KARACHI  - The Sindh Assembly has heard that 54 schools have been established in a single village of Thar, mostly non-functional.

Ruling PPP MPA Dr Khato Mal Jewan informed the house Monday that the previous government of chief minister Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim approved these schools as part of “political gimmick”.

Jewan is elected on reserved seats for religious minorities while Arbab is an MPA who has not attended a single session of the current Sindh Assembly.

Talking of lack of facilities at theses schools, the ruling party lawmaker urged the education minister to “open the new education institutions in the area”. Education Minister Nisar Ahmed Khuhro also admitted that 54 schools had been established in the village to gain political mileage. However, he said these schools could not be closed down. The minister did not clarify if the teachers of these schools were drawing salary.

On the demand to open new schools in the area, the education minister mentioned a policy that barred opening new schools as the government wanted to make functional the closed schools. He, however, said that he was unsure if these schools would be closed down.

He further said there was a village, where two or three houses exist with few meters distance but 54 school buildings with one room in each school was constructed there by the then government of former Chief Minister Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim in Thar area. He made it clear that each primary school must be constructed at a distance of one and half kilometre, which principle was violated by then government.

Earlier, MQM legislators walked out of Sindh Assembly in protest against the 'illegal' detention and torture on its activist, Fahaz Aziz, who was arrested Saturday night during his wedding.

According to INP, The MQM activist was nabbed from Shah Faisal Town area on charges of his alleged involvement in criminal activities.  Following the MQM walkout, Sindh Information Minister Sharjeel Inam Memon told the assembly that the government of Pakistan People's Party (PPP) did not believe in politics of discrimination. 

He also took exception to criticism on targeted operation in Karachi, saying the ongoing raids against criminals should not be labeled as 'discriminated'.