This is a first hand story of my friend who was narrating his experience with the customs officer at the Hyderabad airport on his recent visit to India.
My friend had two laptops with him. One was a gift to someone and one was his personal computer. The rules on this are slightly ambiguous. The general understanding is that as long as you can prove that only one is a gift, it is ok. Anyway, the customs officer refused entry to my friend and demanded a customs fine of $300. When my friend realized that the officer was not going to accept his interpretation of the rules, he gave up, and this was the conversation that followed.Friend: Ok, Sir. I'll pay the fine. Where should I pay it?
Officer: You can pay here in cash.
Friend: I will need a receipt.
Officer: You can pay 250 here, no receipt.
Friend: I will pay, but I need a receipt.
Officer: Sir, please pay 200 and go! The office is closed. You will not get a receipt.
Friend (Looking all around him): Why is office closed when there are so many international flights landed in the last hour. I just want to pay, get a receipt and go home! I am tired and jet lagged....
Officer (Now extremely impatient) : Pay 100 dollars here or wait until tomorrow morning.
My friend paid and left. Although he got away with reducing the bribe to 1/3rd its value, he wasn't very pleased with the whole affair. I however think that this was a wonderful way of atleast not letting that man get what he wanted so easily. If more people are as conscientious in any place they are asked for a bribe, we can go a long way in reducing this evil.