As reported in the media, the Karachi Stock Exchange brokers have decided to help the community on humanitarian ground, by feeding the hungry under a programme named 'Dastarkhwan'. In the beginning, they are set to provide free meals to 500 poor but subsequently the facility will be extended to 2,000 needy persons per day. The meals will be distributed at the Kikri Ground in Lyari. Charity is, no doubt, a noble cause but feeding 2,000 people a day, even if regularly, is neither going to alleviate poverty nor is it the answer to serious economic crisis the country is passing through. It will rather create a permanent class of hangers-on and beggars, waiting all the day for their bowl of morsels. That is below the dignity of man. The country has millions of underprivileged and needy people whose numbers are increasing every day due to lack of employment or poverty plain and simple. If the stockbrokers are feeling genuine pangs of sympathy for the downtrodden, they could forgo exemption on the fabulous amounts of capital gains they earn on trading of shares and offer some bit of tax on them. In this way they will not only be feeding far, far more than 2,000 poor and sharing the burden of the nation too. By not insisting on exemption on the gains from the sale of shares, they will be making a real contribution rather than a mere cosmetic show of magnanimity. -DR KAZI KHADIM HUSSAIN, Hyderabad, via e-mail, June 20.