The Indian diver who has saved more than 100 lives

Publishedduration5 days agoimage captionShiva says he has saved 114 lives so far

For years, Shiva helped police find bodies in Hussain Sagar lake in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad. And then one day, he stopped someone before they jumped, saving a life for the first time. BBC Telugu's Balla Satish reports.

Shiva, who uses only one name, says he was about 10 years old when he came across a group of policemen who were offering to pay anyone who would bring a body out of a nearby pond.

Police in India are underfunded and poorly trained. Many don't know how to swim and are not given funds to hire professional divers. So it's not uncommon for them to rely on such informal, even risky, arrangements.

But when Shiva volunteered, he says, they were taken aback. "They initially refused saying I was too young. But I convinced them," he recalls.

He did the job and walked away with 40 rupees, now worth about $0.54 or £0.42 but a decent sum for him at the time.

That was 20 years ago. He is now 30 and still helping the local police.

Shiva lives right by Hussain Sagar, a large artificial lake in the heart of the city. A popular tourist spot, the lake is also used during the Ganesha festival for immersing idols of the Hindu deity.

The statues disintegrate under water and Shiva fishes out the iron rods they are made of to sell to recyclers.

But the lake is also a place where many come to die and Shiva often helps police retrieve bodies out of the water. Sometimes, he also helps them recover bodies from other rivers and lakes in the city.