An Icon in The City of Sarolangun

Ikan Keloso (or Kelisa) This is a 15' long fish monument that is located at the entrance leading to the government offices in Sarolangun (Kantor Bupati)

Ikan Keloso (or Kelisa)
This is a 15′ long fish monument that is located at the entrance leading to the government offices in Sarolangun (Kantor Bupati)

While visiting the City of Sarolangun we had the opportunity to meet in the home of the Sekretaris Daerah (Sekda) Kabupaten Sarolangun, Bapak (Mr.) H. Thabroni Rozali. This man invited us to the Kantor Bupati (Bupati’s office) the next morning, where he introduced us to eight men who were kepala adat & ketua adat (cultural experts), as well as the heads of various government agencies.

Batik cloth on display at the Abadi Hotel in Sarolangun. The pattern is the fish known as ikan keloso, or kelisa
(in English, arowana).

We enjoyed conversing with these men for little over an hour, asking them questions about Sarolangun’s history. One question we asked them about was the fish design on batik cloth, which we saw in the Abadi Hotel, as well as a large statue of a fish on the road as you enter the Bupati’s office complex. These men informed us that the fish is an icon, or mascot for Sarolangun. The fish is an ikan keloso (in English, the arowana). The name comes from the Indonesian word arwana or nirwana, meaning fish of paradise. This fish is said to be very delicious but now rare.

Close up of the batik cloth.

Close up of the above pictured batik cloth.

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This link shows the City of Saralangun on wikimapia.

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