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Tatar-Bashkir Report: October 26, 1999

26 October 1999
Election Committee Head Denies Fraud Accusations
The chairman of Tatarstan's Central Election Committee, Marat Sirayev, said on 25 November that there is no proof that the results of the last Russian presidential elections were fraudulent. Sirayev made the comments in an interview with Tatar-inform in reference to an article in the 23 November edition of the daily "Sovetskaya Rossiya" about alleged "mass ballot fraud in favor of [Russian President Boris] Yeltsin" that took place in Tatarstan during the last elections. The daily also reported that these "notorious" examples in Tatarstan have been put under "permanent control" by the Russian General-Prosecutor's Office. Sirayev said that there were dozens of attempts to accuse the republic of forging the results of the vote and that they all were investigated by the Prosecutor's Offices and the Supreme Courts of Tatarstan and Russia. He said no proof of the charges was found by any of those bodies. He said certain "cases existed indeed but all of them were closed because concrete facts were not available." Sirayev said "when the accusation" was made by Communist Party leader Gennadii Zyuganov, "we appealed to the Russian Central Election Committee with a statement that nobody has a right to speak about forgery without proof. But we will not litigate against Zyuganov because he enjoys parliamentary immunity."

Tax Collection Revenue Increases
The head of the Russian Tax Ministry's branch in Tatarstan, Rinat Khairov, said on 24 November that the collection of taxes in Tatarstan has increased by 77 percent this year; in 1998 the increase was 62 percent. Khairov made his comments at a briefing in the Cabinet of Ministers in Kazan. Khairov said that Tatarstan is among the ten Russian regions collecting the greatest amount of taxes in cash. He said some 15 billion rubles ($600 million) were collected for the federal, republican, and local budgets over the last 10 months.

KamAZ Produces Engine For Carosa Bus
The new engine for the Czech bus Carosa produced at a KamAZ truck plant was demonstrated at a ceremony attended by Tatarstan's prime minister on 25 November in Kazan, Tatar television reported. Also, a project for the repair of Carosa buses in Tatarstan was approved by government members. The KamAZ-produced engine will reportedly cost 50 times less than an equivalent Czech version. The model will be tested and certified before mass production of it begins next year.

Registration Of Candidates For Parliament Seats Completed
Tatarstan's Central Election Committee reported on 24 November that some 500 candidates have been registered to stand for the 130 seats in Tatarstan's State Council. Thirty-nine of the candidates are women, and 52 are heads of local administrations. At least two candidates are running for every seat in the republic while in Kazan each seat is being contested by at least three people.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova