A Communists of Russia party official has called for the criminal prosecution of a regional lawmaker for insulting religious believers by calling to bury Lenin’s preserved body.
Lenin’s body was temporarily embalmed and put on display for mourners to pay their respects to the Soviet leader for four days after his death in January 1924. The Soviet government then moved Lenin’s body to a mausoleum on Red Square and decided to preserve it almost two months later. A debate has since raged over what to do with the Bolshevik revolutionary’s corpse.
Vladimir Petrov, a lawmaker in the Leningrad region, reignited the debate about Lenin’s preserved body two weeks ago by suggesting that it be buried on the 100-year anniversary of the Bolshevik leader’s death in 2024 and replaced with a rubber or wax replica in his mausoleum.
Sergei Malinkovich, the central committee secretary of the Communists of Russia political party, said the proposal had violated Russia’s Criminal Code by insulting religious feelings and inciting hatred, the MBKh Media news site reported Tuesday.
“Our lawyers concluded that two Criminal Code articles could have been violated,” Malinkovich was quoted as saying.
“If you count supporters of Marxism-Leninism as the followers of an ideology, then of course he [Petrov] insulted them all,” he added.
The Communists of Russia is a separate organization from the more popular Communist Party of Russia (KPRF). It fielded the least-popular candidate in Russian presidential elections earlier this year.
Malinkovich told MBKh Media that the party plans to “keep hounding” Petrov for his public remarks. ”He clearly wants to insult and humiliate Communists in public,” he was quoted as saying.