ISLAMABAD - The government allegedly due to vested interests has cancelled the contracts with M/s Ittehad Industries and PI Holdings though these companies had offered the highest bid for Nur, Babla, Jandran and Sara fields. Intriguing information has come to the light that the collusion and almost criminal coordination is done for ulterior motives in the current political set-up for obtaining specific financial objectives, TheNation learnt on Wednesday. It is to be mentioned here that the bids were invited for Nur, Bagla, Jandran and Sara West Fields and the highest bidders were selected. Then and as approved by OGDCLs 116th meeting in June 2010 a letter of intent was issued to M/s Ittehad Industries and PI Holdings. A senior source in the Ministry of Petroleum said on condition of anonymity that the cancelled contracts taking the plea of a letter written by the government of Sindh in which it had demanded its share giving the reference of the 18th amendment. The sources said that as per the amendment the government was not bound to hand over the fields to the Sindh government but it is supposed to get its due share. The sources further disclosed that the bidding results were not liked by a particular party who was unsuccessful in the bidding since this unsuccessful bidder had very close relationship with the high-ups both in the Presidency, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources and in OGDCL. Background interviews carried out by several staff members of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources have confirmed that upon verbal instruction of the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Resources, a letter was drafted by an official of Directorate General of Petroleum Concessions in his office under the direct supervision of the then DGPC, Naeem Malik (who has recently been appointed as MD OGDCL). This letter as planned with endorsement of DGPC was passed on to the OGDCL where by that time Naeem Malik had taken over as MD OGDCL and took the government of Sindhs demand to the Board of Directors (earlier drafted by his own Deputy Director) and had letter of intent already issued to successful bidders was thereby cancelled. It has been reported in the media that the companies who won the contracts are now planning litigation against OGDCL on this matter. The Deputy Director who wrote the letter is understood to be under pressure within the Ministry of Petroleum since it is known almost to everyone in the ministry about how that particular day the pressures from the Minister of Petroleum was coming and Naeem Malik then pressurized this Deputy Director to draft the letter and how after drafting the letter Naeem Malik flew to Karachi to have the letter issued by the Sindh government. This Deputy Director, who is a relative of an ex-Chief Justice of Pakistan, is generally known to be an honest official of the Ministry. Naeem Malik, MD OGDCL, was called many times on phone for his version but he did not pick up the phone.