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Open mind’s opinion

December 24, 2010

No. 9(9)

The first and only English‑language newspaper in Tatarstan

Social and Political newspaper

The Hottest and the Coldest of Years 2010 in Review 2010 began with severely cold weather and ended with an abnormally warm winter. Tatarstan is still recovering from the 2008 economic cri‑ sis. It was coping quite well with this challenge, but then the budget took a huge hit af‑ ter the summer’s record‑break‑ ing drought. Even so, enter‑ prises across the republic are expecting to see a return to pre‑crisis conditions in the upcoming year. The most significant event in the life of Tatarstan this year was the voluntary resignation of President Mintimer Shaimi‑ ev, a legend of domestic pol‑ icy. His resignation was a sur‑ prise, and the choice of suc‑ cessor did not make sense. 4 February 2010 will stand as a milestone in the history of the Republic. The Shaimiev era has ended, and a new one begun.

By RUSTEM YUNUSOV A Reshuffling of Power President Shaimiev’s resignation prompted a reshuffling of the posts of power in Tatarstan. Former Prime Minister Rustam Minnikhanov, a young and energetic business manager, was appointed president. In turn, the newly‑appointed President appointed Naberezhnye Chelny Mayor Ildar Khalikov to the post of Prime Minister. 2010 also saw a drain of personnel to Moscow. Two Tatarstan Ministers were lost to promotions to the capital. Marat Bariev, Tatarstan’s former Minister of Youth Affairs, Sports and Tourism, became the Executive Directory of the Russian Olympic Committee. Marat Khusnullin, former Minister of Construction, Architecture and Housing, was noticed by Moscow’s new Mayoral administration and appointed the city’s Head of the Department of Construction. Both brought along a lot of

Continued on page 3

Kozya Sloboda To Open Before New Year

in this issue Tatarstan has no problem of extremism page 2

Minnikhanov Pledges to Support Youth Projects

page 4

Barto band on Russian politics and fines for Music page 5 by Wyatt Ford Workers are toiling around the clock to finish the construction of Kozya Sloboda, Kazan’s seventh metro station, before its official opening on 30 December. The worksite was a flurry of activity when the Kazan Herald visited last week. Workers were scurrying around the aboveground entrances, carrying dirt and sand from place to place, lugging cut stones and tiles

past the flapping tarp entranceways that lead down to the station. Inside the station itself, the air was full of the sounds and smells of fresh construction. A fine dust hung in the air, enveloping everything. Workers of various trades were busy performing a variety of tasks simultaneously, some cutting stones and tiles down to size with electric saws, others laying the tiles into the floor, others sanding and polish-

ing the walls. The urgency with which they were working was palpable. These are the final touches on what has been a long and difficult construction project. Kozya Sloboda, which translates as Goat Settlement, will be Kazan’s first metro station on the right bank of the Kazanka river. The station connects the right bank of the Kazanka to the six other stations Continued on page 5

on the left bank via two tunnels at depths varying from nine to thirty-one meters below the riverbed. Digging these tunnels has proven to be far more complicated than expected. Kozya Sloboda was originally scheduled to be built simultaneously with the first five stations that were opened in 2005, however the soft and boggy riverbed of the Kazanka river posed

New Horizons of Tourism page 6

Deconstructing Kazan page 6

Kazan to Host World Cup page 7

Khasan Tufan — Tatar poetry page 8

Arch‑meeting on December 11 page 8

December 24, 2010 No. 9(9) Society

Local News

Tatarstan has no problem of extremism


Svetlana Zakharova, the Chair‑ man of Tatarstan’s State Council Committee on Social Policy, sat down with the Kazan Herald to discuss the demographic situa‑ tion in Tatarstan, tourism devel‑ opment, and the recent riots in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Interview by RUSTEM YUNUSOV. — In his message to the State Council, the President of Tatarstan drew attention to the Republic’s increased fertility rate and the increase in life expectancy from 69 to 71 years. What is the reason for such successes? — Primarily, this is due to attention that both Russia and Tatarstan have given to the development of youth and youth policy, healthy lifestyles, and the construction of sports facilities, which helps contribute to participation in sports. A lot of work has been done to modernize health programs. Nine trauma centers and eleven cardiovascular centers have been opened. These centers aimed to providing immediate emergency care for patients with circulatory disorders or stroke. If such assistance is provided on time, we can avoid disability in these patients. This, of course, will help increase life expectancy. In addition, fourteen Health Centers have been opened recently in Tatarstan. They aim to identify the pathologies associated with smoking, alcoholism and obesity. Last week, a state-of-the-art medical center was opened in Naberezhnye Chelny. The center helps patients with diseases such as acute myocardial infarction and diseases of the nervous system and musculoskeletal system. These centers have helped people receive high-quality medical care, which, of course, has an effect on life expectancy. Even so, there is still a lot of work to be done. Health service workers are responsible for perhaps only fifteen percent of the population statistics. Humans themselves are ultimately responsible for the remaining part. If citizens continue to drink excessively, smoke, eat improperly, and not get enough sleep, this will certainly have an effect on life expectancy statistics. — Does Tatarstan have its own program to stimulate the birth rate, separate from the Federal Program? — First of all, we have a social mortgage (cash certificates issued to orphans and families with children), which, I believe, helps to increase fertility. Tatarstan also provides cofinancing of all Federal Programs. In general, the whole policy of Tatarstan is aimed at increasing life expectancy, increasing fertility and, perhaps the most important, reducing mortality. This is typical not only for Tatarstan, but also for Russia as a whole. As stated in the letter of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, for every third child born, land issuance is scheduled. Of course, the details of this plan—for example, where these plots will be—remain unclear. It is not enough just to provide land, we also have to think about selection and utility networks. I think these issues will be addressed at the regional level. — This year, Tatarstan received more than a million tourists for the

