Indian-origin teacher in Singapore faces abuse charges against maid

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Singapore: An Indian-origin primary school teacher in Singapore has allegedly hurt her domestic help with a hot ladle just 11 days after the Myanmar national started working for her family in 2018, a district court heard here on Monday.

Nachammai Selva Nachiappan, 39, and her 41-year-old husband, Arunachalam Muthiah, are facing multiple abuse charges involving their maid Hla Hla Miang, 37.

The Indian-origin couple couple are accused of committing the offences between June 25 and Aug 2, 2018.

Nachiappan stands in trial facing five charges. She is accused of acts including hitting Miang’s face with a clothes hanger and throwing a hot ladle at her.

Muthiah, who faces three charges, is accused of kicking the maid and punching her, The Straits Times reported.

On the first day of their joint trial, the maid testified that she had to work from 4.30 am to 11.30 pm everyday for the family.

She said her employers took her back to the maid agency, as they were “not satisfied”.

The Ministry of Education (MOE) had earlier told The Straits Times that it would review the case against Nachiappan and take the appropriate actions according to its internal disciplinary processes.

“MOE takes a serious view of staff misconduct and will not hesitate to take disciplinary action against those who fail to adhere to our standards of conduct and discipline, including dismissal from service,” the Singapore daily quoted a ministry spokesman as saying. The trial is underway.

For using an instrument to assault a domestic help, an offender can be jailed for upto 10-and-a-half-years and fined or caned. Nachammai will not be caned, as she is a woman.