While the country is mired deep in lawlessness, economic recession, widespread hunger and chaos, the Emperor-to-be Nawaz Sharif has gone on a hunting expedition. This pastime of royalty has a history of the monarch using the hunting trips to venture deep into the country side to ascertain the true state of administration in the hinterland. Our modern monarchs have used it differently. For example, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had invited the American Ambassador of the time to a hunting expedition in order to make entry into Sikander Mirzas administration. He again invited Yahya Khan on a hunting trip in the post-1970 elections to 'fix Mujibur Rehman who was to be the incumbent PM. Yahya Khan again went on a hunting trip on his own just before the war of 1971 and according to the East Pakistan commander, he or his coterie of generals were incommunicado. Put in simpler words, whenever our political stalwarts go deep in the hinterland for a hunt, it is our poor people, rather than the geese, goats or pheasants, that get hunted. There are others in politics, of course, with more benign, or at least less bloody, diversions. Maulana Fazalur Rehman, whenever confronted with public pressure to do something expected of him does, what is now his familiar act, of disappearanceusually for a tour of Libya or Iraq on the noble mission of 'Tableegh. Before him the elder Maulana Noorani used to be perennially on 'the noble mission whenever local politics demanded of him to take a tough stand. Then there are others who use charity as diversion from politics. Asif Zardaris lone good work remembered even now was a hot water-geaser he got installed in a private ward of PIMS that lasts to this day. Zardari is apparently not so fond of the hunt, or at least his hunt is not of the usual flesh and blood kindhe is a shikari (or khilardi) of cash. M. SHAIKH, Islamabad, February 20