Without Hook – Back, to Serfs

Without Hook – Back, to Serfs
nton Votrehev 19.02.2014

Collective farm - millionaire "Serp & Molot”, prospering during Soviet period in Sergach of the Nizhny Novgorod district, in the middle of "corpulent zero" sold all its property to a new owner. Five years later the businessman went bankrupt, and now the housing together with people living in it will again be sold, "Sobesednik" tells. The collective farm doesn’t exist any more, but there are about 50 one-storeyed constructions where the former collective farmers live. These are stone houses with gas heating received by collective farmers from the Soviet power free of charge. Toilet is in the yard, water - in a column. In the late eighties, during Gorbachev’s reforms, the collective farm millionaire began ruining with the ruin of plan eonomy. In 1995 when Boris Yeltsin's issued decree about reorganization of collective farms, "Serp & Molot" was transformed into association in which collective farmers became shareholders. That association existed only ten years.

When process of final elimination of ex-millionaire (collective farm) began, there was a question of houses which collective farm allocated to the workers. As a result some workers were allowed to privatize apartments free of charge, but the former chairman of "Serp & Molot", nowadays mistress Valentina Vodopyanova demanded money from the majority of ex-collective farmers: 25 thousand rubles for one-room apartment, 50 - for two-room.

"Where should we take such money from?! - the former alf woman Nadezhda Belova who worked in "Serp & Molot" for 12 years is perplexed. - Then I worked with the salary few rubles in the post offie, some did nothing in general. I have pension of 5500 rubles, it’s enough to buy only food. Where should I take money to redeem housing?"

However, there were few who redeemed apartments. The others are against: say, it’s our housing, we have alredy paid for it with our work. But in 2006 she sold housing of the discordant, in total about 20 apartments, together with other property of collective farm to a new owner. It’s Rais Valemeev, the owner of other agricultural enterprise in Sergah being known in the ninetieth due to the brand of beer, "Krasny Vostok". Businessman received living souls registered in the houses.

After sale of all collective-farm property to "Krasny Vostok" the former workers again tried to get the right to housing. They sent letters, went to different authorities. They were told in militia that there are no violations: businessman didn’t dishouse anyone. Prosecutor's office also didn't find anything illegal in the situation and the world court didn’t satisfy claims of the collective farmers.

Meanwhile last year Valemeev's property was arrested for debts, and now JSC Krasny Vostok undergoes bankruptcy procedure. Soon everything will be put up for sale, including those houses. It turns out together with people. It’s unknown what the new owner will do, but he will hardly want to do charity work. Though houses are not in very good ondition, they are situated in the enter of the town, on the most expensive local earth. Meanwhile among these residents are such who paid money to Valemeev for apartments, but didn't receive documents.

Let’s remind, last year news about similar scandal story came from Ural. Businessman there bought bankrupt state farm in the village Narovhatka and also with inhabitants, having offered them either to redeem houses at extremely high prie, or to go away. It reahed the court, however the ourt passed the decision not in favor of the inhabitants, "Komsomolskaya Pravda" reported.

Similar problems appear everywhere with closing of the collective farms and privatization of collective-farm property. Having lost collective means of production, peasants automatically lowered the standard of living and further had no former right to hoose work and plae of residence as in the legendary movie "Chapayev". It’s possible to see similar to "Serp & Molot" picture, but already in Tula region in the village Nikolskoe. There’s in the village one employer — Nikolay Kurkov - the former chairman of the state farm "Leninsky Komsomol" and now he is the owner of two farms, a grove and a milk plant.

Parents of pupils from shool in Nikolskoe either work for Kurkov, or moved for residene to Shchyokino, or Tula, having left children to grandmothers. Kindergarten closed in the 90s, and children, if they aren't brought up by grandmothers, turn into rural Mowglis. There are two pupils in the first class two pupils, but the teacher copes with them with diffiulty. "At the beginning of academic year they were running during a lesson and shouted," — she tells.

It’s unprofitable to open private kindergarten in the village: inhabitants of Nikolskoe can't pay for a child more than one thousand a month. While "gilded rural youth", Kurkov's numerous grandsons, personal driver ars to the district comfortable school.

It is easy to observe degeneration of village after Eltsin’s deree onerning dissolution of olletive farms not only looking at buy and sell of earth and housing together with "natives", but also at "school question"

Doing graphic sketches at the end of May of the current year Victoria Lomasko tells:

- There are 23 pupils and 10 teachers in the shool in Nikolskoe. There are four pupils in the most numerous class, in one – in the least. Some pupils ome from neighboring villages where there are no schools. In summer they come by bicycles. They go on foot in winter. When the snow is heavy and administration doesn’t manage to clean the road, they stay at home. In the neighboring village Kuzmino the school with five pupils worked for long, there were more teachers, than children. "If there is no school, the village is doomed," —teachers from Nikolskoe say. If there are no former rights of collective decision-making, on the basis of shares in the same collective-farm property, ex-collective farmers instantly turn into serfs, men quickly become inveterate drunkards from consciousness of their fatal flaw, after all during reorganization in the 90s they also picked up the slogan "General - means nobody's". At best new serfs, if they manage to leave former collective farms - millionaires, will fill up armies of guest workers in the neighbouring capitals – Nizhny Novgorod, Tula, Moscow, Petersburg …

"For comparison, - the artist Victoria Lomasko ontinues, - there are not less than 20 pupils in eah lass in the neighbouring rural shool in Krapivna. All in all there 226 pupils in all school. There are classes in which a half of pupils are children of migrants. Families from Dagestan actively move, buying up houses, to Krapivna. Migrants from Central Asia settle in a hostel on the very edge of Krapivna, they work in gardens and storages. There are two Uzbeks, one Tajik, one Lezgians and one Azerbaijanian in the lass. Children normally communicate among themselves. "For me they are local. We have friendship of peoples," — the teacher smiles. There are also difficulties. Not all children of migrants tolerably speak Russian. Not all of them are sent to school in time. For example, the Tajik boy was higher, than other pupils. It appeared, he was brought to the first class when he was ten years.

On May, 9 pupils of the school in Nikolskoe under leadership of the teacher of music and physical culture held gala concert. Guests came: two veterans who drank a bit on the occasion of holiday, two graduates of the school, three grandmothers and old former teacher who cried all concert. Seniors are not indifferent to the events of the Great Patriotic War. Grandmothers and grandfathers managed to tell own children's memories how fascists passed through Nikolskoe to many of them. While other events of the Russian history remain not dry, boring text from textbook for hildren. First graders don't know how the capital of our Homeland is called. "Well, what’s wrong with it?" — the teacher considering Moscow big garbage winces. Really, well, what’s wrong? Capital inhabitants are also not interested in life and death of forgotten villages like Nikolskoe.

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