Punggol Field murder: What exactly happened that night

The attacker, then 20, walked around estate with knife in hand for 1.5 hours after attack.

Belmont Lay | September 15, 2022, 03:45 PM

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On Sep. 15, 2022, Surajsrikan Diwakar Mani Tripathi, 22, was sentenced to life imprisonment and 15 strokes of the cane after he pleaded guilty to a charge of murder.

He admitted he stabbed and slashed Tay Rui Hao, 38, near a bus stop in Punggol Field Road at 11:08pm on May 10, 2020.

Surajsrikan and Tay were strangers to each other.

Surajsrikan was 20 at that time when he committed the act.

The charge of murder with the intention of causing fatal injury carries the death penalty or life imprisonment and caning.

Details about the events that fateful night have been reported by CNA and The Straits Times.

What happened

Took knife and wet wipe along

Surajsrikan took along a Singapore Armed Forces-issued Swiss Victorinox Trailmaster knife and a wet wipe for a run that night.

He fell mid-run near bus stop number 65559 in Punggol Field Road.

He got angry as a result.

He then spent the next five to 10 minutes to cool down.

Victim was just jogging past

Tay jogged past Surajsrikan at 11:08pm.

Surajsrikan, still angered, chased after Tay.

In the process, he unfolded the knife.

When he caught up with Tay, Surajsrikan stabbed him in the back.

Tay rolled forward and tried to sit up.

When Tay was facing his attacker, he was repeatedly slashed on his arm, chest and abdominal area.

Surajsrikan then left Tay alone.

Victim conscious after attack

Tay, who was conscious after the attack, called 995 and said: "I've been stabbed many times."

An ambulance took him to Sengkang General Hospital.

He died from his injuries.


An autopsy found that Tay died after a main artery on his right forearm was cut due to a slash wound, ST reported.

His lung had also collapsed due to a stab wound to the chest.

CNA reported Tay had 10 external injuries comprising incised wounds, abrasions and a deep gaping wound in a muscle.

Wandered estate for 1.5 hours

After the attack, Surajsrikan kept the knife in his pocket and used the wet wipe to clean his hands and knife, CNA reported.

He did not go home immediately as he wandered around the neighbourhood for the next one-and-a-half hours.

He did not call for an ambulance or the police.

He reached home at about 12:30am.

He threw the soiled wet wipe away before he got home.

Caught 6 days later

Surajsrikan was traced through police surveillance camera recordings.

He was seen wandering around the neighbourhood with the knife in his hand.

He was arrested at his home on May 16, some six days after the attack, ST reported.

The knife was found in his bedroom cupboard.

He had washed it with hand soap.

Tay's blood was found on the knife and on the shoes that Surajsrikan owned, ST reported.

Surajsrikan's DNA and blood were found on the knife and swabs lifted from his shoes, CNA reported.

Surajsrikan has been in remand in isolation in a single cell till now, CNA reported.

Psychiatric assessment

Surajsrikan underwent a psychiatric assessment, both CNA and ST reported.

He had severe social anxiety disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder, leading to a low mood and anger.

However, his actions were not directly caused by his disorders, and he was not of unsound mind at the time of the offence, CNA reported.

The court heard that May 10 was a significant date for Surajsrikan, ST reported.

He enlisted for national service on May 10, 2018.

Previously, his father abandoned his mother on May 10, 1999, while she was pregnant with him, two months into their arranged marriage.

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