A confident Prime Minister Gilani debunked the talk of 'change when he met journalists at his Lahore residence on Sunday. As his attention was drawn to the 13th October deadline set by the Supreme Court about the implementation of its verdict on NRO (the reopening of cases in Swiss courts), with the government apparently making no move towards that end, he asserted that both the judiciary and the army were on the same page with the government in protecting democracy. There is no disagreement; we all want to strengthen the present system. Conspiracy theorists would fail in the presence of strong institutions. But the question is, would Mr Gilanis observations put an end to the growing speculation, both in the political circles and the media within Pakistan, and among knowledgeable quarters abroad, about an impending change? For quite some time, reports of unease have been circulating in the Western capitals, particularly in Washington, about the governments mismanagement - the case of belated and inadequate response to the challenge of floods is one such glaring instance - and the unending perception of corrupt practices of the ruling classes. Serious thinking about successors as well is a daily phenomenon. Yet, in Mr Gilanis opinion the government has not run out of options. On the other hand, Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif, perhaps, feels that the only way out of the cul-de-sac, where the ruling leadership now finds itself stuck, is through a prompt and strict obedience of the Supreme Court judgements. However, there is little doubt that an overwhelming majority of Pakistanis do not relish the thought of an army coup, in the event of a change in government; they want the democratic system to take root, but not the sort of democracy that runs the country at the moment. The people earnestly desire a democratic government that is frugal and watchful of national interests, rather than bartering them away in the false hope of perpetuating its rule. It should be attending, on a priority basis, to their basic needs of an easy availability of essential goods at affordable rates; security; public transport; health; and education. The Prime Ministers hint at trimming the size of the cabinet is a welcome sign, but that leaves a vast field of inaction where he and his team would have to work hard to justify his assumption of an unchallenged continuation in power. He would do well also to pay heed to Mian Shahbazs counsel; for unless court verdicts are honoured, the verbalisation of respect for the judiciary would not go down well with the nation.