The Indonesian authorities have shut a bar and restaurant chain in Jakarta after the local police charged six employees with blasphemy over free alcohol promotion for people named Mohammad or Maria.
In a now-deleted social media post, the Holywings bar had offered a free bottle of gin for men named Mohammad and women named Maria every Thursday if they presented their ID cards.
The post caused online outrage, and several youth organisations reported the management to police for allegedly committing blasphemy, while other groups threatened to raid the bar chain's locations.
The six were charged under the blasphemy law, which can be punished by up to five years in jail, and a blasphemy provision of the internet law, which carries a maximum 10-year jail term, reports Reuters.
On Tuesday, 12 outlets in the capital were sealed off after authorities said they did not have licences to serve alcohol, the Jakarta government said in a statement on its website.
After the outrage, Holywings issued a public apology and claimed management was unaware of the promotion.
Alcohol is considered forbidden under Islamic law and while drinking is not prohibited for any religion in Indonesian bars, the act itself is frowned upon by conservative Muslims.
According to the report, the police said the employees created the promotion in attempt to meet sales targets.
"The suspects made the content to attract customers to their outlets, especially those making less than 60 percent of their sales targets," South Jakarta police chief Senior Commader Budhi Herdi Susianto was quoted by Jakarta Post as saying.
Meanwhile, human rights activists said Indonesia's strict blasphemy laws are being used to erode a long-standing reputation for tolerance and diversity in the world's biggest Muslim-majority country.
Andreas Harsono, Indonesia researcher at Human Rights Watch, said the blasphemy law and a law regulating online activity was becoming "increasingly dangerous".
"These six individuals just made an alcohol promotion, maybe ridiculous in this increasingly Islamic country, but no crime at all according to international standards," he said.
As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.
Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.
We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.
Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.