The recent rampant message spreading on Facebook has been about the Singapore Lokpal Bill that claims to be passed in 1982 and getting arrested about 142 corrupt officers and ministers within a day of its application. In case you are not aware about this, let me post the exact message:
“In 1982, In Singapore, LOKPAL BILL was implemented and 142 Corrupt Ministers & Officers were arrested in one single day.. Today Singapore has only 1% poor people & no taxes are paid by the people to the government, 92% Literacy Rate, Better Medical Facilities, Cheaper Prices, 90% Money is white & Only 1% Unemployment exists. Re Post this if you want to live in a corruption free country!”
The reason why this message is rapidly spread is because the share button on Facebook is just a click away and practically takes just a second to do that. Another reason behind it is the supposedly patriotic line that is stated at the very end of the message. People share and spread these messages in the name of patriotism as well. But does anyone really bother to know the true story behind the message or do they feel that sharing any such message whether real or hoax makes them a proud and devoted citizen of the nation?
I personally searched for the terms ‘Singapore lokpal bill’ the first time, but found posts like ‘the real story behind the Singapore lokpal bill’ etc. I tried researching on Wikipedia and Google it out with different terms but not once did I find anything as relevant about the so called Singapore lokpal bill as the messages viral on Facebook suggests.
Singapore might be one of the least corrupted countries in the world, no doubting that but I searched a multiple times for the extraordinary news of the arrest of 142 ministers and officers in a single day, but well I did not find any. Google knows all, but this was something that even Google could not get me and why so? Because such report does not even actually exist.
Another ridiculously amazing thing coming out from the message is the point that people in Singapore do not have to pay any kind of taxes to its government. Here is the real picture : The Singapore corporate tax rate is fixed at 17%, while the Singapore personal tax rate is fixed at from as low as 0% to 20% for the residents and 15% for the non-residents. If that is not all Singapore has various tax forms in the country namely, Income Tax, Property Tax, Motor Vehicle Tax, Customs and Excise Duties, Goods and Service Tax and few others. With a list of taxes in Singapore right here, how foolish would it basically sound to pass off the country as a no tax paying nation?
While there is nothing wrong with being patriotic and wishing for a corruption free nation, people should at least bother to check out the authenticity behind the message that is spread, before sharing it blindly and letting the hoax go viral. Not everything that is shared on Facebook is authentic. It takes just one me or you from the networking site of billion users to create such messages mixed with the required emotions and spread a wrong piece of information to several other users. High time we should get responsible even on social networking and play our roles to curb such hoax messages from going rampant.