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A large number of PTI supporters gathered at Jinnah Avenue during a public meeting on the last day of election campaigning. — Photo by INP
A large number of PTI supporters gathered at Jinnah Avenue during a public meeting on the last day of election campaigning. — Photo by INP
Ayla Malik stands next to PTI chief Imran Khan as he makes a speech during a rally in February. — Photo courtesy Twitter.
Ayla Malik stands next to PTI chief Imran Khan as he makes a speech during a rally in February. — Photo courtesy Twitter.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan's choice for NA-71 faces a certain by-election ban after the Election Commission and the Rawalpindi Education Board raised doubts over her high school degree.

Ayla Malik was scheduled to run in the by-elections on Imran’s home seat in Mianwali, NA-71, after Imran vacated the seat to keep his Rawalpindi seat.

Malik, who is the niece of former President Farooq Leghari, was scheduled to run for by-elections in Mianwali but her candidacy was challenged by political opponent Obaidullah Shadikhel of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

On Saturday, the election tribunal of the Lahore High Court’s Rawalpindi heard the arguments of Shadikhel’s counsel. He argued that Malik should be barred from contesting elections.

Rawalpindi Education Board and Election Commission also filed their replies before the tribunal, claiming that Malik was awarded no degree by the Rawalpindi Board. A Board reply stated that the degree submitted by Malik before the Election Commission was found to be of another candidate, Imdad Hussain, who had failed his intermediate examination.

The Election Tribunal reserved its ruling for July 29.

Malik comes from a long line of politicians. Besides her relation to the former president, she is the granddaughter of Nawab Malik Amir Muhammad Khan, otherwise known as the Nawab of Kalabagh. Her sister, Sumaira Malik, is an MNA for the PML-N. Earlier, Ayla Malik served as an MNA on a reserved seat from 2002-2007.

The issue of fake degrees took centre stage in Pakistani politics in recent months, after the superior courts took up several petitions against the dubious credential of parliamentarians and election candidates.

In April this year, Election Commission penalised three senators, five Punjab Assembly MPAs, two Sindh MPAs and one Balochistan MPA for holding fake degrees. . Earlier this week the Supreme Court disqualified a Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) lawmaker from Punjab Assembly, Samina Khawar Hayat, for a fake degree.

An independent MNA from Muzaffargarh, Jamshed Dasti had made headlines when he was disqualified for his fake degree – but managed to win his seat in the general elections this year after getting his ban overturned just in time from the Lahore High Court’s Multan bench.

Comments (72) Closed

Agha Asad Raza Jul 27, 2013 06:15pm

If the degree is a fake, then she is ineligible, period!

pathanoo Jul 27, 2013 06:59pm

I thought in a Democracy every one is equal and the only requirement to contest an election for any public office is citizenship. Why is a degree necessary? Why is being a "GOOD MUSLIM" necessary to be allowed to contest? AND "GOOD MUSLIM" BY WHOSE DEFINITION? Let people decide. PERIOD. That is what Democracy is all about and nothing else.

fida sayani Jul 27, 2013 07:18pm

All these fake degree holders should be sent to jail and their properties including cash and jewelry should be confiscated and deposited in the Pakistan Government Treasury. This should be a warning to all those future wrong doers.

Ali Vazir Jul 27, 2013 07:27pm

Wow. So the family of politicians: 1 in PML, other in PTI, and???? The game remains the same.

babar Jul 27, 2013 07:40pm

fraud leader and fraud workers. Long live corruption and long live PTI.

Saqib Jul 27, 2013 07:42pm

PTI has got same landlords unforunately. It looks like IK is now learning politics in Pakistan and also how to survive in this culture of do as the romans do!!

Zak Jul 27, 2013 07:57pm

If they are not true to themselves how can they be true to the people and the nation that houses them , protects them and feeds them.

Jonathan Jul 27, 2013 08:01pm

The Election Tribunal reserved its ruling for July 29. I can't wait for the outcome of it.

gangadin Jul 27, 2013 08:03pm

What a disgrace and shame to Nawab of Kalabagh. He must be rolling in his grave.

Rashid Jul 27, 2013 08:04pm

Why can't they study and earn authentic degrees? Is it so very difficult ?

shafiq khan Jul 27, 2013 08:48pm

I find it astonishing that rich and powerful are so thick and want a degree? Why in heaven's name you want a degree, just jingle your gold and be happy in your ignorance.

A fake degree would not change you, if you have not learnt to tell the truth thus far. Shafiq

Amjad Wyne Jul 27, 2013 09:30pm

What surprises me is the fact that many of these candidates come from families that should know the value of education and learning. No wonder the country neither invests nor believes in the value of education.

muzammil ullah khan Jul 27, 2013 09:31pm

Should those who have fake degrees not be sentenced to serve some quality time in jail ?

