PESHAWAR: As many as 179 militancy-hit schools - predominantly those for girls – have been rebuilt in different districts of Pakistan's Malakand Division, one of the most affected areas during the Taliban militancy. The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Provincial Disaster Management Authority has rebuilt 179 out of 182 militancy-hit schools in Malakand Division, The Express Tribune reported.
The schools – predominantly those for girls – were targetted by militants from 2008 to 20011 in the region. The Provincial Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Settlement Authority, a supporting organisation of PDMA, started reconstruction work with financial support of US Agency for International Development (USAID) in 2009 and have so far managed to rebuild 179 out of 182 schools in different districts for both male and female students, the paper said.
Citing the PDMA documents, it said a total of 134 schools were destroyed in Swat, 21 in Lower Dir, 7 in Bunner and the remaining in Upper Dir and other areas of the Malakand Division. Out of these schools, 108 were rebuilt under USAID-KP reconstruction programme, according to the documents. Similarly, around 47 schools were reconstructed under a UAE assistance programme, 12 under a chief minister's special package, while another 12 were restructured with the support of different non-profit organisations, it said.
PDMA Media Coordinator Taimur Ali said that work on 179 schools had been completed and they were handed over to the provincial government. However, he said construction work was underway on remaining 60 militancy and flood-hit schools under USAID assistance "which will complete by June this year".
Pakistan Army launched an operation in June 2014 to wipe out militant bases in the tribal regions and bring an end to an insurgency that has killed thousands of people since 2004.