Looking at the socio-economic condition of the two nuclear neighbours of South Asia, Pakistan and India, you wouldnt know why an arms race is on. Both countries are spending huge chunks of their budgets on defence, even diverting desperately needed funds allocated for food, health and education sectors for military purchases. This, while, they are unable to provide basic human amenities to their population. The South Asian region accounts for more than one-fifth of the world population and almost one-sixth of the worlds poor. The two countries spend very tiny, negligible fractions of their GDPs on education, health, clean drinking water and other social welfare programs. However, they take great pride in strutting out large armies on defence days. How imprudent and anti-people is it that Pakistan is sixth among worlds arms importers even though it has the fourth largest percentage of the worlds poor with 38. 6% of them below the poverty line? In the 2009 World Hunger Index, Pakistan ranked at 58. Literacy rate of the country is supposedly 47 %, exaggerated but even at that one of the lowest in the world. In health facilities, it is poorest in the world, ranked 134th in the world. In the UNDPs human development rankings, Pakistan ranks at 141on a list of 182 nations. India is no better with nearly half of its population living below the poverty line. According to the 2009 World Hunger Index, India ranked 65th alongside several sub-Saharan nations. Literacy rate is 57%. It is ranked 126th in health expenditure. India ranks 134 in UNDPs human development rankings. And here is the biggest prize of all. It is number one importer of arms in the world. In its 2009 budget, $29.39 billion were allocated for defence. -WAQAR-UN-NISA, Rawalpindi, May 26.