first time in history. What contributed to this achievement, and how many tourists can Tatarstan expect in the future? — The Republic can expect the number of tourists to increase. We have a special tourism program. Former-president Mintimer Shaimiev is currently overseeing the active development of Bulgar and Sviyazhsk. I think that this will also positively affect the number of tourists. Second, the medical centers we have build can become a base for medical tourism. We also have many resorts on our territory. Special attention should be given to training tour guides. There must be a separate program, which should include qualifications and course exams. It is imperative that tour guides know the history of the Republic. And in my opinion, they should be not just knowledgeable, but must love our Republic. There are also some problems with the availability of facilities for the disabled and elderly people. Disable people travel worldwide. In Russia as a whole today, there are no opportunities for people with disabilities. Today, particular attention is given to this issue. I think in the near future Tatarstan will be accessible for everyone, including people with disabilities. — In a recent interview with the Kazan Herald, Head of the Kazan School of Policy Ivan Shesterikov suggested that «youth policy,» by definition, is not necessary. He believes that it creates an inaccurate distinction between young people and the rest of society. Could you comment on this point of view? — I think it should be separate. Each age group has its own interests. In Tatarsatan, young people are defined as people thirty years old or younger. We must take into account the difference in their worldviews. How old are you, for example? — Twenty-three. — Think of yourself when you were sixteen. A sixteen-year-old boy has a lot of choices to make. He must choose his profession, his school. He must make plans. A twenty-threeyear-old man needs to find employment. It seems to me that every age is different. Perhaps in the future everyone will be the same, but youth policy will still exist. Maybe every country doesn’t have a Ministry of Youth, as we do, but there is at least a separate program of youth policy almost everywhere. For example, a program of healthy lifestyle for young people needs to be separate. We cannot compare a fifty-year-old human with a youngster. Young people have many more resources and energy. This energy must be developed in a positive way. At fifty, a man has to focus on different aspects of health. — Should such programs for youth be supported by law? For example, should we have a special Law for Youth? — I think yes, we should, because we have to think about the employment. Right now, we have a lot of young lawyers and economists who cannot find jobs. At the same time, we do not have enough professionals with engineering background in nuclear power engineering, construction, and so on. Here we should have

a separate program specifically for young people. The same is for the sports. Everything must be spelled out. Many countries do not separate youth programs, but they still can’t get rid of the phrase «youth policy». Because it is, in any case, present in some programs, whether in health programs, Employment programs, or education programs. — State Duma Deputy Alina Kabaeva recently introduced a bill on national politics in response to the riots in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Do you think it is necessary to return to this Soviet Legislation? — I’d have to see this act before commenting on it. In general, Tatarstan has always been a place of peaceful coexistence of different nationalities and faiths. I’m from the city of Naberezhnye Chelny, where more than eighty different nationalities live at the moment. I’m a child of a mixed marriage, my mother is Tatar, and my dad is Russian. Again, this question returns to the youth. Recent events have demonstrated that the problem of extremism among young people in Russia is generally stronger and dangers, often escalating into more serious crimes, such as terrorism, murder, or riots. Often, informal networks of youth are not acting on their own, but are subject to the «cheap» calls and slogans of adult nationalist organizations. In this regard, we must discourage young people’s participation in extremist groups with social and special prevention measures. On 9 December 2010 at the meeting of the Commission on Youth Policy, Healthy Lifestyles, and Assisting in Preparations for the World Student Universiade in Kazan, the issue of paying more attention to informal activities of youth subcultures and possibly engaging with them was once again raised. The idea was to involved youth more in state sponsored activities and to form common moral values. In accordance with the Decision of the Commission, plans were made to organize youth forums of various groups and faiths. — But we don’t have such problem in our Republic, do we? — No, I don’t think we do. But just because we don’t have a problem today doesn’t mean that it won’t appear tomorrow. There will always be people able to «raise a storm in a teapot.» So, perhaps, that’s why we need Youth policy, not separate from national issues, but as a part of it.

Tatneft recovers first 10 thousand tonnes of oil in Syria This is done within a joint venture with Abu Kamal Petroleum Company at the South al-Kashmeh field. The JSC Tatneft has within a joint project with the Abu Kamal Petroleum Company extracted the first 10 thousand tonnes of oil at the South al-Kashmeh field in Syria, the Tatneft’s press service has said. Based on the data obtained during the drilling and testing the drilled wells, the Tatnipineft, Tatar Geological Exploration Department and LLC TNG Group has successfully devised and defended at the Syrian Arab Republic’s General Oil Corporation a report of the cost to performance ratio for the South al-Kashmeh first field’s opening. An additional seismic exploration has been performed at the field and drilling an exploration well is planned, to increase the open oil reserves category. Two wells are being exploited. Tatneft was the first Russian company to win an open international tender in 2003 and signing a contract for exploration and recovery of oil and gas on product sharing terms in Syria. Abu Kamal Petroleum Company is a joint venture set up by Tatneft and the Syrian General Oil Corporation on a parity basis. The recoverable resources are estimated at $4.9 million tonnes. Ten thousand tonnes of snow in past 24 hours taken out of Kazan A total of 10 thousand tonnes of snow has in the pat 24 hours (Dec. 21) been taken out of Kazan, in which 584 equipment units were involved, says the Kazan executive committee’s press service. The bulk of the traffic lanes clearing work was done at night, about 400 machines were involved. To prevent packed snow, 2,684 tonnes of the sand-salt mixture was put on the surface. Nearly 10 thousand tonnes of snow were delivered to the snow dumpsites and snowmelting chamber. The weather in Tatarstan in the next few days will possibly deteriorate. A blizzard and snow drifts are expected. The temperature will be 4 to 7 degrees minus. The Kazan executive committee’s deputy head Alexander Lobov said the Buran operation continued to be in effect in Kazan due to this. The plan was imposed on December 6. The municipal services will continue to involve additional machinery, to clear the city streets. Restrictions for heavyweight autos entering the city during snowstorms have been imposed. A.Lobov appealed to residents in Kazan, asking them not to leave personal cars on the roads, as it hinders the snow cleaning work.


