KARACHI, Oct 12: Amid guarded feedback from sceptics and political rivals, the Sindh government carved out brand-new Sujawal district from Thatta on Saturday with the claim that the move had no political reason as was propagated by opposition politicians.
A notification issued on Saturday by the provincial revenue department said a new district encompassing Sujawal, Kharochhan (barring 10 dehs), Mirpur Bathoro, Jaati and Shah Bunder talukas would be Sindh’s 28th district to be called Sujawal.
Its headquarters will be located in Sujawal taluka.
The new district has been established under Section 6 of the Sindh Land Revenue Act, 1967.
Thatta, area-wise among the largest districts of the province, will have half the size in its new boundaries, comprising Thatta, Mirpur Sakro, Keti Bunder and Ghorabari talukas.
Besides, dehs Bablo, Betri, Sookbi, Babyo, Dolo Sholani, Bet Maehar, Mir Wari, Thare Wari, Darsi and Mor Chabuda of Kharochhan taluka have also been included in Thatta.
People in the area had been seeking the status of a district for Sujawal for many years, which had been delayed in the past mainly because of political reasons.
The influential Shirazi brothers who had been at the forefront of the demand had lately backtracked conceding that it was wrong to dissect Thatta district as Sujawal had always been popularly believed as Thatta’s Siamese twin.
“We were wrong in the past when we demanded a separate district and now we are politically mature and realise that such a move is counterproductive and unviable,” Shafqat Hussain Shah Shirazi, head of his family-based group and former nazim of Thatta district, lately told a moot.
They opposed the new district on Saturday after the notification alleging that the new district limits had political dimensions rather than public service.
“The PPP has a certain agenda. They have a plan to politically subdue their political opponents and increase their political clout, which has never been in the past,” a source close to the Shirazi group vaguely said.
A spokesman for provincial minister for local government Syed Owais Muzaffar quoted him as saying that the provincial government’s order followed a popular demand for a new district.
“Thatta was a very large district, which made it difficult for the people in remote areas to come to district headquarters to help resolve their matters. Now we have two districts separated by the river and both are fairly accessible to their inhabitants,” said Mr Muzaffar.
Most Sindhi nationalist parties had opposed the division of Thatta district. They largely associated this move by the PPP in the light of its plans to establish a new city, Zulfikarabad, comprising various talukas of Thatta — and now — Sujawal districts.