On April 4 and 5, citizens in Iran held at least 31 rallies and protests in various cities, venting their anger over the government’s plundering and profiteering policies. On April 4, retirees and pensioners affiliated with the Social Security Organization staged a countrywide protest in 23 cities. They declared their disappointment about both government factions and vowed to boycott the upcoming Presidential election in June.

Furthermore, shareholders of the Tehran Stock Market rallied in front of the Parliament (Majlis) on April 5. They also chanted, “We have not seen any justice, we will no longer vote,” declaring their boycott of the election. On the other hand, Haft-Tappeh Sugarcane workers continued their strike for the ninth consecutive day.

Also, farmers in Isfahan held two rallies, announcing, “Government officials do nothing for us, and we must obtain our rights.”

Countrywide Protests by Retirees in 23 Cities

On Sunday, April 4, retirees, pensioners, and welfare recipients affiliated with the Social Security Organization held rallies in at least 23 cities in 19 provinces across Iran. They protested officials’ failure to improve their living conditions, low salaries, and skyrocketing prices.

“We have heard too many lies, we will no longer vote,” “Threats and crackdown are no longer effective,” “We have not seen any justice, we will no longer vote,” “Parliament, Government, stop deceiving the people,” they chanted, venting their anger over the regime’s plundering and profiteering policies.

In recent months, retirees and pensioners have time and again staged rallies and marches in various provinces. These protests have gradually grown into a countrywide movement, which has swept more and more cities. Furthermore, despite officials’ promises and other tricks, such rallies increase with each passing week.

“Today, Iran’s honorable pensioners and retires once again held their protests and uprising across the country with chants which boycotted the mullahs’ election charade. They thus echoed the voice of all the people of Iran who seek to gain back their rights usurped by the mullahs’ corrupt regime,” said NCRI President-elect Maryam Rajavi.

“The clerical regime has plundered the Iranian people’s national wealth and assets. They squander the product of Iran’s toiling workers on warmongering and belligerence, nuclear and missile programs, domestic repression, and terrorism abroad, just to preserve the regime’s rule,” she added, highlighting, “The protesters are right when they cry out: We will no longer vote, because we did not see any justice, but heard many lies.”

 

Rally of Urban-Service Workers

Khuzestan province—on Sunday, April 4, municipal workers of Karun’s urban-service section staged a rally in front of the Provincial Governorate in Ahvaz, the province’s capital.

They protested officials’ failure to pay their salaries and experience pensions. They also blamed officials for dismissing workers under bogus excuses.

 

Haft-Tappeh Workers’ Strike

Khuzestan province—on Sunday, April 4, for the ninth day in a row, pest-control workers affiliated with the Haft-Tappeh Sugarcane complex continued their strike.

“Our contracts must be extended,” workers said. Haft-Tappeh Sugarcane employers do whatever they want under the excuse of the private sector. In this respect, in recent years, workers frequently urged officials to return the complex to the public sector, which would restrict employers’ exploiting policies.

 

Rally of Farmers

Isfahan province—on Sunday, April 4, farmers gathered at the Heydar mosque, calling on other farmers to join them in obtaining their right to water.

“Today, all of us from the eastern and western areas are brothers. We do not have any fight with the people of Yazd, Chaharmahal, or Shahr-e Kord. Government officials have created this fight among us. For thousands of years, we were benefiting from the water. Currently, the government intends to transfer the water, but it refuses to pay money,” said the farmers’ representative.

“Did you know what would happen if they had planted a tree? Just imagine what would be happened if they had done this. For 20 years, they had taken our water. Wherever we referred to, they said, ‘You are right.’ However, were you mister asleep or awake? You had the power… The government could resolve the water dilemma in four years, but it had done nothing for Isfahan after 40 years,” the representative added.

Protesters also declared their disappointment over the officials’ failure to resolve their dilemmas, saying, “Government offices are useless, and we ourselves should follow up the water. When they closed the water pipe of Yazd province, the Steel company, Zob Ahan company, and Chaharmahal province, then we will understand that there are bread and water in this country.”

