LAHORE An embezzlement of several billion rupees has been detected in the National Fertilizer Marketing Ltd (NFML), a wing of the National Fertilizer Corporation (NFC), whose task is to sell the imported urea to farmers through its dealers network all over the country. Official sources told TheNation that a team of Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), which has also set up a permanent office on NMFL premises, is also conducting inquiry against the accused NFML officials and recommended registration of a case against them. They said that around 46 per cent of the total 2.7 million tons imported urea worth over $1 billion, which was to reach the farmers through over 900 distributors of the NFML, was dumped enroute from Karachi and Gwadar ports to the upcountry. The nexus of the NFCs present chairman Khalid Malik, former NFML MD Mian Ijaz, ex-secretary of Ministry of Industries Shahab Khawaja and a son-in-law of the former Industries and Production Federal Minister, along with the corrupt officers of the NMFL are responsible to cause over Rs27 billions loss to the kitty, stated the officials requesting anonymity. According to NFC sources, Muhammad Ijaz and other officials of National Fertilizer Marketing Ltd had committed corruption in the import of fertiliser and its transportation during the period 2008-10. When about half quantity of the 2.7 million tons imported urea was diverted to the 'private godowns from the real destination (NFMLs 25 stores and over 900 dealers warehouses), it created shortage of urea at the govt outlets and stores. This share of the urea first went to the private warehouses of the front men of former MD Mian Ijaz, from where the consignment was sent to Afghanistan, they added. The mafia, in official documents, showed that the whole consignment has reached the targeted destinations and the farmers community was facilitated by this subsidised urea. Sources said that govt imported the commodity at around Rs1,900-2100 per bag and sold it to the farmers for Rs870 per bag during the last two years. These perpetrators caused the loss to the govt by not providing the subsidised fertilizers to the poor farmers on one hand and on the other hand they earned billions of rupees by selling the major chunk of this dumped fertilizers in the neighbouring Afghanistan at the hefty amount of Rs4,000 per bag of urea. Moreover, the remaining dumped urea was sold to the unauthorized persons through black marketing in Sindh and Balochistan. In this way they saved a hefty amount of carriage charges to transport it to Punjab and KP province. In documents they claimed that they have delivered the commodity to the marked consignees in remote areas of the both the provinces. Source said that the sitting Managing Director of the NFML Brig Balal Ahmed Khan has terminated licences over 100 bogus agencies which are owned by the mafia and which are involved in black marketing of the fertilizers in the country. Officials documents available with TheNation revealed that the perpetrators had set up hundreds of the stores and agencies through which the urea was sold to the farmers at exorbitant rates. Sources said that no inquiry has been initiated against the real planners of this Rs27 billion fraud, including NFC chairman Khalid Malik, farmer NFML MD Mian Ijaz, ex-secretary Ministry of Industries Shahab Khawaja and a son-in-law of the former Industries and Production federal minister. Sources revealed that however, action has been taken against some officers and they were sacked by the present NFML management, including Lt Col (retd) Ikramul Haq, consultant marketing and in-charge sales and stores; Hamed Pervaiz, deputy GM marketing and distribution and Fateh Muhammad, marketing officer Lahore. While regional manager Abdul Ghaffar who is also involved in the corruption had not been relieved of duty due to certain reasons, an official said. More than 12 storekeepers deputed at various centres of NFC of the country had also been sacked for their alleged involvement in the corruption, they added. Since the main beneficiaries of this embezzlement are relatives of the sitting ministers, who are very cloze to the President House, there are no chances of any result-oriented investigations, sources said. It is to be noted that 2.7 million tons urea contains 54 million bags of 50kg each. As per the investigation papers, the mafia received commission of up to Rs500 per bag, translating into Rs27 billion. Moreover, they made money by steeling 5kg urea from each bag. In this way they put aside around 27 million tons kg urea, implying 0.54 million bags worth Rs378 million. Besides, millions of rupees were collected in the form of handling charges at stores. Transportation cost which comprises about 80 per cent of the total expanses of the organisation was the biggest source of earning for the top management of the MNFL and other higher echelons, which runs into billions.