''Kazan can become the first city in Russia to reach zero waste burial''

7 days: from the construction of a waste incineration plant to the International Turkic Cinema Festival in Kazan

''Kazan can become the first city in Russia to reach zero waste burial''
Photo: Maksim Platonov

The issues related to equity construction in Tatarstan are planned to be solved by 2020. In 2022, a waste incineration plant in the village of Osinovo starts its operation. Kazan citizens are increasingly moving into small bed-sitting rooms because they can't afford more comfortable accommodation. The requirements to documents proving the employment history of the employee continue to tighten. These and other topics were discussed in the weekly informational and analytical program 7 days broadcasted on TNV channel. Read more in the review of Realnoe Vremya.

Two years to solve the problems

In the middle of last week, Prime Minister of Tatarstan Aleksey Pesoshin reported to the deputies on the results of the last year's work at a regular session of the State Council. Pesoshin focused more on problems than achievements. He promised to solve one of them by 2020. We are talking about the problem of deceived construction equity holders. To date, in Tatarstan 33 object remain problematic. The correspondents of 7 days investigated the situation.

Ravilya Lutfullina with tears in her eyes told about her tragic story. She is a disabled person of the first group: no leg, suffering from diabetes in severe form. Ravilya often had to go from Bugulma, where she lived before, to Kazan for treatment. Then she decided to sell a two-bedroom apartment and move to the capital of the republic: it is more convenient to receive the treatment, and it is closer to her son. His family lives in Kazan.

In 2014, Lutfullina bought an apartment in a house on Chistopolskaya Street. But the money from the sale of the former living space was not enough, she had to incur debts to find another 300,000 rubles. The infamous firm Svey was engaged in the construction of the house. For already the fifth year, the pensioner says, she has been living in limbo. She has to rent an apartment. There are other 4,211 such defrauded equity holders in Tatarstan like Ravilya Lutfullina. Each of them has its own difficult story of relations with unscrupulous developers.

Deputy of the State Council of Tatarstan Artyom Prokofyev notes that together with the deputies of Kazan City Duma they have recently inspected all problematic constructions in Kazan. They met with people. Artyom Prokofyev showed the prepared document. There was a complete picture of each facility: what the city administrations suggested, and what the government did, and what people themselves considered it necessary to do.

Artyom Prokofyev notes that together with the deputies of Kazan City Duma they have recently inspected all problematic constructions in Kazan. Photo: gossov.tatarstan.ru

''The information we gathered, the results of the meetings — all this should be used in the work. I am sure, we can solve the problem using joint efforts,'' the deputy considers.

''Just yesterday I reported to the presidium of the General Council on the problems of the equity holders. Unfortunately, the year 2017 turned out to be peak from the viewpoint of appearance of constructions which do not fulfill the obligations,'' said Deputy of the State Duma of Russia Aleksander Sidyakin. He notes that in Tatarstan the issue of deceived shareholders is under special control of the leadership of the republic.

More than one thousand families in the region have already received the keys to their long-awaited apartments. But in Tatarstan as well as in Russia in general the problem remains unresolved. Last year, in Russia more than 35,000 deceived shareholders received support, while another more than 58,000 new victims appeared. Almost 500 objects have been 'frozen'.

On Thursday, Prime Minister of Tatarstan Aleksey Pesoshin said at the session of the State Council that within 2 years Tatarstan intends to completely solve the problem of deceived shareholders.

''By 2020, we plan to completely solve the issue. This year, it is planned to complete 21 facilities, seven of which have already been built and only legal problems need to be solved. In 2019 — five objects, in 2020 — seven objects,'' Pesoshin assured.

If previously the authorities were involved in solving the problem at a late stage, when it was necessary to help with connecting houses to networks and other infrastructure, now the main problematic objects are houses of bankrupt developers. The only way out is to find a new investor to finish the object. But how to do it? That's what the Fund is for. The scheme is simple: the investor invests in the construction of a problematic house, in return receives a land plot from the same Fund. The parameters have not been disclosed so far, but the very fact that the authorities have decided to create it says a lot.

A little later, the official representative of the Kazan Kremlin, Lilia Galimova, acquainted the journalists with the schedule of settlers. In Bavly, 40 families will move into new apartments this year. The house is ready at 65%. Housewarming will be given in the village of Kuyuki in Pestrechinsky district. The houses are completing the finishing and decoration works. The readiness is already at 90%. Negotiations with a potential investor are under way in Zelenodolsk district. It is necessary to complete the landscaping and commissioning of internal networks. In Naberezhnye Chelny, the solution to the issue of the shareholders is being in the final stage. The investor has been defined. There are 639 apartments.

