LAW and order in the whole of Punjab is very poor, with robberies rife and thefts common. A report of 36 dacoities in Lahore alone shows the provincial metropolis is under attack not from militants or terrorists, but ordinary robbers. The police force is showing not just the effects of politicisation, but also of the War on Terror, where its attention and energies are diverted, and by which the supervisors of senior policemen are judging them. The dacoities happened to hit particularly hard, because the wounding of a security guard showed that this alternative to the state-funded police was not effective enough a deterrent, but its personnel, or at least some of them, were as willing as the police force to take risks when resisting criminals. The large number of dacoities showed that the provincial capital was ruled not by the government but by the dacoits, to whom it seemed as if it had been turned over for them to strike virtually with impunity. The duty of any government starts with maintaining law and order, and ensuring the security of the lives and properties of the citizen. It will not serve as an excuse if a defaulting government, like this one, happens to be elected. The method was selected because it was supposed to be the best method of selecting a government responsive to the concerns of the people. In case the government no longer remembers, those concerns have law and order at the top. Much of the concern about the War on Terror comes from its failure to protect the lives of the citizens against suicide bombings. Therefore, any claims of other achievements will be weighed at the next election by the electorate against the law and order situation. The provincial government will bear the brunt of the blame for poor law and order, but the central government cannot entirely escape blame. Under the Constitution, the central government is supposed to supervise the law and order situation, and the voter will hold it to this.