Monetizing Rejection

Listen to Today's Edition
Voiced by Amazon Polly

A Singaporean man is suing a woman for more than $2 million in damages after she rebuffed his romantic advances and told him she saw him as a friend, in a case observers say underscores issues of sexism and misogyny faced by women in Singapore, the Washington Post reported.

The case began when the plaintiff, identified as drone-racing executive K. Kawshigan, initially filed two lawsuits against the woman, Nora Tan.

The first is a defamation lawsuit filed at Singapore’s High Court for $2.3 million, alleging that Tan’s rejection has caused him “sustained trauma” and “reductions in his earning capacity.”

The other was filed at the Magistrate Court for $17,000 for allegedly breaching an agreement to improve their relationship, the Straits Times noted.

While the High Court suit is expected to be heard this week, the Magistrate Court struck down Kawshigan’s claim last month for abuse of process.

Court documents showed that the two individuals met in 2016 and developed a friendship over time. But problems began in September 2020 when “they became misaligned about how they saw their relationship.”

Tan claimed she saw Kawshigan as a friend, while the plaintiff “considered her to be his ‘closest friend.’” She initially asked him to reduce their interactions, which Kawshigan countered would mark a step back in their relationship. She added they needed to set boundaries and urged Kawshigan to be “self-reliant.”

But in October 2020, Kawshigan threatened the woman with legal action for damages stemming from “emotional distress and possible defamation.”

Tan agreed to take part in counseling sessions with Kawshigan but stopped after more than a year of therapy because she felt they had become futile.

The plaintiff then proceeded with the lawsuits.

The case has prompted criticism from women’s rights groups in Singapore, while legal analysts explained that Kawshigan’s suits “probably had no merits.”

Not already a subscriber?

If you would like to receive DailyChatter directly to your inbox each morning, subscribe below with a free two-week trial.

Subscribe today

Support journalism that’s independent, non-partisan, and fair.

If you are a student or faculty with a valid school email, you can sign up for a FREE student subscription or faculty subscription.

Questions? Write to us at

Copy link