From April 8 and 11, the people of Iran staged at least 37 rallies and protests in various cities, venting their anger over the government’s plundering and profiteering policies. On April 11, retirees and pensioners affiliated with the Social Security Organization staged a countrywide protest in 27 cities for the second time in the past week. They declared their disappointment about both government factions and vowed to boycott the upcoming Presidential election in June.

Iranians Continue Protests; at Least 37 Rallies and Strikes from April 8 to 11

Furthermore, enraged people took to the streets in different provinces blaming officials for oppression and mismanagement creating enormous dilemmas for citizens.


Rally of Dental Students

Fars province—on Thursday, April 8, dental students held a rally in the dental faculty of Shiraz University. They protested officials’ negligence and indolence about vaccinating students.

“Who specifies the priorities?” “We would never rest until obtaining the Covid-19 vaccine,” and “Who is responsible?” protesters had written on their placards.

Notably, the government had frequently bragged about vaccinating impoverished sweepers in recent weeks. Some sources acknowledged that officials are performing the third phase of the Cuban vaccine’s human trial on sweepers while authorities had received reliable vaccines. The government’s refusal to vaccinate students has intensified this doubt that the officials have turned poor people into ‘lab rats.’

Hamedan province—on Saturday, April 10, students held a rally at a dental faculty. They protested the continuation of faculty’s activities amidst the coronavirus outbreak.

Protesters also blamed authorities for refusing to vaccinate students. Notably, dentists and dental students are one of the most vulnerable parts of society regarding viral diseases.


Rally of Physicians

On Saturday, April 10, physicians staged at least two rallies in the cities of Hamedan and Ahvaz. In Hamedan, the capital of the western Iranian province of Hamedan, physicians of public hospitals gathered in front of the Medical Science University. They protested officials’ failure to pay their salaries and pensions.

Despite relentless efforts, particularly amidst the coronavirus outbreak, medical and health staff in Iran have been deprived of essential rights. In the past months, Iranian healthcare workers have rallied several times. However, they gained nothing, and at least for one time, their peaceful rally in Mashhad was suppressed by the State Security Forces (SSF).

In Ahvaz, the capital of the southwestern Iranian province of Khuzestan, selfless physicians rallied in front of the Health Ministry’s Medical Deputy.

“Seventy percent of physicians’ salaries are in the pocket of the government and the insurance organization,” read protesters’ handwritten placards.


Locals Protest Water Shortage

Kerman province—on Saturday, April 10, residents of the Takht-e Gonbad region in Sirjan held a rally, protesting potable water shortage. They also expressed their discontent over the Takht-e Gonbad Company’s activities.

Local people said that the son of Hamid Behbahani, the former Roads Minister, runs a powerhouse causing water shortage in this region. In response to residents’ protests, he sent his mercenaries to beat and harass protesters.

“The people are angry; they have no potable water. Their trees have been dried. The dam has been dried. The people are dying because of water shortage. Behbahani has established a dam and powerhouse here. He has hired 200 guards. They are beating women and children… The son of Behbahani, you have destroyed the people’s lives,” said a protester.


Locals Protest Astan-e Quds Razavi

Razavi Khorasan province—on Saturday, April 10, residents of Hossein-Abad Jangal village in Neyshabur held a rally in front of the Astan-e Quds Razavi’s Real Estate Office in the cities of Neyshabur and Sabzavar. They protested the conglomerate for monopolizing their water wells.

“Our village has only three deep wells. The Astan-e Quds has offered these wells to reach people, and our farms had been dried. We have nothing to make ends meet. To find a job, our youths have to emigrate to Tehran. Some of them are working in poultry farms. They should climb unsafe scaffolds. Until now, three or four young men have fallen from scaffolds and lost their lives,” said a woman.

“We have problems with the Astan-e Quds Razavi for two wells… There is someone named Elahi… If Elahi agreed with us and allocated wells, we would guarantee with our documents. If he rejected, he himself should come and farm here. This is the people’s demand,” said another protester.

Notably, the Astan-e Quds Razavi is one of the main pillars of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s economic empire. The real wealth of the conglomerate is a secret. However, this institution along with the Execution of Imam Khomeini’s Order (EIKO), Mostazafan Foundation, and Khatam al-Anbiya Construction Headquarters are controlling 60 percent of Iran’s economy, according to former minister Behzad Nabavi.


Rally of Poultry Farmers

Semnan province— on Saturday, April 10, a group of poultry farmers held a rally in front of the Provincial Governorate. They protested recent decisions made by the Organizing Chicken Headquarters in the province.

They blamed officials for these decisions reckoning that they had created tension and disorder in the country’s chicken market.


Rally of Pars Metal Workers

Tehran province—on Saturday, April 10, workers of the Pars Metal company held a rally in front of the company at the Tehran-Karaj road.

They protested employers for failing to meet their obligations. Back on March 16, these workers had rallied, but the employers refused to follow up their demands.


Retirees’ Protests in 27 Cities

On Sunday, April 11, retirees, pensioners, and welfare recipients affiliated with the Social Security Organization once again took to the streets protesting the government’s oppression, the dire living conditions, low salaries, and devastating high prices. According to the Iranian opposition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the retirees rallied in 27 cities in 20 provinces.

Retirees rallied in Tehran, Mashhad, Isfahan, Shiraz, Ahvaz, Karaj, Tabriz, Rasht, Kermanshah, Arak, Qazvin, Zanjan, Ardabil, Khorramabad, Kerman, Ilam, Bojnurd, Sanandaj, Urmia, Shahroud, Sari, Neyshabur, Nowshahr, Behshahr, Shush, Shooshtar, and Dezful.

In Tehran, protesters rallied in front of the Parliament (Majlis) and in other cities, pensioners rallied in front of the organization’s representations. Fearing the expansion of protests, authorities had dispatched the State Security Forces (SSF). They blocked the pensioners and attacked anyone trying to take video to prevent the people from joining the rally and to spread the news of the protest.

“Retirees in most cities stressed the need to boycott the clerical regime’s sham presidential election, chanting, ‘We have heard too many lies, we will no longer vote,’” stated the NCRI.

“A significant change in the protests is the political nature of the demands. Previous rallies focused on high inflation rates and prices and low pensions. But since the beginning of April, the slogans of the rallies are becoming political with protesters calling for a boycott of the elections,” reported the opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK).

NCRI President-elect Maryam Rajavi saluted the struggle of retirees and pensioners for their inherent rights, saying, “The nationwide protests by the dignified retirees reflect the cries of protests by all Iranians to obtain their pillaged rights by the mullahs’ usurper and corrupt regime. This regime has been squandering the national wealth and the fruit of workers’ labor through plunder, warmongering, nuclear and missile programs, and domestic suppression.”


Rally of Shareholders

Tehran province—on Sunday, April 11, plundered shareholders of the Tehran Stock Market held a rally in front of the Bourse Organization. “We are ashamed for our disgraced government,” protesters chanted.

In their protests, shareholders hoisted down the Bourse’s flag, showing their anger over the organization’s deceitful policies. The Stock Market experienced an unprecedented crash in recent weeks.

Back in November 2019 and April 2020, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and President Hassan Rouhani encouraged the people to invest in the Stock Market. However, no one currently accepts responsibility for destroying people’s assets.


Rally of Contract Workers

Khuzestan province—on Sunday, April 11, contract workers affiliated with the Agriculture Organization in Ahvaz staged a gathering in front of the Provincial Governorate. They protested officials’ failure to allocate an adequate budget to the organization.

Government officials have recently threatened 196 workers with dismissal under the pretext of a lack of budget. The organization intends to fire these workers until April 23, according to workers.

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