Python Swallowing an Entire Drunk Man in India Photo Is Probably a Hoax

The picture of the huge snake with a person-sized bulge in its stomach goes viral again

By on November 30th, 2013 10:24 GMT

A Twitter user called Vikraman Nair reposted a disturbing picture, with a python showing a human-shaped bulge in its stomach with the caption “a Python ate a person who was drunk and lying besides the liquor shop. News from Attapady, Kerale,” succeeding in shocking thousands of viewers.

The picture is said to have wandered around the web since September 2012, but has now become viral again after a few similar cases were rumored to appear in China, South Africa, Malaysia and Indonesia, according to The Huffington Post.

This particular photo allegedly shows the python that swallowed an adult man that was passed out drunk outside a liquor store in India. The picture was said not to be true, as even if pythons attack humans, it's rather difficult for them to swallow an entire adult person. Even if they have a powerful flexible jaw, it is quite hard to go past an adult man's shoulders.

According to Express News, the first documented case of a python swallowing a person appeared in 2002 in Durban, South Africa, when a 20-foot-long (6 meters) python ate a 10-year-old boy.

The fact that the photo has been reposted over and over again doesn't actually mean it is true, at least not for the drunk man from India. A few months ago, the same image was associated with a python eating a human in South Africa, so tracing its actual source is quite difficult.

The human-shaped bulge from the snake's stomach can easily be another creature and not actually a person, or it can even be photoshopped. People tend to freak out when seeing such posts online and share them without even having the slightest doubt about the details of the fact.

There are almost five versions of the story involving the weird-shaped content of the python's stomach: a drunk guy in India, an unknown woman in South Africa or an unknown man in China, an unidentified person in Indonesia or a 4-year-old in Malaysia. Maybe the photo is real, and that snake actually ate something as big as that stomach bulge, but it is also very possible to be another animal.

The fact is that the now famous python didn't eat any drunk man in India, at least not in the last few months. It may be possible that someone trying to make people stop drinking alcohol thought it was a good idea to scare them with a drunk-eater python.

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