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December 24, 2010 No. 9(9)


The Hottest and the Coldest of Years 2010 in Review

(Continued from page 1)

former subordinates from Tatarstan to continue on as members of their new teams in Moscow. Politics «Tatarstan is an active conductor on the path towards modernisation and innovative development of the country,» — President Minnikhanov in his message to the Tatarstan State Council on 13 October 2010. It is well known that President Minnikhanov has not played as large a role in Russian politics as his predecessor. Perhaps it is not particularly interesting for him. It is therefore not surprising that there were not any significant change or turmoil in Tatarstan policy in the past year. The Republic celebrated the Ninetieth Anniversary of its formation. the Twentieth Anniversary of its Declaration on State Sovereigntym, and joined the entire country in celebrating the Sixty‑Fifth Anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War (Russian participation in World War II). The new Prime Minister didn’t present any surprises either. Modernisation has become a catchword in Primier Khalikov’s speeches in the Tatarstan State Council, in which he laid out the Cabinet of Ministers Plan for 2010–2015. He is certainly not alone: Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has also declared modernisation the main strategy for the coming years. Local elections similarly aroused little interested this year. Everything was predictable, peaceful, and quiet. The United Russia party representatives won nearly all of their elections with confidence. The Economy The year’s major test for the Republic’s economy was the drought. More than 1.3 million hectares of crops were destroyed because of the record‑breaking heat. Farming and agricultural enterprises grossed 10 billion rubles this year, 18 billion short of the 30 billion ruble average yield. This shortage led to inflated prices of potatoes, corn, and wheat, despite government efforts to the contrary. Experts say that the ramifications of this disaster will continue to be felt over the next few years. Even so, the fact that Tatarstan was one of the few regions of Russia that preserved and developed its

agricultural sector this year should be noted. The Republic did have some considerable positive achievements this year. The Second International Islamic Business and Finance Summit, held in June, demonstrated the enormous potential of this sector. Similarly, the Third Euromoney International Investment Forum, held in October, further confirmed Tatarstan’s status as one of the top investment sites in the Russian Federation. The oil industry, traditionally an important part of the Tatarstan economy, has been continuing to grow steadily, thanks largely to Tatneft, the leading oil company. Smaller oil companies were responsible for twenty percent of the total oil production in the Republic this year. Tatarstan’s petrochemical industry has also been successful this year, returning to the pre‑crisis level. Enterprises such as Nizhnekamskneftekhim, Kazanorgsintez, and the TAIF group companies continue to develop new kinds of petrochemical products. Kamaz is becoming one of the modern enterprises of the new Russian landscape. It successfully cooperated with world leaders in the automotive industry this year. Daimler Trucks increased its stake in the company’s capital from one percent to eleven percent. As the year began, it seemed that the scope of construction was a mismatch to the contemporary economic conditions. The construction of facilities for the Universiade, the TANECO complex, and the implementation of housing programs under the social mortgage and capital repairs of housing helped to return the construction industry to pre‑crisis levels. Tatarstan’s President also finally drew attention to the middle class. «The foundation of any developed society is the middle class,» he said. «It is the guarantor of stability in any country. Its share in economically affluent countries is about sixty percent. In our republic, this figure is two times lower.» Along these lines, Economic Minister Midhat Shagiakhmetov announced promising news during a meeting of the State Council regarding the results of the Tatarstan Socio‑economic Development Program, 2005–2010. Per capita cash income has i n c re a s e d m o re t h a n three‑fold, totalling 18,000

rubles. The average salary also increased, becoming 17,000 rubles a month. The Gross Regional Product (GRP) also increased 1.4 times over this period. GRP per capita increased 1.8 times, amounting to 260,000 rubles in 2010. GRP almost doubled over this period, growing from $17 to 32 billion in 2010. Foreign trade turnover also increased. Mr. Shagiahmetov also noted that, thanks to the results of the past five years, Tatarstan is now responsible for nearly seven percent of the Russian Federation’s oil production, thirty percent of car production, fifty‑two percent of polyethylene production, forty‑two percent of synthetic rubber production, and thirty‑four percent of tire production. Labor productivity has also increased, amounting to nearly 540,000 rubles per employee in 2010. Output per worker in industry is now 2.8 million rubles. The budget revenue has increased twice. Social Progress Tatarstan has achievements to be proud of outside of the economy. Average life expectancy has increased by two years, becoming seventy‑one. Also, more than 2 million square meters of housing have been introduced each year in the country. This year, the assessment will be introduced in 2020 sq m. We will touch on this topic in more detail in upcoming issues. Overall, Tatarstan has continued to develop, in spite of the economic crisis. President Minnikhanov has a four‑pronged formula with which Tatarstan should measure success: Quality of Law — Quality of Power — Quality of Business — Quality of Life. We must maintain this progress over the next four years. Sports By DAMIR VALIULLIN Important Sports Milestones for 2010 1. Kazan hockey cub AkBars won the Gagarin Cup, becoming backto‑back winners of the Continental Hockey League. 2. FC Rubin Kazan took third place in the Russian football championship 3. Kamaz‑Master won another victory in the transcontinental Dakar Rally‑Marathon 4. Dinamo Kazan won the World Cup in ball hock-

