Destruction on a whim legalized
Apparently it was made official by the National Assembly of Armenia that the government does not care about the interests and well being of its citizens. The Armenian Parliament only yesterday passed a bill that would allow for any building, historic or otherwise, to be torn down whenever it deemed proper by a decree to oblige the “needs of the public and the state.” Protesters for a second time in about seven days were parked in front of the parliament building’s iron fencing on
This law overturns a decision made by the Constitutional Court of Armenia last April that stipulated all such demolitions made be illegal. The ruling was based on public outcry for the insufficient, rather humiliating sums of money given to families living in
Nothing was mentioned in the article that I read about how pro-government parties, particularly the coalition-member organizations, voted on the bill. But a majority of 70 members of the 131-seat parliament voted in favor of it.
It goes without saying that not only am I opposed to the decision, I am appalled that the government actually declared by passing a law that it will blatantly oppose the human rights of its citizens whenever and wherever it feels like it. I heard instances where people were virtually tossed into the street when they ignored calls for their eviction, just moments before a bulldozer smashed away at their homes—one woman supposedly died of a heart attack on the spot when she returned from shopping to see her apartment destroyed. Some protested against the measly amounts of compensation and in return did not receive a single dram. There is no way of telling where such people are today, some of whom do not have identification papers, but occasionally you can still see some lost souls wandering around Abovyan and Aram Streets, with blank looks on their faces mumbling to themselves. I have also heard rumors—which would not surprise me if they are true—of such people being thrown into vehicles, then whisked away to be dumped off at trash heaps on the outskirts of the city, where they “belong.” Armenians are careless and cruel towards one another as I have observed and even experienced personally. Whenever necessary they place their own interests first and foremost without turning a thought as to how their decisions may affect neighbors around them. As one example, the resident of the fifth floor of my apartment building has nearly completed the construction of his private elevator. The entrance way to the building was defaced so that he could accomplish this feat of selfishness. When the construction workers realized that not enough support was provided for the elevator frame to be free standing, they bolted it to the stairway wall, thus jeopardizing the structural integrity of the building. Not to mention that there are tons of cement blocks and slabs that now rest on the building’s roof so that he could add a second floor to his flat. The stairway has been coated with a thick layer of dust and chunks of plaster for over a year. Issues involving administrative carelessness happen everywhere in
I really don’t understand what’s going on in this country anymore. The troubling thing is that I am getting used to the fact that citizens’ interests repeatedly being cast aside are normal, acceptable occurrences. Indifference has become the method by which to govern and survive.
On an unrelated but poignant note, an article published last Friday demonstrates political party apathy in activating the citizens they supposedly serve—read it here.