A video showing a couple from the Czech Republic washing the woman’s private parts with holy water from a Balinese Hindu temple in Ubud went viral over the weekend, sparking outrage among many Indonesians and furthering the conversation on issues with tourism in Bali.
The video, which was first uploaded as a story to the Instagram account of the woman, Sabina Dolezalova, has since been captured and shared widely by others. The video also shows her boyfriend, Zdenek Slouka, splashing water from a pelinggih (shrine) on Dolezalova’s butt.
Unsurprisingly, the video elicited a lot of negative reactions from Indonesians, including Balinese designer Niluh Djelantik, who highlighted the importance of tourists understanding and respecting Balinese culture.
“Bali will drown if we can’t protect ourselves and be selective with the types of tourists that visit the island,” Niluh said in an Instagram post.
The couple uploaded an apology video not long after receiving a torrent of criticisms online in which they expressed their regret and admitted their lack of knowledge about the temple and its holy status.
“We are so sorry about the video from yesterday, we dishonored the holy temple and holy water in Ubud, and we didn’t know it,” Slouka said in the video.
According to a statement issued by the Gianyar Police, Slouka and Dolezalova held a meeting with officials from Padangtegal village (where the temple is located) on Sunday. The meeting produced a joint statement from the couple and officials in which they declared that the matter was taken care of.
In a message exchange with Niluh (which the designer shared on her account), the couple again apologized and claimed that it was hard for them to recognize which places are holy because they are atheists.