MIAN Nawaz Sharif has once again called on the government to implement the SC verdicts in letter and spirit and has demanded that NRO beneficiaries be excluded from the Cabinet. He is reflecting the sentiments of the nation when he calls on the government to respect the judiciary and work under the rule of law. So far President Zardari has been paying lip service to the concept of respecting the judiciary while on the ground he has let loose his coterie of sycophants to target the judiciary on multiple fronts - especially the media. Mian Nawaz Sharif, Quaid of the PML-N, the largest opposition voice in Parliament, is making all the correct statements on national issues, especially on rule of law and the judiciary, but he has not been forceful in challenging the government on this count. The Prime Minister has let it be known to many that he and Mian Sahab have an understanding on the principle that they will not allow democracy to be derailed. So, in this overall context, disagreement over specific issues does not impact this understanding. This is to be welcomed but what happens when the democrats themselves, specifically those in power, are bent upon derailing the democratic process? Does the understanding between Mian Nawaz Sharif and PM Gilani still stand as it was or will it shift to new parameters which would require a more active and strong opposition by the PML-N both inside and outside of Parliament? The present rulers are certainly making a mockery of the notion of democracy with their complete disregard for rules and regulations. Certain members of Parliament, holding fake degrees, are terrorising professionals while the Governor Punjab is busy hurling accusations against the ruling party in that province and its Chief Minister. Surely there are rules by which the Governor has to conduct his relations with the Chief Minister - or is it now a free-for-all in the name of the much-maligned democracy? Mian Nawaz Sharif has also called on the government to arrest the price hikes and have a budget that is responsive to the plight of the common Pakistani. Here again he knows full well that that is not what will happen in the upcoming budget. The IMF has already demanded its pound of flesh - in fact it is demanding far more given how we are also in the throes of a war that has been thrust on us by the Americans. It is as if the IMF is deliberately implementing the US agenda for destabilising Pakistan. So what will Mian Nawaz Sharif do to ensure that the government responds to the people rather than the IMF and US? This is the real issue - what is the opposition prepared to do to ensure the government follow rule of law and have people-friendly economic policies? Mere words will not suffice; there has to be an alternative strategy offered by the PML-N, to rid us of the prevailing political anarchy and economic miseries confronting the nation.