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Anti-Maskers Face a Spooky Punishment

Some have been forced to dig graves, sit in coffins in Indonesia
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 15, 2020 9:44 AM CDT

(Newser) – Indonesia is dealing out spooky punishments to anti-maskers, some of whom have been forced to dig graves, sit in coffins, and stay in "haunted" houses. "There are only three available gravediggers at the moment, so I thought I might as well put these people to work with them," says Suyono, head of the Cerme district in East Java, after ordering eight anti-maskers to dig graves for COVID-19 victims, per the Jakarta Post. The offenders worked in pairs at a public cemetery in Ngabetan village. One would dig the grave while the other would lay boards at the bottom to support the body. They didn't take part in actual burials. "Hopefully this can create a deterrent effect," Suyono says, noting cases are rising in the area.

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Anyone found violating the country's COVID-19 health protocols, including mandatory face masks in public, could face fines or community service. Other offenders have been forced to clean open sewers or sit in a hearse with a casket to reflect on their actions, per SBS News. Some were put in a casket themselves. But it was the head of Sragen Regency who perhaps got most creative in doling out punishment. Back in April, Kusdinar Untung Yuni Sukowati decided any travelers to the island of Java who disregarded the two-week quarantine should be housed in abandoned homes believed to be haunted, per Newsweek. The outlet notes one offender said he'd learned his lesson, even if he hadn't met any ghosts. (Read more coronavirus stories.)

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