The names of five directors of Axact have been removed from the Exit Control List (ECL) on Wednesday by the Islamabad High Court (IHC).
In May 2015, the government had placed the names of Axact officials on the ECL. This was connected to the case revealed two years ago in which the company had sold fake degrees of non-chartered universities to people for a lot of money.
The firm’s Chief Executive Officer Shoaib Sheikh and Director Ayesha Shoaib were among the five people whose names were removed from the list by Athar Minal-lah, the IHC Justice.
This order has come about as a result of the failure of the interior ministry to provide a suitable lawful reason to not remove the names of these five directors from the ECL.
The FIA started investigations immediately after the New York Times published an article on fake diploma mills operation run by Axact in May 2015. Following that, the company’s top directors were charged with fraud after investigators found thousands of forged degrees and student ID cards from Karachi in a secret office owned the company. In June 2015, a Karachi court sent Sheikh and eight more people of the company on a two-day judicial remand over the fake degree case.
Later in August 2016, a district and sessions court acquitted Axact’s Shoaib Sheikh due to lack of proper evidence.
Earlier Axact company was put under thorough investigation for serious allegations over the company issuing ‘fake degrees’ to its candidates and money laundering. As new pieces of evidences surfaced, the company found itself in hot water and several arrests of those associated followed.
As per the investigations, Axact was accused of being involved in laundering of up to 6 billion rupees every year through its inland and off-shore bank accounts.