Heritage Centre honours Indian contribution to Singapore

INGENUsingapIn May this year the Indian Heritage Centre (IHC) in Singapore was inaugurated to commemorate and honour the Indian contribution to Singapore.

The Indian connection with Singapore goes back to the famous spice route when the Chettiars of Tamil Nadu first made their journey to the island nation to explore opportunities.

Over time Indian traders, the middle class educated who occupied positions in the British empire, members of the Indian Army, and more recently white-collar professionals have migrated from India.

The IHC Building in the heart of Little India blends traditional Indian and modern architecture, but as said by the head of the department of Southeast Asian Studies, leaves out some of the history of migration and assimilation.

However, the structure highlights the varied contribution of Indians in the social and economic structure of the country, especially the early Indians’ formation of an indelible part of the cultural fabric and distinctive characteristics of the country.

According to Itty Abraham, head of the department of Southeast Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore, ‘the IHC fails in capturing the complexities of the Indians’ migrant story and it remains a museum and not a centre, which should have had the gritty tales of people who survived in a foreign land and helped make its foundations strong.