ey for the first time ever, upsetting the reigning champion, Sweedish Hammarby, in the final match. 5. Volleyball club Zenit Kazan became the three‑time champion of Russia. 6. Dinamo Kazan won the Female Volleyball Russian Championship for the second straight year. 7. International Chess Grandmaster Alisa Galliamova won the Thirty‑Ninth World Chess Olympiad in Khanty‑Mansiysk for the Russian national team. She also won the Super Final of the Russian Women’s Championship in Moscow for the second straight year. 8. Arsene Tsinaridze took the gold medal in the European Championship in Taekwondo. 9. Anastasia Kovyazina won the Students World Cup in Sambo. Culture By ARTHUR MIROSHNICHENKO The quantity and quality of Kazan’s has increased dramatically over the past year. Kazan residents now have cool concerts no less often than they have in, say, Moscow or St. Petersburg. This positive change is not simply the result of active young folk‑promoters, who have brought more and more famous artists, nor a result of the city administration, which recently began to become involved in youth leisure. Instead, it is due to the fact that Kazan audiences have become uncannily enthusiastic. Our audiences are eager and ready to absorb all the new, fresh and relevant from the world of music and art.

The year began as most typically do, with a variety of themed gigs. Tribute concerts dedicated to Lennon or Cobain collected many bands and music fans of different walks of life. The savage cold of last winter did not deter the warm support of the young clubbers who came out to these concerts. Things got even brighter as the weather turned warmer. Kazan was visited by Petrograders PTVP, Jane Air and Funny Guys from the group Sea & Rails (More&Reslsy). Of course, we can’t forget to mention the big festivals. The Creation of Peace festival featured performances of Splin, Mummy Troll, and hot guys from the Molotov band. The festival brought together a diverse mass of hundreds of people. The end of 2010 was also intense. Within a span of three months, Kazan was visited by many trendy Russian groups, including NRKTK, PTVP, and Barto. The year was not without scandal. The Sixth Ka-

zan International Music Film Festival was the first festival that was not under the «Gold Minbar» label. Apparently there was a conflict between the Moscow and Kazan offices prior to the festival. It is not exactly clear what their points of disagreement were, but the result was visible to everyone: Moscow hosted a «Golden Minbar» festival, Kazan the «Kazan International Muslim Film Festival. «Bibinur,» a Tatar film directed by Yury Feting, won the Best Film award at the festival. The film’s producer Svetlana Bukharaeva accepted the prize and thanked all those who helped in the time‑ and effort‑demanding process of shooting the film. On a side note, the Golden Minbar controversy seems to have already been settled. Tatarstan Minister of Culture Zilya Valeeva announced shortly before the festival’s closing ceremony that the «Golden Minbar» will return to Kazan next year.

December 24, 2010 No. 9(9) Society

Minnikhanov Pledges to Support Youth Projects

by ZULFIYA TARAZOVA Tatarstan President Rustam Minnikhanov promised to provide support to the winning projects of the Tatarstan National Youth Forum. In total, twenty different projects across six thematic divisions were recognised with awards at the Forum. The six first‑place projects — The Kazan Herald, in the «Information Channels» division; Developing polyplexes based on amphilphilic block co‑polymers, in the «Youth Science and Innovation» division; the «Rostock» Project, in the «You as an Entrepreneur» Division; «Pure Drive»

in the «Technology is Good» Division; the Tatarstan Discussion Club, in the «Leadership» Division; and «TatAR,» in the «Start in the Future» Division; and the Republic’s student (youth) building group, in the «Careers» Division—each received personal congratulations from President Minnikhanov. The three‑day forum was held at IT‑Park from 15 to 17 November and featured the best ideas and projects of Tatarstan’s youngest generation. Part exhibition, part presentation, the forum was the culmination of a two‑stage process that began this summer. 753 groups sub-

mitted projects for consideration by a panel that included experts from various ministries and government bodies, «Idea» Technology Park, Tatarstan’s Venture Capital Fund, and other business representatives. President Minnikhanov was the head member of this panel. The panel selected thirty‑eight of the 753 submitted projects for further consideration in the three‑day forum in November. Over the course of the forum, the project founders met with the panelists, discussed, and explained their projects. The forum’s six different thematic divisions mirror those in the Russian Youth Forum «Seliger,» making it possible for these projects to compete at the national level next year. During the forum, Minnikhanov announced that the leadership of Tatarstan is prepared to further support youth projects and hopes that new ones will continue to be developed. President Minnikhanov carefully examined all of different projects and shared his impressions on November 17, the final day of the forum. «I am quite glad to be here with you today,» said Minnikhanov to the Forum participants. «Today you have shown me a mass of interesting ideas. There is great promise in your projects. The competitiveness of any country or region depends on its youth’s knowledge and ambition to realise itself. In the past few years we have seen a lot of support being given to education, science, and youth projects, both in Tatarstan and in Russia. But knowledge and ideas themselves do not produce any results if we ourselves do not learn how realise them.» Natalya Bastrakova, Assistant Director of the Communications Department of the Russian Olympics Council, took part in the

