After the Indian nuclear test in 1998, the Nawaz Sharif government was caught between public sentiment and the dangers to the economy. Benazir Bhutto arrived in Pakistan from abroad on May 19 and immediately started exploiting the public sentiment to pressurize Nawaz Sharif. Her first statement was that a weak Nawaz Sharif was a threat to the security of the country. Thereafter, heading meetings of the APC on a daily basis she kept piling up the pressure, demanding that the government go tit-for-tat against India, among many other demands. Along with her many statements in the press, she was shown sitting with Gauhar Ayub Khan who had gone to reassure her that the government fully respected the views of the Opposition. In a public meeting she threw her bangles at the crowd asking Nawaz Sharif to wear them if he could not stand up to India. Finally the government was given a deadline of May 30 when it would be toppled. This was no empty threat given the public sentiment. On the morning of May 28, Bill Clinton phoned Nawaz Sharif for the third time, asking him to desist from conducting nuclear tests in return for financial and security guarantees by USA. Nawaz Sharif told him that no purpose would be served if he agreed with him because his government would be toppled in two days time. Within hours after Pakistans nuclear tests on the afternoon of May 28, CNN contacted Benazir Bhutto for her views, she said The people are euphoric, but they dont understand the economic repercussions. CNN promptly reported There is one leader in Pakistan who is against the nuclear tests. The people were not, but going by her statement, Benazir Bhutto was fully aware of the economic repercussions but still pushed Pakistan into a nuclear arms race with India. At the same time conveying to Washington that she was against the nuclear tests. Her blatant duplicity makes Benazir Bhutto fully responsible for the economic sanctions that Pakistan had to bear. The damage thus done to the economy coupled with her opposition to Kalabagh dam have stabbed the country and its 18 crore people in the back. The day the poor people find out who is actually responsible for their poverty will be the day when they will throw PPP out of power. Until then PPP's populist policies will go on ruining Pakistan's economy. KHURSHID ANWER, Lahore, August 10.