New Delhi - The Indian government's information wing was at the centre of creative jokes on microblogging site Twitter on Friday after it tinkered with and briefly put out a photograph of Prime Minister Narendra Modi surveying floods in Tamil Nadu.
The original photograph put out by the Press Information Bureau (PIB) on Thursday showed Modi looking out of a aircraft window at a hazy scene of what looked like fields under water.
For a brief while the window view changed to - from that height an unnaturally clear - scene of an urban landscape with buildings drowning in metres of water in a photograph with obviously cropped sides.
The response on Twitter was scores of edited photographs in which Modi looked out of the window at varying scenes with mocking captions.
One had the globe-trotting Modi looking at the moon with the caption: Where no more countries are left to visit.
Another had a deep sea scene with a shark looking in at Modi captioned: Deep sea adventure.
There were political comments. As Modi looked out on a burning aircraft the caption said: First PM to see Turkey shooting down the Russian plane.
The next had Putin doing an Icarus act with shades, bare torso and wings. Caption: How Modiji found he had reached Russia. The suffix ji is an honorific in Hindi.
Yet another one had a video of Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj doing a jig, with the caption: When your boss is watching and you don't know it.
The PIB, which changed the photograph back to the original, but not fast enough, issued a clarification and an apology Friday saying there had been an error of judgment.
PIB said of the several photographs released of Modi doing an aerial survey of flood-affected Tamil Nadu on Thursday on its Twitter handle, "one picture used the technique of merging two pictures" and was being referred to as "photoshopping" in sections of the media.
"This happened due to error of judgement and the picture was subsequently deleted. PIB regrets the release of the above mentioned picture. Inconvenience caused is regretted."