Viral video prompts Badrinath-Kedarnath temple committee to demand cloakrooms

After a video purportedly shot inside the sanctum sanctorum of the Kedarnath temple went viral on social media, the Badrinath-Kedarnath Temple Committee (BKTC) has urged the Uttarakhand state government to build cloakrooms near the two temples so that pilgrims can leave their mobile phones, wallets, and bags there before entering the temple premises.

In a letter addressed to Uttarakhand Chief Secretary S S Sandhu, BKTC chairman Ajendra Ajay requested building a cloakroom to ensure that the culture and tradition of temples is not violated by influencers and YouTubers.

“The situation in these temples is that they bring bags with electronic items etc and go inside the temple. This can cause safety issues for us. Also, in the recent past, with a lesser number of people visiting the temples, we allowed them to go inside the sanctum sanctorum. Some incidents happened where people and social media influencers started making reels and live videos inside the sanctum sanctorum,” he said.

Ajay has asked BKTC CEO B D Singh to probe how the video that went viral was allowed to be shot inside the sanctum sanctorum of the temple and seek an explanation from the employees who were on duty at the time.

Ajay said that he has also proposed building a cloakroom outside the temple premises. “A lot of problems are created due to people carrying their phones and cameras inside. The YouTubers and bloggers have become a new headache for us. They make videos for their own benefit and ignore the religious feelings of people. They ignore traditions too. This is why we plan to prohibit phones and cameras at a certain distance from the temple. We have also proposed building a wall before the Kedarnath temple to make sure no footwear is allowed beyond that point,” he said.

Last month, a controversy broke out after a vlogger took his Husky to the Kedarnath shrine and got a priest to put a tilak on it. A video of the incident went viral on social media.

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