A poor country is a country where the rulers are richer than the rulers of the richest countries, and the masses are poorer than the church mouse. The rulers of the rich countries envy the rulers of the poor countries, but the masses of a poor country envy the pet cats and dogs in the rich countries for whom medical care is available round-the-clock. Lately, the young doctors of our public hospitals demanded an increase in their salaries. The government dustbinned the demand. Feeling humiliated, the doctors took to the streets. According to the newspapers, many poor patients died. As a rule, only poor Pakistanis rush to the public hospitals. The rich Pakistanis rush to expensive private clinics. They believe that if a poor patient escapes death while being treated in a public hospital, it is a veritable miracle. And such miracles are very rare. Normally, the rich Pakistanis have their clinics in the West. When needing medical aid, they fly straight to the West. They firmly believe that the Pakistani doctors dont have any knowledge of the flesh with which nature has manufactured them. Moreover, they also believe that they can cheat death by getting treated by the Western doctors. Probably, death does not enjoy killing animals of the jungle. It enjoys killing human beings, who are under medical protection. Probably, death regards medicine as a challenge to its sovereignty. Man can compromise with everything barring physical pain. If someone is hungry, he can eat grass. If someone is roofless, he can sleep under the open skies. If someone can afford only tattered clothes to cover his nudity, it doesnt matter. But if someone is in pain, he cannot compromise with it. He begs to be relieved of the pain or to be killed. The doctor deals with pain. He must not himself be subjected to financial pain. The young doctors are protesting that because of the gigantic inflation their current salaries are unable to provide them a reasonably comfortable living. They must be relieved of their financial agonies. A financially comfortable doctor would try to kill his patients pain devotedly and efficiently. We cannot live with pain. Liberate the doctors from their financial worries. They would do their best to liberate the poor patient from his physical agony. Imagine a poor patient carried to a hospital shrieking and yelling with pain and leaving the hospital with all smiles. Every Westerner has a substantially longer lifespan, as compared with the lifespan of a poor citizen of a poor country. There is nothing enviable about the long lifespan of a Westerner. What is enviable is the fact that almost his entire lifespan is virtually pain-free. On the contrary, the entire lifespan of a poor citizen of a poor country is pain-ridden. Lets prepare a gradation list of the various sorts of services in the country. The medical service must occupy the top position. The doctor should be guaranteed a lifelong comfortable living so that he can devote all his energies to crushing painful diseases of the poor patients. A doctor whose financial problems are worrying him must not be expected to worry whole-heartedly about the medical problems of the poor patients. Doctors dont allow death full freedom of action. Of course, they cant conquer death. But they do their best to deprive death of its pain-inflicting power. The doctors, who have created painkillers, are great benefactors of mankind. In the West, physical pain has been almost completely conquered. Death has been deprived of its ages-old power of inflicting pain. But, unfortunately, in the poor countries this power is as furiously functional as ever. Death seems to be in league with the rulers of the poor countries. The rulers seem to have granted death full freedom to kill the masses as cruelly as it can. If in a poor country a poor patient dies medicinelessly, it is not death which kills him. It is the political system of the country, which is the real killer. Lets pray that the doctors problems are resolved by the rulers and they are not forced to return to the streets. We spend a gigantic amount of money on maintaining our provincial and federal legislatures. Just a tiny bit of this money can resolve the doctors problems. But we love our politics and detest the medical problems of the poor masses. The writer is an academic.