Furthermore, farmers’ representative blamed officials for the recent deal with China and countless concessions to the Chinese. “Should the Chinese resolve our dilemmas? They are plumbing everywhere. How could they plumb the water to Sirjan, Kerman province, in a four-year period?”

Farmers’ Rally in front of the Power Plant

On the other hand, on Monday, April 5, Isfahani farmers held a rally in front of the Islam-Abad power plant. They protested officials for transferring sewage to the plant. “You have deprived us of the water, at least let us use sewage for our products,” said outraged farmers.

“Today, farmers from the east and west of Isfahan have gathered in front of the Islam-Abad power plant at the Darcheh district. Officials want to transfer sewage to the plant. Farmers protest, arguing this sewage belongs to farmers, and officials do not have the right to use it,” said a protester.

“Farmers have gathered here to prevent transferring sewage, saying, ‘If you are supposed to transfer sewage, so what should we do? Why does the government not aid us? Who is actually there in the government? This is an oppressive government and violates farmers’ rights. This year, we had to graze our sheep in wheat farms due to water shortage,” the protester added.

 

Rally of Shareholders

Tehran province—on Monday, April 5, plundered shareholders of the Stock Market held a rally in front of the Parliament (Majlis). They expressed their anger over officials’ failure to follow up their demands despite their constant protests in recent months.

“I would no longer vote since all I’ve heard are lies,” “We do not vote anymore, we did not see justice,” “The [Bourse] Organization betrays, the government supports it,” and “[Iran’s] Bourse is likely a furnace for burning our money,” chanted endangered shareholders.

They also blamed Economy Minister Farhad Dejpasand for failing to return people’s assets, chanting, “Dejpasand, resign, resign” and “We do not want imprudent officials.”

According to IMNA news agency, Tehran Stock Market experienced 13,415-unit and 6,733-unit drops on Sunday and Monday, respectively. These drops severely shocked Iran’s bourse once again despite officials’ hollow promises during the past weeks.

Since November 2019, high-ranking officials have encouraged citizens to invest in the Stock Market. “The people should invest in the Bourse,” the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei said on November 18, 2019, and President Hassan Rouhani on August 12, 2020, added, “The people must realize that the gold coin and dollar market is not a safe place for investment. But the bourse is a safe place for investment.”

However, observers believe that the government deceived citizens and collected their sums to compensate for its massive budget deficits. “The stock fell so deep that it even said goodbye to the index of 1.7 million, reaching 1.662, a subject that has instilled fear and panic in the hearts of shareholders – mostly newcomers – and many are trying to leave the market,” Aftab-e Yazd daily wrote on August 26, 2020.

 

Locals Protest Officials for Power

Kerman province—on Monday, April 5, residents of the Narjuiyeh village, a suburb of Jiroft, held a rally in front of the Jiroft’s Governorate.

These people have been deprived of power, which has created enormous dilemmas for them. In this context, their demanded officials to resolve this dilemma and provide minimum power for their residential houses and workplaces.

 

Rally of Safety and Health Advisors

Tehran province—on Monday, April 5, workplace safety and health advisors staged a gathering in front of the Labor Ministry. They protested the ministry for changing bylaw and making them unemployed.

“Given the Labor Relation Deputy’s bylaw, which has been implemented from October 2019, 2,300 safety and security advisors had been unemployed. According to the bylaw, this deputy no longer extends these people’s contracts,” said a protester.

 

Rally of Oil and Gas Workers

Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad province—on Monday, April 5, workers and employees of Gachsaran’s Oil and Gas company held a rally in front of the CEO’s bureau.

Workers protested employers’ failure to follow up their demands, asking them to resolve their dilemmas as soon as possible. Notably, in 2020, oil workers staged a strike in dozens of cities across Iran for their inherent rights. The strike severely affected the country’s oil and gas industry.

Iranians Continue Protests; at Least 18 Rallies and Strikes from March 28 to 31