My dear readers,

I have to ask you for financial assistance, although I understand that you the readers of our newspaper are not rich. Perhaps, you might know those who could help our newspaper to survive.

You may see that the e-version of our newspaper, started on November, 2nd 1999, has been quite successful in its work despite the constant pressure of the authorities. It has become the first Tatar newspaper on the net. The texts are in Tatar, Russian and English. The net-conference of our newspaper works succesfully in two languages - Tatar and Russian. We discuss different problems of the Tatars here.

The texts of two dissertations and one book concerning Tatar subjects were placed on the 7th of November on our site. If it wasn't for our work, these dissertations wouldn't be defended and this book wouldn't be published. I'm doing my best to carry out the declaration of our "Yaktashlar" (Countrymen) Tatar culture society proclaimed in 1996 about helping everyone in Mordovia who would write scientific works concerning Tatar and Turkic problems. But you need a whole scientific centre to work successfully. Or just a department. The efforts of one man, even so persistent as me, are not enough.

The beginning and the going on of Putin's Restoration have frightened the Tatar businessmen of Mordovia very much. Anvar Saitov, Rinat Rezepov, Rinat Shabaev and Ilshat Demkin who used to be very helpful, have stopped helping us. Only Shamil Bikmaev keeps on helping us, but very unregularly.

I'd like to thank Azat Badretdinov, Rustam Yumash, Ravil Selihmet, Renat Taziev, Sabirjan Badretdin, Norm Kisamov, Edil Kasimov from the USA, Australia, Canada. If it wasn't for them, our newspaper would never be on the net. And the printed version of the newspaper would be eliminated last autumn already. But their financial possibilities are too limited.

I hoped the descendants of the Tatars from Mordovia who live abroad would help us, but in vain. I've been offering an exclusive thing for them - the research of their genealogical trees. I understand that they won't help if they get nothing in exchange. There are very little people who would make charitable contributions, even if they contribute to a saint deed, and I think there are no such people among the descendants of the Tatars from Mordovia at all. They are all descendants of small tradesmen, and they have never been philanthropists.

I thought that would be very simple - we offer an exclusive service which they can't buy anwyhere else - their documented past. They just pay for that. And the most part of this money goes to the researchers of the history of Tatar people and one of the Tatar states - the Temnikov Principality. Alas! Many people from abroad wrote to me, they wanted their genealogical trees to be made. But when I told them about the money, they would just stop sending messages.

Dear readers, I have to ask you for financial support. The newspaper's and my personal situations are critical. The last printed newspaper was published on April, 18. Since then, due to the debt to the printing house, we can't publish the newspaper in paper version.

I can't already ask money from my neighbours, relatives or anyone else. I took money from all those who would give. My personal debt is 9200 roubles(about $330) and the newspaper's debt is more than 28 thousand roubles (about $1000).

Nevertheless, I fell morally better now than in the autumn of 1999, when I had less debts. Now I have a moral satisfaction of some performed work, dedicated to the future of the Tatar people. Help us any way you can.

Thank you,

Irek Bikkinin

E-mail: irek@moris.ru