Whenever the word Hawaii is mentioned, normal folks think about white sand beaches, cool drinks, surfing and snorkeling. If you are a politically-minded person you may think about Hawaii as the birthplace of the current US president, but no one would think of Hawaii as the academic destination of choice.
Honestly, if I had to spend any time in Hawaii, I would rather soak up the sun on the beach than spend it inside a stuffy library. I know that there are people who go to college in Hawaii but they must have super human discipline to concentrate on academia when waves and wind beckon them to step outdoors.
Our esteemed minister for law and parliamentary affairs, Babar Awan is these days embroiled in a fake degree scandal. Apparently his doctorate degree, obtained from a certain University of Monticello in Hawaii is fake because the said university has been declared a non-recognised and non-chartered institute by the courts in the State of Hawaii. Babar sahib, for starters, you chose to order your (fake) degree from a university named Monticello which either sounds like the name of a casino or a spaghetti sauce from southern Italy, but not the name of a centre of academic excellence. At best, it can be name of a minor character in Mario Puzo’s Godfather trilogy.
Secondly, sir, you already had perfectly respectable degrees from Punjab University for both, bachelors and masters, why did you have to order a fancy doctorate degree from the University of Monticello? Honestly, if I were the investigation officer, I wouldn’t have investigated too much had your fake degree been from average, regular-sounding universities like the University of Montana or a Florida State University, but with a name like Monticello – people were bound to get suspicious. And that is what that has brought you down sir, the name of your chosen university. Next time, pick a better name.
‘Dr’ Babar Awan is not the only one with fake university with a fancy name. International University of America in London is very popular among the parliamentarians from Baluchistan. MPA Shama Parveen Magsi and the infamous minister for postal services Mir Israr Ullah Khan Zehri (his claim to fame is his defence of burying women alive as part Baloch tradition) have so-called accredited degrees from this university. If either of them had bothered to think this through, they would have noticed that there is no room for an ‘International University of America’ in a city like London that boasts a number of top tier universities and colleges. Perhaps minister sahib was too busy defending supposed Baloch traditions – he could not possibly find the time to pursue academic excellence or to even look for a fake degree from a believable university
Mir Humayun Aziz Kurd, the federal minister for livestock chose Eire International University for his fake BBA Marketing degree. Eire is the Gaelic name of Ireland, which except for a tiny minority in Ireland, no one really uses it, but I digress. There is an unaccredited university named Irish International University but perhaps Kurd thought it would be fancier if he used the Gaelic name of the university instead of the regular English. In any case, the university is a sham and according to Wikipedia, its own honorary chancellor calls it “dodgy.”
MNA Mazhar Hayat is also a proud holder of a degree from Winona State University, USA. Unlike Monticello, this is actually a proper university – albeit with a filmi name – but the university has confirmed that Hayat’s degree is a fake. Hayat must have been a fan of Winona Ryder from those ‘Heathers’ and ‘Reality Bites’ days and when one of his henchmen asked him about his degree of choice, he asked them to get him some ‘Winona.’
Originally written for Dawn.com with a different title and the illustration is by Fieca.