‘Please forgive me Lord Jagannath’: YouTuber apologises for flying drone over Puri Srimandir

Bhubaneswar: A YouTuber apologised for flying a drone equipped with a high-definition camera over the Jagannath Temple in Puri.

After facing wrath from various sections on social media for allegedly demanding huge amount per drone shot on the aerial view of Puri Srimandir, the YouTuber came up with a clarification and apology.

In a YouTube post, the accused identified as Animesh Chakraborty confessed to his mistake terming it as ‘unintentional’.

“I have a registered drone, which did not notify me that the Jagannath Temple is ‘no-fly’ zone. I did not receive any notification on my drone when I shot the video of Puri Srimandir.

Making his stand clear about flying his drone over the Jagannath Temple, he said that he had visited Puri around 2-3 months back for taking aerial images of the temple with permission from the Puri police. However, everything happened hurriedly and he failed to ask the police for the shooting.

“I wanted to take permission from the police to fly a drone over the temple. Due to shortage of time and incessant rain during the period, I used my drone to take beautiful areal views of Srimandir without prior notice to the police,” he said.

He refuted the allegation over sale of footage on Srimandir for Rs 20,000 clarifying that he had not sold any footage of Puri Srimandir to anyone.

“I demanded Rs 20,000 per footage after some media person asked one of my associates for the exclusive drone shots as I was aware of the fact that no individual will pay this large amount for the footage.”

“As reported in media that I was demanding Rs 20,000, it was not the fact. I had no intention to violate any rules of the government. As I had no idea about no-fly zone. I only uploaded the drone shots after I found many videos on Puri Srimandir on social media platforms and blogs. I thought there is no restriction in uploading such materials on YouTube. I gave credit to Puri police in the post so that no blogger can fly the drone randomly over the area, he clarified.

“The police had not given me permission for flying drone over the temple. I apologise to everyone including Puri SP as I used your name. I am extremely sorry for my mistake. Please forgive me Lord Jagannath,” he said with folded hands .

According to reports, Animesh Chakraborty from Kolkata had uploaded a series of videos displaying premises of the Jagannath Temple on his YouTube channel on November 19. The views of the ancient structure were closely shot through a drone registered in his name.

The youth allegedly had demanded Rs 20,000 from a buyer to sell one footage of Srimandir. Later, he removed all videos from his YouTube channel after it sparked controversy.

Even as the top of Srimandir and its premises have been declared no-fly zone, drone’s entry restricted into area raised serious security concerns among devotees and servitors.

After the matter came to fore, Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) initiated a probe to take prompt action against the YouTuber.

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