12 lawmakers disregard ECP notice to defend educational degrees


ISLAMABAD: Parliamentarians and members of provincial assemblies appear to have no regard for the law or the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), as some of them accused of possessing fake degrees are consistently avoiding to appear before the ECP special committee to defend their educational record.
Only three of the 15 MPs summoned appeared before the special committee on Monday and the ECP officials hearing the fake degree cases said that the committee would refer the cases to the Chief Election Commissioner on October 25 for further action, in accordance with Supreme Court orders. During the hearing of a female MPA’s case, those present found it amusing to discover that the MPA’s degree had been issued in 1991, whereas she sat for the examination four years later.
PML-Q’s Seemal Kamran submitted a degree which was issued four years before her appearance in examination, however, The University of Punjab has disowned the degree, saying the university never issued the degree. Neither Seemal nor her lawyer appeared for hearing. Only three lawmakers, including Balochistan minister Mir Muhammad Khan Toor appear before the committee to defend their degrees. Toor, Balochistan minister for population welfare, provided his original documents to the committee for verification.
Nasim Nasir Khawaja also appeared before the committee and sought a few days to defend of her degree. Her case was adjourned until the next date of hearing. Lawyers for Afshan Farooq, Samina Khawar Hayat, Ijaz Ahmed, Sardar Mir Badshah Khan Qaisrani, Saima Aziz appeared on behalf of their clients. Hayat Ullah Khan Tareen, Ghulam Dastagir Rajar, Muhammad Safdar Gill, Mazhar Hayat, Shamaila Rana, Seemal Kamran, Farah Deeba and Majida Zadi did not appear. The next hearing is scheduled for October 21 and 25.
In his concluding remarks, committee head Afzal Khan said the aforementioned lawmakers had been given final notice to appear before the committee to defend their degrees. “All cases will be closed on October 25,” he said.