The controversy surrounding the National Police's handling of US pop diva Lady Gaga's concert permit for her planned June 3 concert at Bung Karno Stadium, Central Jakarta, has drawn criticism from the singer's local fans.
Hervina, founder of the Twitter fan group @IndoProGaga, said she understood that obtaining permits were standard procedure.
"But at the same time, the police shouldn't have complicated matters by bringing religion into the issue. This is just entertainment," Hervina told The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.
Similarly, Simon Sibarani, the coordinator of a planned flash mob dance event by Gaga fans that expressed their support for the singer, said that the police should have been more objective.
"The police, as an institution that maintains authority in the state, also should not let itself be controlled by certain groups," Simon told the Post.
"If the government gives in to one group, then it will be sacrificing the interests of over 50,000 people."
Simon is referring to the 50,000 people who bought tickets for Gaga's planned concert, around 12,000 of whom originate from countries like Australia and the Philippines.
The hard-line Islam Defenders Front (FPI) has threatened to send its members to intercept the singer upon her arrival at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, west of Jakarta, should the concert go ahead.
At the same time, Hervina said that local concert promoters should have been better prepared for concert disruptions.
"Yes, obtaining a permit is part of the procedure that promoters have to go through. But they should have planned this way earlier. They have only decided to take care of this matter now, even though they had so much time to prepare," Hervina said.
"In the end, morality is a personal matter and depends on the individual. We can tell right from wrong. Just because we like her music doesn't mean that we're going to follow everything she does," Hervina said.
The fate of Lady Gaga's planned concert depends on whether the National Police will issue her a concert permit.
Article 15 of the 2002 Police Law stipulates that it is the National Police who have the authority "to issue a permit for, and monitor activities, involving crowds".
After saying last week that it would not issue a concert permit for the US pop singer, the National Police are now saying that a permit would be issued if Gaga’s concert promoters could get recommendations from the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) and the Religious Affairs Ministry. (png)