If you are among those who’re planning to holiday in Bali with your love interest, think again! The Indonesian parliament is well on its way to bring in a new criminal code that would take the fun out of a trip for unmarried couples. A proposed new law would put unmarried couples living together guilty of a crime and place a criminal penalty on all sex outside of marriage.
In simple words, pre-marital sex might put you and your partner in an Indonesian jail for anywhere between six months to a year. The punishment’s severity depends on which draft of the resolution becomes law this month.
Where do we go now?
Unmarried couples would further face problems getting a place to stay. A hotel room will be allotted only after a valid marriage certificate is presented at the time of admission. Absence of such documents will be considered against the law and tourists will face judicial consequences.
With civil liberties and reputation of the tourism sector at stake, human rights activists are currently pressing the current administration led by President Joko Widodo to get rid of certain parts of the proposed legislation.
It’s not just you!
These laws will discriminate as much against Indonesia’s LGBTQ community as it will against tourists. Indonesia is bent well upon updating its criminal code for more than two decades now. Other proposed changes involve criminalising sex work and making it an offence for non-health professionals or incompetent volunteers to discuss contraception and family planning.
This could make getting an abortion near impossible under the new laws. While this may sound insensitive, there’s no scope of standing against it. Once the law is passed, criticising the President or Vice President of the country, or being part of an organisation with such an ideology can add 10 years of prison to your portfolio.
Representatives of various European countries as well as Australia have decided that if the law is passed, a travel advisory would be handed out to people planning to visit Indonesia.
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