Pink Sari with Gold zari from the collection of Sukirtham Harriet Dudley Nee Snell

The Tamil community in Singapore traces its origins to different parts of south-eastern India and Jaffna in northern Sri Lanka. South Indian Tamils were employed in many capacities on their arrival and contributed significantly to Singapore’s trade, agriculture and infrastructure. Tamils from Jaffna, northern Sri Lanka were highly educated and trained by the British. They were employed as overseers on the plantations and as surveyors. They also dominated the railways and the civil service. The proposed collection of saris is donated by the late Mr Ron Chandran Dudley in memory of his mother, the late Sukirtham Harriet Dudley Nee Snell, a pioneer Sri Lankan Tamil woman, who migrated to Singapore from Jaffna in the late 1920s.