April 26 – International Day of Remembrance of Victims of Radiation Accidents and Catastrophes. The history of nuclear energy is divided into two periods: before April 1986 and after, when in a few short hours the word “Chernobyl” became a symbol of the tragedy that mistakes in the use of nuclear energy can lead to. Two powerful explosions on Unit 4 at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on April 26, 1986 at 1:23 min 49 sec shocked the world. Millions of human lives were dragged into the vortex of this tragedy. This day will always unite all living in one memory, one sadness, one hope.
Thirty-four years have passed since the tragedy and today we want to pay tribute to the memory of all those people who participated in the liquidation of the reactor accident and wish the Chernobyl victims, who passed this disaster first of all, health, happiness and only good news in our difficult time. May our peaceful sky never again be clouded by explosions, nuclear disasters and viral diseases.
In Karaganda, a monument to the liquidators of the Chernobyl accident was opened in Victory Park on 30 August 2016, Constitution Day. The veterans of Chernobyl have been waiting for many years for this event. A stone stood in place of the future monument for a long time.
“This event is for all of us Chernobyl veterans, who are popularly called “liquidators”. This is the greatest holiday, because we have been waiting for it for exactly 30 years 4 months and 4 days. We finally found an opportunity to immortalize the feat. But the holiday, I would say, is sad”, – said Guards Major General Yanis Duda, Honorary Chairman of “Karaganda Regional Union of Veterans of Chernobyl-Semipalatinsk”. According to him, more than 2,500 Karaganda residents participated in the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident. “But there are no exact data. There are about 590 alive today. Radiation ‘eats’, slowly but surely,” says I. Duda.
The author of the 10-metre composition is artist-sculptor Igor Bagramov. The sketch of the sculptural composition was born in 2014. The monument is executed in black and white solution made of gabbro and granite, metal structures. “Beware of radiation” sign on the top of the stele. “And even higher, it’s like a stone explosion. It’s a warning to everyone about the danger posed by the atom, the radiation. To remember that there was such a man-made disaster, a tragedy,” the author explained the idea. – On the back side there is an unusual panel, where real photographs were reproduced. Some of them were provided to me by Chernobyl victims, and some of them were found on the Internet”. There are also poetic lines carved in the stone:
“A black slice from our lives, chips in my memory.
That Chernobyl once became a black pain for people.”