The FIA Banking Circle has recovered billions of rupees foreign and local currency during a raid at an under-construction house in a residential area in Shamsabad.

The raid is part of the countrywide crackdown launched by the agency on the exchange companies involved in the Hundi/Hawala business.

After collecting evidence about the illegal trade, the Banking Circle raided a house in Rawalpindi and recovered 13 computerised iron lockers filled with foreign and local currency worth billions of rupees in cash. Two persons were arrested during the raid.

The Banking Circle conducted surveillance for a week before the operation. A small iron gate was found in the parking area of the double basement of the plaza. Spare construction equipment was also kept there.

The FIA team crashed the outer walls and heard a booming sound, which proved an empty space behind. On breaking the wall, they found a small secret door behind which lay 13 large iron lockers. Security system and cameras were also installed on the premises. According to reports, the FIA team and the plaza owner engaged in a bitter tiff over the uncovered money.

The plaza owner insisted that the authorities leave the money on site, while the FIA team said the recovered money would be seized.

Later, the FIA called the police for assistance. A preliminary report has been sent to the higher authorities, said the agency. When the plaza owner Sheikh Iftikhar Adil was contacted and asked about the seizure of the money, he said no bank was operating on the premises, it was reported.

He said the money saved in the lockers was business transaction about which money trail had been provided to FIA. He also denied that any foreign currency was recovered from the lockers.

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