Shivraj Singh Chouhan, the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, is being roundly criticised after a photograph, showing him being literally carried by his security guards to keep him dry during a visit to the flood-hit Panna district on Sunday, went viral.
The photo shows two security personnel carrying Chouhan across ankle-deep water.
According to an NDTV report, government officials said that Chouhan had to opt for this unusual mode of transport after the district collector and the local police chief decided that they could not risk the CM getting hurt or being bitten by snakes.
The Hindustan Times has reported that another government officer claimed that Chouhan was carried because he had hit his foot on a hard object in the mud and was having trouble walking.
"That's why the security personnel lifted him on their own, despite insistence from the CM not to do so," the official said. "The nullah (stream) was deeper ahead, hence security personnel took the decision out of security concerns as despite pain in his foot, the CM decided to tour the flooded area. He wanted to meet the affected people and assess the situation caused by heavy rains and flood."
Chouhan visited flood-affected families in Satna on Saturday evening and continued with his tour to Rewa and Panna on Sunday, taking stock of the situation there.
Predictably, Chouhan is being ridiculed for his actions on social media.