New Delhi, Feb 11: It can happen only in India! A 41-year old unemployed villager from Odisha, Ratan Kumar Malbisoi, travelled more than 1,000 miles to claim 'lottery prize' only to find he has been scammed.
Malbisoi travelled 1,500 km to claim 'bogus prize' of £300,000 BBC lottery win that did not even exist.
In April 2012, Malbisoi received a message on his mobile phone that "he had won the BBC's national lottery for 20 or 30 million rupees, and was asked to send his details so that they could send him the money".
Poor Malbisoi, with little formal education, fell for the message and had no idea that he was being 'scammed' or 'conned'.
BBC reported that Malbisoi got in touch with the scammers, emailed them his bank details and account statement, and spoke to them several times over the past two years.
With lots of 'hope', Malbisoi borrowed money from friends and boarded a train for Delhi. He even spent the night at a platform at railway station and in morning, he reached BBC office in Delhi.
Scammer called up Malbisoi as "BBC chancellor" from Britain.
After coming to know that no such lottery existed, Malbisoi, who has three daughters and his wife in family, revealed that scammer used to call him as "BBC chancellor" from Britain.
The "heartbroken" Malbisoi told BBC, "I never felt he was trying to cheat me. I liked speaking with him, he was always very nice," he said adding that he never complained to the police."
"If they don't want to give me the money, I can't force them. It's their money', he added.
After spending two days in Delhi, Malbisoi returned "empty-handed" to his native place in Odisha.
Cyber law expert Pavan Duggal said that even though Malbisoi has not paid any money, if the identity of the scammers is established, they can be punished with a jail term and a monetary fine under Section 66C and 66A of India's IT (Information-Technology) Act.
Duggal has described the fraud case as "old Nigerian 419 scam".