No student has ever set foot in Karachi's Govt Degree College Ibrahim

KARACHI:14 July:Government Degree College Ibrahim Hyderi is one of the many ill-fated buildings that have not seen any teachers or students since its inauguration in 2012. It resembles a ‘haunted house’ and is surrounded by sewage water.

Taking advantage of its desertion, local residents not only dump the garbage inside the building, but have also stolen the furniture, doors and windows. The college has become a home for stray dogs and donkeys, as its main boundary wall has collapsed. One cannot stand inside the school for more than a minute due to the terrible stench of dead fish that emanates from every corner of the structure.

“The staff, including the principal, were appointed but have not been performing their duties,” said Kamal Shah, a local activist.
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“The work on this doomed building started in 1994. We suggested to the government not to initiate this scheme on the shore of the sea where the fish mills are located. You can experience this foul smell but the officials would not listen,” he said adding that since the school has now become non-functional, drug addicts have made it their permanent abode.

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The state-of-the-art college building comprising 25 to 30 classrooms is located on around 10 acres of land and local residents have blamed the successive governments, elected representatives and bureaucrats for ruining the educational institution.

“The then PPP MPA of the area, Haji Muzafar Shujra, had [proposed] this scheme. It took around 18 years to finish the development work,” said Ayoub Shan, a senior office bearer of the Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum, a representative organisation of fishermen. “I still remember the day when the then education minister Pir Mazharul Haq had inaugurated the college, promising to make it a model educational institution on the coastal belt of Karachi, but all went in vain,” he said, adding that they have protested and held demonstations, but no one is interested in looking into the issue. “The chief minister has declared an education emergency in the province but it looks like the CM’s statement was just a political gimmick. He should visit this place to get an idea about dealing with an education emergency,” he lamented.

PPP MPA Haji Muzafar Shujra criticised the education department and told The Express Tribune that he was ‘toothless’ because no one listened to him. “I was the MPA of Ibrahim Hyderi constituency and worked hard for the establishment of the college,” he said, adding that as soon as the PPP government was dissolved in 1996 the degree college scheme was postponed by the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz [PML-N] government. “When we came back into power in 2008, I once again took up this issue and government started construction. We finished and inaugurated the college, but unfortunately I am no longer the MPA [for the area]. No one takes this issue seriously and consequently the college scheme has now died out,” he said.

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When asked why the odd location was selected where fish mills are located he said the mills were recently constructed and when the college was built, the area was free of any sort of odours. He said since the government failed to appoint a watchman, all the furniture has been stolen.

“Even though I am not the MPA, I have been requesting education department officials to look into matter. The education minister on my request has also visited college, but no tangible result has come of it,” he said. Responding to a question about staff he said a principal was appointed at the time of the inauguration but he did not know about the other teaching staff. “I don’t even know if they are drawing salaries,” Shujra said.

PML-N MPA Shafi Jamote, who is now the elected representative of the area, called it government negligence and said, “I have also taken up this matter and written letters to the education secretary, but nothing has been done so far”.

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Despite many attempts, Education Minister Jam Mahtab Hussain Dahar was not available for comments, nor was Colleges Secretary Parvez Sehar. Meanwhile, the spokesperson for education department said the department would look into the matter.Express turbuni.