The recent amendment to a college rule by the Governor of Punjab and Chairman of the Aitchison Board of Governors has ignited a significant controversy.

Under the new amendment, the Governor has sanctioned a 50 percent fee waiver for students benefiting from seat reservations during their leave or absence.

This move comes in the wake of last month’s directive from Punjab Governor Balighur Rehman, which waived fees for the sons of Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Establishment Division, Ahad Cheema. The decision drew intense criticism, leading to the resignation of college principal, Michael A. Thomson. In his resignation letter, Thomson cited “prejudiced actions by Governor House” and condemned the interference as “unwarranted” and “brazen.”

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The Board of Governors (BoG) of the college recently accepted Thomson’s resignation and appointed Amina Kamran as the acting principal.

Notably, this is not the first time Thomson has resigned due to political interference. In September 2018, he tendered his resignation under pressure from political circles after taking disciplinary action against certain students. Reports at the time suggested pressure from the BoG to admit the son of former MNA Kashmala Tariq into A-levels after his expulsion.

Thomson later withdrew his resignation following visits from then-Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar and the provincial education minister, who urged him to reconsider.

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