Pakistan these days is being haunted by robin hoods of another kind, who rob the two million tax payers of this unfortunate country, to benefit the rich and in the process become dollar billionaires. When the state, represented by its legitimately elected government, instead of performing the role of custodian and protector of national exchequer, conspires to protect those who plunder it, than such a state is surely to fall in the category of a failed nation. If our rulers had ant sense of honor and dignity the remarks by Secretary Clinton on her recent visit to Pakistan about tax evasion and massive corruption would have been enough to tender their resignation or make amends. Those who sit in government and under whose watch transgression and abuse of laws take place, lose their moral and constitutional right to rule this country, since they have violated their oath to protect our constitution and the state of Pakistan. Propriety demands that such irresponsible political forces either resign from office or be prepared to face the wrath of angry and frustrated masses. Nobody who claims to honor and respect the constitution, can justify the abuse of state prosecution and investigation agencies to assume the role of an agent for a deliberate crime of being an abettor for those who have indulged in naked plunder of the state. What we have witnessed in NICL case is abuse of power, denial of justice by a friendly prosecution and failure by those who had taken an oath to protect the tax payers of this country. When a government chooses to play politics with lives of its citizens, as it has done in Karachi and fails to perform role of custodians of the state, it is time for a change, otherwise this country and its long term national interests and sovereignty will be at stake. Remember if a country is driven into an economic quagmire, and the wheels of its industry grind to a halt, than such a nation cannot claim its sovereignty. Mere rhetoric claims of state sovereignty are just hollow words, when there are no plans to achieve economic self reliance through financial discipline, accountability, rule of law and good governance. MALIK TARIQ, Lahore, October 23.