A Chinese official recently lost his job after an embarrassing photo of him being carried over a puddle during a visit to a disaster stricken town went viral.
Education bureau officer Bao Xuwei was photographed being carried by two subordinates over a muddy puddle as he was making his rounds in the Typhoon-ravaged Taishun county of Zhejiang province last Friday.
The photo was immediately uploaded online and Chinese netizens were quick to identify and bombarded him with insults, according to China Daily.
Upon reaching the local education bureau, the department announced that Bao had been dismissed from his post while they conduct an investigation.
For Bao’s part, he insisted that he was a victim of hasty judgments and the photo was largely misunderstood. He explained that he was rushing his way to the typhoon destroyed area, and coming from a recent meeting, he was not able to get into some waterproof shoes.
He then claimed that he was approached by some workers as he attempted to cross the puddles and lifted him up for just a few seconds. Unfortunately, a moment from those few seconds was caught on camera.
The concerned workers would later corroborate with his story, adding that they had done the same for others. Hu Liming, the person who took the photo, also apologized for the misunderstanding.
Typhoon Meranti caused the destruction of over 900 homes amounting to over 17 billion yuan, or over $2.5 billion, in damages and has left 28 people dead in the Chinese provinces of Zhejiang and Fujian.