Some NSmen recalled to protect Geylang Serai bazaar
They patrolled bazaar to keep the area peaceful
Sergeant (NS) Muhammad Arithzuan Ahmad was patrolling the Geylang Serai bazaar earlier this month when he spotted two large groups gathering.
The operationally ready national serviceman (NSman) said the two groups moved towards each other in a threatening manner, and he knew it was not a good sign. That was when his team moved in.
He said: "We could see that things were getting rowdy, and we asked them to calm down. We talked to them and then instructed them to disperse."
This year is the 50th anniversary of national service, and Sgt (NS) Arithzuan and his fellow NSmen told The New Paper they enjoy performing their national service duties.
Sgt (NS) Arithzuan said: "When you see your friends and relatives at the bazaar, you want the place to be as peaceful as possible for them."
He was one of the 60 NSmen from the Bedok Police Division's Division Special Task Force recalled to patrol the bazaar, which ended last week.
The deployment is fully made up of NSmen, something Inspector (NS) Chan Kang is proud of.
The marketing student at RMIT University said: "At other events such as the National Day Parade and F1 Night Race, we work with the regulars.
"But here, we feel the added responsibility because the onus is on us to make the decisions on the ground."
Insp (NS) Chan, the deputy team leader of one of the two 29-man teams in the deployment, added that being recalled felt like returning to a family.
Sgt (NS) Arithzuan, a petrol technician at Shell, agreed, saying it was a nice break from work.
The officers began their shift at 5pm, going out on patrols lasting from 45 minutes to over an hour. They did four or five patrols a shift.
They attended to various cases, such as lost family members, missing items and potential disputes. They also acted as first responders while projecting a police presence in the area.
With the increased threat of terrorism this year, the officers stepped up security measures by making sure that the barricades were properly placed.
They also kept a vigilant eye out for any suspicious activity.
Morale remained high among the officers.
Sgt (NS) Arithzuan said: "In the end, we all know that it is worthwhile serving the country."