A bill supposedly designed to make pornography illegal, has created turmoil within Indonesia. Many opponents charge the bill was the work of fundamentalist Islamic leaders who object to what many consider to be normal visual or artistic material. The law criminalizes any sex-related materials that government deems to violate public morality. There is widespread opposition to the law in rural areas where people dress in their own style which could be interpreted under the law as an expression of immorality. Kamala Chandrakirana, chairwoman of the National Commission on Violence Against Women, expressed disappointment with the law which could be used against women who dress in a manner that offends religious fanatics.
President Yudhoyono, in signing the bill defied advice from close advisers who feared the law would encourage civil disobedience in areas of Papua and Bali whose style of life and dress is not in accord with traditional Muslim views. Opponents fear fundamentalist Muslims will take the law into their own hands and decide what is or is not appropriate dress or artistic work.