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Getting to know the Pecalang figure in Bali

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Balitraveldiary.com – The effort in preserving cultural integrity from generation to generation by the people of Bali deserves a thumbs up. They continue to try so that technological progress does not erode the traditions of the ancestors. There is a lot of evidence that can be shown, including the existence of a pecalang figure in Bali.

Pecalang Bali
Pecalang Bali

Pecalang is a figure who has a very important role in maintaining the customs of the Balinese people. They have an important role as the police. It’s just that, the duties and obligations of a pecalang, are only closely related to adat. Remarkably, in carrying out this task, the pecalang did not get any reward.

A Pecalang’s Heavy Duty

Calling pecalang as a security officer is indeed a simple term used in describing their duties and obligations. However, who would have thought that being a pecalang turned out to be far more severe compared to security officers who were officially employed by the government such as the civilian police and police.

There are 3 main reasons that make the job of Pecalang so heavy. The first reason is because the scope of work can be very broad. The existence of pecalang is closely related to the status of traditional villages or pakraman in Bali. They need to apply the rules that have been determined based on adat in the area of ​​the adat village or pakraman.

The task becomes difficult because sometimes customary rules do not have clear standards. You may find that the customary rules in one Pakraman village are different and even in contrast. Not only that, sometimes the Pakraman village area is much broader than the official village area.

The second reason is the absence of clear sanctions against violators of customary rules. In Bali, you will not find written rules regarding sanctions that will be given to everyone who violates, both those who are Balinese or tourists. Because there are no clear sanctions, it is not surprising that the number of violators of adat rules is quite high.

The last reason is because pecalang work without pay. In the Balinese tradition, being a pecalang is part of a habit called ngayah. In fact, on the other hand, the pecalang have responsibilities towards their families. Really heavy, right?

Not to mention, pecalang sometimes can also get additional work. This was evidenced by the many collaborations between pecalang and the police. In addition, the task becomes increasingly strenuous because the pecalang needs to be available at any time during the call of duty.

The Rights Owned by Pecalang in Bali

Despite having heavy responsibilities and duties, pecalang has several rights that provide benefits. Because of this difficult task, pecalang has the right to be able to not participate in mutual cooperation activities. In addition, pecalang also does not need to pay regular contributions which are paid to the banjar.

No lag, Pecalang also accompanied by attributes that distinguish them from ordinary citizens. These attributes are pecalang traditional clothes. Even though they do not get a salary, pecalang has the right to obtain the profit from money penalties from violators of adat rules.

In recent months, the possibility of the fate of pecalang will improve. Moreover, the latest draft rules, seek for salary or honorarium that is given specifically to the pecalang.