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BAHAWALPUR, Sept 13: Former PML-N MPA Haji Zulfiqar Ali was arrested on Friday from the district and sessions court in his fake degree case.

His arrest orders were issued by District and Sessions Judge Rasheed Qamar after Assistant Controller of Examinations Ali Ahmed of the Sindh University, Jamshoro, Hyderabad, gave a statement.

Dawn learnt from sources at the divisional office of the Election Commission that Ali Ahmed appeared with relevant examination record and stated the degree submitted by the accused did not belong to him but to another Zulfiqar.

Following court orders, the police handcuffed the accused and took him into custody and shifted him to the New Central Jail here.

The judge fixed Sept 21 for next hearing of the case.

On contacting, Zulfiqar’s counsel Advocate Qazi Belal Ahmed said he had applied for a copy of the detailed judgment and did not know when he would receive it. Later, he stopped responding to phone calls.

Assistant Election Commissioner Ghulam Farid, from the office of Bahawalpur division deputy election commissioner, told Dawn that so far the court had not given him an official copy of the judgment, adding it was expected on Saturday.

Haji Zulfiqar Ali was elected MPA on a PML-N ticket from PP-271 (Bahawalpur city) in the 2008 general election. After a short while, he got involved in a fake degree scandal and a case was initiated against him during his five-year tenure in the Punjab Assembly. However, he was lucky to have completed his period as a lawmaker.

The former MPA had again applied for a PML-N ticket to contest elections for a provincial assembly seat from the same city this May, but was denied by the party leadership. He contested as an independent candidate and lost.

PETITION: An election petition was filed against Minister of State for Education Baleeghur Rehman, who was elected MNA from NA-185, Bahawalpur, in May.

According to the petition, the minister had been summoned for hearing before the election tribunal, headed by Justice Kazim Ali Malik retired, on Oct 1.

Defeated candidate Farooq Azam Malik, a joint candidate of the PTI and Nawab Salahuddin’s Bahawalpur National Awami Party, challenged his election.

Meanwhile, in a petition filed by defeated candidate Muhammad Ashraf Khan Rind against MPA Ahmed Yar Hinjra of PP-251, Muzzafargarh, evidence was recorded by the tribunal on Thursday.

The next date of hearing was fixed on Oct 1.