There have been many occasions when Pakistan received huge funds to meet natural calamities like floods, earthquakes, droughts, even miscellaneous S.O.S calls by the government like 'Qarz Utaro Mulk Sanwaro'. On all such occasions, our ever-so-upright rulers have been telling the nation that the utilization of funds would be transparent. But it has never been so simply because corruption is the lifeblood that courses through the veins of Pakistani nation, especially its rulers. Pakistan, we might recall, received millions of dollars in foreign aid during 1974 for earthquake in Besham (Northern Areas) where the actual damage was quite minimal. We could have built a new city with those funds but no one asked where those funds disappeared in the end. Similarly floods used to play havoc in our country almost every year and people used to donate billions of rupees besides foreign aid to help rehabilitate the affected persons. But only a small portion of this flood relief fund used to be utilized for the purpose. Besides these natural catastrophes, our Parliamentarians have been getting huge development funds for their areas but their areas remain neglected and the funds are usually misappropriated to make up for their own election expenditures. There has never been any transparency in any of our projects; be it the development projects or rehabilitation of the displaced persons. It is learnt that even the Zakat funds are regularly misappropriated by successive governments. In the recent catastrophe of migration of millions of people from Swat, Dir and Buner, the mismanagement of camps is an ample proof of mismanagement of funds. The Prime Minister told the parliamentarians in the session on 14th May that utilization of funds would be transparent. The intelligentsia laughed at it. This slogan of transparency used to be good to befool the nation in the past. Not any more. -MUHAMMAD AZHAR KHWAJA, Lahore, via e-mail, May 15.