«Information Channels» forum and presented her own project, «Creative Business Trips at Home.» Her project’s goal is to connect Tatar journalists working outside of the republic with young journalists beginning to enter the professional sphere. Thanks to this project, the Youth Forum was able to hold master classes with Maksim Sharafutdinov and Farida Kurbangalieva, leading journalists on federal TV channels. «It was simply wonderful,» said Alsu Saetova, the head of «New Media,» about the forum. «The event was organised entirely by the Tatarstan’s young leaders. The Ministry of Youth Affairs, Sport a n d To u r i s m w a s o u r co‑sponsor and curator, but at the same time we worked out all the organisational logistics ourselves. The forum became a platform, where we displayed the new talent of Taarstan. But I would say that our work is not over. To the contrary, it has just begun. Now we must realize all of these ideas and projects. The extent to which this happens will be the true measure of the forum’s success.» The forum did not pass without criticism, however slight. It did not go unnoticed that there was a significant overlap between the forum’s participants and organisers. «In the rest of the world such a dishonest game is punishable by legislation, but for us it is business as usual,» noted Kazan Herald Head Editor Rustem Yunusov. «The appearance was as if the winning bid for a Gazprom contract was submitted by Gazprom. The most offensive aspect of this situation is that we joke about it, knowing that the joke itself is half true.» «The main achievement of this forum was to show Tatarstan’s youth that they are not alone,» added another prize‑winner. «It would be a stretch to say that the forum united this

group of people—such, in fact, was not even the goal of the event. Even so, it impressed upon them how important their work and research is for the republic. The forum was at a very high level.» President Minnikhanov emphasized the fact that all the presentations at the exhibition are going to receive support from the republic. «The ideas which we have seen today will be supported, and we would like for the number of project to multiply,» Minnikhanov announced. «I would like to wish our youth success. I

myself can assure you, that all your undertakings will be supported by us.» How and whether this support will manifest itself in monetary rewards will becom clear in the near future. The allotment and understanding of «support» differs from participant to participant: for some, it means a financial grant, for others, it is the organization of a meeting with potential investors. The forum organizers themselves noted that, if only for this reason, the forum was the first step for the future development of each project.

Information Channels First Place The Kazan Herald, Tatarstan’s First and Only English Newspaper Second Place Yaz, a Youth Newspaper in Tatar Third Place New Media, an information agency Youth Science and Innovation First Place Developing polyploexes based on amphilphilic block co-polymers Second Place Developiong modified soil stabilization for construction of roads in rural Tatarstan Third Place Research on adeno-associated viral vectors for gene-cell therapy to treat neurodegenerative diseases You as an Entrepreneur First Place The «Rostock» project Second Place Brand promotion of a modern national dress, «Dress Aitam» Third Place Developing and promoting garmets with polyurethane-coated fabrics Technology of Good First Place «Pure Drive,» a preventative youth volunteer movement Second Place «Let’s Become Friends» Third Place Multicoloured Word — It’s Ours! Leadership First Place Tatarstan Discussion Club Second Place Model UN Kazan Start in the Future First Place «TatAR» Multisport advendure race Second Place «Hermitage» Garden — Student Park Third Place The Student Square — a socially significant project involving youth inat work and in the economy Careers First Place The Republic’s stduent (youth) building group Second Place The Big Internship, a program to help graduates transition into working in enterprises in the priority sectors of the Tatarstan Economy Third Place «First Standards — Youth Potential»

December 24, 2010 No. 9(9)


Kozya Sloboda To Open Before New Year (Continued from page 1)

serious engineering difficulties. Consequently, construction plans for the station were put aside to be dealt with at a later date. Construction of the station finally began in 2006 and has been delayed several times. During this period, the metro system added another station, Prospekt Pobedy, at the southern end. Kozya Sloboda is located on Dekabristov street, where Chistopolskaya Street and Vaxitova Street meet. When it opens, it will become an important portal for people wishing to travel across the Kazanka river. At the moment, citizens of Kazan can only travel across the river by one of four bridges, all of which frequently become gridlocked with bumper-to-bumper traffic during rush hour. Thanks to the new Kozya Sloboda station, Kazan citizens will soon be able to circumvent these daily traffic jams. Particularly fortunate are students of Kazan State Energy University (KSEU), which is within walking-distance of the new metro station. Liana Zamaltdinova, KSEU Class of 2015, lives on Prospekt Pobedy and currently travels to university on an epic ninety-minute bus ride. When the new station opens, however, she will be able to go to university by metro. The less-than-twenty-minute ride from Prospekt Pobedy to

Kozya Sloboda will end up saving her roughly two hours of travel time every day. «The Kozya Sloboda station will definitely make our lives much easier,» Ms. Zamaltdinova said. «We students at Kazan State Energy University literally waste hours coming and going to university every day. I think it is wonderful that this station will open soon.» Ms. Zamaltdinova is not the only person to have realized the time-saving benefits of the Kazan metro. According to Metroelectrostrans, the body that runs and operates the metro, the number of metro riders spiked noticeably during the week of 6 December, as a result of the traffic congestion caused by a spell of heavy snowfall. The number of riders doubled during this period, totally more than 70,000 every day. Officials anticipate that the number of daily passengers will only increase as commuters become more familiar with the metro system and as the number of stations

increases. They are already planning on increasing the number of trains in circulation after the new station opens. Four more stations will be added to the current metro line before the Universiade in 2013. The line will be extended north from Kozya Sloboda station to Dekabristov station, Moskovskaya station, and Aviastroitelnaya station. At the other end, the line will be extended from Prospekt Pobedy station to Dubravnaya station. Once this first line is complete and the Universiade is over, officials will begin the long-term task of expanding the metro coverage throughout the city, explained Veniamin Terzimanova, the Assistant to the Director of Kazmetrostroi, the company carrying out the construction project. In theory, the plan is to construct four different metro lines servicing fiftysix different stations. «A serious task has been given to the builders of the Kazan metro,» said Mr. Terzimanova.

