Four Russians, including two women, were detained for flying a drone equipped with a camera over Shree Jagannath Temple in Odisha’s Puri on Thursday, said police. The four were allegedly operating the drone from atop the roof of Radha Ballav mutt close to Singhadwara police station. The police seized the high definition camera and a memory card.
“Preliminary investigation suggests the four are Russian nationals and devotees of ISKCON. They have been in Puri since December 7,” said police officer Gokul Chandra Das. “According to their version, they had come here for ‘parikrama’ of the holy temple. They used the drone to chalk out the system for the other devotees who would come in future.”
The shrine and its periphery areas have been declared a ‘no fly zone’ by the government. A quadcopter had hovered over the temple in 2014 and managed to capture aerial videos and photos of the shrine. The videos and photos were later uploaded on social media.