Karish Jul 27, 2013 10:30pm

I give her one degree for being beautiful. It that valid for election?

Nasir Jamal Khan Jul 27, 2013 11:00pm

Is there any current Pakistani politician who does not "come from a long line of politicians"?

pulvasha Jul 27, 2013 11:01pm

Well done! Step by step: keep the frauds out. They think it is their birth right to rule.

Shah Nawaz Jul 27, 2013 11:18pm

it surprises me to learn that a lady from such a family has a fake school certificate. May the allegations are fake. What about higher education? Isn't she a graduate of a college or a university ? If not,how come she is a candidate ? TIP needs to be more vigilant.

Nasiroski Jul 27, 2013 11:52pm

This news reminded me of a song I heard recently it goes like "saaf chalee shaffa'f chalee - therik e insaaf chalee". So much for political elites.

S. Israr Ali Jul 28, 2013 12:38am

Ayla Malik,Niece of former Oresident, Farooq Ahmed Leghari and grand daughter of Nawab of Kalabagh Malir Amir Mohammad Khan, former Governor of West Pakistan, what a coincidence caught using fake degree for seeking elections! Imran Khan should get her out to clear himself. The country's courts should inflict exemplary harshest of punishment besides disqualifying her for life.

The problem lies somewhere. All land holdings above 100 acres should perforce be confiscated by government and distributed amongst landless farmers. Only then sanity and respect for rule of law can prevail.

Ahmed Jul 28, 2013 12:42am

Looks like PTI is following the foot steps of other parties!! This lady is uneducated and belongs to a feudal family who have other family members belonging to PPP and PML(N). Imran you continue to disappoint!!!

Assad Jul 28, 2013 03:23am

More of the same trash! I thought PTI was about bringing new faces. However the reality is that its all recycling of the same faces. Mr. Imran Khan, you and your PTI has been duped!

mike jackson Jul 28, 2013 03:29am

Its a shame she got caught. If they start checking degrees of all those working for the Pakistani government , wont be surprised if the number of fake degress reaches thousands. Any ways she looks hot ...but made one technical mistake .. should have gone for a degree from the Punjab University ...

Sincerely Mike

Dr Siddiqui Jul 28, 2013 04:21am

Awesome people with a long peidgree and false degrees....such rampant corruption so it is no surprise seeing the state of the country.

A Pakistani Jul 28, 2013 06:09am

Government should fix education system of Pakistan, and should launch a legitimate investigation against those universities/boards who awarded fake degrees in the past to penalize them through due process. Also Pakistan Supreme Court should order investigation of degrees across the board, not only of the politicians. Every one will agree that a fake degree in the hands of a doctor poses greatest risk for the public health.

ali Jul 28, 2013 06:20am

Contrary to his earlier policies IK is taking all kinds of waderas in his party even the fraud ones like AYLA Malik. Ayla thinks it is her right to be in parliament because of her background,but at the same time she is forgetting she is a fraud and as such should be banned from contesting elections until she goes back to University and earns her degree,IK should tell her that.

collin bingle Jul 28, 2013 08:19am

What a shame. Shameful politicians and shame on the people who vote them

S. A. M. Jul 28, 2013 09:02am

I wonder if Imran's policy was just to win seats in election. does he or his party has any agenda in the post election period if so what it is and where it is. May be they wre presently working on it. such a deafening silence of PTI and its cheerleaders.

omer Jul 28, 2013 09:33am

I thought degree was no longer a pre-requisite for contesting elections.

Mashood Qadri Jul 28, 2013 10:42am

Well. I am not surprised if any of the fake degrees, could have been provided by any candidates from any of the parties,(corruption is widely metastatic). Even a bitter pill is the candidates blood line from "Farooq Leghari" owner of notorious mega mills, Tangail Cotton mill, various textile mills. PTI is another modified form of non-disposable establishment, have been ruling the country for 65 years. IK is using the blind, helpless mandate.

sabeeh omer Jul 28, 2013 11:03am

What a shame! These power-hungry individuals have no character and no morality. No wonder Pakistan has not been able to make any progress during the last 60+ years because the prestigious House is filled with an illiterate bunch of supposedly law-makers.

Kaiser Jul 28, 2013 12:02pm

PTI seems to be a party of fake degree holders. Here is another one! How many more?

Dilwer Jul 28, 2013 12:09pm

It should be high school certificate not a degree.

AZHAR Jul 28, 2013 12:11pm

Tahir ul qadri was so right. This prove it. One sister is an MNA from PMLn and this sister wants to contest from a different party. Don't they have any thing better to do. For example to go to school and get some education or is education only for the poor to seek and get nothing in return. What a sorry state of affairs in this state!

