**** یــــــــــــــــــــــاری چــوار چیون بــاوری و جا ////// راسـتــــــــــی و پاکـــــــی ، نیستـــــی و رداء **** ****راگـــــــــه حقیقت شیشه بنیین نه جـــــای گـــزافن نه جای منیین**** پیروان آئین یارسان - corruption in iran پیروان آئین یارسان - corruption in iran

A former Iranian foreign minister and two top TV celebrities are among several figures suspected of being involved in corruption, the reformist Tehran newspaper Shargh has revealed. Former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s foreign minister, Manoucher Mottaki, and well-known hosts on Iranian state television, Mehran Modiri and Ehsan Alikhani, are among those suspected of having received massive illegal loans

As Shargh reports, in a letter to the director of Iran’s central bank, Mottaki denied any wrongdoing and claimed that the newspaper’s head had told him that it was the Central Bank’s request for the claims against Mottaki to be published

As the trial into the workings of the Samen ol-Hojaj financial institute gets underway, the Shargh report is explosive, indirectly revealing the names of some of the scandal’s top suspects. Following a tradition of Iranian journalism, it doesn’t publish the actual names but uses initials that makes it all but obvious who the report is talking about


Corrupt Financial Businesses and Protests

Grievances against illegal financial institutions played a major role in fueling mass protests earlier this year. Many of these institutions habitually disappear after promising unusually high returns to attract millions of rials of deposits. Samen, whose case is being tried in a criminal court in Tehran, is the first of such institutions to face trial. It is charged with “disrupting the economic order and squandering people’s property

Samen opened doors in 2001 with a capital of 63 million rials. But in 2009, the last year in which it provided a balance sheet for its books, it reported that it had 870 billion rials — meaning it had increased its initial capital almost 14,000 times. By 2015, when it was closed down by the order of the judiciary, this had reached the astronomical sum of 123,000 billion

There are three leading defendants in this case. The main accused (“Defendant no. 1,” in Iranian legal parlance, which ranks the defendants based on the degree of their participation in the crime) is Abololfazl Mirali, Samen’s managing director and a member of its board of directors. Defendant no. 2 is Robabe Ebrahimi, Mirali’s wife and a fellow member of the board of directors. Defendant no. 3 is Mehdi Ramezanian, who is yet to attend any of the trials and is suspected of having fled Iran

Mirali’s biography has fascinated Iranian media in recent days. He used to be a prosecutor for the Special Court of the Clergy in Mashhad, Iran’s second biggest city (the SCC is tasked with prosecuting the crimes of the clergy). In 2001, he launched Samen ol-Hojaj as a cooperative financial institution that, according to its constitution, was to be active only within the confines of the city of Sabzevar, which has a population of 250,000 and lies 230 kilometers west of Mashhad. It was also only supposed to employ people who at least hold a post-secondary associate degree and give small loans to its employees. In practice, however, Samen was to open more than 480 branches all over the country and its first employee was Mirali himself, whose highest academic qualification was a high school diploma

Mirali headed Samen’s board of directors from the outset until 2006, when he left for two years, only to return in 2008 to the same position. From 2010 to 2015 (when Samen closed down), Mirali was both managing director and head of the board of directors. His lawyer claimed his experience in gardening and husbandry was equivalent to a post-secondary degree. Mirali’s financial past is also shrouded in mystery, as 119 of his checks bounced before he started Samen. The intelligence ministry had once, in 2013, declared him to be unqualified, but he was simply kept in his position


Government figures 

Shargh’s reporting shows that the corruption in Samen wasn’t limited to the members of the board of directors. As a cooperative institution, it was to only offer loans to its employees, who had to be residents of the small city of Sabzevar. But it was to do much more. Today it is charged with abusing its nominal status of being supervised by the Central Bank, offering massive loans with low interest rates to well-connected people and offering loans without collateral

Samen’s files show it has offered 255 counts of loans, ranging from 10 billion to 2000 billion rials, with a usual interest rate of three to four percent. A Mr S.Sh, for instance, received a loan of 500 billion rials with an interest rate of three percent. A Ms T.M got 430 billion rials with a rate of four percent. Shargh’s most explosive finding was that Mottaki, who was billed as Samen’s advisor for international affairs, received a loan of 1,240 billion rials

“A high-ranking family linked to the government” had also been involved in a number of illegal doings, Shargh said. A member of the family, a Mr H.S, received 1000 billion rials, which was said to be his salary of 30 years being paid in one go. His father is a leading official who was also an “advisor” to Samen and who received a monthly salary of 51 million rials for the task. Ms. F.P (H.S.’s wife) received a loan of 10.2 billion rials. Their daughter, M.S, was employed by Samen and now owes the institute more than 20 billion rials in unpaid loans. Samen had also purchased two counts of real estate in the central Iranian cities of Yazd and Isfahan from F.P. and her daughter M.S. It paid the family 500 billion rials for a piece of land in Yazd (an unusually high price) and 10 billion rials for an apartment in Isfahan 



