The Jakarta Post
A member of the Fajar Nusantara Movement (Gafatar), accompanied by human rights activists visited the headquarters of the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) on Monday to report the government's negligence in the forcible eviction of Gafatar members from their homes in Mempawah, West Kalimantan.
The eviction by a mob of local people had caused the Gafatar members not only material losses amounting to billions of rupiah, but also trauma, said Yudhistira Arif Rahman Hakim, a Gafatar member.
Hundreds of Gafatar members were now awaiting promised assistance from the government in terms of food and development funding because they had nothing, he added.
"What will [my friends] do? They have nothing [...] we now call on the government to fulfill and respect our rights," Yudhistira said as quoted by kompas.com.
Gafatar came into the spotlight when a doctor, Rica Tri Handayani, and her son were reported missing on Dec. 30, 2015. She was an active member of the group while she was at university. Rica and her son were located by police on Monday at Pangkalan Bun Airport in Central Kalimantan.
The group's spiritual leader Ahmad Musadeq was imprisoned for religious blasphemy as he once declared himself a prophet.
Negative publicity about the group led local residents in West Kalimantan to forcibly evict the group. The government repatriated thousands of them to their former hometowns, such as Balikpapan in East Kalimantan, Banyuwangi in East Java, Jakarta and Semarang in Central Java.
Gafatar members deny they spread deviant religious teachings. They said that all they did in West Kalimantan was farm and build settlements to achieve food security and economic independence
Meanwhile, activists from several organizations -- One Justice Foundation (YSK), the Indonesian Legal Aid Institute Foundation (YLBHI), Pro-democracy Network, Advocate, Nationalist-Tolerance Movement Alliance and Indonesia Citizens Struggle Union ' have demanded the government reinstate all the rights of Gafatar members that were lost during the forced eviction.
"We asked Komnas HAM to push the government restore the basic human rights of the Gafatar members that have been violated,' said YSK chairman Sugeng Teguh Santoso, who was speaking on behalf of the group.
The government, particularly the police should have enforced the law against the intolerant citizens who had burned and damaged the houses of Gafatar members, instead of relocating the latter, Sugeng said, adding that the police should investigate and arrest whoever was responsible for the arson that had resulted in the loss of property of hundreds of Gafatar members. (bbn)(+)
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