By Paul Stokes
A five-year-old girl's passport application was rejected because her photograph showed her bare shoulders.
Hannah Edwards's mother, Jane, was told that the exposed skin might be considered offensive in a Muslim country.
The photograph was taken at a photo-booth at a local post office for a family trip to the south of France.
Because of the way the camera was set up, the picture came out showing Hannah's shoulders.
The family had it signed and presented it at a post office with the completed form but were told that it would not be accepted by the Passport Office.
A woman behind the counter informed them that she was aware of at least two other cases where applications had been rejected because a person's shoulders were not covered.
Mrs Edwards, a Sheffield GP, said: "I was incensed. I went back home and checked the form. Nowhere did it say anything about covering up shoulders. If it had, I would have done so, but it all seems so unnecessary.
"This is quite ridiculous, I followed the instructions on the passport form to the letter and it was still rejected. It is just officialdom pandering to political correctness.
"It is a total over-reaction. How can the shoulders of a five-year-old girl offend anyone? It's not as if anything else was showing, the dress she wore was sleeveless, but it has a high neck."
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jh ... port14.xml
(only a portion of the article; every official they quoted is scrambling to distance themselves from it).