Staunton, December 15 – Ingush activists take great pride in the fact that they know the law and can navigate their way through the Russian legal system, and their experiences reported by independent media in that North Caucasus republic mean that a knowledge and appreciation of the law is widespread.
The activists there routinely insist that they and their nation are the most legally literature of all the regions and republics of the Russian Federation, and now there is evidence for their claims: Ingush participants ranked in first place in the fourth all-Russia law test that more than 507,000 Russian citizens have just completed (bakdar.org/ingushetiya-lider-sredi-subektov-rf-po-urovnyu-pravovoj-gramotnosti/).
The Ingush averaged 77 percent correct, the Izvestiya information center reports, above those from Chukotka who manged 75 percent, those from Bryansk Oblast (75 percent), Lipetsk Oblast (74 percent), and Tver Oblast (74 percent). Nearly two-thirds of those taking the test were younger than 23.
The test was administered on line earlier this month. It consisted of 40 questions, and those taking it were allowed 60 minutes to answer. Its main focus was on the Russian Constitution, legal support for individuals and business during the pandemic, and Russian labor, civil and family legal codes.
It is striking that the leaders in legal knowledge came not from Moscow and St. Petersburg but rather from borderlands like Ingushetia and Chukotka, but it is a reminder that residents of these areas against whom the state often uses its laws are likely to pay attention to what the laws say as a means of protecting themselves.
Over the past two years, not a single week has gone by without trials and other legal actions concerning Ingushetia, sometimes inside the republic but often in neighboring republics. And an unintended consequence of this drive has been to make the Ingush the most legally literate nation in Russia.