WION Web TeamNew Delhi, Delhi, IndiaOct 06, 2017, 07.09 AM (IST)
In a major breakthrough, the government today confirmed that it has received vital information from 13 banks on bank account operations and post-demonetisation transactions.
The government said around 2,09,032 suspicious companies were struck off from the Register of Companies list earlier this year. It may be recalled that after being struck off the list, the operation of the bank accounts of the suspicious companies was restricted for the discharge of liabilities only.
The 13 banks have submitted their first data instalment. The data received from them pertains to merely about 5,800 companies (out of more than 2 lakh that were struck off) involving 13,140 accounts. This in itself is a revealing figure.
Few of the companies have been found to have more than 100 accounts to their names. The highest grosser among these are companies with 2,134 accounts, followed by others who have accounts in the range of 900 to 300.
The data for the pre demonetisation account balances and transactions conducted from the accounts of these companies during the demonetisation period is even more startling. After separating the loan accounts, these companies showed a meagre balance of Rs 22.05 crore to their credit on November 8th, 2016.
However, from November 9th, 2016, that is after the announcement of demonetization, till the date of their being struck off, these companies deposited a huge amount of Rs. 4,573.87 crore in their accounts and withdrew an equally large amount of Rs 4,552 crore. With loan accounts, there was a negative opening balance of Rs 80.79 crore.
Disturbing facts have been identified on companies with multiple accounts which have minuscule or negative balance as on November 8th, 2016. The companies have deposited and withdrawn amounts in several crores from these accounts.
The accounts were thereafter again left as dormant accounts with a paltry balance. As mentioned earlier, this exercise of swindling the authorities was carried out post-demonetisation till the companies were struck off.
In some cases, certain companies made deposits and withdrawals even after being struck off.
For example, in one of the Banks, 429 companies with zero balance each as on November 8th, 2016 deposited and withdrew over Rs 11 crore and left again with a cumulative balance of just Rs 42,000 on the date of freezing.
Similarly, in the case of another Bank, more than 3,000 such companies, most having multiple accounts, have been located.
From having a cumulative balance of about Rs 13 crore as on November 8th, 2016 these companies have deposited and withdrew Rs 3800 crore, leaving a negative cumulative balance of almost Rs 200 crore at the time of freezing of their accounts.
Sources stress that this data is only about 2.5% of the total number of suspected companies that have been struck off by the Centre.
The investigative agencies have been asked to complete necessary investigation in a time-bound manner.