Jakarta – The government plans to monitor the activity of college students on social media as part of efforts to prevent the spread of radical ideologies, a minister has said.
Research, Technology and Higher Education Minister Mohammad Nasir said his side was cooperating with the Communications and Information Ministry to track students' social media accounts and profile them.
"We need to be more cautious of the spread of radical ideas on social media," Nasir said as quoted by tempo.com on Thursday.
He also invited university managements to participate in tracking their students' social media accounts to ensure they were not being exposed to radicalism. Nasir also plans to gather rectors nationwide to discuss radicalism on June 25.
The move follows the National Police's Densus 88 antiterror squad's recent raid at Riau University in Pekanbaru, during which the squad arrested three suspected terrorists and confiscated homemade explosives.
The National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT) found that social media had been used to spread radical teachings. The agency also suspects college students in Java and Sulawesi have been exposed to radical teachings, albeit at different levels of exposure.
Separately, a survey conducted by the State Intelligence Agency (BIN) in 2017 showed that 39 percent of college students in 15 provinces across Indonesia rejected democracy and disagreed with Pancasila as the nation's ideology. (dpk/swd)