Three booked by CBI for fertiliser fraud

fertiliser fraud

New Delhi, March 26: The CBI on Saturday filed a case against a former IFFCO official and two others for causing a loss of Rs.2.41 crore to the government exchequer by misusing a central government subsidy scheme for urea fertiliser.

A Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) team also carried out searches at the residences of the accused in six places in Thrissur in Kerala and seized several incriminating documents.

Gopala Krishnan, a former official of Indian Farmers Fertilisers Cooperative (IFFCO); Akhil T. Gopi, a former field officer in-charge (Trainee) of Kerala State Cooperative Marketing Federation; and C.G. Pauly, a transport contractor in Thrissur, were booked on charges of criminal conspiracy and cheating under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), and the Prevention of Corruption Act.

“During April 2015 to January 2016, around 1,096 tonnes of urea was misused by the former field officer (Gopi),” the CBI’s press information officer R.K. Gaur told.

“He (Gopi), in connivance with the former IFFCO officer (Krishnan) and the transport contractor raised bogus bills showing the supply of urea to 31 cooperative societies in Thrissur and other places in Kerala.

“However, the urea was actually supplied to some industries for illegal monetary benefits as the price of industrial urea was around Rs.27,000 per tonne.

“By using this modus operandi, the accused caused a loss of Rs.2.41 crore to the government exchequer,” the CBI official said.

Gaur said the chemicals and fertilisers ministry was giving subsidy of around Rs.22,000 on one tonne of urea.

“After subsidy, the farmers would get one tonne of urea for Rs.5,250. The objective of the central government giving subsidy is to help the farmers with an affordable price and to boost agricultural production.”

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