Teenagers who are still together after 9pm dating curfew would be forced to get married

In Purwakarta, a district in Indonesia, teenagers are banned from dating after 9 p.m.

Teenagers who are still together after 9pm dating curfew would be forced to get married

The new regulation which was announced last week by the authorities of Purwakarta district, will only apply to youths under 17.

This decision is aimed at protecting their morality, preventing unwanted pregnancy and protecting the honor of families, head of Purwakarta district, Dedi Mulyadi told local media.

Mulyadi also told AFP the regulation will ensure teenagers go to bed early and embrace a more traditional way of life. “Back in the day, you could not visit a neighbor after 9 p.m. because villagers would be in bed, preparing to wake up at dawn to till their [rice] paddy fields,” he said.

Mulyadi is very serious about this. Local patrols and new CCTV cameras will help ensure the regulation is enforced. And teenagers might think twice before breaking the law, as the punishment could turn innocent dating into serious commitment.

“If they break the rules three times, the village council may ask for the parents to marry them,” Mulyadi said.

It’s not clear how this would be enforced, as the legal age for marriage in Indonesia is 16 years old. But teenagers might not want to take their chances, as underage marriage ceremonies still occur in rural parts of Indonesia.

Purwakarta is not the only place in the country considering eyebrow-raising measures to prevent premarital sex. In Sumatra’s Bengkulu province last June, the local parliament said it was drafting a bill to limit the sales of condoms and other contraceptive methods, especially to minors.

The belief that contraceptive methods encourage promiscuity is common in conservative Indonesia, and so are calls for restrictions on their sale.

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