Syktyvkar city court imposed an administrative fine of 10 thousand rubles to Igor Sazhin, a human rights activist and the chairman of the Komi Human Rights Commission "Memorial", which is under liquidation now. The fine was imposed for a picket in support of the journalists and human rights activists beaten at the border of the Chechen Republic and Ingushetia. This information was posted on April 8 by a lawyer Ernest Mezak on his Facebook page.
The human rights activist went to a one-person picket in front of the town hall, where the regional Vladimir Putin's office is situated, on March 10. After 10 minutes, the police squad came and took him into custody. Later on, after drawing up protocol Sazhin was released.
"Some gopniki [hoodlums] have beaten up the journalists and human rights activists. It was a clear raid, that people were wearing masks and carrying bludgeons… And I decided to stand on there [Stefanovskaya square] for a while. If they take me up, let them do that. Let the president draw his attention on the fact that there is a Russian territory which is doing whatever it wants to do. I'd most like if the president's representatives react somehow, because we can't stand it anymore”, Sazhin said then.
It is forbidden to hold any protest activities, including one-person pickets, on Stefanovskaya square in Syktyvkar. In November 22, 2012, the majority of Komi Republic Council deputies supported the bill on “particular issues of carrying out public events in Komi Republic” drawn up by The Liberal Democratic Party of Russia members Aleksandra Bushuyeva and Mikhail Bragin. Back then Bushuyeva argued that “Stefanovskaya square is the most important place in the city where small children with their moms, carriages, hobby-horses, and bikes could have a walk, but it was not supposed for public rallies, pickets, and demonstrations”. Yet the deputy was not disturbed by the fact that some events, fairs, parades that were allowed to be held there got in the way of the citizens having a walk much more. When voting on this issue, the deputies did not have unity. 19 people balloted for it, another four voted against, and two others abstained.
Viktor Ivanov, «7x7»