The Story of Kampung Baru Rasa

Kampung Baru Rasa is located 50 kilometres away from Kuala Lumpur, right in the middle section of Hulu Selangor district, and is a small town with over 120 years in history. In the late 19th century, due to the rich tin mine deposits underneath the land of Rasa, several tin mining entrepreneurs were attracted to the small town to operate the lucrative industry, such as the renowned industrialist Loke Yew and tin mining tycoon Tan Boon Chia who made a fortune here. In the heydays there were up to twenty-odd open air tin mines and five tin dredge ships, bringing upon a bustling town with a sharp population increase, where in the early 20th century the population in Rasa is censused at twenty thousand, just a slight difference in comparison to Kuala Lumpur which houses around thirty thousand people back then.

Tin mining is the main economic lifeline of Rasa, a significant contribution to the nation’s economy, as well as relating to the rise and decline of the town. During the Second World War, all business activity in Rasa was censured and forced to cease operations, the economy stopped from then onwards. Rasa inhabitants suffered severely over the Japanese occupation for 3 years and 8 months, then the British colonial government declared a national state of emergency throughout Malaya and formed new villages, in the meantime carrying out guerrilla warfare against the Malayan Communist Party for 12 years. Afterwards, the development of Rasa slackened, and the population declined, as most of them sought employment opportunities elsewhere.

With the passage of time, the hustle and bustle of former days fall back into peace and quiet. The elder generation, who lived locally for most of their lives, are used to the serenity and amicable daily routine. There are also some members of the younger generation who chose to return to the village, for instance the third generation owner of “Fong Kee Wantan Mee” Mr Lim Zhi Sheng (transliteration), operating the authentic cuisine stall, persisting in producing homemade noodles. Lingering on the streets of Rasa is peace that comes after a time of flourish, as well as rich warmth.

Text: Daniel Lim & Pua Hui Wen

有你 UNI Production
Producer : Mok Yii Chek
Coordinator : Daniel Lim
Cinematographer : Amelia Lim / Evon Pang
Drone : Daniel Lim
Video Editor : Evon Pang
Production Assistant : Michael Lerk
Music : Calm & Inspirational – Ashmaluev from Youtube


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