The federal government will be announcing budget for the year 2010-2011 in June this year. All government employees of the country have been eyeing the budget with a hope of increase in their meager salaries. It is quite disconcerting to note that during the last ten years, inflation has doubled or tripled, especially in the consumer items are concerned. But salaries of government employees have not increased to that level during the same period. All this has adversely affected the household budget of those who subsist on a take home salary. They are constantly consumed by the worry to bridge the huge and ever widening gap between their meager, fixed salary and the spiraling prices of everything. For balancing their genuine expenses, the government employees these days borrow either from friends or family members and most find themselves trapped in the struggle to scrounge to pay off their debts every month. I hope the government would do something to show that it feels the pain faced by the citizenry and especially of those in her own pay and make an endeavor in the forthcoming budget to provide maximum relief to them. A sizable raise in their shriveling take-home salaries is a must now. This would enable them to mitigate their financial worries, help meet their genuine needs of life without borrowing money or doing corruption. -ABDUL SAMAD SAMO, Karachi, May 8.