Kazi Ashraf Jul 28, 2013 12:17pm

Shameful! These are our leaders, our lawmakers, our hope for a change, our means of salvage, our hope for a better future... And look at the family she comes from! Makes you think even more!!!

waleed fakhar Jul 28, 2013 12:33pm

this is called the revolution...hats of to imran khan...

iftikhar khan Jul 28, 2013 01:58pm

Shame on you Mr Imran Khan ,how can you nominate a non qualified candidate to represent your party in election by submitting a fake degree.She is not honest so is you.Come on ,you are teaching other people honesty.As a chief of Tehrik -e-Insaaf party you knew your candidate has no credential to take part in by election, you have disappointed lots of your fans like me ,now I can not say to any body that I supported you because Mr Imran khan you are an honest person and honest have to apologise to your supporters for this action ,if not you will loose their support and trust in future.

Ravi Ingale from University of Pune Jul 28, 2013 02:02pm

Its new on these days, Fake degree issues are in the air, in Pakistan.

Arslan Jul 28, 2013 04:28pm

These landlord families dominating Pakistan Politics with Fake degrees. Let us see what will decision for PTI

jamshed bashir Jul 28, 2013 04:34pm

The greatest damage to Pakistan has been done by the crooks with a university degree.

It is debatable if a degree is going to add any value to the competence or indeed the integrity of a lawmaker. As education is not universal in Pakistan, the current law restricting membership of the parliament only to citizens with a college / university degree is discriminatory and stupid and therefore should be abolished forthwith.

Everyone should be entitled to contest the elections and become a member of the assemblies, as long as they are people of integrity, honesty and have a desire to serve people, degrees or no degrees.

It should be left to the voters. Let them be the judge, rather than a Munshi in the Election Commission checking educational certificates

Gul Jul 28, 2013 04:54pm

"But, But! Mr. Commissioner, I paid good money for the degree, it cannot be fake!!!!"

ailly Jul 28, 2013 05:41pm

not major issue which should be brought to day light....

dawn should bring real story behind Kh Asif's ministry ..... what govt has done until now to reduce load-shedding ? what PMLn has done so for to reduce or end drones ? and their many more policies which were in their manifest.

do your job and serve us the way you are supposed to. show us what we want to know not what you wish to.

Khalid Jul 28, 2013 06:03pm

This is indeed a surprise to see a PTI candidate using fake degree. What I fail to understand is that why none of the previously convicted people of this crime have been brought to justice. This is really a serious crime and the punishment should be a couple of years in jail as these people are nothing less than fraudsters. Does anyone know how many of the convicted people have been sent to jail? Looking at the numbers involved, it might just be a good idea to have everyone working for the government have their degrees verified. I bet half of the people hired (by PPP & PML-N) would be found to have fake degrees. This is exactly what happens when merit becomes just a word in the dictionary.

Agha Ata Jul 28, 2013 06:23pm

All the beauty that she has, now it appears fake. Kala Bagh was never so black as she made it. But the brave people of Kala Bagh would stand up and stop such fake beauties to represent them in future.

DoubleStandards Jul 28, 2013 07:19pm

I am not against Jamshed Dasti, but this guy admitted about holding a fake degree when he was disqualified. Later on, he managed to win the case. Isn't this double standards from Pakistani Courts that they allow a known offender to enjoy the MNA powers while disallowing others with similar offences?

Ali Jul 28, 2013 08:00pm

The most interesting point I thought was " her sister is an MNA for the PML-N"

Ahmed K Jul 28, 2013 09:01pm

@muzammil ullah khan: The bigger the cheater the more honourable the person becomes in Paki land!

Agha Ata Jul 28, 2013 09:07pm

@Karish: What? If her beauty is fake, too

akram Jul 28, 2013 09:27pm

There needs to be some exemplary punishment for those willing to defraud the public. At the moment they seem to be getting away scot free. Although the political system is in its early stages, its time for us to close this loophole for the fraudsters.

Azhar Jul 28, 2013 10:19pm

@pathanoo: You are really a Pathanoo. The issue is not about having or not having a degree. It is about dishonesty and cheating. By submitting a fake degree/certificate, the candidate is lying & cheating and that is a crime. Hope you understand now Pathanoo.

farid Jul 28, 2013 10:24pm

@Karish: Beautiful? You must be blind.

wizarat Jul 28, 2013 11:09pm

Is she from Mianwali, or just her domicile certificate?

Imtiaz Faruqui Jul 28, 2013 11:32pm

She look PREETY educated, but not educated in fact, but whats education has to do with politics in Pakistan. I think she is OK as far as her family background is concerned.

zuhaib Jul 29, 2013 01:58am

It is the filtration process IK knows it. just getting rid of freebies.

Shahpur Jul 29, 2013 03:01am

This is a classic example of Pakistani society. Does not matter what party comes in power, these families always have a family member, in each party, and that is the reason nothing have changed and nothing will change.

