India: Official has reservoir drained to find smartphone

An Indian official relaxing at a reservoir in central India dropped his cellphone in the water while trying to take a selfie. The 32-year-old first asked divers for help. He later ordered the reservoir to be drained.

Rajesh Vishwas, a food industry official, was relaxing with his friends at a reservoir in central India as the BBC reported. When the 32-year-old decided to take a selfie, his phone slipped from his hand and fell into the water. The officer first asked local divers for help. After several unsuccessful attempts to locate the device, Vishwas summarily ordered the workers to pump the water out of the reservoir. In a video statement released later, he said he had received verbal permission from authorities to “drain some water into a nearby canal.”

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The work took a total of three days, during which millions of liters of water were pumped out. When the phone was finally found, it turned out that it was no longer working. Officials from India’s Ministry of Water Resources arrived at the reservoir following a complaint. They stated that they had not given permission to pump out the water.

The 32-year-old has since been suspended. An investigation is underway against him. He claims that sensitive government data was stored on the phone, so he tried to find the device by any means possible. He is accused of abuse of office.

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