Almost nothing in this country seems to be working to anyones satisfaction. As a result, the people are so disenchanted with the present leadership that in case another adventure takes place in Pakistan, it may not face a stiff resistance, which was expected to be mounted sometime back, especially by all those, who firmly believe in democracy and the rule of law. Pakistanis, unfortunately, are caught in a vicious circle where the threat of terrorism, devastating floods, long hours of loadshedding, astronomical price hikes and unemployment have all broken the back of the people leading the entire nation into the Dark Ages. As if that was not enough, the recent episode in which the lawyers were shown on television beating mercilessly a police constable and later a journalist, all in a reaction to the non-transfer of District and Sessions Judge Zawar Ahmed, who is known for his honesty and integrity, indicated the height of insecurity and lawlessness prevailing in the country. During their brazen acts of violence, some of the lawyers even broke the windowpane of the LHC Chief Justices courtroom; an action that is unthinkable anywhere in the civilised world. Meanwhile, the police, who took their turn and savaged the lawyers, arrested a few of them on charges that went beyond the offence, which they had committed. The judiciary immediately bailed them out, acting within the orbit of law. The time may have come that some of the lawyers need to be taught a lesson that will deter them from indulging in such an activity again, which has become quite frequent and is, thus, alarming. Undoubtedly, it has now become a routine that lawyers dare to abuse the magistrates and civil judges, who refuse to grant them relief. In certain cases, even female judges had to face verbal abuse from the lawyers, who seem to be on a rampage with no cure in sight. This is, indeed, creating serious problems for an already beleaguered country. Meanwhile, Pakistans political leadership instead of uniting were busy playing politics, which did not help to resolve the issue, but aggravated it further. It was not very heartening to find out that some senior members in the federal government had blamed the Punjab government for encouraging the violent acts of the lawyers, who, according to them, belonged to the PML-N. Likewise, some senior members in the Punjab government had alleged that the hooliganism shown by the protesting lawyers was the result of the 'grants distributed by Federal Law Minister Baber Awan to the bar councils across the country. In addition, several well known lawyers had rightly condemned the situation, besides the brutality perpetuated by the black coats. In fact, they were quite disturbed at the growing trend that should be snubbed as early as possible. This, however, does not mean that the other party, i.e. the police, can be absolved of all responsibility in the ugly scenes which were being witnessed for the last few days in Lahore. The police, which are quite notorious for overstepping the law, besides being hopelessly inefficient and corrupt, registered cases and applied certain clauses that exceeded the level of offence committed by the lawyers. It also resorted to the use of overwhelming force that could have been avoided. Although the present Police Chief in Lahore is, fortunately, a man known for his integrity and has managed to bring about some positive changes in the force, yet he will have to act swiftly and decisively, if the overall law and order situation or the handling of issues, like sectarian violence and the lawyers agitation, is to be managed in a purely professional way. According to latest reports, the superior judiciary has accepted the lawyers demand and appointed a new District and Sessions Judge, Justice Suhail Nasir, which has allowed civility to return to our society. We are sure that the judiciary is capable of putting in place a system would not only cater to the legitimate demands of the lawyers, but will also make them behave properly in future. Also, it is expected that all the democracy-loving forces would rally around one another, to save democracy and the rule of law. And to do this, it is important that they refrain from political point-scoring and use their influence to ensure that none of these ugly scenes that are witnessed routinely, in different parts of the country, are repeated. Indeed, the dignity of the courts and the lawyers should be restored to a point where they command the respect that is due to both the institutions. And if some of the lawyers persist with their uncouth behaviour, then the government, the judiciary and their colleagues should ensure that all those, who are on the wrong side of the law, will receive punishment as enshrined in the countrys constitution. The writer is a freelance columnist. Email: zarnatta@hotmail.com