Lilia Galimova acquainted the journalists with the schedule of settlers. Photo: Oleg Tikhonov

''Kazan accounts for the largest volume of problematic objects. There is a significant progress in the residential complex MChS. In part of providing the federal ministry of emergency situations with lands at the disposal of the republic. An agreement in principle was reached during talks between Rustam Minnikhanov and Minister Vladimir Puchkov. There is a high degree of readiness of the section G No. 1 and the apartment house No. 5,'' Galimova designated.

The construction of a waste incineration plant begins in the autumn

This week it has become known where most likely it will be build an incinerator plant in the village of Osinovo in Zelenodolsk region. All works on its creation will take 4 years. It is expected that the plant will start its operation in 2022.

The wider public for the first time learnt about clear intentions of the construction of a waste incinerator plant in Kazan at the beginning of last year. Public uproar was rather great. At the time it was unknown where, in fact, they were going to build this plant, representing in the minds of the citizens a kind of a giant crematorium with a hollow pipe, spewing acrid, toxic smoke. Specialists parried — this is not true. Incinerator plants do not smoke and do not pollute the air. The pipe is designed for steam. And it is possible to deal with such landfills that kill us only using such methods.

More than a year has passed, but the parties are still intransigent. There has not been much news over this year. Whether the plant will be or not — it was unclear until this week. And now we know, for sure, even where it can be built. The prime minister has no doubts.

''My opinion — the plant will be, surely. Now engineering works are under way, the owner purchased the site. Now the layout of the site is being planned, protection zone are being defined,'' commented Pesoshin.

In the village of Osinovo, the atmosphere is, frankly speaking, ominous. Here everyone without exception is against, everyone listened to terrible stories and everyone considers that there is no smoke without fire. Nobody believes in fire without smoke.

The residents will have an opportunity to express their opinion directly to the customer of the project. The customer is Alternative Generating Company-2. AGC-2 has already started collecting information, questions, comments, suggestions from the population. Until 19 April, all this can be sent either by e-mail or by post. Public hearings will be held in June. The construction can begin no earlier than in October this year.

There are many similar plants worldwide. They are usually located within the limits of the city. The design capacity is 550,000 tonnes of waste a year. Kazan can become the first city in Russia to reach zero waste disposal — along with Zurich, Berlin, Stockholm and Copenhagen.

''The technology chosen at this stage is the technology used by 80% of similar plants worldwide. Tatarstan President has set the task to involve public control in this issue. The project will definitely be discussed with Tatarstan citizens, activists concerned about this topic. The position of the leadership of the republic in matters of new technologies introduction, means of waste disposal is strictly reduced to one thing — the project must be absolutely safe for the environment and for the health of residents, representative of the Kazan Kremlin Lilia Galimova told reporters at a briefing.

The wider public for the first time learnt about clear intentions of the construction of a waste incinerator plant in Kazan at the beginning of last year. Public uproar was rather great. Photo: Maksim Platonov

How it is like to live in bed-sitting rooms in Kazan

The quality of housing in Russia is not adequate to its price. The smallest studio apartment on the outskirts of Kazan costs 1,5 million rubles. If the apartment is more or less decent, then it is 2-3 million rubles. The price of a good two-bedroom apartment in the centre can even exceed 10 million rubles. In recent years, small-sized housing has become very popular among buyers in Moscow. It is the apartments of 10 square meters, where the developer managed to combine kitchen and bathroom with toilet in one small room. People have already called such studios as 'canisters'. Kazan is also trying to keep pace with newfangled trends. The journalists of 7 days decided to find out how it feels to residents of these apartments.

Own corner for singles and people without phobias — perfect home for those who are not afraid of confined spaces. In 20 square meters, if you want, you can accommodate almost everything: kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom with toilet. Providing absolute freedom and absence of any obligation.

''As a rule, these apartments are chosen either by young families or single people for a quiet life without children,'' explains the head of the estate agency Happy House, Anastasia Gizatova.

Such apartment in a new building almost on the outskirts of the city will cost 2 million rubles on average. This is the cost of an old studio apartment, but in the centre of Kazan. Future owners are not afraid of any price or distance.

