The main focus in Lahore has been the weather, which has developed pretensions of wintriness, even though the monsoon season is not yet officially over, and the pretensions were indeed based on monsoon rains, Monsoon rains may bring some relief from the heat, but mainly they are supposed to bring relief from the mugginess. They are not supposed to introduce a chill into the air, or do anything that is the least bit chilly. But with the monsoon season lasting until at least September, there is bound to be at least a reminder of winter, or at least autumn, in any rain that might fall. However, we have not been left the leisure to watch the weather, even though it is the middle of Ramazan. This Ramazan is to be devoted to a search (maybe futile) for flour and sugar, neither of which are free of the controversy they are supposed to be all the year round, let alone in Ramazan. First was the report about the MPA who objected to his chit being dishonoured, and people bearing it not being given flour out of turn. That is an ideal to which all our legislators aspire: people lining up to get stuff (any stuff, flour is just an example), and getting it only because of a legislators chit. The staff should realize that the MPA is sacred, not the line. They should realize that the legislator belongs to the ruling party, and is not some traitorous opposition person, and that the government depends on his support. And just because he is not yet a minister does not mean that his chit deserves to be ignored. And for some reason, that reminds me of the student leader who assured me that there was a merit prepared for the people recommended by the organization to which he belonged, for admission. That fits in with the philosophy of the legislator who beat up a principal for not admitting a luminary who had deigned to get a 'Gentlemans Third in the Matriculation, yet was not being admitted. Instead of working against guesses and so on, the government should work on getting legislators admitted to examinations, and being allowed to help students, but only those whose future admissions they would pursue. Its about time that legislators did something useful. Frankly, at present, legislators would not be very useful in an exam. Carry a blunt pencil, a dull sharpener or a pen without any ink, but a legislator would be of no help, not unless he could ensure the kind of facilities that a governors son once enjoyed: a room to himself, the Board Controller of Exams around to make sure he faced no hardships, free access to books, but I believe none to teachers. It was an exam after all. After that, the marks would be a mere formality. Anyway, as another legislator remarked to another principal on a similar occasion about 30 years ago, legislators only try to get admitted those who cant make it on merit. This merit thing is also exaggerated, as once upon a time, a Sindh CM once had an FA-pass admitted to a medical college on the ground (duly noted) that if he could do FA, he would be able to complete his medical studies. I dont know if the luminary completed his medical studies or not, but there have been no complaints of any patients being killed in Sindh teaching hospitals, so presumably he graduated all right. And the complaints that come up sporadically in Lahores teaching hospitals are against doctors who were admitted to medical college on merit, after doing their FSc Premedical. Its funny, but while there is very beady-eyed and close scrutiny to admission, afterwards, there doesnt seem to be any, so that it seems a licence to practice medicine is actually one to kill. No one seems to mind that, because the population (of natives) could always bear controlling. Well, lets talk a little about sugar, which disappeared as soon as the Lahore High Court set its price at Rs 45 per kilo. Its perhaps a sign of the times that the LHC saw Rs 45 a kilo as a reasonable price. Ayub Khan was toppled over a much lower price. It was perhaps also a sign of the times that the millers didnt see this as a reasonable price, and made sure that sugar disappeared from the markets. So I suppose the fastest way to get a commodity to disappear from the marketplace is to get the LHC to take an interest in its price. The main problem with sugar is that it is such a vital component in Ramazan. However, Ramazan is not just half over, but there is already speculation about Eid. Yet sugar is also vital to Eid, perhaps even more than to Ramazan itself. So it seems that this Ramazan is supposed to be devoted to getting sugar and flour, or any other commodity which the LHC might choose for considering the price thereof. This is supposed to be the price of participating in the War on Terror while living in the Third World. Our living in the Third World means that we dont deserve either flour or sugar, not even in Ramazan. Or rather, especially not in Ramazan.