A Portuguese couple have defended themselves after they were slammed for hanging out of a moving train when passing the Demodara Bridge in Ella just so they could capture the perfect picture for Instagram in February, Daily Mail reported.
The photograph shows Raquel clutching onto the rails with her whole body hanging out - as her boyfriend Miguel leans out of the carriage to kiss her forehead.
The adventurous pair, who document their travel pictures under @explorerssaurus, claimed the slow pace of the train meant they were never in any danger.
But critics have responded by saying it was an irresponsible picture to take, pointing out that copycats could be in real danger if they tried the same stunt along similar tracks around Sri Lanka, where the trains move at a much faster speed.
‘You’d risk your lives just for a picture? Just so you can upload it on social media? Or do you do this because this gives you ‘the rush’? How is this sensible? Anything could’ve happened,’ one woman wrote.
Another commented: ‘I will never promote a picture like this since there are not few people stupid enough to feel encouraged to try and recreate the idea. What you do and the models do is only their own responsibility. But you should see your responsibility for influencing others.’
One said: ‘I want to like this photo, but all I can see is a guy putting his girl in danger. He should have been on the outside.’
‘Are you not normal? How can you risk the life of a girl? Why is the guy so not hung from the train?,’ another posted.
One chimed in: ‘Two idiots risking their lives and others’ lives just to get likes.’
Another commented: ‘I thought it’s dangerous even if it’s not moving, one misstep and gone. Too sad they can’t even see the risk.’
One said: ‘It doesn’t matter how slow the train was moving! It’s stupid and dangerous and most importantly you will inspire others to take similar risky and dangerous shots. How do you not understand that?’
While another wrote: ‘I’m 99 per cent sure it’s not the slow moving train that is the problem... it’s the fact that there’s a giant ravine below, one slip of the hand or foot and the couple are both dead. All for a pretty picture.... that’s why this photo in particular annoyed me enough to respond, otherwise I ignore them.’
And one commented: ‘Wow... This will inspire more emulators to do this. Dangerous, irresponsible, and all in the name of vanity. Be a role model guys...it’s not rocket science.’
Despite the backlash, Raquel has hit back at critics, saying: ‘Can you see my hair moving? This was how fast we were going.’
‘It’s better to go to the places before you say this kind of rude things about people you don’t know at all. Even for not a fit person we don’t think this is dangerous at all. It’s much more dangerous some hikes we did before. If you did this journey you also know that the train goes really slow, specially when crossing bridges. It was moving super slow, almost not moving, my hair was barely moving,” she said.
Quote -- I will never promote a picture like this since there are not few people stupid enough to feel encouraged to try and recreate the idea. What you do and the models do is only their own responsibility. But you should see your responsibility for influencing others.