Readers Disapprove Of ST’s Hari Raya Haji Headline, Suggest Ways To Improve It

Community Feels Singled Out In ST Hari Raya Haji Headline

Hari Raya Haji is coming up, and besides it being a public holiday, it is also an important day for Muslims as they gather in the morning for prayers before performing a Korban — the sacrifice of an animal.

However, a headline from The Straits Times (ST) has drawn flak for its phrasing.


The article is about Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Masagos Zulkifli’s call for Muslims to abide by Covid-19 ahead of Hari Raya Haji festivities on 20 Jul. You can view his Facebook post here.

But readers found that the headline seemed to single out Muslims in urging them to abide by Covid-19 rules.

Netizens call out ST Hari Raya Haji article headline

The article posted on Friday (16 Jul) caused some online to question the headline’s phrasing.

On ST’s Twitter post, several replies questioned the wording of the headline which appeared to single out Muslims to follow Covid-19 restrictions ahead of Hari Raya Haji.


Some others pointed out that the growing clusters are coming in part from going to places such as KTV lounges, calling the warning to specific communities pointless.



Netizens suggest alternative headlines

Meanwhile, in the spirit of the Internet, enterprising netizens came up with alternative headlines.


An ‘improved’ headline took note not to target specific communities and instead urged everyone in Singapore to abide by Covid-19 rules every day.

Another headline makes it to ST print edition

There’s even an alternative headline that made it to the print edition of ST.


The content is the same as the web version apart from the headline, maybe a reflection of how print editors work separately from those who manage the online site.

The alternative headline notably drops the messaging directed at Muslims but still maintains Mr Masagos’ wording of abiding by safe management procedures during Hari Raya Haji.

We’ve reached out to The Straits Times for comment.

Abide by Covid-19 rules regardless of race or religion

Even though the article itself takes note of safe management measures pertaining to Hari Raya Haji, the headline on its own might be seen differently.

Nobody likes to feel singled out to do something when it’s everyone’s responsibility.

As such, the alternative headlines asked everyone to follow the rules for the upcoming festivities, whether they’re going to the mosque or not.

Singapore is a multi-ethnic and multireligious society. Regardless of who we are, we should abide by Covid-19 measures during this time since the virus doesn’t care about race or religion.

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Featured image adapted from Google Maps and Facebook.

Jonathan Yee

Jonathan is a bedroom headbanger. His Kobo is never far from him.

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