BADUNG, KOMPAS.com – For one elderly Italian national identified as HRAR, Bali is not so much an Island of the Gods as it is an island of hard knocks.
The 75-year old already hit rock bottom in Bali’s Badung regency, when Public Order Agency or Satpol PP personnel took him into custody for vagrancy at the Kuta tourist district.
“[Satpol PP] found him sleeping on the porch of a house in the Legian tourist district following reports by local people,” said Badung Satpol PP head I Gusti Agung Ketut Suryanegara. “He was known to beg to passers-by to meet his daily needs.”
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Suryanegara added that HRAR was down on his luck, as he “claimed to live in Canggu, and that he ran a business here and was an artist as well. However, his business went bankrupt as it was badly affected by Covid-19 and lockdowns in his native Italy.”
He added that HRAR claimed to have neither money or ID, forcing him to live on the streets over the past year. Suryanegara’s Satpol PP unit then took HRAR into their custody, then handed him over to immigration authorities to be deported back to Italy.
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“We urge the public to report foreigners who are forced into vagrancy or forced into hardships in Bali by the Covid-19 pandemic. If we are not notified we cannot tell if [the foreign national] was merely backpacking or genuinely distressed.”
Indonesian authorities in Bali have deported foreigners for various infractions since the Covid-19 pandemic was first found in the resort island before the rest of Indonesia in March 2020.
HRAR’s plight was exposed, days after Indonesian authorities in Bali deported two social media influencers for using face paint to get around Covid-19 health protocols.
(Writer: Ach. Fawaidi, Bali Contributor | Editor : Robertus Belarminus)
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