New Delhi – The body of an Indian magician who attempted to perform Harry Houdini’s famed underwater escape trick has been discovered, police said on Tuesday.
Harry Houdini was a Hungarian-born American illusionist and stunt performer, noted for his sensational escape acts.
A police officer at the North Port Police Station said Chanchal Lahiri’s body, which confirmed that he drowned while attempting Houdini’s feat, was washed up two kilometres from the site of the incident.
Police said Lahiri’s body was identified by his relatives on Monday.
“His hands were free but his legs were still bound by chain and rope.
“Lahiri, 42, who adopted the stage name Mandrake, attempted the stunt by being lowered into the Hooghly River in the eastern city of Kolkata on Sunday,” the police officer added.
Local media reports said that a search operation was launched immediately after spectators did not see him re-emerge.
It noted that the magician had not taken proper security precautions in preparing for the risky act.
Lahiri, who performed a version of the underwater escape in 2013, was however, assaulted by spectators who said that a false door in the cage was easily visible.
“He also made an unsuccessful attempt to walk on the Hooghly River a few years before that,’’ the local media also reported.
Lahiri gave a televised interview before the fatal incident, saying his hands and legs were being shackled with six locks, steel chain and a rope.
“It will be very difficult to free myself but I should manage it. If I can do it, it will be magic. If I cannot, it will be tragic,” Lahiri said smiling.