Few would have expected the rich and famous to turn to the public for help covering their hospital bills, and therein lies the controversy when a fundraiser was set up for one of Indonesia’s most renowned celebrities.
Actor and TV personality Indra Bekti was admitted to Abdi Waluyo Hospital in Menteng, Central Jakarta on Dec. 28 after suffering from a cerebral hemorrhage. He has since undergone surgery and is recovering at the hospital to this day.
His wife, Aldila Jelita, recently took to social media to ask for direct donations for Indra’s ballooning hospital bills. He has reportedly racked up IDR1 billion (US$64,087) in bills as of Dec. 3, and has to be under intensive care for at least 20 days before undergoing months of post-surgery therapy.
On top of his lucrative TV career, Indra also owns a slew of F&B businesses, a talent agency, and more, so eyebrows were raised when Aldila publicly asked for donations.
“How is it that a celebrity of this stature doesn’t have insurance?” one user tweeted.
Indra’s brother-in-law said that the celeb does have private insurance, but is not yet eligible for full coverage of his current hospital bills as he only signed up some six months ago. Going through the hoops for the BPJS universal healthcare plan was also out of the question, the brother-in-law said, as Indra required immediate care due to the potentially fatal nature of his condition.
Aldila has hit back at critics by saying that they don’t know the ins-and-outs of her family’s domestic life. She has also thanked donors for their kindness, and has pledged to be transparent about the donations for her husband.
Today, Aldila said on social media that Indra is on the way to recovery and he is now able to recognize his two daughters. He is also once again talkative, though his speech is occasionally garbled.
This is not the first time a fundraiser was raised in the name of a seemingly wealthy celebrity in Indonesia. In 2019, an influencer named Gaga asked for donations to cover the medical bills of his then-girlfriend Edelényi Laura Anna, who was herself an influencer, after the pair was involved in a car accident. However, Gaga allegedly neglected to take care of Laura’s medical bills until she passed away in 2021.