Aitchisonians and parents stage demo in support of principal

A protest erupted outside the Governor House as Aitchison College students and parents rallied against alleged pressure on Principal Michael A Thomson and expressed solidarity with him over the fee waiver issue involving Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Ahad Cheema’s sons.

Following the controversy, Mr. Thomson resigned after differences with the Governor House regarding the college’s fee waiver policy. Governor Balighur Rehman approved Thomson’s 28-day ex-Pakistan leave amidst the turmoil. Meanwhile, Cheema declined the fee waiver for his sons, accusing the principal of instigating the controversy and rejecting an undisclosed deal.

Thomson’s resignation cited interference in college management. Protestors demanded an end to political interference in Aitchison College affairs, while the Aitchison College Old Boys Association (ACOBA) and alumni opposed the governor’s fee waiver order, urging adherence to governance norms.

The PTI spokesperson condemned government interference, calling for an investigation. Amidst this, Amna Kamran and Khalid Noon Barsar will oversee administrative affairs during Thomson’s leave. Cheema, in a letter to the Punjab governor, praised the equitable fee waiver policy but declined it for his children, citing unwarranted controversy and alleging the principal’s prior offers of private relief.

Despite supporting the policy change, Cheema urged against withdrawing it under pressure, emphasizing its future benefits for students and parents.

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