The Supreme Court (SC) has ordered the Higher Education Commission (HEC) to close all illegal campuses of the universities.

A three-member bench headed by Justice Umar Ata Bandial heard the case related to the non-issuance of degrees to the students from the private universities’ illegal campuses.

The Supreme Court (SC) maintained that the authorities concerned should formulate a procedure to issue degrees to the students passed from the illegal campuses.

The top court directed the Higher Education Commission (HEC) to ensure the implementation of its policies. The SC judge remarked that no compromise will be made on the provision of higher education to the young generation.

The federal and provincial governments have been ordered to assist the HEC in maintaining qualitative and standard education.

The top court questioned whether private universities are allowed to establish their campuses outside the premises. The HEC had clarified that the universities were not permitted to establish campuses outside their premises and issued alerts to the private varsities in this regard, the top court maintained.

In its order, the apex court maintained that HEC in its stance sought assistance from the authorities concerned to stop the illegal activities of the varsities, however, the centre and provincial governments had not helped the commission.

The lawyer Ali Zafar told the court that the court had ordered the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to take action against the private universities. Justice Umar Ata Bandial remarked that HEC has powers, hence, there was no need to ask NAB for conducting an investigation.

Justice Bandial remarked that the top court will issue an order to the Centre to amend the laws if the Higher Education Commission (HEC) is a weak state institution.

Ali Zafar said that the students had moved to the Lahore High Court (LHC) to get their degrees where the campuses of the private universities were declared ‘illegal’.

Justice Umar Ata Bandial remarked that IHC gave its verdict on the basis of facts.