Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Over 1K in Russia’s Kazan Kicked Off Public Transport on First Day of Covid Passes

The republic of Tatarstan was among the first Russian regions to mandate QR code passes for public transit and other public places. Yegor Aleyev / TASS

More than 1,500 passengers were kicked off public transportation on the first day of digital Covid pass enforcement in the central Russian city of Kazan, the city's Mayor's Office said Monday.

The republic of Tatarstan was among the first Russian regions to mandate QR code passes for access to public places as the country battles the fourth and deadliest wave of the pandemic yet. The passes, which prove one's vaccination status, negative PCR test result or recent Covid-19 recovery, are an attempt to entice the vaccine-hesitant population to get the jab.

Scuffles erupted over the new rules, leading to significant delays, multiple arrests and hospitalizations of bus conductors in the city of 1.2 million.

Kazan’s transport authority said 786 passengers had been kicked off trams and trolleybuses and 126 off metro stations as of mid-Monday.

Police detained at least five people, the Metroelectrotrans Kazan company said on its social media page.

A number of bus conductors have been hospitalized after being beaten and pepper sprayed, the Kazan Mayor’s Office said.

Tatarstan’s Business Online news outlet also reported higher taxi fares and shortages in car-sharing services in connection with the QR requirements.

The Kremlin said Monday that hiccups with transport are inevitable as the public adjusts to the new rules and expressed hope that the issues will be resolved soon.

Kazan’s transportation crisis comes as Russian lawmakers race to mandate vaccine passports for public transport, restaurants and non-essential shops in a bid to combat deeply entrenched vaccine hesitancy.

Russia’s parliament is expected to adopt the QR code requirements, which will come into effect from Feb. 1 to June 1, 2022, next month.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more