In Pakistan, the inflation has been an untamable monster and has remained there since inception but the surges we have witnessed in a year or so are relentless and unbearable for the downtrodden people. It appears as if the Pakistani nation is being swindled in a tactful way. The maneuverings are visible. Every time there is a great surge in prices through an artfully-orchestrated artificial shortage of sugar, wheat or floor and petroleum products, then there passes some time during which there is great hullabaloo among the masses and the emergence of an acute need of 'good governance. The latest example of sugar is a case in point. The sugar prices have taken the quantum leap not for the first time but the current set of circumstances gives a strong sense of dj vu. The prices have risen from 38 rupees per kg in early 2008 to 110 in recent days but the good-governance based performance has fixed it to 72 which appears to serve the purpose of all those who were with the same ulterior motive. But, to be honest, it seems far from the wonderlands of great good-governance. The ground reality is the bitter truth that that good-governance has been, and is, elusive to Pakistan and today. We are actually the victims of bad governance. If sugar were the only entity, we might have faced its music but the whole fraudulent-paradigm holds water for many other necessities of life as well. The petroleum products have seen similar fate with a bit more complex mechanism in the same period of time in Pakistan. In a country where corruption has been ratified through NRO (and that too, not on equal basis for all), and where bad governance is the order of the day, there is no respite for the majority. What is needed is a system of checks and balances. Certainly, all the opportunists who fished in the troubled waters of the prevailing uncertain environment in the country can not only be identified but can be held accountable. DR. SHAHID MEHMOOD, Faisalabad, November 15.