The owner of Yerevan’s ‘Vosku Shuka’ (Gold Market), Vagharsh Abrahamyan, had severely chastised workers who protested against the new “Law on Turnover Tax.” On Tuesday, protesters against the new law decided to organize a larger protest today, September 24, 2014, however, the owners of the Vosku Shuka and Malatya marketplaces threatened to fire those workers who attend the protest.
Owner of the Vosku Shuka, Vagharsh Abrahamyan has broken the tables of protest participants and restricted them from doing business.
Merchants told the journalist from Epress.am, who visited the market place, that Abrahamyan became furious after being informed that workers had not come to work in the morning, instead had attended the protest. A portion of the workers, who learned of Abrahamyan’s behavior, returned to work from the protest and were forced to give different excuses for not coming to work. The merchants, crying, explained that many of them had taken out loans and could not afford to lose their jobs.
While leaving the building, Abrahamyan was asked by an Epress.am’s journalist why he had fired the workers. He answered with “Let them go protest!”
– Is that why you fired them? – asked the journalist.
– I punished them.
– Then how many people have you punished?
– I haven’t counted; you go and count for yourself. I won’t let them work by me anymore.
– Have you received an order, or is it your will?
– I’m deciding and it’s my right. Let them work according to the law.
– They have a constitutional right to protest.
– Let them do it. I’ll go do my own protest too.
– Do you belong to any political party?
– Which one?
– I can’t tell you, it’s a secret.
Video in Armenian only.
Note, that Abrahamyan’s office which was restricted to journalist had a photo of President Serzh Sargsyan.
To recall, the merchants protesting the new law claim that the new law has the intention of creating a more difficult situation for small and medium sized enterprises. The protesters claim that at the present moment they pay a 3.5% tax, in addition to, rent for their stalls at the markets, which gives enough room for them to work. According to the new law, they have to first, buy new controlled cash registers, which cost around 80,000 AMD (nearly $200). Other than that, businessmen must electronically send complete detailed descriptions of their product’s size, style, color, and other criteria to the Tax Services. Further information,it_ebooks_pdf in regards to today’s protest will be updated later.