I want to draw the attention of higher authorities towards the role of Utility Stores in deterioration of the economy. The world, as well as, Pakistan is facing a shortage of commodities of daily use. The rich people can cope with this exponential rise in prices but the poor are unable to make the ends meet. There are some who are unable to provide even two square meals a day for their families. In these circumstances, there is an urgent need to empower all those departments that can provide some bit of relief to the poor. The Utility Stores is one such department that has been providing commodities of daily use to the poor people of the country on subsidized rates. All previous governments recognized the importance of Utility Stores and enhanced their number till there are now about 4580 Utility Stores all over the country. The present government, being heir to the legacy of Zulfaqar Ali Bhutto Shaheed, was expected to enhance the role of the Utility Stores in serving the poor. But it is very disturbing to know that the government has intentions of ending all subsidy on Utility Stores merchandise. It will be another blow to the already suffering people. -M. AAMIR ADREES, Lahore, May 30.