NASAh (USA) Jul 29, 2013 06:06am

If a life time cricket player Imran Khan can claim a Master degree in politics -- so can Ms. Malik

zafar Jul 29, 2013 06:20am

Talking of the Nawab of KalaBagh! This was only to be expected from his clan and as for Imran Khan Saheb we cannot easily forget his attitude when he was the captain . Democracy is about a mindset and not about getting poor people to vote for those only desire is to grab as much power as possible.

JAK Jul 29, 2013 09:07am

How come one court declares DASTI having a Fake degree and other court allows him to contest the election.?The issue of FAKE degree is cause of SHAME for our HEC as well as for our courts.

JAK Jul 29, 2013 09:11am

@iftikhar khan: What a shameful comment about Imran Khan.No politrical party leader check any persons degree before they join the party.If Imran Khan give ticket after knowing some one has fake degree than your comment was justified.

JAK Jul 29, 2013 09:12am

@Kaiser: You must be taking about PML N.

FJ Siddiqui Jul 29, 2013 11:44am

PTI is political a party, not an scrutinizing institution. It works under the rules and regulations of the government and complies with every law of the land. Anyone can join. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty. Once proven guilty will be reprimanded by the law and dealt according to the party policy.

Despite this party tries utmost to have as honest people as available in Pakistan and wish to join the party. Party is just a couple of years old and progressing fast. PTI has acknowledged problems and has plans in progress to fix them in time to come.

Being in PTI is different from being in any other party because you have to pay back if you do anything wrong! Doesn't matter which family, tribe or clan one belongs to. No personal gains. Period.

It would be much better that all honesty loving friends who have commented below (as evident from the comments) join PTI and help improve the party. PTI wishes and is striving to get better, does not shun better people.

Kamran Khan Jul 29, 2013 11:56am

@Kaiser: How many more where there before that were supported by PTI? And lets not forget fake degree or no degree is no longer the issue for contesting election that was a stunt of the past by Musharaf. Who himself was a matriculate.

Sheran Jul 29, 2013 12:25pm

Her beautiful face is the sufficient qualification bestowed by Nature.

zain Jul 29, 2013 12:28pm

Problem is actually every party wants leadership through any means, they just don't care. Tell me is Imran Khan not familiar with this issue of fake degree of Ayla, why is he promoting her if he is a honest leader? To we innocent people HONEST is the one who we don't know or who he hides his wrong-doings smartly.

Sameer Jul 29, 2013 01:32pm

@jamshed bashir: Last i read, the requirement for a degree has been lifted.

Though i do think, we need real educated people in the parliament to understand and solve the problems of the people of Pakistan. How can an uneducated minister understand the complexities of running a ministry?

Only politics for your own benefit is not enough to run the country.

People assume that if I elect someone in my area, he will get us jobs and make us all rich. That is not the purpose of the election. That person represents your benefits on the national or provincial level, far from "meray betay ki norki lagwa dain sahib" politics we played till now.

Sameer Jul 29, 2013 01:36pm

@Kaiser: and PPP and PML-N is not filled with fake degree holders?? Fail!

Fida Ahmed Advocate Jul 29, 2013 02:07pm

@Kaiser: The fake degree holders or other corrupt politicians etc. have been opposed more by PTI than any other party. It will not defend this case as others have tried to do.

Fida Ahmed Advocate Jul 29, 2013 02:12pm

@iftikhar khan: Apply brakes Iftikhar. You are riding too fast. It was not in the knowledge of Imran Khan that she is having a fake degree otherwise she would not have got the PTI ticket.

Sayeed Altaf Hussein Jul 29, 2013 02:36pm

I suppose when you beautiful you can get away with any thing. But unfortunately beauty can only get you that far and nor further.

Taha Lateef Jul 29, 2013 04:47pm

@NASAh (USA): The problem is that Ayla Malik will still have to do her intermediate to claim that degree. She hasn't done that and lied about it.

arif Jul 29, 2013 05:10pm

What about the Judges from the Supreme Court? are their certificates genuine too, who is going to account for the Judges certificates in Pakistan whether Fake or Original.

ysk Jul 30, 2013 07:37am

@FJ Siddiqui:

a. Its not couple of years was founded in 90s. b. not all honest people want to join PTI.....infact more dishonest people are getting revealed everyday c. the speaker and CM in KPK are just looking after their own constituencies ...and everybody knows that , i would be amazed if IK doesnt...and he is doing jack shit about it.

In short , there is no difference...maybe u have more pretty faces in the party

zeeshan Jul 30, 2013 01:14pm

@Fida Ahmed Advocate: Runours of Ayla Fake degree have been in air for years now....Mubashir luqman so called PTI fund raiser advertiser and supporter himself going on TV to show ayla fake BA degree from Moscow yet..PTI gave her bypoll ticket....almost all Parvez khattak family member is parliament now.....and you call it a Change....LMAO