In Russia, they began to build small-sized housing in large quantities under Khrushchev. These small, uncomfortable apartments are contemptuously called khrushchevkas in the vernacular. But particularly khrushchevkas increased the norm for one person — at least 9 sq.m. The one-room apartment was supposed to be at least 14 sq. m with a small but isolated kitchen, where, as a rule, people had lunch alternately, with a narrow corridor and combined bathroom with toilet. People at the time joked that Khrushchev managed to unite practically everything in this apartment. It's good that he did not have time to unite the ceiling with the floor.

Under Khrushchev, developers puzzled how to isolate rooms in a small space. Unlike developers of the Soviet era, modern designers did not bother themselves in search of a better solution. They took the experience not of veterans, but the life by the Western model. The fashion for small apartments, where there are only four walls, has come to Russia relatively recently. Abroad, such housing is called studios. But this is a special philosophy of life. Colourful pictures with extraordinary design of studio apartments are flooding the Internet. This place is not so much for life as for the work of creative people. There live and create artists and poets who are strangers to the problems of everyday life.

In 20 square meters, if you want, you can accommodate almost everything: kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom with toilet. Photo: prav.tatar.ru

''The building regulations state that all rooms in the residential apartment must be separate. But here they all are in one space. It means noise, smells. Comfort immediately disappears,'' says Chairperson of the Union of the Architects of Naberezhnye Chelny Rinat Safiullin.

In conditions of gray everyday life and lack of creative thinking, such an apartment in Russia loses its European charm. They even call them in a different way. Not studios, but gostinkas [bed-sitting rooms]. That is, a place for temporary residence. But people in our country buys gostinkas not because of blue-skies thinking.

''Developers understand that the purchasing power of the population is low and are looking for ways to satisfy it,'' explains Safiullin.

Architects believe that such housing policy can lead to very sad consequences in a few years. High density of the population of a certain social status can cause serious problems.

''Segregation in our country manifests even stronger than in European countries,'' believes Alexander Dembich, the head of the department of urban planning and planning of rural settlements at Kazan State University of Architecture and Engineering.

Pension needs to be earned

Requirements to documents that prove the employment history of the employee continue to tighten. Experts explain this by the fact that in Russia the under-the-counter salary has become widespread since the 1990s in all sectors of the economy. And today, these workers, who received wages under the table, begin to get a pension. And they are facing serious difficulties. Besides, there is the problem of missing documents of disappeared enterprises. The heroes of the next plot of the program were drivers from Chistopol. For many years they have worked in passenger transportation. But they can't retire early now. Instead, they are camping of the doorstep of courts of various authorities.

Three years of endless trials, two of which are in the Supreme Court, and no chance of early retirement. Konstantin Saltsin claims that he has worked in a motor transportation company in Chistopol since 1984 as a driver of a city bus. That means that it is provisioned early retirement for him. However, in his employment book there is other line — 'a driver of the convoy', which means that Konstantin Petrovich will have to work until aged 60. The driver cannot find documents confirming special working conditions. Almost 17 years of grace period vanished together with the documents.

''In 2015, I addressed to Chistopol motor transportation company, they told that me they would give me nothing. But they didn't explain on what basis. After that, I've lost all the cases,'' shared Saltsin.

Perhaps, in Saltsin's case, the employee and the employer did not understand each other. Photo: chistopol-rt.ru

Dozens of questions arise in the case of Konstantin Saltsin. How could our hero be at the wheel of a city bus and be responsible for the safety of 100 passengers without having the right? What insurance contributions did the company make if the salary in the employment record was less than it actually is, Konstantin Petrovich asks. And, of course, the main question is whether there is still a chance to give early retirement. Meanwhile, the attorney doubts the positive outcome of the case.

''We still need to see what awards appear in diplomas, photos can be confirming, as well as waybills,'' says attorney Larisa Lazareva.

The vanished documents and numerous trials related to pensions — the number of such cases increases year on year. Most often this is connected with employees of the enterprises privatized or liquidated in the 1990s. Today there is a wave of future retirees from today's gray market — with salaries under the table. What is the benefit for the employer?

''The contributions will be less. Besides, if there were harmful conditions — it is necessary to conduct a special assessment of working conditions. The employer doesn't want to do it,'' Larisa Lazareva answered.

In the Pension Fund of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Tatarstan, they emphasize that future retirees are not always honest in drawing up the documents. Perhaps, in Saltsin's case, the employee and the employer did not understand each other.

