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|Location of Sundarapore|
|Official languages||English, Chinese, Malay, Tamil|
|Largest Cities|| Sundarapore: 2,507,000|
Tanjong Penang: 167,000
|Vice President||Yeo Jiwang|
|Independence||August 9, 1965|
|Currency||Sundarapore Dollar (SPD)|
|Motto||Majulah Sundarapura (Onward Sundarapore)|
|Unofficial Motto||Everyting oso cannot.|
|Our Timeline Equivalent||Singapore, along with the Riau Islands, including Natuna, etc|
Sundarapore, formally the Republic of Sundarapore (Malay: Republik Sundarapura; Chinese (traditional): 蓀達啦璞啦共和國, Chinese (simplified): 荪达啦璞啦共和国, Pinyin: Sūndálāpúlā Gònghéguó; Tamil: ஸஉஙட்அற்அப்பூர் குடியரச, Sundarappūr Kudiyarasu) is an island nation consisting of a group of islands just to the south of the Malay Peninsula - between Malaya and Sumatra, as well as the Natuna and Ambas archipelagos between Malaya and Borneo.
Sundarapore is known for its Government Mandated Vegetarianism, being the first country in modern times (though not the first political entity) to declare a ban on all meat and animal products that result in the death of animals. It is also known for its extreme environmental record, including declaring the much of its small landmass as a national park, and buying land in various other countries for conservation purposes. Because of these purchases, the Sundarapore government owns land amounting to more than 20 times its own landmass.
A former city named Temasek (Sea Town) occupied the main island of Sundarapore, where the city of Sundarapore now stands. However, by the time the English arrived, the town of Temasek was gone and the island was uninhabited by a settled community (though orang laut (sea people) frequented the area). Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles came upon this island while searching for a good entrepot so that the English could trade more with China and other East Asian countries. In 1819, Raffles chose what is now Sundarapore island and gave it its name, meaning "Beautiful City" in Sanskrit. The English also colonized the Riau Island chain, linking Malaya and Sumatra. Raffles knew that many of the islands had to be fortified, but fought to keep some of the Riau Islands in their natural state, years before most people even thought to found towns on them. However, with the island of Sundarapore, Raffles worked to create a city that could continue to grow through trade and immigration. Almost 200 years later, his dream has come about ten-fold.
The process of turning Sundarapore into a global city was gradual, but Raffles got to see the beginning of it during his lifetime. Indeed, even in the first few years after the founding of Sundarapore, its free-trade status brought traders from far and wide, and it very soon surpassed both Penang (another English settlement) and Malacca (the largest city in Malaya) in entrepot status. In the early years, Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles laid the town out, with ethnic enclaves and green spaces. After a while, Sundarapore would become a treasure trove of Western, Chinese, Indian, and various other styles of architecture, and it remains so to this day.
Sundarapore was granted independence in 1963 and joined Malaya. However, due to political and cultural differences, it was expelled from Malaya and on August 9, 1965, became an independent state. Since then, through sound management under the guidance of Lee Kuan Yew and many others, Sundarapore's economy has grown tremendously. Its level of development now ranks among the highest in the world, while its myriad people have carried on many traditions and the legacy of times past.
Sundarapore is a tropical country that consists of hundreds of islands, with a total of just more than 22,700km² of land area. Of that land, the main island takes up only 700km², yet 78% of Sundaraporeans live there. The rest of the islands consist of the Riau Archipelago, between Malaya and Sumatra, as well as the Natuna and Ambas Archipelagos between Malaya and Borneo. Though Sundarapore is a small country, primary forests and other natural features currently take up more than 90% of the total land area.
The population of Sundarapore is concentrated near Malaya. There are three cities, containing a total population of 2,789,000 (or 87%) out of the nation's 3,207,000 inhabitants. The three largest settlements are shown below.
- City of Sundarapore, Sundarapore Island - 2,507,000
- Tanjong Penang, Bintan Island - 167,000
- Sinkang, Batam Island - 115,000
The three islands with the highest total populations and the highest population densities are the same as the home islands of the above cities, and rank the same. All three are neighboring islands, with Sundarapore Island to the North - near Malaya, Batam just to the south, and Bintan to the east of Batam. These three islands hold well over 90% of the population. Most other islands have an extremely low population density or are uninhabited. Furthermore, many of the islands are fully or partly protected from human exploitation. Even the large island of Natuna Besar, for example, is almost completely protected. The largest settlement there is a small research station to study nature, called Telok Nila.
The largest town in Sundarapore is Willemston (Pop: 43,000), on Karimun Island.
Note: The City of Sundarapore is sometimes casually called "CSP" for short, unlike the country, and not to be confused with "the CSP" - a nation on the opposite side of the world.
Sundarapore has a tropical wet climate, with abundand rainfall (though showers do not last for long). The average high temperature is 28 degrees celsius, though it reaches 30 degrees relatively often.
Sundarapore is a densely populated country. However, only a small fraction of the total land area houses the vast majority of the people. 78% of Sundaraporeans live on the island of Sundarapore, while the other 22% are scattered about the many other islands. Its population of 3.2 million as of 2006 is racially and culturally diverse. Percentages are as follows:
- 70% Chinese
- 12% Nusantaran (predominantly Malays)
- 07% Indian (predominantly Tamils)
- 04% mixed race (including Peranakans, Eurasians, etc.)
- 03% European
- 01% Indigenous peoples (forest-dwelling people, including Malay groups)
- 03% others
As shown above, Sundaraporean Chinese, the majority, account for 70% of Sundaraporeans. (Large groups include Hokkien, Teochew, Hakka, and Cantonese (eastern Gwongese) people.) Sundaraporean Malays/Nusantarans (from Malaya and various parts of Macronesia) constitute 12%. Indian Sundaraporeans are the third largest ethnic group at 7%. (Tamils represent the largest group of Indians, but there are many others as well.) 3% are European Sundaraporeans (mostly of English extraction, but others are represented). There are also substantial populations of mixed race, indigenous, and other peoples. Notably, more than half of the European Sundaraporeans speak Sundaringlish, the national dialect of English that the many ethnic groups in Sundarapore use, combining elements into English from the other languages in use. Caucasians in Sundarapore also tend to be thought of as some of the most "Asian-like" Caucasians in the world, culture-wise, as most are assimilated to a large extent.
Sundarapore is a religiously diverse country. Some Sundaraporeans even have two or more religions (as with Buddhism and Daoism). When asked for their primary religion, this is what Sundaraporeans professed to be (as of 2006):
- 42% Freethinkers* (including atheists and agnostics)
- 21% Buddhists (mostly Mahayana)
- 13% Hindus (includes a sizeable Swaminarayan group)
- 07% Jains
- 05% Cathars
- 04% Christians
- 03% Jews
- 02% Daoists**
- 01% Muslims
- 02% others
* Note that many Freethinkers take part in at least some religious practices because of tradition.
** Note that 26% claim to be Daoist, but this often in addition to other religions.
100% of Sundaraporeans are (by law or otherwise) vegetarian in Sundarapore. It is thought that very few (probably fewer than 2% of) Sundaraporeans even try meat when outside of the country. In 1980, before the announcement of the prohibition, approximately 96% of Sundaraporeans were already vegetarian.
- 98% Vegetarian (100% inside Sundarapore)
- 51% Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian
- 26% Vegan Vegetarian
- 14% Lacto Vegetarian
- 07% Ovo Vegetarian
- 02% Non-Vegetarian (0% inside Sundarapore)
Sundarapore is multilingual, as well. English, Chinese, Malay, and Tamil are all official languages, though English is the medium of education in public schools and is used as a lingua franca among residents. Below is a list of the primary languages spoken at home.
- 52% Chinese Languages
- 18% Hokkien Chinese
- 10% Mandarin Chinese
- 09% Teochew Chinese
- 07% Cantonese Chinese
- 04% Hakka Chinese
- 02% Wu Chinese
- 02% other Chinese varieties
- 25% English/Sundaringlish
- 13% Malay
- 05% Tamil
- 05% others
- 86% of Sundaraporeans are relatively fluent in more than one language. 42% are trilingual to some extent.
- Almost all Sundaraporeans can speak English, and well over one-third of the Chinese population knows Mandarin.
- Speakers of the Min Nan language(s) (Hokkien + Teochew) make up 27% of the population.
- Informally, most English speakers actually speak Sundaringlish (sometimes also known as Sundarlish).
Most Sundaraporeans love their country, but they are by no means nationalistic, and often put their country down when comparing it to others in some ways, including not understanding why someone would want to visit the small country. International issues matter very much to Sundaraporeans, and their numbers are well represented among conservation groups. On the other hand, since most Sundaraporeans live good lives, they are not very interested in "challenging the establishment". Most laws, like the one banning meat, are supported throughout the nation, and the same political party has been in power since independence.
