History would judge President Asif Zardari for his role as head of an elected government that showed the same contempt for rule of law and judiciary as its predecessor, a military dictator. His advisors would not get the blame for they work at his discretion. The indecent haste with which President had moved to give relief to Riaz Sheikh, a corrupt former official of FIA, is unprecedented even in our history of shame. When would somebody ask these corrupt former bureaucrats, generals and a few politicians of their ilk, about the properties they have in UK, Canada, USA, Spain and UAE and then ask them to justify these huge assets they own there?.Would they ever be questioned that which legal mode of banking did they adopt to transfer the huge amounts of money that was needed to buy properties in these countries and whether or not they had resorted to money laundering? Perhaps these gentlemen had earned enough money through employment to do a business there or did they win a lottery like Lotto over there? People of Pakistan have a right to know. Democracy is about rule of law. Corruption on a limited scale is indulged in everywhere by men in power but always very discreetly with care for the ground realities. Nobody can justify the arrogance of manner with which corruption is being indulged in and being openly patronised by a democratically elected government of Pakistan today. There is a constitution in place here and an independent judicial system restored to working order. Pardoning criminals guilty of corruption just because they hold public office is unacceptable and if tolerated by this Parliament, would land this unfortunate country in the list of Banana Republics. We are on the verge of being declared a failed country at present. History shall never forgive the Prime Minister, the elected opposition and all other institutions of the state if they failed in their duty of preventing such transgressions. -MALIK TARIQ, Dubai, May 18