Moscow, April 20, Interfax - More than half of Russians (58%) believe that Vladimir Lenin's body should be buried: 32% propose a site beneath the Kremlin wall and 26% the Volkovskoye cemetery in St. Petersburg as the preferred burial place, the Levada Center public opinion study institution told Interfax.
About one-third (31%) are sure that Lenin's remains should be kept where they are, in the Mausoleum. A tenth of (11%) respondents was undecided. The poll was conducted from March 31 - April 3 among 1,600 residents in 137 populated localities in 48 Russian regions.
However, 79% of Russian are against demolition of any monuments to Lenin and only 14% agree that they should be pulled down. The remaining 8% were undecided.
When asked to assess the role played by the personality of Lenin in the country's history, 26% of Russians expressed the view that the memory of the leader will be preserved but no one will ever again follow the same path. Another 23% agreed that Lenin had put the country on the path towards progress and equity, while 21% said that his ideas were distorted by followers. A fifth (19%) of respondents was certain that Lenin "tried to build on the best thoughts and hopes of people, aiming to lead them to a bright future", the Levada Center said.
However, 15% said they believe that Lenin led the country down the wrong path, causing a lot of trouble and suffering, while 11% said that Lenin was wrong in his expectations regarding the revolution and communism.
In all, the share of Russians highlighting Lenin's positive contribution to the country's history grew from 40% in 2006 to 56% now. The opposing stance is held by 22% of respondents now compared to 36% in 2006. The remaining 23% were undecided.
The poll suggests that 35% of Russians believe that nobody save for historians will remember Lenin in 40-50 years. A fourth (25%) believe that in the future, Lenin will be remembered as the founder of the Soviet state and a fifth (20%) said Lenin would be remembered as a leader for whom the interest of workers were a top priority. Every seventh respondent (12%) believes Lenin will be remembered as a great thinker who managed to foresee the future.
On April 22, 2017, people will celebrate Lenin's 147th birthday.