Singapore – Just two weeks after opening their stall in 2018, a hawker couple had their savings stolen by a group of thieves.
Located at Yishun Park Hawker Centre, Madam Kalsom Kamis and Mr Zaidi Zainal operate a curry puff stall.
As part of her labour of love, Mdm Kalsom wakes up at 5 am daily to make the savoury pastries by hand. They’ve been saving a portion of their daily sales to buy equipment to ease the load off Mdm Kalsom.
According to Today, a day before they planned to buy the new equipment, Mr Zaidi arrived at their stall only to find that all of their savings were gone. A total of more than S$1,000 was stolen from their cash register on July 17, 2018.
On June 14 (Friday) of this year, one of the six youths who committed the crime was sentenced to two years’ probation.
Ng Qiang Qing served as the lookout for the youths’ “get rich quick” scheme and together they targeted the curry puff stall.
He was charged with one count of theft in dwelling, rioting and abetting the impersonation of a public servant, to which he pleaded guilty.
Ng was ordered to undergo 180 hours of community service and spend a year at the Singapore Boys’ Hostel, a juvenile probation institution.
Ng was also involved in a group fight on April 30 this year at Yishun Avenue 11.
On May 1, Ng and three of his friends posed as police officers from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and falsely apprehended two Bangladeshi foreign construction workers sleeping on a bench. They demanded that the workers show their work permits and hand over their wallets.
One worker lost S$379 to the youth posing as officers.
To ensure his proper behaviour during his disciplinary period, Ng’s father posted a bond worth S$5,000.
Mdm Kalsom shared that she shed many tears after the theft. “I flatten the dough with my hands and make them into balls with my hands every single day. It would take around 600 curry puffs to get the money back.”
To compensate for the loss, the couple raised the price of their curry puffs from S$1.20 to S$1.50 each.
Unfortunately, they were also hit with another incident of theft earlier this year and lost another S$50.
It took them four months to save up once more for the dough flatterers, mixers and other equipment that Mdm Kalsom needs.
In response to Ng’s sentence, Mdm Kalsom hopes that he had learned his lesson. “His parents should be more strict on him,” she said.
The couple plans on installing security cameras and bars around the stall to increase safety measures.
Netizens are sharing the story of the couple in hopes of raising awareness and support.