ISLAMABAD: Punjab Governor Malik Muhammad Rafique Rajwana, without going through the original record as well as ignoring key findings of the Anti-Corruption Establishment, Punjab, validated the controversial BA degree of Abdul Qadir Gilani, son of the former prime minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, The News has learnt.
Abdul Qadir Gilani approached Punjab governor, who also hails from his home town, Multan, to reconsider the decision of the PU’s Syndicate dated June 29, 2014 wherein his results and degree was quashed after charge of impersonation proved against him. The charge of impersonation proved against him on the report of Punjab Forensic Science Agency (PFSA) which had pointed out that handwriting on answer sheets and junior Gilani’s handwriting specimen was different.
The governor after detailed arguments of the complainant, Abdul Qadir and the respondent PU, set aside the Syndicate’s order observing, “When the original answer sheets were available as primary evidence as defined under Article 73 of the Qanun-e-Shahadat Order, 1984, can secondary evidence, as defined under Article 74 ibid, be sent to the handwriting expert? The answer can be found in the provision of Article 75 of the Ordinance of 1984 ibid which envisages that documents must be proved by primary evidence except in the cases hereinafter mentioned.”
He further observed, “Whole of the record is silent that why the original answer sheets were not sent to the forensic science agency for comparison. Hence, withholding the primary evidence and sending the photostat copies being the secondary evidence for comparison of the handwriting of the petitioner is against the above mentioned provisions of law.”
The governor also noticed that the evidence of handwriting expert itself showed that it was far short from the definite conclusion which, he termed, a ‘weak type of evidence’.
It is important to note here that the governor, who questioned the quashement of Gilani’s degree on the report of PFSA which was based on the photo copies of his answer sheets, didn’t bother to seek original record (answer sheets) of Gilani from Punjab ACE to verify the PFSA report. He, instead, passed the subject order on the basis of the available record which he had already termed a poor evidence.
It may further be noted here that the governor also ignored the outcome of the probe of Punjab ACE which had concluded that PU administration and Abdul Qadir Gilani were involved in forgery, fraud, etc in the subject degree case. The ACE also sought permission from Punjab chief minister to register a criminal case against junior Gilani, Mujahid Kamran and others involved in the case. The permission is still awaited.
Initially, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) probed the matter of fake degree of junior Gilani a few years back but citing jurisdiction issue, the case was transferred to Punjab ACE.
A senior ACE official, seeking anonymity, told The News that the governor’s order had nothing to do with their enquiry as they were investigating the criminal side of the case. “We have already completed the probe and fixed the responsibility on the accused persons.”
To a question, the ACE official further opined that the governor should have contacted them for obtaining original record of the case before passing the controversial order in favour of Gilani.
Talking to The News, the then PU VC Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran said on the report of PFSA, the PU Syndicate had quashed the result card and degree of Abdul Qadir Gilani in 2014. To a question why the PU administration didn’t forward the original answer sheets of junior Gilani to PFSA, Dr Kamran said those sheets were in the possession of FIA at that time.
When contacted, Punjab Governor Rafique Rajwana said he wouldn’t comment on the issue because he had passed a judicial order on the subject matter. When asked to comment how he passed such a controversial order, the governor responded, “I’m not bound to comment on it.”