing rules. Investigations are also being done for other possible breaches of safe distancing measures.

The authority added that teams of safe distancing ambassadors and enforcement officers will continue their patrols islandwide, and will take immediate action against any breaches of safe management measures by both individuals and operators.


British Indian Curry Hut was ordered to close with immediate effect. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR

 
 
 

Individuals who breach the safe distancing rules, such as by gathering in groups of more than five people or not wearing a mask, will be fined, even if it is a first offence.

Egregious cases will be charged and prosecuted in court.

Likewise, any business operator unable to comply with the safe management measures, such as not having tables at least 1m apart or serving liquor after 10.30pm will be ordered to close, and will face possible penalties and charges.

"We cannot afford to let our guard down even as we move into phase two," said URA. "Everyone must continue to play their part to prevent the transmission of Covid-19."

In a Facebook post on Saturday, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong called on business operators to "do the right thing".

"There's no point rushing to open, only to fall short of the new safe management requirements," said Mr Wong, who is also co-chair of the Covid-19 multi-ministry task force.

"You will end up with further closures and disruptions for your business. Worse, you will be endangering the lives of your customers and staff."