A government official in India pumped millions of litres out of a dam to retrieve his mobile phone after it fell into the water.

The food inspector in the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh has now been suspended for misusing his position.

Workers ran a water pump for three days, emptying around two million litres of water from the reservoir until another government official from the water resource department arrived to investigate, following a complaint.

The draining operation was ordered by the food inspector after he dropped his phone – a Samsung S23 Ultra - into the water while taking a selfie on Sunday. The inspector first ordered divers to go search for the device. When they failed to find it, he rented a diesel water pump to drain the dam.

The pump began draining water on Monday evening and ran until Thursday

By the time he retrieved the phone, it was too waterlogged to work.

The inspector, who has now been suspended and is being investigated, claimed the phone contained sensitive government data and that the water he ordered to be drained was “not in a useable condition”.

He said he had also obtained permission from a local government official, who he says told him that draining the water would also benefit local farmers.

The two million litres of water he drained could have irrigated six square kilometres of farmland.

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