For now, though, the municipal government has only budgeted plans for adding a second line to the metro by 2020. In December, the cost of one trip on the metro became fifteen rubles, a three-ruble increase from the previous price. A metro token is good for one day only. Passengers who use the metro’s electronic card can buy multiple trips that are valid for thirty days and cost thirteen rubles.

Culture and Policy

Barto band on Russian politics and fines for Music By ARTHUR MIROSHNICHENKO After the Barto band concert to protect Khimki forest soloist Masha was summoned to the police station. Police tried to find extremist appeals in the text of the song «Ready». Guys told us the details in an interview just before their Kazan performance at «Mayakovsky — Yellow Shirt» club on December,12. KH: What kind of news to call the police about the song «Ready?» Did anything cleared up? Masha: Well, they took us as members of the group «War» and trying to tie us with them in any way. We thought that it may be hushed up, but now... the text was sent to the re‑examination, and we still have no answer from it. Nobody knows when it comes out. KH: Do you associate this with the fact that next year will be some progress in the legislation and this article will figure out without any penalties? Eugenie: From 3 to 7 years are in Article 282. With the present penalties. There are between 300 thousand and up to 3 years in old form of legislation and the new one has from 3 to 7 years. Masha: It is not rosy at all... Eugenie: And »War» was stabbed in the introduction to

Barto. Some guys probably want to fabricate some kind of anti‑state conspiracy. Sounds funny, of course. «War» attributed to the Criminal Code 282 article, the same as for Masha. Masha: But we are not sure about it yet. Eugenie: Re‑examination lasts for three months. Simply pull on the go. KH: I was wondering what you felt after talking to the police? Did it somehow affect you? Eugenie: We have released an album titled «The mind, conscience and honor,» although it was not planned to be called that. Last story coerced us. Masha: And we never wanted nothing to do with those people, but failed. We both understand what is happening in our country. There was no more «Protest», because so ugliness is around — that is a real protest. In general, I have not received any new emotion. If there is some sort of hype, then the Government see that the interest of the people subsides, and they quietly roll up. And all of this, of course, annoying. Eugenie: That’s why we still have no answer with Masha, because now everyone will forget and you can have someone to get to jail.

KH: And you are trying to stay away from it, do you? Eugenie: Yes. Music must has nothing to do with politics. Masha: Absolutely. We strongly declare everywhere that we are not political. KH: You are just for the healthy citizens’ initiatives, such as was the case with Khimki... Eugenie: Exactly. One of the conditions for participation

was that there will be no politics. Masha: In the end, all stood up again on its head and I think it’s just because they were not connected to public associations but to political parties. But the State behaved strangely. The usual concert on the «Mirnaya» square was completely banned. The only thing is not clear — what will be the end of this process. We have met with

the defenders of Khimki forest recently, and many of them have already been instituted to the criminal cases. Some of them are beaten on the head with bits. And, of course, we couldn’t be indifferent to this offenses. I can’t understand the police, hits innocent people. People who never stole or kill, who completely innocent in any guilty in the state. People who came to the protection of clean air.

December 24, 2010 No. 9(9) Tourism

New Horizons of Tourism By ROBERT MAY A new phenomenon in the tourism industry of Russia finds its application — rural tourism. Deputy Minister of Youth, Sport and Tourism of the Republic of Tatarstan, Sergey Ivanov told The Kazan Herald about the prospects for this trend in Ta‑ tarstan. — What does rural tourism, agrotourism, «green» or village tourism means? Is it a new concept for our Republic? — This is new trend in terms of development of world tourism at all. But in European countries this type of tourism has been developing for a long time. Previously, we had movement from village to city. All dreamed of living and working in the city. Today, with the increase of cities and the acceleration of the rhythm of life, we see the reversed process. There are different groups of peo-

ple who are interested in this. This is associated with childhood memories and a kind of attempt to break from the hustle and bustle. People in Europe understand that the village means a good environmental condition. Clean water and air. Plus the opportunity to explore the original culture of people inhabiting this territory. — How to develop rural tourism in Tatarstan? — The agriculture sector is very developed in Tatarstan. We have many villages and hamlets, which continue to live and grow. They have their own zest — the sights and customs. And features peculiar to them. All this is very attractive for many people from among the townspeople. The latter may feel the charm of village life, participating in the working process and learning new things in here. I believe that if people are closer the land‑mother, the great-

er harmony they feel inside of them. — Is there a rural tourism in our country? — We are in the beginning of this way at the moment. In the way of thinking. Unfortunately, today our Republic does not have the base or prepared areas for tourists. There are attempts of farmers from different districts to do such activity. — Who is responsible for this? I mean from the Ministries… — It is adjacent jurisdiction. Already, the Ministry of Agriculture has a program of alternative rural employment. Important point for us to match the interests of everyone, because we know how and what to sell and Ministry of Agriculture has this base.

— This year RT topped a million tourists. What percentage of tourists would be interested in this new direction of rural tourism, as by your opinion? — I think that as an excursion in the Tatar and Russian countryside that would be interesting to 15% of the total tourist flow. This may also be associated with tour to Bulgar or Svijazhsk.

— What do you find interesting in rural tourism for yourself personnel? — I think it is very helpful and enlightening for citizens to be in the village. This is a completely different world and most importantly the surrounding atmosphere, where everything teems with life, and at the same time, stability and sustainability.


