A new bylaw in Bali will forbid the use of Hindu religious symbols to promote tourism businesses, it has been announced.
Speaking to reporters in Denpasar on Wednesday, I Wayan Suastika of the provincial Culture and Tourism Department said that exiting 1991 laws on the appropriation of religious symbols were no longer fit for use.
New regulations were required, he said, as Hindu names and symbols were frequently misused by tourism businesses, which caused tension between the businesses and the local Hindu community.
“Currently, some players in the tourism industry frequently use symbols of Hinduism just to attract as many visitors as possible without fully understanding the real meaning of the symbols,” he said, citing the example of a golf course that used an image of a golf ball nestled in a traditional Balinese offering for its promotions.
“These misleading advertisements have sparked anger and controversy among the locals,” Suastika said.