The music scene is very diverse, with Japanese, Pemhakamik, European, Chinese, Malay, and Indian music all taking up the charts, as well as home-grown Sundaraporean music. The hottest current music is New Wave and Neo Wave Rock and Pop music from the places listed above. Hikaru Utada is the top-selling artist in Sundarapore history.
Sundarapore's image deeply depends on the individual. To non-vegetarians, anti-death penalty advocates, and other groups which don't find its rules to be pleasant, it is seen as too strict, and as a place to avoid. On the other hand, it is generally beloved by pro-life vegetarians (vegetarians against the right to choose to eat meat), conservationists, and the like, as it represents their dream in a little part of this reality.
Sundarapore is known as a food paradise, particularly for vegetarians. Sundarapore has perhaps the largest selection of vegetarian foods in the world, largely because it's historically been a place where vegetarians from across the world have gathered. There are so many Chinese vegetarian dishes from all over Chinese areas (Hokkien, Gwong, Gan (particularly Hakka), Jonggwo, Yue, and Wu), Taiwan (the nation that practically invented mock meat), India, Malaya, Siam, many places in Europe (particularly Italy, Greece, Great Britain, and Catatania), and Mejico. The original Sundaraporean dishes have some similarities to the food of the main races living there, but are unique and constitute a cuisine to themselves. Now, uniquely Sundaraporean cuisine can be found all over the world. In addition to food, all manner of fruit juices can be obtained.
Food labeling is mandatory, both in grocery stores and restaurants. Such ingredients as onions, garlic, MSG, and root vegetables have to be labeled. Food must have a note stating that it is suitable for differing kinds of vegetarians. The main categories are lacto-ovo, lacto, ovo, Chinese veg, vegan, and no-root-vegetable vegan.
Sundarapore has many food stalls, gathered together in what they refer to as "hawker's centres". These are generally the same as food courts, and can be situated inside a mall or in a building specifically catering to food stalls. Many food stalls are family-run, though there are some chains. Besides food stalls, of course, there are stand-alone restaurants which yet have the trays of food and such that are usual sights in the hawker's centres. High-end restaurants of any and every variety abound as well, but the smaller, family-run enterprises are in no way becoming endangered. They seem to coexist peacefully, like the different ethnicities found in the nation. Although Sundarapore has been fully vegetarian for some years now, many stalls and restaurants still prominently point out that they are vegetarian. Perhaps this is a way of reinforcing the fact to visitors, or perhaps it just stems from tradition.
With the outstanding variety of cuisines from around the world, and a local cuisine that ranks among the best of them, Sundarapore has been labeled the vegetarian food capital of Asia.
Urban Sundarapore has a very well-developed infrastructure, though some far out islands have none. In the city of Sundarapore, there are 5 MRT (mass rapid transit) lines as of 2007 (see below). A 6th MRT line ("North Shore" or "North Coast") is under construction and should be completed by 2011. In addition, there are some line extentions (like to Changi Airport) and LRT lines through some Housing Development Board housing estates. On top of the train lines is a superbly-developed fleet of electric buses that ply nearly every corner of urban Sundarapore. Transport into and out of Sundarapore City is through the very modern and award-winning Changi Airport. All public transportation accepts a rechargeable contactless smartcard called "ez-link".
- East West (including the Changi Airport Extension)
- North South
- North East
- Circle (including the Downtown Extension)
- Eastern Region (or "East Central", including the Tampines Extension)
- Bukit Timah
Sundarapore is known for its environmentalism, a tradition continued since Raffles' time. Under the British, national parks were created both on the main island and on many of the outlying islands, some of the islands being fully protected against exploitation. After independence, the Sundarapore government continued the process. But instead of merely protecting land within its own borders, it has been one of the pioneering states to buy sensitive land in other parts of the world for conservation. Because of this, as of 2006, the government (through its environmental agency) owns approximately 514,000 km² of natural land across the world, which is around 22.6 times the size of Sundarapore, itself.
