Indonesia recently sentenced a woman to two years in jail and a fine of IDR250 million (S$22,200) for blasphemy.
In a since-deleted TikTok video, she said a Muslim prayer before consuming pork in the Muslim-majority country. Under Islam, pork is “haram”, or prohibited.
The woman expressed disappointment at the heavy punishment meted out despite having apologised multiple times.
While she knew what she did was wrong, she did not expect it would land her in so much trouble.
On Tuesday (19 Sep), Indonesian news station MetroTV reported that the district court of Palembang sentenced Lina Mukherjee to two years in jail for violating blasphemy laws.
Lina reportedly uploaded a TikTok video of herself saying the Muslim prayer “Bismillah”, which means “in the name of God”, before eating crispy pork skin.
In the context of Islam, pork is not permissible, or “haram”.
A panel of judges ruled that her video and actions have disturbed the public, especially Muslims.
In a separate report, Reuters reported that court documents stated Lina, who identifies as a Muslim, had deliberately put out content that would “incite hate or enmity based on religion”.
The court also ordered her to pay a fine amounting to IDR250 million (S$22,200).
This verdict matches the sentence that the prosecution was seeking for the woman.
Upon receiving the sentence, Lina expressed shock and disappointment as she had repeatedly apologised through several platforms.
Lina and her family have yet to decide whether to appeal this sentence, reported MetroTV.
She said to the news station, “I’ve apologised many times, right? I realise what I did was wrong, but I didn’t expect to go to jail for two years.”
On the contrary, the court explained that the sentence is not punishment but a lesson.
Through this incident, the court hopes that Lina and other content creators will refrain from putting out content that provokes controversy.
They also hope to encourage respect between different religious communities.
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