An Indian stuntman is reported missing after he was lowered into the River Ganges in India while tied up with steel chains and rope by a crane.

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40-year-old Chanchal Lahiri, known by his stage name 'Jadugar Mandrake' (Wizard Mandrake), was lowered into the river by a crane on Sunday as family members, media and police watched on.

Before his trick, he said: 'If I can free myself it will be magic, if I cannot it will be tragic.' But the 40-year-old failed to emerge from the water, sparking an immediate search by authorities.

'We are still searching,' a family member told AFP.

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21 years ago, Lahiri successfully pulled off a similar stunt at the same venue. He was locked inside a bulletproof glass box and tied with a chain.

During the stunt, he was dropped from Howrah bridge, but managed to come out in seconds, according to reports.

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'I was inside a bullet proof glass box tied with chain and locks and dropped down from Howrah bridge. Then I came out within 29 seconds,' he told AFP.

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