Newly Married Woman and Three Family Members Drown in a Reservoir After Trying to Take a Selfie

A newly married woman and three teenage members of her family drowned in a reservoir in India while trying to take a selfie, authorities said.

The 20-year-old woman, identified as V. Nivedha, and her husband G. Perumalsamy, 24, were visiting relatives in Uthangarai in the state of Tamil Nadu over the weekend, The Hindu newspaper reported.

The couple, both from Bargur in Krishnagiri, were married last month.

The newlyweds and the groom's 20-year-old sister Yuvarani stood alongside three teenage siblings in waist-deep water near the Pambar Dam to pose for a picture.

One of them, a 14-year-old boy named Santosh, slipped and dragged his sisters Sneha, 18, and Kanniga, 19, as well as the newly married woman and the groom's sister into the water.

The groom managed to pull his sister to safety, but the other four disappeared under the water. Their bodies were later retrieved and transported to Uthangarai Government Hospital.

The incident is the latest in a series of deaths linked to selfies in the country, with experts warning that people are risking their lives to impress their friends and family on social media.

It comes after three teenagers taking selfies on a railway track died in Haryana state in May.

They had jumped out of the way when they spotted a train approaching, only to be hit by another train coming in the opposite direction, according to the BBC.

In 2017, the state of Karnataka launched a campaign to warn that "selfies can kill" after four students died in two incidents linked to selfies.

In September that year, a man was trampled to death by a wild elephant as he tried to take a selfie with the animal in the state of Odisha, The Hindustan Times reported.

India has the highest number of recorded deaths linked to selfies in the world, followed by Russia, the U.S. and Pakistan.

India accounted for around half of the 259 selfie fatalities reported from October 2011 to November 2017, according to a study by researchers associated with the All India Institute of Medical Sciences last year, whose findings were published in the Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care.

Drowning, transport deaths and falls were the top causes of deaths linked to selfies, according to the study.

Agam Bansal, the study's lead author, told The Washington Post last year: "The selfie deaths have become a major public health problem."

Bansal said he was concerned about how many of the selfie-related deaths involved young people. The study found that more than 85 percent of the victims were between the ages of 10 and 30, he said.

He also noted that although the act of taking a selfie isn't dangerous, it becomes so when people take risks to get the perfect shot.

"If you're just standing, simply taking it with a celebrity or something, that's not harmful. But if that selfie is accompanied with risky behavior then that's what makes the selfies dangerous," he said.

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Stock photo: Water gushes out of Sardar Sarovar Narmada dam in the state of Gujarat, India. Four people have drowned while trying to take a selfie near the Pambar Dam in Tamil Nadu, India. Getty