According to Shargh, In 2013, Samen gave 5.8 billion rials in payments to Mehran Modiri, perhaps Iran’s most celebrated television comedian of a generation. This was paid in two counts, in March and September 2013, and the payments had been simply billed as a“gift.” But the gift is small compared to the loans Modiri allegedly received. He received a loan of 29 billion rials, of which he only paid back 8 billion rials. A bit of calculation (subtracting the ‘gift” from the amount paid back) shows that Modiri only paid back 2.2 billion rials and has kept a full 27.8 billion rials to himself

Ehsan Alikhani, a 36-year-old TV host, has also allegedly received a payment of 30 billion rials from Samen which was billed as “advertisement expenses


Importing Rice, Selling Handball Players 

Among the stranger operations in which Samen was involved is the importing of rice and swapping of handball players. In 2012, it broke the law by importing 690 tons of rice for an individual identified as “A.” It was also involved in buying and selling handball players until the Iranian Handball Federation got involved and asked for the practice to stop

As the trial of Samen goes on, more light will be shed on the corrupt dealings that have come to symbolize the moral bankruptcy of the Islamic Republic, which was founded on egalitarian claims but ended up harboring an oligarchic capitalism mired by endemic corruption

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پیروان آئین یارسان

The majority of people in Iran believe that corruption in the country has increased in recent years and that local government and banks are among the most corrupt institutions in Iran, a government-led research group has found

Looking at survey results from 2009, 2010, 2012 and 2015, the Network for Public Policy Studies (NPPS) sought a comprehensive picture of how Iranians viewed corruption, and particularly how that view had changed in the last nine years. Its report, entitled “An Account of How Corruption is Perceived in Iran” [Persian link] found that 89 percent of Iranians believe that corruption in the Islamic Republic has become worse and that local governments, the customs department, the Ministry of Finance and the country's banks are the most corrupt institutions in Iran

The study shows that while in 2009 the percentage of Iranians who believed corruption existed in the country was 63.7, the percentage steadily increased to 73.5 in 2010, 80.3 in 2012 and 88.67 in 2016. The study also shows that Iranians believe that the most corrupt institutions are those “with financial and legal power

According to the latest survey in the study, only “9.8 percent of respondents say that when they have had to deal with a government office or institution they did not need to have connections with influential people to get what they wanted

The NPPS describes itself as “an academic peer-reviewed website under the supervision of the Center for Strategic Studies” of the Office of the President of the Islamic Republic


Based on these surveys, Iranians rank the most corrupt institutions as follows

1. Municipal governments , with 84.75 percent

2. Customs Bureau, with 84 percent

3. The Tax Bureau of the Ministry of Finance, with 78.5 percent

4. State-owned banks, with 75.5 percent

5. Politicspolitical parties and elections, with 70.25 percent

6. The Iranian judiciary and the courts, with 69.25 percent

7. Traffic police, with 63.75 percent

The Revolutionary Guards, the regular Armed Forces and the Mostazafan Foundation, a charitable foundation and the second largest commercial enterprise in Iran, also appear on two of the surveys. The 2009 survey shows that 27 percent of Iranians believed the Revolutionary Guards to be tainted with corruption — and this number increased to 35 percent in the 2010 survey. In both surveys, 18 percent of Iranians believed that corruption existed in the Armed Forces. Compared to the numbers for the Revolutionary Guards, this number show that Iranians have a more favorable view of the Armed Forces

The NPPS surveys looked at two kinds of corruption — bribery and favoritism. However, without pointing to a specific organization or institution, the study adds that other kinds of corruption existed too.“Since some organizations are more prone to certain types of corruption, we must first identify the context of corruption in various organizations

The study highlights the importance of transparency. “The hidden types of corruption that are not reflected in these kinds of statistics are more dangerous,” says the study, adding: “and, of course, they will eventually find their way into how the public opinion perceives corruption” in Iran

In 2015, the Iranian parliament’s Research Center reported that the members of 271 financial and economic entities in Iran believed that corruption in government agencies had increased in the years 2003 and 2004

These findings generally agree with a January 2016 survey by the Information and Public Opinion Solutions LLC (iPOS) that indicated that most Iranians believe that corruption has become more widespread and that, according to 77 percent of those polled, banks are the most corrupt institution

Source: Information and Public Opinion Solutions LLC


In this survey, the justice system, municipalities and the police were ranked the most corrupt, after the banks

According to the iPOS survey, a considerable majority of Iranians (71 percent) believe that corruption has become pervasive in the country. Only 15 percent think that corruption has not become epidemic


Source: Information and Public Opinion Solutions LLC


The study also differentiated between the views of people who live in urban environments and those who live in rural ones. “Analysis of responses based on demographic variables demonstrates that city dwellers are in a meaningful way more likely to believe in the pervasiveness of corruption (84 percent); those in rural areas are conversely less likely to believe that it’s epidemic (78 percent),” the study reads. And the research also indicates that the more people are informed, the more they are worried about corruption. “Moreover, respondents who express that they keep up with news regarding corruption either a lot or a great deal are more likely to believe that corruption is pervasive (89 percent) than [compared with] those who say that they either don’t at all follow corruption-related news, or follow it only a little." It added that the responses of those who took the poll and “either reported that they had no opinion and were not informed or registered otherwise vague responses were set aside

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