Jakarta's Kalijodo is the latest of nearly 70 red light districts to be shut down in Indonesia, with the government still wanting to close the remaining, which is estimated at about 100, by 2019. Kalijodo red-light district has long been home to thousands of sex workers, despite prostitution being illegal in the country. Yet despite the law, it is still rampant in most major cities.

Bulldozers were seen destroying dozens of homes and sex-orientated businesses in the Jakarta neighbourhood, which the Indonesian government wants to turn into a park. The decision to demolish the area was finalised by Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, after there was an accident caused by a drunk motorist, which killed four people in Kalijodo earlier this year. Basuki Tjahaja Purnama ordered the neighbourhood to be closed, starting with the Intan Cafe, which was, according to reports, owned by prominent local figure Abdul Azis aka Daeng Azis, who allegedly controlled most of the operations in Kalijodo.

"If the main reason of the government is to clear prostitution, then I think this is the right thing to do. Prostitution violates religious values and it also disrupts other people around it," said Slamet Basuki, a resident of Jakarta.

Red light district, Jakarta
Men enter a shop to gain access to a dwelling behind to remove scrap building materials in the Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaDarren Whiteside/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A disco ball is seen near civil service police unit members as buildings are demolished at Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaBeawiharta/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
Civil service police watch the demolition of Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaGarry Lotulung/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A man removes corrugated iron walls for scrap from a former entertainment spot before the area is to be demolished in Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaDarren Whiteside/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A civil service police officer sits in the ruins of Kalijodo red-light district during its demolition by authorities in Jakarta, IndonesiaGarry Lotulung/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A member of the civil service police unit sits near the ruins at Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaBeawiharta/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A man removes corrugated iron from a dwelling before it is demolished in the Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaDarren Whiteside/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A member of the civil service police unit walks near the ruins at Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaBeawiharta/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A police officer walks past a pile of salvaged building materials and some belongings from a dwelling in the Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaDarren Whiteside/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
A reporter walks near the ruins of demolished buildings at Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaBeawiharta/ Reuters

Former sex workers who relied on Kalijodo to earn a living, have been asked to join a rehabilitation and vocational centre, where they learn trades which will help them get a job.

The city administration had given some 3,000 local residents seven days to pack up their things before the buildings are torn down, although there are six families having insisted on staying in the area. Some have been relocated to new apartments, but remain perplexed as to how they will move forward.

Red light district, Jakarta
Women practice the hairdressing skills at a government funded training centre that provides vocational training to former sex workers in Jakarta, IndonesiaDarren Whiteside/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
Student work on sewing machine at a government funded training centre that provides vocational training to former sex workers in Jakarta, IndonesiaGarry Lotulung/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
People demolish a cafe building at Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaWahyu Putro/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
An excavator demolishes buildings at Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaBeawiharta/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
An excavator demolishes buildings at Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaBeawiharta/ Reuters
Red light district, Jakarta
People watch a man dismantle his dwelling in the Kalijodo red-light district in Jakarta, IndonesiaDarren Whiteside/ Reuters