The University of Management and Technology (UMT) has been fined with PKR 5 million by the Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) for making false claims regarding their ranking and accreditation. The claims made by UMT are in direct violation of Section 10 of the Competition Act, 2010.
The PR department of UMT, in response to HEC fine, when approached by TechJuice said,
“The decision of Competition Commission of Pakistan is totally baseless and without appreciating actual facts and circumstances of the case. This is based on a concocted story. University has W4 ranking and is ranked among top 500 universities in South Asia by QS ranking. We believe that institutions cannot grow and flourish without offering excellence and quality education. We have legal remedies to challenge the decision of Competition Commission of Pakistan which is passed beyond the exercising legal authority. And we will win as truth can never be defeated.”
CCP on the basis of information received, conducted an inquiry on the university, to check if they are misleading people about their achievements. To which the commission later concluded that UMT has made multiple false claims in their prospectus and other promotional material about regarding its ranking and accreditation, to lure new students into taking admission in their university and in-turn make huge profits.
These false claims compromised the future of thousands of students and also caused major financial losses to their parents who thought they were sending their children’s to a highly ranked institute. Moreover, these claims could also hurt the businesses of other affiliated parties.
Below mentioned are few of the false claims that UMT made in their prospectus;
- Top 10 in South Asia and best accredited in Pakistan
- UMT School of Business and Economics (SBE) is the only business school in Pakistan that has SAQS Accreditation by the Association of Management Development Institutions in South Asia (AMDISA),
- UMT is also at the top as per HEC ranking in the General Category (medium sized) of private sector institutions in Punjab in a row since last year
- Ranked as 2nd best by HEC* and Top 10 in South Asia
- The best ranked and best accredited School of Business and Economics (SBE) at the University of Management and Technology.
After completion of the inquiry, a show cause notice was issued to the university. UMT during the trial failed to justify their claims and extended an unconditional apology to the court, and promised that they will not make any false claims in the future.
Meanwhile, CCP’s Prosecutor argued in the court that the US courts have settled the students of (now shattered) Trump University with $25 million, so UMT must also be fined with a heavy penalty. CCP under the Competition Act is directed to ensure economic efficiency, free competition in all areas of commercial and economic activity, and to protect consumers from falling prey to any deceptive marketing.