'It is the only way to attain something': hoodwinked investors and incinerator opponents take to the streets in Kazan

Representatives of different protest movements gathered together for the first time in the centre of Kazan

'It is the only way to attain something': hoodwinked investors and incinerator opponents take to the streets in Kazan Photo: Rinat Nazmetdinov

Defrauded housing equity holders, or hoodwinked investors, opponents of the incinerator plant — they are only a small part of those who came to the Millennium Square in Kazan on 9 December to express their protest. The rally was held in the centre of Kazan for the first time, for the organization of which all the main protest groups united also for the first time. Read the details in the material of Realnoe Vremya.

300 registered participants

All activists, representing the interests of a particular group, for the first time came together to hold a single rally and speak about all problems — from filling of Volga river to the disagreement with the pension reform. Ravil Mukhametzyanov, who is also the representative of the all-Tatar public centre, filed an application for the rally as a private person.

''The notification was filed on my behalf, other organizers were rejected. In general, the rally was organized by about 30 initiative people. The issues are different — against the pension reform, the filling of Volga river, on the protection of the rights of wrongfully convicted. All this is organized by the forces of initiative groups, a council meeting of public self-organizations is to take place soon,'' Mukhametzyanov told Realnoe Vremya.

The territory in front of the central stadium brought together about 150 people, many of whom were holding posters. Activist, opponent of the incinerator Vera Kerpel before the start of the protest rally admitted that the application was submitted by less than 300 people.

The territory in front of the central stadium brought together about 150 people

''We expect several hundred participants, a little less than 300 have already applied. For our part, we want to once again draw attention to the fact that it is necessary for us to unite, it is the only way we can achieve something. We want to tell you about our next steps, that we have filed several lawsuits, we are challenging the summer hearings. People cannot directly affect the problems — the government does not listen to them. Tensions are rising, protest groups are increasing. We do not tell, 'Down with the power!', we ask them to listen to us, to establish a dialogue. The question is whether they inform the president about all this,'' Karpel commented and admitted that the area in the centre has been given for the first time, and even agreed on the first attempt.

To fold up posters

The rally was declared ''against the lawlessness of the authorities and for justice'', among the issues — 11 topics, but the leaflets, the images of which were spread through instant messengers, did not mention deceived housing stake holders. They came with posters to the square in a large number. Police officers immediately approached the group of real estate investors of MCHS residential complex and asked to fold up the posters, on the grounds that this issue had not been declared in the application. Eventually, the activists were allowed to stay.

''Why are you asking this, how dare you? It also infringes on our constitutional rights, about which the whole rally is. We are in such a situation — no money, no housing. We have only piles, there is no foundation, investors seem to agree, but then they do not,'' deceived housing stake holder Ramzia Latypova argued with a police officer.

The rally was declared ''against the lawlessness of the authorities and for justice'', among the issues — 11 topics, but the leaflets, the images of which were spread through instant messengers, had not mentioned deceived housing shareholders

The rally began, organizers reiterated the demand of the police to remove posters of the shareholders. If MCHS holders removed their posters, despite the opposition, then the interest holders of Yashlek residential complex (Kuyuki, Pestrechinsky district) were long holding them after that.

''We have no news, nothing happens, that's why we're here. How can we remove the posters? If they approach us, we will remove,'' Natalya Ivanova said.

We have to protect ourselves

It was felt that the activists for the first time all together came to one platform and didn't know who was the leader. Ravil Mukhametzyanov, who filed the application, began to lead the rally, but the initiative was quickly caught by the opponent of incinerator construction, Anton Golubkov. Not everyone was happy with such a start, the dispute continued immediately, at the feet of the speakers. Anyway, Golubkov continued to lead the rally.

''Here they asked to remove posters of the deceived shareholders, but isn't their problem the violation of constitutional rights? Here it is a fault of the organizers, next time we will correct it. What's your problem, why have you come here, why rocking the boat?'' the activist addressed the audience, listing the main problems.

The topic of housing and communal services was another big question at the rally

Most of them lacked oratory skills and elementary ability to keep the attention of the public. Besides, technical problems made themselves felt. But the majority of the audience, it seems, did not care much about it, after all, all those who came were already activists. It is unlikely that individually each of the movements would have gathered so many participants.

''I'm concerned about the environment. I am concerned about the issue of the incineration plant, but I also represent the association of the wrongfully convicted. When I write in different letters about all the problems, they ask me whose interests I eventually represent. All of them, as it is arbitrariness. There is the same crime on Volga — it was being filled for several years, the authorities don't protect us, and we have to protect ourselves,'' activist Gulnara Gilyazova expressed confidence.

Several presentations were made on environmental issues. For example, activist Yulia Fayzrakhmanova, who urged not to agree with the disappearance of the forest on Gavrilov Street, where the construction of a residential complex is planned, also participated in the rally.

The topic of housing and communal services was another big question at the rally.

''We are not an organization, we are just from ordinary people, we have come as pensioners. They are infringing on the rights of ordinary people. We need direct contracts for the supply of utilities, otherwise it is a huge rent,'' said pensioner Zemfira Daminova.

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By Yulia Kosolapkina. Photo: Rinat Nazmetdinov
Tatarstan