A draft decree giving Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri powers of detention without trial - which she is due to sign today - is being met with deep disquiet. But few of the traditional sources of public protest dare to take to the streets while the counting of the dead in Bali continues. 'We've been discussing the decree and it's very repressive,' said Wardah Hafidz, co-ordinator of the Urban Poor Consortium. 'It gives the government and the military the power to arrest and harass anyone they like.' The consortium is a group formed by and representing the dispossessed, including unemployed workers, hawkers and street dwellers. Such a group would not have been allowed to exist in the days of former ruler Suharto, but its members now fear the new powers could be used against it. 'Everyone is still thinking about the decree's impact but we have no plans for protests yet. It's a very difficult moment, it's very tricky,' said Ms Hafidz. Instead of the street demonstrations, which would have been commonplace two years ago, Jakarta's community of non-governmental organisations and multi-faith democrats is holding candlelight memorial meetings to mourn the bomb victims. Several activists said that at such a time of national tragedy, it might not be seen as appropriate to mount protests that could be misused as an excuse for fresh repression, and open up participants to criticism for a lack of sensitivity to the dead. This is why the president and her advisers may well get away with a decree that harks back to the blanket repression of civil liberties which marked the Suharto era, analysts say. 'It's very bad, we are going backwards,' said Mochtar Buchori, an intellectual and former adviser to Ms Megawati. 'I don't think our current situation warrants such emergency powers. This sort of decree is not the only solution available,' he said. 'To reach a wise solution, which means cracking down on terrorism at the same time as preserving democratic freedoms, would require Megawati to think, and to consult knowledgeable friends. But she is not doing this and she is not capable of doing this. 'She is surrounded by people who are very pragmatic types, with a short-term approach to problems and possibilities,' Mr Buchori said. Passage of the decree is made easier for Ms Megawati because parliament is in recess until November. Technically described as an 'executive order in lieu of legislation', the emergency decree needs only her signature to become active. The parliamentary sub-committee on internal security could choose to call special hearings even during the parliamentary recess. 'But are they interested in having a good law on terrorism?' asked Mr Buchori. Concern about the new powers has spread into legal circles and among ministers of former governments. Opponents risk being labelled as supporters of terrorism, however it is defined, when in fact their concern is more profoundly about where four years of reform have gone.