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My Kazan

Deconstructing Kazan By IAN BATESON I first came to Kazan in August 2007. The warm weather, blue skies, quiet streets, and friendly people amazed me. The Tatar culture appeared to give Kazan an added extra flair not present in other Russian cities, compensating for some of the dynamism Kazan lacked in comparison to Moscow and St. Petersburg. I had previously spent a semester studying in Almaty, Kazakhstan, and the Tatars’ Turkic roots made Tatarstan seem to be an intriguing slice of Central Asia, transplanted to Europe. Kazan had captivated

me, and I was determined to come back. Three years later, I did. As fate would have it, my German university (confusingly, I am American, not German) had an exchange program with KGU (now officially Kazan Federal University). I came to Kazan to write my Master’s thesis on Soviet language policy in the 1960s and 1970s. But, by the time I arrived this past September, it was chilly, the skies were grey, and little seemed to be as I remembered it from my first trip. The streets that had been quiet that August (most likely be-

cause everyone was out at their dachas) were packed, and I found I had to let several buses pass in the morning before I could squeeze into one to make my way to the university, in the city center. I’ve also discovered that the friendliness I had experienced during my last visit was only because it was obvious to everyone that I was a foreigner: most people are anything but polite in daily life. The Turkic migration from Central Asian hadn’t brought along the Central Asian friendliness that I knew in Almaty. Kazan’s «Tatarness» has also become elusive. I rarely hear Ta-

tar outside of the Tatar philological department of the university (which, to my dismay, offers no Tatar courses specifically for foreigners) or when old Tatar babushki are around. In my daily life, Tatar culture is usually limited to ordering a Tatar snack that, more often than not, is referred to using its Russian name: the treyogolnik. And so, I am left trying to figure out exactly why I am in Kazan. It is difficult not knowing the answer to this question, especially since locals are always quick to ask foreigners why they have come to Kazan. I know that

I didn’t come here to be stared at for looking foreign by unsmiling students at the university. I also know it wasn’t to live in the new student village, built for the Universiade, which, while an impressive and shiny project, often leaves its «villagers» without hot water and feeling like prisoners. Only slowly have I started to find a side of Kazan that seems real to me, to find young people who have aspirations beyond emigrating or wearing as many real or fake designer items at once as possible. I am still working on it.

December 24, 2010 No. 9(9)


Russia, Kazan to Host 2018 World Cup

By DAMIR VALIULLIN On 2 December, Russia was declared the host country for the FIFA World Cup 2018, marking the first time the World Cup will be played on Russian soil in its 78‑year history. Russia won the bid over Britain and the combined application of Belgium, Netherlands, Spain, and Portugal. Britain was considered the leader on the eve of the vote because of their ability to bring in the most revenue for FIFA, however their bid received only two votes. Not surprisingly, the news has provoked an outcry across Britain. Arsenal

Head Coach Wenger expressed bewilderment as to why Russia won the bid. By chosing to host the tournament in Russia, he explained, FIFA has returned to the middle ages. «I’m very disappointed,» he explained to Sky Press. «I feel sorry for the local fans who are crazy about football. I do not believe that FIFA was aware of what the World Cup means for England.» The British press is also replete with articles about conspiracy and back‑room dealings to make World Cup Russia possible. Some articles make accusations of corruption amongst the FIFA executive committee

and amongst the commission members who voted. The Times calls the reason for Russia’s successful bid «the Putin factor.» Back in Russia, however, football fans celebrated their country’s victory, in some places partying until the morning. FIFA President Joseph Blatter explained that choosing Russia as the 2018 World Cup site was part of a broader plan to expand the geography of football. The 2022 World Cup is already scheduled to be held in Qatar. FIFA believes that holding the tournament in new places across the world will bring the sport even more popularity. England, a perpetual football haven, will have to wait for now. After all, they already had a World Cup, in 1966. UEFA president Michel Platini has backed FIFA’s decision to hold World Cup 2018 in Russia. «There is nothing illogical. The world championship was held in Western Europe ten times,» he explained to Reuters. «I think that this fact influenced the members of the

Hematic By DAMIR VALIULLIN Rubin’s results this year — third place in the Russian Championship and a weak performance in the European Cup — have spar­ ked a lot of discussion about the club’s future. Some of the more outspoken critics are correct — our players have become weaker. In 2006 Rubin stirred up the football community by taking third place in its first year in the Russian Premier

League. The team was quiet for the next three seasons, not finishing above fourth place. Rubin did not appear much in the press during this period. The most memorable story about the team back then was the controversy about the club’s Sporting Director Rustem Saymanov, an alleged gang member of «Sebastopol» accused of killing four people. Few observers suspected that over these

three years the sorcerer Berdiyev was working hard on molding the future champions of 2009 and 2010. This year’s third‑place finish has made it clear that the team cannot succeed without good strikers, even if it has an impenetrable defense and stellar goalkeeper Ryzhikov. A team needs to have a balance of solid defense and threatening offense to be successful. Kurban Berdiyev understands this perfectly. The team is in the process of acquiring the eighteen‑year‑old top Latvian scorer Ruckels to help Kornilenko, Medvedev, Martins, and Eduardo in the team’s attack. This is probably not the last acquisition that the team will make in the offseason. In addition to acquiring new players, the club also needs to resolve one more

