Meeting on the Issue of sacred site legalization, 2006

Meeting with the state administration of Talas province on
Legislative Protection of Talas Sacred Sites
Date:         July 7, 2006
Place:        Talas town, Talas oblast, Kyrgyzstan
Language: Kyrgyz
At present time the representatives of Aigine are working on implementation of the project that will help to obtain the legal power of the conduct “Protection, preservation and the order of worshipping at sacred sites in Talas oblast”. An initiative to develop some regulation on protecting, guarding and worshipping sacred sites or mazars in Talas came from Aigine’s constant informants, the custodians and healers in 2005.
The project objectives are the following: definition and the types of the mazars (sacred sites); goals of the conduct; issues of the protection and preservation; preservation and the use (worshipping) of sacred sites; the order of worshipping at sacred sites etc.
Aigine has worked with the lawyer Jakyp Abdrahmanov, former Jurisprudence ministry, for a few months to work out a regulation draft based on ideas and suggestions of the culture bearers. Then a draft was brought back to Talas to discuss with a) mazars shayiks and keepers, b) the representatives of the state administration.
On 7th of July, in Talas town was held the meeting with the representatives of the administration of Talas oblast. The goal of the meeting was to present a draft of legal regulation “Protection, preservation and the regulations of worshipping at sacred sites in Talas oblast” and its discussion. Each section of the conduct was discussed in details by participants of the meeting with the consideration of suggestions and corrections of the participants and at present time the conduct is on the stage of last corrections for further submission and consideration for the Governor of Talas oblast.
The main difficulty was many administrators do not recognize shayiks and keepers as a social group and have had strong objection to include the appropriative point in a regulation.
After the approval of Aigine representatives the last version of the conduct, it will be submitted for consideration to Kengesh in the district.
In the future Aigine representatives are planning to implement the same project not only in Talas oblast but in Issyk-kul and Osh oblasts as well. Certainly with the consideration of suggestions and opinion of the local community members and local administration as well. Aigine also hope that above mentioned activities on «Protection, preservation and the order of worshipping at sacred sites in Talas oblast” will lead to further acceptance and support of the conduct on the state level.
The meeting with the regional state administration was organized by a specialist of a state administration Muratkan Aidarov.
Below there is a project reworked and supported by both groups: mazars shayiks and the oofficials of state administration in Talas. Project still has not been presented for a certain official organ in Talas or Bishkek to get legal recognition because of the political instability in the country. Currently Aigine does work with a few deputies of Parliament, but it will take more time to get a concrete feedback. Unfortunately, parliamentarians are fully busy with political arrangements.
Prepared by Dr. Gulnara Aitpaeva