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Centre launches nationwide crackdown on industrial units using urea intended for farmers' use

New Delhi: Chemicals and Fertilizers Ministry has launched a nationwide crackdown on those industries across the country that use urea intended for farmers and a special flying squad of the Chemical and Fertilizer Ministry is taking strict action. An official of the Chemical and Fertilizer Ministry told ANI that urea is used in various other industries viz UF resin/glue, Plywood, resin, crockery, moulding powder, cattle feed, dairy, industrial mining explosives and centre is getting references indicating diversion, black marketing, hoarding and supply of sub-standard quality of subsidized fertilizers by various private entities. "Department of Fertilizer (DoF) identified IGU supplier's GST evasions worth Rs 63.43 crore, shared the information with GST department Rs 5.14 crore recovered so far," the official told ANI. Ministry official further told ANI that "Unaccounted stock of Agriculture grade urea of about 25,000 bags worth Rs 7.5 Crore recovered, 6 persons arrested under CGST Act 2017 and remanded to judicial custody, follow-up investigation under process." "30 April 2022-based on the IFMS records, DoF identified, located and then inspected 38 mixtures manufacturing units across 8 states and 20 May 2022 - Launch of Multipronged nationwide crackdown on diversion of fertilizers in 52 units across 6 states. Unauthorized urea stock of 7400 bags (worth Rs 2.22 crore) was seized. Out of 59 samples of suspected urea collected from these units, 22 samples were found to have neem oil content so far," he said. Ministry officials said that the samples collected for quality analysis 70 per cent samples found sub-standard. Manufacturing licenses of 25 erring units were cancelled. A total of seven FIRs or complaints were registered against units involved in illegal activities. They were de-authorized from purchasing subsidized fertilizers from IFMS. States asked legal actions under FCO, 1985 and EC Act, 1955," the official added. Ministry said that a leakage worth more than Rs 100 crore has been identified by various Covert Operations during the last few months. Investigations are still on and this figure may rise further. DoF has constituted a special team of dedicated officers "Fertilizer Flying Squad" for regular surprise inspections of fertilizer and related units involved in diversion, black marketing, hoarding and supply of sub-standard quality fertilizer. States have been to take actions under PBM/EC Act. "Government of India makes available subsidized fertilizers to farmers at a very reasonable rate. The cost of a 45 kg Urea bag is Rs. 266 to farmers, which costs Rs.3000 to the Centre," Chemical and Fertilizer Ministry official said.

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