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Singapore Police Force confirms death of police officer who penned a suicide note alleging workplace bullying and discrimination

Singapore is in mourning following the tragic death of Sgt Uvaraja S/0 Gopal, a dedicated officer of the Singapore Police Force (SPF).

Sgt Uvaraja, 36, was found unconscious at Block 393 Yishun Avenue 6 on 21st July 2023 and later succumbed to his injuries in hospital.

He was transported unconscious to the hospital where he later succumbed to his injuries.

The SPF has confirmed that it is not treating the case as a criminal matter at this stage.

The police have also said that it has opened an investigation into the allegations Sgt Uvaraja raised on social media shortly before his death.

Sgt Uvaraja, a dedicated and enthusiastic police officer since 2005, posted an extended farewell message on Facebook, detailing the challenges he faced within his workplace at Ang Mo Kio North Neighbourhood Police Centre (NPC).

His distressing account painted a picture of a toxic workplace culture, rife with favoritism, prejudice, and bullying.

The Facebook post has been taken down for unknown reasons. Before it was taken down, it had garnered close to 400 shares.

In his post, Sgt Uvaraja claimed he was frequently undermined, demeaned, and even bullied due to his race. He described instances of being sidelined despite his strong performance and being loaded with the team’s work while receiving little recognition.

Furthermore, he alleged that his superior had repeatedly sabotaged his career progression and mismanaged his performance evaluations.

He also recounted an incident in 2019 where his leave application was shredded by his superior because he wished to use extra duty hours to attend a prayer. Sgt Uvaraja alleged that he faced threats from his superiors when he attempted to raise the matter with higher management.

In addition, Sgt Uvaraja revealed he had worked closely with the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau to provide information regarding officers illegally smoking vapes in the office.

He expressed that his whistleblowing efforts were met with increased hostility and ostracization within his department.

In 2021, Sgt Uvaraja invited his team to his wedding, but he was allegedly boycotted, with no one showing up.

Sgt Uvaraja described himself as a dedicated officer and double diploma holder with merit from Temasek Polytechnic, leaves behind a legacy of service to his community, having eradicated gambling syndicates and secret societies among his many contributions.

In his final message, Sgt Uvaraja stated, “I served with honor and distinction but today I am being bullied, treated without humanity and workplace harassment. […] By the time you are reading this, I would have gone with dignity and the pride I have.”

Sgt Uvaraja also addressed his friend, Raj, asking him to tell the truth to the world.

Contacting TOC, Raj said that Sgt Uvaraja’s last wish was for his story to be told.

Following Sgt Uvaraja’s tragic death, the SPF issued a statement expressing deep sadness at the loss of their colleague and extended their condolences to his family.

The SPF assured that they are providing assistance to Sgt Uvaraja’s family during this difficult time and that they will conduct a thorough investigation into the allegations.

Minister for Home Affairs and Law, K Shanmugam, weighed in on the situation stating, “I have asked SPF to investigate the matter thoroughly. We will get to the bottom of it. And be accountable. We have a clear policy of non discrimination.”

“All officers are entitled to be treated fairly. SPF as an organisation is committed to that principle. We will investigate the facts.” said the Home Affairs Minister.

For anyone struggling with thoughts of suicide or self-harm, please seek help immediately.

Samaritans of Singapore (SOS) 24-hour hotline: 1767, WhatsApp: 91511767, Caremail: [email protected]

The Facebook post that was removed

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