The issue of district Nazims' financial misappropriations during the Musharraf regime has been rather vehemently raised in the national dailies by Shahbaz Sharif administration. That has sparked a rather non-productive debate in the province. Mr. Sharif's administration's went to town with the piles of figures that collectively amounts to graft of Rs 114 billion. The idea was either of making a good name for itself or to make the Nazims a little more submissive. That, though, proved to be the proverbial red rag to the bulls. The blue-eyed boys of Perez Musharraf flared up on this 'act of uncivility' that marred their political stature in the eyes of the public. As many as 23 Nazims from near and far districts of Punjab gathered in Lahore to join hands to launch a campaign against Punjab government after Auditor General of Pakistan cleared them of any wrongdoing in the audit observations. The rivals, whom Shahbaz government had thought to be dead horses, are now rising like phoenix from their ashes. And they also have 'a gentle pat on the back' from the Governor Punjab, Salman Taseer, a forever bickering opponent of the present Punjab administration. Enemy of the enemy, they say, is one's friend. Now the 'affectees' are demanding an apology from the Chief Minister or they threaten him with legal proceedings. They also warn of exposing the embezzlement of public funds done during the last tenure of Shahbaz Sharif before the take-over by military in 1999. -MUHAMMAD SALIM SHAHID MEO, Lahore, via e-mail, January 17.