THE DIZZYING AXACT SCANDAL NONPLUSES MANY STUDENTS. Not just that some of my very good classmates lost their jobs, but also that some students can't get the hang of what keeps happening in their country. Some former-employee students are into denial. As I look around, I see a blinding scene of so many girls and boys losing their authenticity, originality and sense of self.

Still however, I find everyone better than me. One night I got my conscience nagging at me: “The person you’re becoming is not the person you want to be. You’re starting to lose the respect that you had for yourself.” As disturbing as it was, I was glad to be at least capable of pin pointing detraction. The fire to learn must not extinguish.

Quite worrying is the fact if people could go to any length, in an attempt to achieve the monetary targets, becoming defensive to protect their frayed dreams, they would grow up to wreak havoc. I did a double take at this behavior as it incarnated the corporate and government firms’ behavior in my country and all around the world. How is it that the multinationals operating in Pakistan keep their practices and the responsibilities towards society in check in the race of profit making.

In order to stem the despicable practices in business world, one must learn to be upright in the personal world. At the end of the day, the only and true source of happiness is your own values. But we must not become complacent. Complacency eats up your special character.

As the New York Times' exposé revealed the involvement of Axact in giving out fake degrees, it's important to accept that a newspaper would not refrain from telling the truth, especially when a company is becoming big. The bigger you become, the more eyes on you. Automatically, a duty of modelling behavior rests upon the organisation from which it can't escape.


Shortly after Malik Omaid, a Pak Tea House blogger rounded up mockery results from Twitter, Axact threatened to sue the blog if the blog owner didn’t immediately take down the slanderous links. There’s something frantic about Axact that I hadn’t noticed before. Raza Rumi, the blog owner who was served with a nine-point legal notice by the Axact lawyers, has referred to the act as bullying and a breach of the freedom of speech principles. The blog has also reached out to the global online community for help in warding off the unlawful threat.

Much to the blog’s relief, New York Times published the voice of free speech advocates in Pakistan, without siding with any party which is what an unbiased newspaper must do in times of scandals and confusion.


In my homeland, nobody ever resigns. All problems are presumed to be the result of someone else’s fault. A Huffington Post writer related that when a former railway minister was besieged by curious media that asked whether he was going to resign or not, the minister responded: “Why would I resign?” Thwarting the questions, he continued to justify “I was not the train driver.” Not a tinge of leadership is witnessed in people holding the most sophisticated positions. This only accentuates the reason that leadership must be taught earlier at home and at school.

Nonetheless, Pakistani journalists are becoming headlines for their resignations after finding out that their employer was involved in the issuing of fake degree. One newspaper has reported Axact “running the world’s largest fake diploma mill.”

The company immediately turned down the charges by regarding it a conspiracy theory by an outside newspaper to defame Pakistan. Many supporters came into a defensive position by saying “So what? Many companies in the world do it! Why are we being caught for bringing money into the country?” The mindset caught me off guard. The ethics and values were lost to people since when - I can't speculate. But they looked to me as if they were running into a dark alley, pursuing any path their feet could set on.

Fortunately, journalists began breaking the cliché. The very first grace step was taken by Kamran Khan who resigned from his position of Chief Editor of BOL Group. Many senior journalists soon detached themselves from the network as a mark of displeasure for their owner accumulating wealth through illegal practices.

Desperate times call for desperate corrective steps. Setbacks must be followed by bold ideas capable of turning defeat into opportunity. While in some situations the notion may appear to be a fantasy but on my occasions there are grains of possibility with it. Are the founders leaders – can they admit something? Or the risks of losing big amounts is pushing them to become compulsive liars?

To make an authentic organisation, be an authentic person first. For the business students, the Axact incident is fraught with lessons. In case you’re considering launching a global venture, make sure it sticks to international standards and ethics. In this era, you can't get away with wrong practices in the online world. You'll be scoffed.The responsibility is cumbersome.


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