TikToker sentenced to two years in prison for video showing her reciting Islamic prayer before eating pork in Muslim-majority Indonesia
- Lina Mukherjee found guilty of blasphemy by a Sumatra court
A TikToker has been jailed for two years in Indonesia for a video of her reciting an Islamic prayer before eating pork, which has been widely condemned in the Muslim-majority country.
In the video, Lina Mukherjee shudders as she utters a Muslim prayer that translates to “in the name of God” before consuming crispy pork skin.
A resident reported the 33-year-old man over the video, which racked up millions of views on the social media platform.
The influencer was found guilty of “disseminating information intended to incite hatred against religious people and specific groups” in a court in the city of Palembang.
Mukherjee, a self-proclaimed Muslim, was also heavily fined for the clip and ordered to pay 250 million rupees (£13,000).
Indonesia is the largest Muslim-majority nation in the world and has strict blasphemy laws. Pork is considered ‘haram’, or not permitted, according to Islam.
The influencer, who identifies as Muslim, makes a disgusted face while tasting the crispy pork skin
After the trial, Lina told reporters that she was surprised by the verdict.
“I know I was wrong, but I didn’t expect this punishment,” Lina said on local news station MetroTV.
Mukherjee received harsh backlash for the video, which was released in March, from conservative groups in the country.
Indonesia’s main Muslim clerical body, the Indonesian Council of Ulema, ruled that the video was blasphemous.
The popular content creator has two TikTok accounts, the largest with over 2.2 million followers.
His is the latest high-profile case in a series of blasphemy convictions in recent years.
Last year, six people were arrested after a bar chain advertised free alcohol to patrons named Mohammed.
Lina Mukherjee says a Muslim prayer that translates as “in the name of God” before consuming the crispy pork skin.
Lina Lutfiawati, also known as Lina Mukherjee, faces the camera in the clip, which she posted in March.
The influencer makes a face while tasting the pork. She is popular on TikTok for videos of her that show her trying various foods.
And in 2017, the former Christian governor of Jakarta was jailed after being accused of insulting Islam, with the charges widely seen as politically motivated.
Human rights activists have sharply criticized the strict laws, arguing they disproportionately target minorities.
Usman Hamid, executive director of Amnesty International Indonesia, said the blasphemy article in Indonesian law has been abused to target minority and dissident groups.
“It contravenes Indonesia’s international obligations regarding respect and protection of freedom of thought, conscience and religion or belief, as well as freedom of opinion and expression,” he said.