executive committee in choosing Russia.» The 2018 World Cup is a third addition on an already crowded plate of Russia sporting events, joining the 2013 Universiade in Kazan and the 2014 Soochi Winter Olympics. Russia expects to spend $30 billion over the next eight years to support these three world‑class sporting events. $17 billion will be spent on the Olympics, $10 billion will be spent on the World Cup, and $1.3 billion on the Universiade. Part of these funds will be raised through public‑private partnerships. Russia has promised to grant visa‑free entry and free movement within Russia to all football fans visiting to watch the world cup. It also plans to build five hundred new football pitches. For now, however, major infrastructure preparations have not yet been sorted out. The World Cup will require significant investment in the construction of highways, railroads, terminals, and hotels. For this reason, some analysts have heralded the World

important problem, namely low attendance numbers at home matches. There are several explanations for this poor turnout. The first is logistical: the central stadium is owned and operated by the Kazan municipal government, which maintains its own policies in regards to fan attendance and conduct. (This might change when the new stadium is completed in 2012.) The second reason is the fact that Kazan viewers have become spoiled with the successful play of its other, stronger sports teams: Hockey National Champions Ak Bars, the volleyball team, basketball, and water polo. Rubin will soon begin preparing for next season’s domestic league and European League play. Expect this hot‑blooded, resilient team to bounce back next season. For now, though, fans will have to be content with Rubin Under‑18 Team’s performance this year, smashing openings and becoming the Youth Champions of Russia.

Cup bid as the beginning of a new construction boom in the country. The World Cup will be played in Kazan and twelve

other cities across Russia. The semi‑final and final matches will most likely take place in Moscow and St. Petersburg.


Stadium capacity



Moscow (Dynamo, Luzhniki, Spartak, Podolsk arena)

44920, 89318, 46990, 44257

St. Petersburg








Nizhniy Novgorod

























Rubin Kazan












Spartak Nalchik




























Krylya Sovetov















December 24, 2010 No. 9(9) Poetry

Khasan Tufan The 110‑year anniversary of the birth of Tatar poet Khasan Tufan was celebrated on 9 December in Tatarstan. Khasan Tufan was born on 10 December 1990 in the village of Karmat, Tatar ASSR (now the Aksubayevo district. He studied at the Eastern Division of the Kazan Pedagogical Institute from 1924 to 1925. He published his first work in 1924). His narrative poems «The Beginning of Beginnings,» «Between Two Epochs,» and «The Bibievs» were all written in 1927. These poems helped give rise to the working‑class theme in Tatar poetry.

In the 1930s, Tufan changed from tonic verse to classical Tatar metre and folk rhythms. In the 1940s and early 1950s he wrote the optimistic poems «Karakums» (1947), «Solar» (1947), and «Floating Clouds» (1951). Later Tufan primarily wrote philosophical lyric poetry, for example, the poems «Oh Life!» (1963), «Where Are You Going, Ursa Major?» (1965), and «You Are Old as Eternity» (1966). Despite the fact that he was a founder of Soviet Tatar poetry, Tufan was arrested in 1940 and released from custody only after the death of Stalin in 1956.

Tufan was awarded the G. Tukai Republican Prize in 1965. His works have been translated into the languages of the peoples of the USSR. Tufan has been awarded two orders and various medals. Biography adapted from the Great Soviet Encyclopedia. Don’t Be Indecisive Father set a long path before me: «Soon I will leave this world behind. Always be a man, my son, Not one of those indecisive sorts. Death already has its hold on me: My back is hunched, my bones deformed. I’m an old bear, brooding in my the lair,

Out of which I will no longer climb. Know that I’ll withhold my blessings If you don’t take revenge on the constable! Well, farewell!» «It’s a shame I didn’t gather a present… We will never meet again, remember me!» I left him there, Leaning on his cane, His moribund, broad body… And I turned towards the world, My path flying towards the unknown, Sprawling far and wide… The old man had good fortune: He happened to see the triumph Of the awesome storms. And as the thrones came crashing down —

At that moment, certainly, He blessed us. In his own way. 1927 Translated from the Russian by WYATT FORD


Arch‑meeting on December 11. About outgoing Kazan By ARTHUR MIROSHNICHENKO For the architectural and historical heritage of cities in Russia are now fighting not only in words. And not just in front of a bulldozer shovel, which is swinging with the permission of the authorities on a half‑ruined walls of some old house or estate in the down-

town area. December 11 — the Day of action in the protection of cultural heritage. People are coming out on rallies, pickets and actions in different cities — St. Petersburg, Yaroslavl, Kazan, Tula, Pskov... People who take sensible attempt to preserve their appearance and history of their native city.

December 24, 2010

One of the victims of historical cities of Russia is Kazan. These photos were taken from the report of Andrey Chekmarev «Doomed», which had great resonance in 2008. But particularly relevant topic of Kazan vandalism acquired after posts for appointment as the Head of the Department of Urban Development

of Moscow’s former Minister of Construction and Housing of Tatarstan Marat Khusnullin. In Kazan action on December 11 was carried out voluntarily by Kazan guides in conjunction with the All‑Russian Society for the Conservation of Monuments of History and Culture in Tatarstan. The campaign tour guides, restor-

ers and historians had free tours of the destroyed buildings in the center of Kazan. During the excursions signatures for an open appeals to the leadership of Tatarstan and Kazan were been collected. The appeal was aimed to stop the destruction of the historic appearance of the Capital of the Republic.

No. 9(9)

R. Yunusov Head Editor

W. Ford Deputy Editor

D. Valiullin General Manager

A. Miroshnichenko Art and culture

S. Saakyan Art‑director

D. Matveyev Columnist

Edition: 999 copies

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The Kazan Herald  

The first and only English-language newspaper of Tatarstan

The Kazan Herald  

The first and only English-language newspaper of Tatarstan