In April 2006 unexpected guests from the Department of Internal Affairs of Rostov Region appeared in Moscow headquarters of the “Labour Russia”. Whom did they seek for a thousand kilometres far from Rostov? As it came out they sought for the leader of the “Labour Russia” local department in the city of Belaya Kalitva Alexey Nikolaevich Rzhevsky, born in 1949, put on the wanted list. What an awful crime did a 57-year-old pensioner commit and why is he seached for all over Russia?
Belaya Kalitva is a district centre in Rostov region with population of 40,000. During the Soviet era it was a city of miners and metal workers. Now the carbon industry is destroyed at all, the city is leading in unemployment and drug addiction. Since 1996 8 mines were closed in Belaya Kalitva. The government appropriated a non-repayable grant for miners’ employment assistance. But this money didn’t reach the unemployed miners. On July, 25, 2002 the chairman of the “Labour Russia” district department A.N.Rzhevsky who had been working at mines for 16 years accused in public the chairman of the Supervisory council, responsible for distribution of funds, assistant of the head of Belaya Kalitva district administration N.Antoshin of laying hands on this money at the session of the city council. On July, 9, 2003 the city court of Belaya Kalitva found the leader of the All-Russian socio-political movement “Labour Russia” local department Alexey Nikolaevich Rzhevsky guilty in commission of a crime prescribed by article 129 part 1 of the Criminal Code of RF “Libel” and sentenced him to conditional punishment of 1 year 6 months imprisonment with a trial period of 2 years. The court considered A.N.Rzhevsky “had floated knowingly false information discrediting the assistant of chief of Belaya Kalitva city and district administration N.N.Antoshin’s honour and dignity”. Let Alexey Nikolaevich speak himself:
“According to the RF Government resolution #957 the money was to be paid to miners directly. But as a violation of the law Mr.Antoshin passed almost all the funds to businessmen of Belaya Kalitva district on purpose of miners’ employment. Unemployed miners were forced to employ at private enterprises being striсken off the register at the Employment centre. Some organization demanded from miners two applications at once - for hiring and for dismissal. People were given the key of the street. Many businessmen became “bankrupts” successfully at once, others built houses and bought cars for themselves on miners’ money. Those miners who were hired after all got misery wages with great delays so they were forced to dismiss. According to Mr.Antoshin’s own statement only 10% of “employed” miners work to date. 13 millions roubles were given for 423 persons. Nobody wants to answer where more than 10 millions have disappeared”.
Pressure on Alexey Nikolaevich was not limited to this sentence. On the night of January, 13th/14th the light blinked off in his flat suddenly. As soon as Rzhevsky came out to the entry a man in Father Frost’s clothes ran up to him, jetted at him face from an aerosol sprayer and began beating him with a rubber truncheon. As soon as his wife ran out she received several blows by a truncheon, too.
But this attempt to shut Rzhevsky’s mouth neither was successful. On March, 30, 2005 the head of administration elections took place in Belaya Kalitva district where the ruling party candidate A.P.Romanov won the first place. “Administrative resources” were widely used during the electorial campaign. A quotation from A.N.Rzhevsky’s application to the Central Election committee and the General Prosecutor office:
“The head office seeker, the operating district head A.P.Romanov’s electorial propaganda started more than 60 days before the elections that is a violation of the article 23 point 2 of the Regional Law “About Elections”. His agitation video clip was produced 6 months before the electorial campaign, was transmitted repeatedly on the regional TV channel “STO”, the clip was payed up not from office seeker’s electorial fund.
During the electorial campaign the social security employees went around pensioners, disabled persons, veterans from yard to yard in order by seeker and operating head of administration Romanov and his assistants and forced them to vote for Romanov using their official capacity, by the way of horrification, threats, bribery of voters, distribution of food, money, alcohol, coal and firewood. After the social security work more than 5000 voters of 38000 turned out to be sick, incapable to come to polling places and voted at home for some pay for the seeker Romanov”.
In summer 2005 Rzhevsky declared repeatedly that the new head of administration was affiliate to illegal engrossment of lands in the centre of Belaya Kalitva and applied to different authorities on this case but he got a refusal everywhere. In autumn 2005 Rzhevsky was accused of libel on the head of administration again, this time at the picket at the “Kazachy” market territory on September, 21, 2005. Nobody was embarassed even by the fact that there had been no picket on that day in that place.
On March, 7, 2006 the justice of the peace of the judicial district #2 of Rostov region, Belaya Kalitva district E.N.Khudomyasova passed a sentence in the name of Russian Federation: “To adjudge Alexey Nikolaevich Rzhevsky guilty in commission of a crime and inflict him a punishment of 1 year 7 months imprisonment with service of punishment in a settlement colony”.
There was no sense to wait for justice of corrupted authorities. Rzhevsky who had an undertaking not to leave before the judgement could look forward to such development. That’s why during the sentence reading Alexey Nikolaevich went out from the court hall and passed outside. By hearsay, he walked to the line Rostov-Saratov and left the city by autostop. After the sentence has been read there was no one to be taken into custody.
Now Alexey Nikolaevich Rzhevsky is in search. He is sought in Moscow not only in the “Labour Russia” headquarters but also at many party militants’ flats. Alexey Nikolaevich’s sones living separately from him in different regions start to have troubles at their work. The cassational instance refuses to examine the case in his absence but Rzhevsky himself is not so naive to appear in Rostov. The communist Rzhevsky decided to take his fate into his own hands and not to entrust it to regime servants. Even in Father Frost’s clothes.
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