Thank God our literacy rate is very low. Had it been high, Pakistan by now might have become a fossil. And a contemporary Lord Elgin might have carried it to England, as a gift for the Albert Natural History Museum. Unfortunately, most of Pakistans woes are created by some literate Pakistanis. Had there been no literacy in Pakistan, the masses might not have been so miserable as they have always been. The havoc, which some literate Pakistanis have played with the country, is absolutely beyond the capabilities of the illiterate Pakistanis. Were the martial laws imposed by the illiterate Pakistanis? Is the general corruption in the land a creation of the illiterate Pakistanis? Did the illiterate Pakistanis borrow huge sums of money from the banks and got the loans written off? Did the illiterate Pakistanis get allotted to them gold-precious residential and commercial plots at dirt cheap prices? Did the illiterate West Pakistanis create fatal hatred in the hearts of the past Pakistanis for the West Pakistan? Was Bangladesh a creation of the illiterate Pakistanis of West Pakistan? Unfortunately, most of Pakistans political and economic woes are a creation of some literate Pakistanis. Pakistans illiterate peasants produce nourishment from the land for the literate Pakistanis, who are unable to feed themselves. The illiterate peasants also produce various sorts of agricultural products. The literate Pakistanis export these products. The exports pour huge amounts of dollars into the pockets of the literate Pakistanis. The dollars enable the literate Pakistanis to enjoy an extremely luxurious lifestyle. This lifestyle is a gift of illiteracy to literacy. It is in the interest of literate Pakistanis that the peasants sons must remain illiterate so that they keep nourishing the literate Pakistanis when the old peasants are dead. Despite the ruthlessness of some literate Pakistanis, Pakistan has managed to survive. The survival is a gift of the illiterate Pakistanis to Pakistan. Illiterate Pakistanis work like demons. Some literate Pakistanis eat like demons what the illiterate Pakistanis create like demons. There is a mysterious relationship between the literate parasites and the illiterate hosts. Our history warns us that if the literacy rate increased, the misery of the country could proportionally increase. Our illiterate peasants, factory workers, grave-diggers, road sweepers etc, are paragons of honest physical labour. The performances of our illiteracy are a matter of pride and the misperformances of some of our literate fellows are a matter of shame for us. History tells us that sometimes the performances of illiteracy outshine the performances of literacy. Here are some examples. Alexander the Great was illiterate. He is the greatest general of all times. Had he been literate, he might have died like one of those literate generals, who are as unknown as the dust of which they have become indinguishable parts. The greatest of the Mogul emperors, Akbar the Great was illiterate. Two of the Mogul emperors were highly literate. But their literacy was no match for Akbars illiteracy. The greatest of the Sikh rulers, Ranjit Singh, did not allow himself to be destroyed by the professional teachers. Had he exposed himself to literacy radiation, he might have died as unknown as his cook. He remained an illiteracy-bachelor. This virtue got him to the heights where no other Sikh rulers could get. Literacy is defined as the ability to read and write. Socrates, probably the greatest philosopher of all times, did not like to write. Thus, he rejected one-half of the literacy process. Socrates rejection of the writing process has fascinated our political dignitaries. Generally, when a political dignitary wants to say something to the nation, he emulates Socrates. He gets his speech written by some professional speech writer. Thus, he dustbins one-half of his literacy. Literacy in itself is ethically neutral. What is of great significance is what a literate fellow does with his literacy. Some use their literacy for noble purposes. Others misuse it for ignoble purposes. Literacy is not a free gift of nature like water and air. Everyone is born illiterate. One has to pay for equipping oneself with literacy. Luckily, most of Pakistanis dont have the means for buying literacy. They remain illiterate. And they use their illiteracy for serving the country most patriotically. On the contrary, some Pakistanis misuse their literacy for exploiting the motherland. To hell with such a literacy n The writer retired as professor of the Department of English, Government College University, Lahore.