The fight against black money and shell companies has taken a fresh twist with the Centre confirming that post-demonetization some 2,09,032 companies are under scrutiny for their transactions.
Over Rs 4,574 cr has been deposited since demonetisation in 13,140 bank accounts of these companies.
Thirteen banks have submitted data pertaining to about 5,800 companies out of over two lakh firms that were struck off.
In all, 13,140 accounts are under scrutiny in the first phase. Some of the companies have been found to have more than 100 accounts. One company has 2134 accounts in its name. Data related to pre-demonetization account balances and transactions are even more startling.
It has been revealed that after separating loan accounts, these companies were having a balance of Rs. 22.05 crore as on November 8, 2016.
But from November 9, 2016, that is after the announcement of demonetisation, and till the date of them being struck off, these companies together deposited a huge sum of Rs. 4,573.87 crores.
With loan accounts, there was a negative opening balance of Rs. 80.79 crores.
Disturbing factors of companies with multiple accounts and with a minuscule or negative balance as on November 8, 2016, have also been identified. This exercise of swindling the authorities was carried out post-demonetisation till these companies were struck off. In some cases, certain companies were more adventurous and made deposits and withdrawals even after being struck off.
For example, in one bank, 429 companies had zero balance as on November 8, 2016, and thereafter withdrew over Rs. 11 crores and had a cumulative balance of Rs. 42,000 when their accounts were frozen.
This data is only about 2.5 per cent of the total number of suspected companies that have been struck off by the government.
Investigative agencies have been ordered to complete the probe in a time-bound manner.