Monday, 23 August 2010

Commonwealth Games tickets will be hard to fake

Tickets to the Commonwealth Games that you buy from August 25 onwards will have all the hallmarks of the Indian rupee note. Specially designed to make counterfeits impossible, the tickets, like the rupee, have been printed on the same paper with a corresponding watermark and security thread that runs through it. To make copying tougher, the tickets have been printed at the same press in Nashik as the rupee bank notes, said organising committee (OC) sources.

According to OC officials, one of the problems that plagued the Beijing Olympics was the presence of fake tickets. In fact, thousands had been duped by a fake ticket website scam — a situation that OC officials said they did not want replicated in the CWG.

A senior OC official said: "Tickets for the opening and closing ceremonies are the most in demand, followed by events like hockey, athletics and gymnastics. The possibility that fake tickets will flood the market just before the Games was high. So, we wanted to ensure that the tickets sold by the OC were distinct, easily identifiable and impossible to copy."

Not surprisingly, printing of the tickets at the Nashik press was also delayed. As a result, sale of tickets was postponed to August 25 from August 1. Sources claimed that the ticket, in which the new symbol of the rupee was to be inducted, took time to be printed as the font was not yet available from the government.
However, the tickets are going on sale from August 25, with the OC throwing open retail outlets across the city. In the third phase, people will be able to buy tickets from the venues itself. Till now, tickets were available only on the OC website.

The rapid sale of tickets to the opening and closing ceremonies has contributed to 25% of the total sales so far, said OC officials. Among the sporting events, hockey is the front-runner, accounting for 14% of the tickets sold till date, followed by athletics at 11% and gymnastics at 10%. Swimming is at the fourth spot with a 8% share of the sales, said OC officials.

OC officials admitted that sale was slow, though the opening of retail outlets were expected to push up the figures. They, however, were confident of selling the entire stock of 17 lakh tickets ahead of the Games. At the retail outlets, direct purchases can be made and those holding vouchers can also procure actual tickets there.


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