Analysis by PMOI/MEK
Iran, Dec. 7, 2018 - The current water crisis that is currently engulfing the lives of people in different regions of Iran is, like many other crises in Iran, the result of the corrupt and destructive policies of the ruling regime.
The water crisis, in particular, has hardly hit the people living in the central and southern provinces of Iran as well as Sistan Baluchistan province in southeast Iran.
The farmers of Isfahan have been hit the worst because government institutions and factories that belong to the Revolutionary Guards are looting their water sources. Specifically, Zayanderud, Iran’s largest river, has been over-exploited by the IRGC, causing real damage and threat to the livelihoods of the farmers of Isfahan, who rely on the river to irrigate their lands.
For this reason, the farmers of this region have been protesting against the destructive policies of the Iranian regime for several months.
In Isfahan’s Khourasgan district alone, most of the 300 thousand inhabitants rely on agriculture for a living. Due to the trampling of their water rights, they are faced with severe problems. This is why they are constantly staging protests and demonstrations against the Iranian regime and its policies.
In recent days, the farmers of East Isfahan have gathered in Mahdiyeh and Jareh and demanded that they’re problems be attended to, especially regarding their rights to water from Zayanderud. More than 700 farmers took part in these protests, wearing grave shrouds as a sign that they will persist in their demands even if it costs them their lives.
Previously, the Iranian regime had promised to respond to the demands of the farmers. But like many other promises the regime has made to farmers, workers, drivers and other disenchanted classes of the Iranian society, those promises turned out to be empty and remained unfulfilled.
In one case, the regime proposed to pay the farmers a fraction of the damages they’ve suffered to end their protests. The proposition was so cruel that it triggered further protests by the farmers.
In this regard, state-run ILNA news agency reported, “What has further enraged the farmers is the proposition to pay 5 million rials in exchange for 14-15 months of not having been able to plant anything.” At the most optimistic exchange rates (100,000 rials against the US dollar), the Iranian regime was proposing to pay $50 dollars to farmers for the damages they had incurred in more than a year.
In this regard, Esfandiar Amini, the executive secretary of Isfahan’s agriculture organization, told ILNA, “The recent actions by authorities has enraged the farmers. This decision made them feel as if they’re being toyed with.”
In response to the proposition made by Iranian authorities, the farmers of Isfahan lined up their tractors and protested while wearing grave shrouds. One of the farmers said, “We farmers of Isfahan have been crushed under the feet [of Iranian authorities]. We rose to claim our rights to water. We will not go back to our homes. The water of Zayanderud is our most legitimate right. 75 percent of the water of Zayanderud should be allocated to farming purposes.”
In the village of Jareh, the farmers gathered at the Mahdiyeh mosque and declared they will continue their protests until they meet their demands.
The protests of the farmers of Isfahan are demonstrating for their most basic rights and in protest to the drying of their farming lands. Their persistence on their demand to reclaim their legitimate right to the water of Zayanderud is one of the many facets of the struggles of the Iranian people against the tyrannical regime ruling their country.
The struggles of the farmers of Isfahan has earned the respect and admiration of other communities and people across Iran, who express their support for the farmers in different creative ways.
It is through the extension and continuation of these protest movements and the national solidarity of the Iranian people that the Iranian people will reclaim their most fundamental right to choose their destiny. That will happen when the mullahs regime falls.