''Perhaps, he has been working on commuter routes, where salary is higher. But he wants an early retirement. Once the organization confirms, perhaps, employment was not in those conditions about which the citizen claims,'' suggests Irina Strelkova, the head of the department of pensions with account special experience and evaluation of pension rights.

Or it is the company isn't willing to confirm. Chief accountant of Yoktrans PLC, now occupying the base of Chistopol motor transportation company (there were transferred the employees of the liquidated company), said all the documents were handed over to the archive.

But the documents of Saltsin confirming his employment as a city bus driver were not found in the archive. They couldn't even find the order on hiring Konstantin Petrovich. By the way, important papers often lie not where they are expected. In the previous year alone, the Pension Fund found out the location of documents of 302 organizations.

Several people win or lose cases from the Pension Fund daily. Photo: vistanews.ru

Several people win or lose cases from the Pension Fund daily, demanding a legitimate pension, if you look at the database of decisions taken by the Russian courts. It seems already today it is necessary to defend yourself not to hire an attorney in the future. Lawyers recommend to monitor the records in the employment record book, to keep employment contracts, timesheets, travel sheets, certificates of wages, which will help to further prove the right to a pension. Photos will also help — the very case when social networks are not for fun, but really help. For example, a photo driving a bus with passengers with the hashtag 'Pushkin Street stop' could be one of the evidence in court for Konstantin Saltsin.

''The most effective way for today is to open a personal account on the Pension Fund of Russia website. Those who has access to public services, in a private office can check whether all the pension rights are taken into account,'' representatives of the Pension Fund assure.

Spring festival in a special way

Last week, the whole Turkic world celebrated the beautiful ancient holiday of Nowruz — the holiday of spring. Few people know that Nowruz was originated more than 3,000 years ago in the Persian Empire. Since 2009, by the decision of UNESCO the holiday was included in the list of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity. In many countries, Nowruz is celebrated as a public holiday, for example in Albania, Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, India and Macedonia. This year Kazan has celebrated Nowruz in a special way. For the first time it has been held the International Turkic Cinema Festival in the capital of Tatarstan. Our country has been represented in the festival by filmmakers of Tatarstan, Bashkortostan, Yakutia, Khakassia and Chuvashia.

Kanat Torebay, a film producer from Kazakhstan, is sure that times have changed. The cinema of Turkic peoples, which once brought up a galaxy of stars and became known all over the union, is experiencing a new round of development.

''For a long time, due to ideological reasons, political ones, many related peoples, especially of the Turkic language family, were divided. But now there is a visible tendency for rapprochement. And the very fact that this process is developing is good,'' says Kanat Torenbay.

After 20 years of stagnation, they decided to unite to assert themselves again. In October 2017, the first meeting of the presidium of the Turkic World Cinema Association was held in Istanbul. The association included well-known figures of cinema from Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Turkey and Russia, which is now in the world of Turkic cinema will be represented by Tatarstan.

''The main message of all members of the Association is to return the films of Turkic countries to the Eurasian space. They differ in that there have pronounced national characteristics of the peoples. Yes, maybe these films do not have enough action or cutting-edge technology, but in the centre there are people and real relationships,'' says Milyausha Aytuganova, the director of Tatarkino.

The International Turkic Cinema Festival held in Kazan has become, so to say, the first tentative step. Each country presented a film that, according to the organisers, could reflect the mentality of a particular people. It is their main difference. But each country has similar problems, which often can be solved only by joint efforts.

The International Turkic Cinema Festival held in Kazan has become, so to say, the first tentative step. Photo: Oleg Tikhonov

The peculiarity of this festival was that the films were not restrained by any time limits. For example, the film Selvi Boylum Al Yazmalim (Red Kerchief) by Turkish director Atif Yilmaz made forty years ago based on the novel by Chingiz Aytmatov. This is already an old good classic.

Old Man from Kazakhstan, Hunter from Khakassia and the fate of a simple Tatar woman Bibinur. It is the film by Yury Feting, shot in 2009, at its time became a discovery of new Tatar cinema, which once had its own history. And which, as many believe, begins its new path.

''We've had our own cinema for already a long time. But it can not become the best in the world, it is the law of evolution,'' said chairperson of the Tatarstan Cinematographer Union Ildar Yagafarov.

By Yekaterina Ivanova