HYDERABAD: A ‘World Passport’ from a ‘World Government’ on the World Wide Web. Interested? A city lad got just that from a website that assured it was really real. But instead of arriving in the US, the passport landed him in the cooler when Begumpet airport officials stopped his flight of fancy right at the immigration counter.
In what is clearly an internet fraud, Mohd Lal Amer was duped by the website www.worldservice.org, which gave him the 'World Passport' for a sum of $ 600. Amer got it in April through a courier from the US. Till the immigration officials stopped him, the 23-year-old believed that the ‘World Passport’ he got from the ‘World Government’ in the US was a genuine one. The incident happened on May 18 and Amer was later handed over to the local police.
When Amer, a resident of Mangapathi Towers at Saidabad Colony, booked his air tickets to Washington through a travel agency at Saidabad, it was taken for granted that the passport and also a visa sticker on it were genuine.
But what takes the cake is what happened next: When he reported at the Air-India counter, he was even given a boarding pass! It was only at the immigration counter that the ‘World Passport’ was noticed and he was detained. Accordingto sources, the passport even had a machine readable bar code.
In order to get the 'World Passport', all one needs to do is submit an application at www.worldservice.org. The website claims that the passport has found acceptance in as many as 170 countries, including India and also the US.
A passport with a validity of eight years costs $ 100, while a world identity card, a world birth card, and a world birth certificate could be bought for $ 20 each.
The website claims that the World Service Authority’s office was in Washington DC and with a branch in China. There are 19 visa pages in the 30-page passport document and resembles a real one.
"We have never got such a strange case before. We checked with the passport authorities and confirmed that there is no 'World Passport'. We will decide whether this case can be handed over to the cyber crime investigation wing," Begumpet inspector J Subbarami Reddy said.
TIMES NEWS NETWORK