A day-long search on Tuesday failed to trace the bodies of two actors who drowned in a nearby lake while enacting a stunt scene by jumping from a helicopter during the filming of a Kannada movie, police said.

“Rescue teams have been searching the TG Halli lake since morning but were unable to trace the bodies of (Anil and Uday) till evening due to poor visibility, silt and water weeds in its polluted backwaters,” police officer H.L. Nandeesha told IANS from the location.

The Thippagondanahalli (TG Halli) lake is about 40 km northwest of Bengaluru at the confluence of Arkavathy and Kumudavathi rivers in Ramanagara district. It is one of the sources of drinking water supply to Bengaluru.

About 50 men of the National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF) and the fire brigade have scouted for the bodies in 10 pontoon boats and four coracles but failed to locate them in the murky waters.

“We have asked for scuba divers from the Karwar naval base to join the search. The lake covers about 100 acres of space. Discharge of effluents from factories and sewage from villages around the lake have polluted its marshy water, leading to accumulation of filth, silt and mud,” lamented Nandeesha.

Fishermen familiar with the lake where a reservoir was built to store water flowing from the twin rivers and their tributaries also joined the search teams.

The stunt act is the climax of a scene in the upcoming film ‘Maastigudi’ where the hero (Vijay) chases the two villains trying to escape in a chopper from the lake shore.

The hero too hops onto the chopper, which flies over the lake’s backwaters.

As seen from the film footage, aired on local news channels, in a fight between the hero and the pair, the hero pushes both the actors from the chopper and joins them in the reservoir to carry on the fight.

Though the movie hero who knows swimming was rescued, the villains were left behind to drown, as they did not know swimming and are feared to have been caught in the thick silt and water weeds in the 20-25 feet deep lake.

“We have filed an FIR under various sections of the IPC against the film unit (KPS Combines) for criminal negligence, failure to take precautionary measures like life jackets and safety steps,” added Nandeesha.

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