In this photograph taken from a Pakistani army helicopter on May 20, 2016, empty houses whose roofs have been removed by the army during an operation are seen in the South Waziristan tribal district on Pakistan's border with Afghanistan. House after house flicks by hundreds of feet beneath a military helicopter, many distinguished by one arresting feature: their roofs have been removed by the army to allow an "aerial view" of militants who may take refuge there. South Waziristan was once a stronghold of the Pakistani Taliban, but the military says the region in the country's mountainous northwest has been cleared of its last militant stronghold. / AFP PHOTO / SHAUKAT KHATTAK / TO GO WITH AFP STORY: Pakistan unrest Waziristan military operation, FOCUS by Shaukat Khattak

South Waziristan: 130 Schools for Girls Now Running

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Lakki Marwat: At least 130 of 290 government schools for girls have been made functional in South Waziristan district to facilitate local students. According to Ghulam Fatima, the district education officer of South Waziristan, informed Daily Dawn that the schools had been non-functional for a long time. She said that after assuming charge of her office, she took it as a challenge and with the support of tribal elders made all such schools operational.

She said that more than 8,000 students were enrolled in the state-run schools in the current year. She pledged to curb absenteeism and ensure teaching and learning activities in public sector schools in the district. “The heads of schools involved in keeping the campuses closed on one pretext or other will face stern departmental action,” she added.

Ms Fatima said that more than Rs21 million was deducted from the salaries of truant employees. “About 30 employees were removed or forced retired. We have also demoted two officials and stopped annual increments of 246 staffers on disciplinary grounds to control absenteeism,” she added.

Acknowledgement: Published in Daily Dawn on 19 December 2023

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