Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) police on Sunday claimed to have foiled a terror bid targeting a girls' school in Ghizer district and arrested 13 suspected terrorists.

According to Deputy Inspector General Gohar Nafees, all the arrested suspects are students of a local seminary run by a local named Inayatullah.

He said that police had also recovered explosive material and petrol during their raid on the seminary late on Saturday night, adding that the plot to target the school and college was hatched at the seminary.

He claimed that the suspects were planning to blow up the school ─ which is part of the Agha Khan Schools network ─ using bombs on Saturday night. Ahsanullah who was heading the 'terrorist group' has been arrested, the DIG said.

DIG Nafees said the 'terrorists' had confessed to their involvement in blowing up several schools in Diamer in 2016-17.

He added that the arrested suspects had also confessed to their involvement in failed attempts to target Prince Kareem Agha Khan and former Governor Pir Karam Ali Shah in a bomb attack.

Schools torched

Earlier this month, at least 15 schools were fully or partially damaged in Diamer district. At least one suspected terrorist involved in destroying the schools has been killed whereas some two dozen others have been taken into custody during crackdowns in the area.

Out of the total schools affected, at least 12 were targeted over a course of 48 hours.

In 2004, half a dozen girls' schools had been torched in one go. Girls' schools were also targeted by extremist forces in 2011 and 2015.

Some traditions and extremism are main reasons for local resistance to female education in the district, which has the lowest literacy rate in Gilgit-Baltistan.

According to Alif Ailaan’s Pakistan District Education Rankings 2017, GB received a score of 63.18, getting fourth position in the list of eight Pakistan territories with respect to quality of education.

However, Diamer is the lowest-ranking district in terms of quality of education, with a score of 36.37, and among the 10 lowest-ranking districts in Pakistan.

There are 244 government schools in the district, about 83 per cent of which are primary level, 10.6pc middle schools and 6pc high schools. There are no higher secondary schools in the district. Of the government schools, 156 are for boys and 88 are for girls, according to Alif Ailaan.

Of the 16,800 students enrolled in government schools, only 20pc or 3,479 are girls.

Opinion

Pakhtuns, state and nationalism
Updated 15 Oct 2021

Pakhtuns, state and nationalism

They have lost the most in the ‘war on terror’. Why then is the PM painting Pakhtuns as a nation of holy warriors?
Unity of faith
15 Oct 2021

Unity of faith

There is unity in the apparent diversity of faith traditions.
The people’s page
Updated 15 Oct 2021

The people’s page

Many are disillusioned with the ‘Naya Pakistan’ narrative.
The next 22 months
Updated 14 Oct 2021

The next 22 months

There are at least 11 key challenges which the government will face in the run-up to the next polls.

Editorial

No need for NAB
Updated 15 Oct 2021

No need for NAB

THE National Accountability Bureau has sent instructions to its regional bureaus to stop processing cases that fall...
Forced conversions
Updated 15 Oct 2021

Forced conversions

THE majoritarian view has once again prevailed in the matter of bringing about legislation against forced conversion...
15 Oct 2021

Transgender rights

MEMBERS of the transgender community in the country are often at the receiving end of both their families’ and...
One big mess
14 Oct 2021

One big mess

At its core, the tension is the result of blurring of institutional boundaries witnessed since the PTI government came to power.
Tareen’s admission
Updated 14 Oct 2021

Tareen’s admission

PRIME MINISTER Imran Khan’s estranged friend Jahangir Khan Tareen has finally confirmed what has long been alleged...
14 Oct 2021

Dengue outbreak

DENGUE cases continue to rise at an alarming rate in several cities of KP and Punjab. According to data provided by...