Reports of pilferage, mismanagement and massive corruption that have eroded the once profitable state-owned corporations are disseminating widely these days through the print and electronic media. We have witnessed the rape of Pakistan Steel Mills that has been systematically robbed of its assets while the government stood by silently to let this brutality take place. This jewel of our family silver escaped a similar heist during Shaukat Aziz's tenure because of an intervention by the Supreme Court of Pakistan, which had halted its sale for a song. Pakistan Steel Mills had reserves of over Rs 17 billion a year ago in stock and cash. But its productivity has declined since to such an extent that the entire lot of steel it produced was placed at the sole disposal of a particular party at below production cost. The party made billions. When the damage was done and the beans spilled, the PM intervened to remove the chairman. PIA is another organization driven to state of insolvency by its management appointed by the present government. Despite mounting losses nearing three figures in billions, the new appointees have remained totally oblivious to the dwindling fortunes of the airline. Given the pattern established in the sad saga of Pakistan Steel Mills, the beneficiaries of PIA's impending collapse would also probably reap a rich harvest before it is handed over to the undertakers. -GULL ZEE, Paris, France, via e-mail, August 28.