Aitchison College Principal Michael A Thomson (left) and former adviser to the prime minister on establishment Ahad Cheema. — X/@kayzafar/@MurtazaViews/File
Aitchison College Principal Michael A Thomson (left) and former adviser to the prime minister on establishment Ahad Cheema. — X/@kayzafar/@MurtazaViews/File
  • Punjab governor ordered to waive off fees of Cheema’s sons. 
  • Principal says he will step down from position on April 1.
  • Says there is no room for politics and nepotism in college.

LAHORE: Aitchison College Principal Michael A Thomson Monday tendered his resignation after Punjab Governor Balighur Rehman ordered to waive the fees of Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Establishment Ahad Cheema’s sons. 

According to Geo News, the resignation came after Cheema’s wife had requested the Punjab governor to waive off the fees of her sons. Following her request, the governor issued an order after which their fees was waived off for three years.

In a letter issued to the college staff, Thomson said that he will be stepping down from the principal’s post on April 1 and will not be playing any role in the management and admissions process. 

“I did not intend to leave Aitchison College but now I have no other choice. Throughout my time as principal, I have done my very best to protect the school’s reputation while extending compassion to those in need,” said Thomson in the letter. 

“However, there is a crucial difference between this pursuit and blatant policy manufacturing to accommodate certain individuals because such people simply insist on preferential treatment,” the letter said. 

The picture shows a letter written by Aitchison College Principal Michael A Thomson. — Provided by the reporter
The picture shows a letter written by Aitchison College Principal Michael A Thomson. — Provided by the reporter 

The letter mentioned that the college’s policy was undermined to “favour some people”, adding that there is no room for “politics and nepotism” in the college. 

The principal added that over the past year, “prejudiced actions by the Governor House have contributed to a breakdown of governance and management”. 

“It seems incredulous to me, and quite possibly to most other people, that a school so successful can be subjected to such unwarranted interference and brazen directives. A well-intentioned foreigner does not venture to another country with less than pure intent, and nor should that person act in any way to encourage or facilitate what he considers to be wrong,” he wrote.

Thompson further added the letter from the Governor’s House “exonerates Mr and Mrs Cheema from paying a tuition fee under college policy for a guaranteed place after a long leave and all future parents’ requests to a maximum of three years’ leave”. 

Moreover, the principal also cancelled the admission of the kids after they failed to join the school once their leaves ended. However, the governor had cancelled the principal’s order to cancel their admissions. 

Cheema’s sons were not studying there: Tarar

Information Minister Attaullah Tarar said that Cheema’s sons were not studying in Aitchison College for three years. 

“When you kids are not studying [in a college] then you are not bound to pay the fees,” he added. 

Tarar said that the Cheema family wrote an application as per rules and laws, according to which, Cheema’s kids were not studying the college.

“A wrong picture is being painted and [truth will come out] after reviewing the report,” he added. “It is not like that the kids were studying there and they were not paying the fees.”

Tarar said that Cheema’s children had shifted to Islamabad and were studying there. He added that the governor made the decision as per the law. 

Principal took 40 lacs as salary: governor

Meanwhile, the governor said that Cheema had shifted to Islamabad due to his posting for one year, adding that his kids were not able to attend the college. 

The governor said that a request was made to waive off the fees for the classes they did not attend. 

“The principal was receiving 40 lacs as salary and we have initiated an audit of his salary,” said the Punjab governor. 

He added that the principal used to have more than 100 offs a year and he adopted this tactic to avoid any inquiry. 



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