Was a “CECA youth” behind the planned attacks on two Singapore mosques?

By February 4, 2021 Religion, Society

We came across this post on Facebook:

The author of the post shared a screenshot of an article on website India Today with a headline that reads: “Indian-origin teenager detained in Singapore for planning attack on 2 mosques”.

In his caption, the author of the post referred to the teen as a “CECA youth”.

As a quick overview about the history of the term, “CECA” refers to the India – Singapore Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement. However, what was once the term for a trade agreement between two countries has in recent times been used as a slur by certain netizens when referring to Indian nationals who live in Singapore.

Regardless, the term has become so contentious that the Government needed to come forward to clarify misconceptions of the agreement, including how CECA does not give Indian nationals the right to take up citizenship or permanent residency and also that it does not oblige Singapore to automatically grant employment passes (EPs) to Indian nationals.

‘CECA youth’?

When we took a look through the article on India Today, there was no mention of the teen being from India, and only mentioned that he was of “Indian descent”.

What’s more, reports of the incident on local news outlets had clearly mentioned that the 16-year-old boy who was detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA) is Singaporean and that he is a “Protestant Christian of Indian ethnicity”.

Therefore, the insinuation that the teen came to Singapore under CECA is false.

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