ISLAMABAD: Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Director General Bashir Memon appeared before the Supreme Court on Friday as it resumed hearing the suo motu notice of the Axact fake degree scandal.

Chief Justice Saqib Nisar asked Memon about the nature of Axact’s business and registration, to which the DG FIA informed the court that the company was registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan around July 2006 and says it exports software.

The bench was further informed that Axact operated 330 universities but they only existed on a webpage. Memon added that 70 per cent of Axact’s revenue was from online universities.

“A degree from Axact cost $5,000,” the DG FIA said, adding that it would be given within an hour.

According to the DG FIA, Axact would issue degrees on the basis of experience, prompting the chief justice to ask if he could be issued a PhD on the basis of his law experience. Memon said that based on his experience, the chief justice could be issued degrees in English and Law.

Axact executive pleads guilty in ‘diploma mill’ scam, faces 20 years in US prison

During the proceedings, the DG FIA said that Axact also had its own platform for accreditation to which the bench expressed its surprise.

The Supreme Court also ordered the high courts hearing cases related to Axact to wrap up appeals against the suspects’ acquittal within a matter of weeks.

The chief justice directed the Islamabad High Court (IHC) to decide on the government’s appeal against the suspects’ acquittal in three weeks. Similarly, the Sindh High Court (SHC) was directed to form a two-member bench next week and decide on the appeal within 15 days.

The apex court also directed the trial court in Karachi to decide on the prosecution’s plea seeking cancellation of the suspects’ bail in two weeks.

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