A large percentage of Sundaraporeans live in Housing Development Board (HDB) apartments. This is especially true in the City of Sundarapore. These apartments are tall, so there is space left over for landscaping open areas. These areas are designed to make Sundarapore a very liveable city. Sundarapore helped to pioneer the concept (along with Hong Kong) of a "High Density Highly Liveable City" (HDHLC). High density housing cuts down on power consumption, as power does not need to be transported long distances. (One apartment complex housing 100 families, for example, uses far less electricity and space than 100 houses, and space is a premium in Sundarapore.) Individual family flats tend to be much more spacious in Sundarapore than in many other cities (particularly in Asia), owing to the heights of the buildings. Another benefit of high density housing is that it leads to an increase of public transportation ridership rates. Train and electric bus stations serve as the nodes in the middle of highly populated areas, with thousands of people immediately within walking- and biking-distance. This method has been used in various cities across the world, even when more space is available to build on. HDHLC has been hailed as a way to combat urban sprawl yet let people enjoy a good quality of life.
Sundarapore has been internationally recognized for its architecture, which spans almost 200 years. Many of the most memorable stuctures are left from the English colonial period. These include intricately designed shophouses, colonial government buildings, and various other European-styled buildings of places like European Town, Raffles Place, and many other areas, especially in the downtown core. Old traditional Chinese, Indian, and Malay buildings of all stripes also fill the central area of Sundarapore city. However, unlike in some quickly developing countries in Asia (notably Japan and Korea) and various other areas of the world, classical architectural designs did not experience a lull from the 1950s to the 1970s. On the contrary, Sundarapore embraced classical forms from many cultures, and traditional-style temples continued to be erected. Neoclassical buildings (often painted vibrant colors) continued to be erected in the 1950s through to the 1970s. In the 1980s, there was a further flowering of architecture, when Neo Baroque and Rococco joined in on the action. The 1990s saw Neo Gothic take charge, though Neoclassical and Baroque structures continued to be built. In addition, modern skyscrapers have made the Sundarapore skyline one of the most recognizable. Art Deco is still in style (as the Parkview Square building (finished in 2002) proves. A new Chinese traditional temple to house a relic of Buddha is currently being constructed, too (see photo to the right). Finally, the first Swaminarayan temple in Sundarapore, known as the "Swaminarayan Akshardham Temple, Sundarapore", is set to be completed in late 2007 and will be the largest Swaminarayan temple outside of India. It is being constructed in the traditional Indian style like the one completed in Delhi in 2005. Along with all of these traditional styles are a plethora of new styles that push the envelope and advance into new frontiers.
The military of Sundarapore is quite advanced. The armed forces of Sundarapore include the Republic of Sundarapore Army (RoSA), the Republic of Sundarapore Navy (RoSN), and the Republic of Sundarapore Air Force (RoSAF), collectively known as the Republic of Sundarapore Military Forces (RSMF). One week a year, Air Force pilots show off their talent by performing in air shows. Sundarapore has particularly taken to the F-5 series of fighter aircraft. The air force includes (among other types of aircraft) T-38 Talons, F-5S Tiger IIs, and F-20E Tigersharks. It has already put in an order for the new F-25 Tiburon/Mako. The F-100 Requiem is still in the early development phase, with Sundarapore being one future market that it is being designed for. Sundarapore uses the best available technology to make up for having a small yet disconnected land area that is therefore difficult to protect.
Sundarapore, known for its strict laws, became the first country in modern times (though not the first political entity) to declare a ban on possessing (including carrying, storing, selling, and consuming) meat. (At the time of the declaration, approximately 96% of the Singaporean population was already vegetarian.) Implementation was in stages, and the complete ban came into effect in 1998. The long interval between was given to slowly wean the 4% of omnivores off meat, as well as to show food companies and other countries that trade would not hastily be stopped. Sundarapore remains the only nation to be completely meat-free, as India has allowed limited subsistence fishing on many islands by indigenous groups.
In addition, sexual intercourse before the age of 18 is illegal (even when both participants are under 18). It is cited by the government that only starting from age 18 can people truly be expected to make wise decisions. Prison is mandatory for any convictions on the underage sex charge. However, that usually involves a one-month sentence on the first offence, used mostly as a scare tactic. Underage sex continues to be rare. Prostitution is illegal, but "decent" pornography (subject to approval by censors) is legal. Castration is a punishment reserved for repeat rapists.
The death penalty is still in place in Sundarapore, but capital punishment is only reserved for premeditated murders. Sundarapore has been criticised on this point by some, because it allows for capital punishment of people but doesn't allow meat. However, the Sundarapore government has stated that there is not one reported instance of a cow or chicken orchestrating a murder of a human (unlike people who are given the death penalty), and that if there is a vicious animal attack, the Sundarapore government reserves the right to kill the animal, and thus it is not being hypocritical.