Red Hill and the swordfish
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The story of Redhill and swordfish

Once upon a time, in the land of Singapura, the village was facing a terrible crisis. The sea was infested with a strange species of fish called swordfish that had never been seen in this region. These swordfish were incredibly fast and deadly, attacking anyone who dared to venture out to sea and those who relaxing by the shore and striking them with their sharp, deadly bills. The villagers who depended on fishing for survival were left helpless, unable to go out to sea, and even those who stayed near the shore were not safe from the swordfish attacks.

Desperate for a solution, the villagers went to seek the help of the Raja of Singapura, Paduka Sri Maharaja. The Raja ordered his troops to go down to the water and kill all the swordfish to protect his people. But despite their best efforts, the swordfish were too fast and too deadly, and the soldiers were either killed or seriously wounded.

Just when all hope seemed lost, a young boy stepped forward with a brilliant idea. He suggested using the banana tree trunks to form a wall at the shoreline. The soldiers stood near the shore and killed the swordfish that got stuck in the tree trunks during the attack. Impressed by the boy’s ingenuity, the Raja instructed the villagers to cut down as many banana trees as they could. And they built a wall when the tide was low.

The next day, the villagers and soldiers stood behind the banana tree wall and waited for the swordfish to attack. As the swordfish charged, they became stuck in the tree trunks, just as the boy predicted. The soldiers and villagers then charged forward and killed them.

The village celebrated their victory with a grand feast, and the boy was hailed as a hero. But there was one person who was not pleased with the boy’s success. The Raja of Singapura, Paduka Sri Maharaja, is jealous of the boy’s intelligence and popularity and afraid that the people might think the boy is more worthy of the throne when he grows up so he decides to get rid of him.

On the same night, under cover of darkness, Raja’s men crept up to the boy’s house on top of the hill and murdered him. His blood spilled onto the ground covering the hill in red. That is how Bukit Merah or Red Hill got his name. If you’re planning a visit to Singapore, make sure to take the MRT to Redhill station, which is the only station painted in a beautiful pastel pink color. Tanjong Pagar, where the banana trunk wall stands, was formerly a fishing village situated along the shoreline.

This is the tale of the folklore that explains the origins of the name Redhill.