Magician’s Body Found in River After Unsuccessful ‘Houdini’ Trick Attempt


A magician was found dead in a river in India after attempting to recreate a “Houdini” trick, which involved escaping from shackles while submerged in water.

“Wizard Mandrake,” born as Chanchal Lahiri, was lowered into a river in Kolkata while tied up Sunday, Fox News reported.

Lahiri said it would be “magic” if he was successful and “tragic” if the trick did not go as planned.

Rescue officials found Lahiri’s body Monday after a 24-hour search, according to Fox.

This was not Lahiri’s first time conducting the trick. He successfully pulled off the stunt more than two decades ago, Fox reported.

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NDTV noted Lahiri also conducted the trick in 2013.

A well-known magician in India, PC Sorcar Jr., told NDTV Lahiri’s stunt was “foolish” and the magician did not use the correct materials.

“He was wearing heavy socks which looked like a gumboot and that did not help him in swimming to escape,” Sorcar said, according to NDTV. “His legs were also chained in such a manner that even when he managed freeing his hands he could not untie them leading to such a disaster. And I think he was also injured while being lowered into the water by the crane … He was also lowered in a wrong manner.”

Sorcar Jr. successfully conducted a similar trick in 1969 and took “requisite measures,” NDTV reported.

While Socar Jr. remained serious about the situation, others have poked fun.

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Kolkata Police and the Kolkata Port Trust gave Lahiri permission to conduct the stunt.

Harry Houdini was a magician known for his escape acts, like freeing himself from confinements while underwater, according to Britannica.

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