LAHORE - Old habits diehard. The Punjab polices money minting habit during the holy month of Ramazan after becoming a norm has even transformed into a culture. It seems nobody dares to challenge those fleecing the public of their hard-earned living under the guise of 'Eidi, the tradition of giving gift on Eid. The recent 'well-organised campaign launched by the police officials deputed on various points in the provincial metropolis for security reasons cannot go unnoticed as they are witnessed receiving Eidi, although forcibly, from the general public. While expressing their distress and grievances, the victims informed The Nation on Thursday that the police teams were using different tactics for their objective. The citizens say when they protested, the policemen busy in receiving Eidi replied that the major part of the gifts would be presented to some hidden hands related to the higher authorities. The men in uniform deputed at various points and crossings are doing their utmost to achieve the set targets. The most profitable locations include Chowk Taxali, Chauburgi, Chowk Istanbul, Bhekewal Morr, Dubai Chowk, Qainchi Stop, Chungi Amar Sidhu, Model Town Morr, Chowk Shalamar, Do Moria Pul, Moochi Gate, Azadi Chowk, Chowk Yateem Khana, Morr Samanabad, Qurtaba Chowk, Canal Bridge, Lakshami Chowk, Regal Chowk and Davis Road Crossing on The Mall. But all this cheating is not without innovation, as a victim told the scribe that a veteran policeman directed him to submit his Eidi to a nearby kiosk as a CCTV camera was recording his each and every movement. A victim Yasir Islam, a motorcyclist, at Shadman Chowk said, We give Eidi to our younger brothers, sisters, nephews and nieces with our own consent, while we have to donate the same to the government and police officials, albeit as a compulsion because of their fear. According to Yasir, the practice of getting Eidi both by the officials and private businesses has now more than a habit rather it is a tradition or ritual throughout Pakistan. Another angry victim, Chaudhry Nasir, a car-driver, informed The Nation. We are forced to give Eidi to many people belonging to different walks of life as the tailors stop booking for further orders after 10th of Ramazan, If anyone wants to go for stitching his clothes, they demand double charges saying 'it is Eid. The same is the case with daily use commodities like fruits, vegetables, meat and pulses, as they are available in the market, but at increased rates because everyone wants to grind others to his benefit, adding that every government employee is utilising the moment. He criticised the higher authorities for their neglect and said instead of taking practical steps to facilitate the people, they are completely silent not withstanding the fact that the Eidi campaign is in full swing. It is pertinent to mention that in 2005, one of the City traffic police SP had prohibited the staff from checking vehicles documents and driving licences for the last 10 days of Ramazan to stop their 'Eidi collecting spree. He had directed officials to submit their challan books at his office by October 25, 2005 to check the exercise in Ramazan. The SP had also warned all the officials of strict action against the negligent officials. Interestingly, not a single such incident was reported that time around, which coincidently a period when a dictator was deciding the fortune of the people. But the masses are now accustomed to mere words of the authorities concerned but of course not a single word for the Eidi movement.