KARACHI - Former president Asif Ai Zardari has directed the Sindh government to set up Thar Arid University and promote the solar energy-based cottage industry in the desert areas of the Tharparkar district.

Special Assistant to Chief Minister on Minority Affairs Dr Khatu Mal Jeewan, who called on Zardari at Bilawal House on Sunday, presented the proposals relating to the university and the cottage industry in Thar to the former president.

On the request of Dr Khatu Mal Jeewan, the PPP co-chairman directed the provincial government to initiate work on Thar Arid University, which should produce quality professionals and conduct research for economic development by exploring agriculture, livestock and forest potentials of the desert.

He also directed the Sindh government to weigh the idea of local cottage industry based on solar energy to provide employment to people of Thar at their doorstep.

The former president said that the PPP government in Sindh was taking special interest in development of Thar and extra funds were provided during the last nine years for various development projects.