Polling stations in Cirebon to replace purple ink with turmeric extract

BANDUNG, Indonesia (The Jakarta Post/ANN) - Local election committees in the villages of Bandakerep and Lebakngok in Harjamukti district, Cirebon, West Java, plan to use a turmeric extract to replace the iconic purple ink on election day on Wednesday.

Voters will have to dip their fingers into the yellowish extract after casting their ballots.

West Java General Elections Commission (KPUD) commissioner Endun Abdul Haq said this method had been in use since 1999. “Some residents believe that the [chemicals in the] ink will invalidate wudhu [ablutions],” Endun said on Monday.

Muslims usually make wudhu before performing prayers.

Another commissioner at the KPUD’s West Java chapter, Nina Yuningsih, said the extract was allowed.

The majority of villagers believe that the purple ink clogs the skin’s pores and, therefore, reduce the quality of their wudhu and prayers. Turmeric, which comes from nature, would not do so, they believe.

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