IN Pakistan, the menace of food adulteration has gone unchecked for quite some time and because of this callous neglect is exacting a heavy toll on public health. Considering the general atmosphere, the rampant corruption, the absence of rule of law, eating food adulterated with chemicals and dyes was the last thing one could have dreamed of. What is really scary is the utter indifference of the authorities, which is almost as much responsible as those polluting the foodstuffs for the crime. In a recently conducted survey, more than 90 percent of food products tested in laboratories ranging from milk, bottled waters, tea, cold drinks, flour, pulses, frozen food items, to spices, etc, were found to be adulterated. The milk that comes in tetrapaks was found to contain a wide variety of chemicals, which can cause a number of diseases. Apart from that, a report by the Environment Protection Department reveals that about 70 percent of Lahore's water supply is contaminated. If this is the situation in Punjab's capital, other places would be worse off. Little wonder then that diseases like gastroenteritis and hepatitis are on the rise. Hope recedes further when one notes that those behind this evil continue minting money and making their adulterated brands more attractive through glamorous advertisements, while the authorities seem to surrender before them. It is a great pity that despite the Punjab Pure Food Ordinance and related laws in other parts of the country, listing severe punishments for anyone involved in tampering with food items, the culprits are allowed to go scot-free. Since it is a mater of public health and concerns everyone, the government must bring such wrongdoers to book immediately. The graph of disease-stricken Pakistanis continue to go up and contaminated foodstuffs have quite a role in it.