“Two options are under consideration,” said Rashkin. “The first one is more humane. It presupposes that the retirement age will be increased by 3 to 5 years. Under the second scenario, pensions in Russia will be abolished completely.”
Over the past few years, social welfare benefits and the pension system have become two the most discussed topics in Russia, along with the crisis, the fall of the ruble, the so-called “zeroing” of Vladimir Putin's terms and other high-profile events.
Moreover, the Russian in the senior age group were again pointed towards to the only possible conclusion that the state was not willing to ensure pension benefits partially or completely.
The notorious pension reform is gradually becoming a fact of life for millions of people, depriving a huge number of Russians of the possibility to enjoy old age. The endless changes in insurance and funded pensions, pension points, length of service, etc literally make the Russians nervous. Experts anticipate a general worsening of the whole situation. If earlier, the critics of the federal center have calmed down for a while forgetting about pensions and shifting focus of their attention on restrictive measures, the lockdown , the looming crisis and amendments to the Constitution, then from now on, they have a new reason to start asking the authorities some unpleasant questions.
It was given by Valery Rashkin, a State Duma deputy from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation. He said that in the midst of the “coronavirus crisis” and “amendments to the Constitution” the Kremlin had prepared another very unpleasant “gift” for the Russians.
He claimed that Vladimir Putin is actually preparing to abolish pensions in Russia. Rashkin made this statement on his YouTube channel when answering the audience’s questions about the results of the political season. It is worth recalling, however, that he claimed earlier the Russian pensioners might be left high and dry at the beginning of the year but his loud statements were to some extent lost in numerous alarming reports about the spread of the novel coronavirus. Most likely, this is also the reason why Rashkin decided to raise the above-mentioned issue again.
“Pension Benefits are About to be Abolished”
Rashkin notes that he is not trying to frighten his compatriots with unpleasant prospects of this kind. He is “just stating the facts” according to which the Kremlin is actively working on changes in the Russian pension legislation again and making them even harsher.
“Attacks on me in the State Duma,” said Rashkin. “They called me a populist and said that the pension reform had been adopted only recently. As a result, the retirement age was increased by 5 years. Allegedly, I'm again intimidating people. But I'm not intimidating. I'm just stating the facts. Changes in pension legislation are being prepared. This is going to be a new shift. And there is one more thing. It is even harsher. Two options are under consideration. The first one is more humane. It presupposes an increase of the retirement age by 3 to 5 years. Under the second scenario, pensions in Russia will be abolished completely.”
According to Valery Rashkin, chances are public opinion will be prepared for the elimination of pensions in Russia with the aid of references to economically successful countries that do not have any pension systems at all.
“This regulation has already been drafted for the Constitution,” said Rashkin. “It is prepared for changes, including those in pension legislation. I am quoting “adult children are charged with the duty to take care of their parents in Paragraph 1 to the Article 72. It might seem that there is nothing bad in it, but what does it actually telling us?”
At the same time, Rashkin cited the previous text of the Constitution that “employable children have to take care of unemployable parents.”
Additionally, Rashkin drew attention to one interesting detail. According to him, Irina Kirkova, the deputy head of the work group on amendments to the Constitution, admitted earlier that the aforesaid amendment had caused a serious dispute among experts even at the stage of its preparation and discussion.
“Of course, she did not reveal the details,” said Rashkin. “But the dispute was about the fact that if this regulation is amended in the Constitution, adult children might be entrusted with the responsibility to support their parents. This amendment gives the State Duma, the United Russia party and the Russian President the right to completely change the legislation and to cancel pensions, or at least to increase the retirement age by 3 to 5 years again.”