Put an end to arbitrary acts of the Russian authorities and the judiciary

Statement of the CC CPRF

It is almost a month since a large group of the Russian State Duma deputies sent letters  to the President of the Russian Federation, the Prosecutor General of the RF, the Chairman of the Supreme Court of Russia calling for an end to an attempt at a hostile takeover of the Lenin Collective Farm. The letter cited numerous gross violations of the law on the part of the law-enforcement bodies and the courts in the Moscow Oblast aimed at making short shrift of the collective farm and its head. We have still not received any official answers to these letters. This is absolutely not normal.

The Moscow regional court at its session on June 17, 2019 considered an appeal of the director of the Lenin Collective Farm, Pavel Grudinin, against the ruling of the Vidnoye City Court which paved the way for a hostile takeover of a people’s enterprise. Thus all the norms of decency were again cast away during the proceedings. Our court, claiming to be the most “independent” in the world, simply brushed aside the arguments of the defence and witnesses without bothering to look into the matter. This is utter lawlessness wearing judges’ mantles. The mechanism of criminal raidership takeover has been set in motion.

In accordance with due legal process and in compliance with the law the city court verdict would have been overruled by a higher court because of a great many procedural violations. However, there are two circumstances in the “Grudinin case” which make it unlikely that even the bare minimum of decency will be observed.

First of all, it has to be borne in mind that the attack on the collective farm has the backing of powerful selfish interests. At stake is the fate of two thousand hectares of land located near Moscow. It is almost taken for granted that if the fraudulent takeover succeeds one of the best agricultural enterprises in Europe will be liquidated and its territory will be used for another huge development. The operation holds out the promise of billions in profits to its initiators, which is why all the legal and moral norms have been thrown overboard. All the more so since the raiders have the full support of the region’s authorities.

Another hugely important fact is that the target of the persecution is a man who was the runner-up in the March 2018 elections of the Russian President, with nearly 9 million votes. We are convinced that in reality many more people voted for Pavel Grudinin. The shameless machine of wholesale vote-rigging alone prevented the actual level of his support from being revealed.

The attack on a Russian presidential candidate casts a shadow on the entire national electoral system and effectively discredits the elected head of state putting into question the declarations about the “triumph of democracy” in our country.

Even more importantly, Pavel Grudinin still enjoys sustained and ever growing popularity among the people. In the minds of millions of people he expresses their true interests and aspirations. This is what worries the ruling group which is afraid that the opposition would get another popular leader.

We have supported the groundswell of popular indignation triggered by the brazen provocation against journalist Ivan Golunov. And yet the political slaughter of Pavel Grudinin calls for an equally tough reaction on the part of the whole society. An end must be put to the arbitrariness of the law-enforcement and judiciary systems in Russia.

Arbitrariness undermines social unity, puts a brake on society’s economic development generating ever sharper conflicts and threatening stability in the country. This is particularly dangerous in the face of the growing economic, military and political pressure on the part of the USA and its allies.

The CPRF resolutely condemns the total lawlessness which has again manifested itself in the miscarriage of justice with regard to Pavel Grudinin and the Lenin Collective Farm which he heads up. We are determined to continue the struggle to preserve this unique enterprise.

By decision of the People’s Patriotic Forces a nationwide action will take place on July 13, 2019 in protest against judicial and administrative outrages. The CPRF is calling on all the country’s social forces to join the protest.

We also intend to appeal to the world community to express its attitude to the fresh instance of suppression of political and economic rights and freedoms in Russia.

The unlawful court ruling will not stop our struggle for redressing the injustice with regard to Pavel Grudinin and the Lenin Collective Farm. We are determined to achieve victory in this struggle.

Chairman of the CPRF CC

Gennady Zyuganov