TOMSK, Aug 11 –
RIA Tomsk. More than 30 people became participants of the
first Forum of descendants of special settlers, which was held on Sunday at the
Tomsk Regional Museum of Local Lore; in addition to Tomsk citizens, the event,
was attended by residents of Latvia who survived the mass deportation of 1940,
the RIA Tomsk correspondent who visited the forum said.
Earlier it was
reported that the descendants of special settlers, historians and social
activists will gather on August 11 at the Tomsk Regional Museum of Local Lore
for a forum dedicated to preserving the memory of the victims of Soviet
collectivization. The initiators of the event were two residents of the village
of Palochka, Verkhneketsky district, who intend to create in their village the
first in Russia memorial to dispossessed peasants.
"More than 30
people gathered at the first Forum of descendants of special settlers in the
museum. In addition, residents of Biysk of Altai Krai, whose ancestors were
sent to the Narym Territory in the early 1930s, participated at the Forum via
Skype. Among the unplanned participants were guests from Latvia who arrived to
Tomsk for the sake of shooting a film about deportation in 1940", – tells
the correspondent of RIA Tomsk.
One of Latvians – Imant Berzins – told at the forum that he was exiled with his family in 1949
to Kolpashevsky district when he was six years old. He emphasized that the
fates of those exiled to Siberia are similar in many respects, despite national
differences, and very many names and surnames of the victims are forgotten.
© РИА Томск. Таисия Воронцова
the Russians were exiled to the village, we were lucky that they got used to it
somehow. The hunger was continuous. We survived thanks to the fact that
Russians gave us food quietly. They were forbidden to do that, but they managed
to: some of them gave groats, someone gave potatoes. We had nothing to eat.
This does not mean that I am complaining: you see, I have survived and will
still live", – he said.
According to one
of the organizers of the event, Irina Yanchenko, the next forum is planned to
be held in Tomsk in the fall. The forum will present a list of people dispossessed
and sent to Palochka, whose names have so far been restored from archival
documents. The list already includes thousands of names and continues to grow.
"We will provide
it to everyone for review ... Recently it turned out that the Biysk merchants
were also sent to us. I would like to find their descendants too", – Yanchenko
Earlier it was
reported that the village of Palochka of the Verkhneketsky district of the
Tomsk region arose in the early 1930s as a result of the forcible resettlement
of dispossessed peasants from Biysk uyezd, thousands of whom then died of
starvation and disease. Two residents of the village – Irina Yanchenko and
Gulnara Koryagina – won a presidential grant to search for mass graves and
restore the names of thousands of victims.