Ahead of the first anniversary of the Centre’s demonetisation drive, the government on Sunday said nearly 35,000 companies – of the 2.24 lakh that were deregistered – deposited and withdrew a total of Rs 17,000 crore after the note ban. The data was prepared on the basis of information on 58,000 accounts received from 56 banks.

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs said that so far, it had deregistered 2.24 lakh companies for remaining inactive for two years or more. At least 3.90 lakh directors have been disqualified for failing to file annual returns for three financial years – 2013-’14 to 2015-’16.

“Preliminary inquiry has shown that over 3,000 disqualified directors are directors in more than 20 companies each, which is beyond the limit prescribed under the law,” it said. “Restrictions have been imposed on operation of their bank accounts in accordance with the law.”

The ministry has also taken action “to restrict the sale and transfer of movable and immovable properties of struck-off companies until they are restored” and has advised state governments to prevent such transactions. Firms have also been identified for inquiry or inspection under the Companies Act, 2013.

The ministry said that, in one instance, a company which had negative opening balance on November 8, 2016, deposited and withdrew Rs 2,484 crore days after demonetisation came into force. Another company was found to have as many as 2,134 accounts, it added.

The information on these bank accounts have been shared with investigative agencies, including the Central Board of Direct Taxes and the Reserve Bank of India, for further action.

The ministry said it was seeding Director Identification Numbers of directors with PAN and Aadhaar through biometric matching for new applications to avoid “dummy directors”. Under the Companies Act, DIN is a unique number assigned to an individual allowing them to serve as a director on the board of a company.