On January 9, Iranian citizens once again took to the streets to vent their anger at the regime’s plundering and profiteering policies. In this respect, people from different walks of life held at least seven rallies and strikes in various cities.
In their protests, citizens demanded their inherent rights and slammed officials and their appointees for doubling society’s economic dilemma. Saturday’s rallies and strikes were organized and staged by medical staff, stockholders, retirees, pensioners, health experts, and truck drivers.
Rally of Medical Staff
Khuzestan province—medical and health staff affiliated to the Health Ministry’s Health Change plan once again rallied in front of the local health department.
In their gathering, they demanded officials change their job conditions and clarify their recruitment situation. “The coronavirus is our exam, changing the job situation is our right,” they wrote on a placard.
In recent weeks, medical and health staff in different provinces time and again held rallies, protesting officials’ failure to recruit them and pay their rights. “We assisted you in the toughest situation, but you left us in the toughest situation,” protesters say, addressing health officials.
Rally of Tehran Stock Market Shareholders
Tehran province—stockholders of the Bourse held a gathering in front of the Tehran Stock Market building, protesting the government’s economic failures. “Death to the economic criminal,” chanted protesters.
They also shouted, “All of these people have become miserable.” According to hollow promises and estimations provided by officials, including President Hassan Rouhani, many citizens invested their savings in the Tehran Stock Market. However, it is now absolved that all promises were yet another trick by officials to compensate for their massive budget deficits at the expense of citizens.
“You have destroyed us,” shouted a woman, adding, “I’m going to set myself ablaze right here.” Angry stockholders demonstrated their anger against the Stock Market by throwing eggs at the building.
Municipality Destroys a Shed
Tehran province—at dawn on Saturday, municipal agents and security forces raided and destroyed a poor family’s shed in Kabudgonbad village at Pakdasht district. The shed owner elaborated on the moving story of this merciless attack and displacement in the cold season.
“I am Mansour Bazri. I bought this land along with my 75-year-old mother to construct a house for her. [Municipal officials] told me ‘Pay 200 million rials [$800] and build your house.’ I said to them, ‘I do not have this money.’ They said, ‘Give 100 million rials [$400].’ I told them, ‘I don’t have such sums.’ And actually, how could I provide this money?” the owner said.
“I built a shed on my land. However, at night, they raided our shed and destroyed it while we were residing there. They destroyed it because I had no money to pay… Look, they recite that [the third Shiite] Imam Hossein aided the underprivileged… However, Imam Hossein must destroy the pomegranate orchards which have turned into villas,” Bazri continued.
He pointed to officials’ corruption and oppressive measures. In fact, while they have monopolized orchards and gardens and turned them into luxury palaces, they blame citizens for constructing poor sheds in their lands and destroy them.
“I urged the city officials and Pakdasht Governor and City Council to destroy all [villas and palaces]… not a poor man’s shed. Take loaders and destroy them all… You must come here and see what is going here if you have faith,” he said.
“At least, you must deny destruction in winter. If it belongs to a rich individual… You destroyed it because I do not have money, do you call this faith? We are Muslims, not infidels. It is right that I’m from the Sistan region, southeast Iran. I’m a Zaboli man. However, we are Muslims. God would not forgive you for what you have done with us in winter. Help us… I had hired a builder and a worker,” he explained.
“They destroyed my home and my life. These are my appliances. This is my situation in winter. The government says owners must not expel renters in winter. Why did you destroy my home in coronavirus conditions and in winter? This is my life and my mother’s life. Why did you not destroy officials’ villas? These are my wife and children who are in cold weather since the morning,” he said.
Rally of Dey Bank Stockholders
Tehran province—stockholders of Dey Bank held a rally, protesting the institution’s economic crimes. In a flagrant violation, rent-seeking, and destruction of stocks’ procedure, Dey Bank’s managing board delayed an announcement of the increase in the bank’s capital.
During their protest, stockholders demanded Saeed Ohadi, chief of Bonyad-e Shahid [Martyr Foundation], as the parent institution of Dey Bank, answer their questions.
Notably, on January 1, stockholders of the Dey Bank held a rally in front of the bank’s central building at Valiasr Street. Protesters demanded the government confront the responsible institutions.
“These protests will continue, and we as stockholders came here to receive answers to our questions, which is our legal right,” said the stockholders, chanting, “[CEO Gholamreza Khalil] Arjomandi, shame on you, let go of the Dey Bank.”
Sit-in of Laboratory Sciences and Medical Genetics Ph.Ds.
Tehran province—Laboratory Sciences and Medical Genetics Ph.Ds. held a sit-in against the Medical Apparatus Organization’s recent decision in front of the organization’s bureau.
In an illegal act, the organization recently stopped allocating laboratory licenses to medical genetics Ph.Ds. and referred their cases to the verification committee. This is while all these people had graduated and received their reliable certifications allowing them to start their businesses.
Rally of Haft-Tappeh Sugarcane Workers
Khuzestan province—for the second day in a row, workers and employees of Haft-Tappeh Sugarcane complex rallied in front of the managing board office. Protesters complained of managers’ failure to follow up their demands.
In recent years, Haft-Tappeh workers and employees have protested privatization, which allows new managers, particularly the CEO Omid Assad-Beigi, to easily violate their inherent rights.
#IranProtests#Khuzestan—on January 8, workers of Haft-Tappeh Sugarcane Complex held a rally, protesting the arrest of their representatives.
"Our demands are clear. We support our colleagues"—worker
They protested officials' refusal to return the complex to the public sector. pic.twitter.com/uo41u5LycE
— IranNewsUpdate (@IranNewsUpdate1) January 8, 2021
A day earlier, a group of workers and employees gathered at this facility. They protested officials for failure to return this complex to the public sector. They also protested the unfair detention of their colleagues, who defended their rights and organized strikes and sit-ins.
Rally of Truck Drivers
Sistan and Baluchestan province—in Ghasr-e Ghand county, truckers and dump truckers held a rally in front of the Local Governorate. They protested the cut off of the fuel quota of around 300 trucks by the Chabahar Oil Company.
“With the cut off of these trucks’ fuel quota, hundreds of people will become unemployed,” protesters said. This is while unemployment in Sistan and Baluchestan province is on rise, and many people have to do hard work for meager money to feed their families.
On the other hand, the residents of this province experience direst living conditions and have been denied public services like running water and electricity. In such circumstances, the regime-backed company would lead hundreds of breadwinners and their families to far more vile conditions.
Rally of Unemployed Youths
Isfahan province—on January 8, a group of youths of Mobarakeh district and its suburbs held a rally in front of the local MP’s bureau, protesting the Foulad [Steel] Mobarakeh’s recruiting methods. While many youths lack sufficient jobs, and unemployment has engulfed this area, the company’s policies led by government-linked individuals have made the conditions harder for locals.
Rally of Retirees and Pensioners
Gilan province—on January 8, retirees and pensioners of the Social Security Organization held a rally in front of the Provincial Retirees and Pensioners’ Center. They protested the organization about the executive procedure of wage balances.