The Tale Of Two Nations

The two neighbouring superpowers tend to exhibit markedly different cultures – political and social!
While China has made some changes in its Constitution in order to allow President Xi Jinping to remain in power for life, Russian President Vladimir Putin has mentioned that he has no plan to stay in the Kremlin beyond 2024.
The Russian strongman, who is all set to be re-elected as president for a fourth term in the March 18 election, has served as the ‘head of the state’ for 14 years (three times in two phases). Talking to the American media a couple of days ago, the former director of the Federal Security Service said that he had no intension to amend the Constitution in order to serve personal interest. “I never changed the Constitution, I did not do it to suit myself and I have no such plans to do so today,” stressed Putin, making it clear that he would not follow in the footsteps of his Chinese counterpart.

It is to be noted that critics recently accused the former KGB official, who was elected President for the first time in 2000, of trying to stay in power indefinitely. As the Constitution barred him from serving as president for more than two consecutive terms, Putin became the prime minister in 2008 and maintained his grip on power through then President Dmitry Medvedev. Putin once again became president in 2012, despite facing huge protests staged by the opposition. Now, he has silenced his critics by announcing that he would quit politics in 2024.

Meanwhile, President Putin recently revealed that his paternal grandfather, Spiridon Putin, had served as a cook for Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin, the two Soviet leaders. In a two-hour documentary film – titled ‘Putin’ and posted on the Internet on March 11, the president said that his grandfather was an important member of the team that used to take care of Stalin. He told interviewer Andrey Kondrashov: “(Spiridon) was a cook at Lenin’s and later at Stalin’s, at one of the dachas in the Moscow area.” According to Putin, Spiridon used to cook for the Soviet establishment till his death in 1965 at the age of 86.
Opposition leaders in Russia believe that the film has been released in the second week of March only to influence voters ahead of the Presidential Poll.

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