Kirsan Ilyumzhinov arrives in Elista

On 27 March, the First President of Kalmykia Kirsan Ilyumzhinov arrived in Elista. At the airport, he was greeted, as an honoured guest, with white khadak*. The purpose of the visit of Kalmykia’s First President was to attend the anniversary celebration dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the Odn (Star in Kalmyk, - Ed.) factory.

Immediately after arrival at the airport, Ilyumzhinov visited the Kazan Cathedral – the first church that Kirsan Ilyumzhinov built while he was President of Kalmykia. The meeting with the First President of Kalmykia was held by the archpriest of the Kazan Cathedral Alexy Grishchenko.


Having visited the relics of St. Matrona of Moscow, which are placed in the church these days, Kirsan Nikolayevich went to the tent-museum of ‘the marching church of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker’. An exhibition dedicated to the history of Orthodoxy in Kalmykia is displayed there.

In the Cathedral, Kirsan Nikolayevich met with parishioners who warmly welcomed the First President of Kalmykia. People recalled with gratitude the years of his service. Among the parishioners was a teacher of the Yashkul school, who visited Paris thanks to the contest “The Best Grandmother of Kalmykia” held with the support of Kirsan Nikolayevich. According to the teacher, it was the happiest time in her life.
Later, Ilyumzhinov visited the Central Market of Elista. Visitors and market workers lined up to have a photo taken with the First President of Kalmykia.
The next point in the visit of Kirsan Nikolayevich to Elista was one of the main attractions of the steppe capital – the Central Khurul of Kalmykia, the Golden Abode of Shakyamuni Buddha. There, the abbot of the temple, Andzha-gelung, arranged a short tour for Kirsan Nikolayevich round the prayer hall, library and museum of the history of Buddhism. Believers, who met Kirsan Nikolayevich, asked him to promote the visit of the 14th Dalai Lama. Kalmykia’s First President replied that he was doing everything possible to make it happen.
Schoolchildren from Arkhangelsk, who came to the Central Khurul for a tour, asked Kirsan Ilyumzhinov for a joint photo. Also residents of the Rostov region, who visited Elista as tourists, said that they know that Kirsan Ilyumzhinov had served in the Rostov region and are very proud of it.
The main purpose of Kirsan Nikolayevich's visit to Elista was to attend a celebration dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the Odn factory, where he worked as a fitter. “I graduated a Soviet school and worked at a Soviet factory. I am also a graduate of the Odn factory. Every young person should have a labour experience. I am proud that I am a Soviet worker,” Kirsan Ilyumzhinov said in his speech.
Kirsan Nikolayevich was awarded the title ‘Honorary Worker of the Factory at a commemoration. In turn, he presented as a gift to the plant a million roubles to the mutual aid fund and ten vouchers for holidays in Turkey for the advanced employees of the factory.
“Thank you and eternal gratitude to all generations of workers of one of the leading enterprises of our  country, the native instrument-making factory Zvezda, for their dedicated work, for their invaluable contribution to the development of Kalmykia, for promoting the best labour traditions of the steppe Republic,” Kirsan Nikolayevich wrote in his twitter.
*Editor's note. Khadak is a ritual long white scarf, one of the Buddhist symbols. It is presented as a token of respect, friendship and goodwill. Khadaks are made of silk and cotton. They are usually yellow, black, white or, more often, blue.