June 6, over a hundred residents of Eskhar village, located near Chuhuiv, Kharkiv region, staged a rally outside the district police department. The gathering was caused by a tragic and mysterious death of 23-year-old local activist Mykola Bychko. The young man was found hanging in the nearby forest at the railroad tracks the day before.
The police claimed that the preliminary investigation version was suicide. However, many people stated that it sounded implausible and out of character.
Recently Bychko was at the forefront of the scandal, protesting against pollution by poisonous wastes from an industrial enterprise out into the Donets river near Eskhar. The activist was the head of Initiative Youth of Eskhar organization. He was gathering evidence to charge local businessmen of poisoning the waters. Bychko’s friends state, the young man had a lot of projects and was not depressed.
That is why people were outraged with the unfeasible version of suicide. They believe this was more like a cynical murder and demanded the police undertake an in-depth investigation into the cause of Mykola Bychko’s death.
June 7, the people went to the town square, demanding the mayor talk to them. Later, the activists blocked the car of the village council head and required his dismissal.
Today, Mykola Bychko was buried. Head of Eskhar village council Anatoly Lehkosherst, the deputy head and the director of the local public service, have resigned.
Currently, the police are working to ascertain all the circumstances and causes of the activist’s death.
Text: Olena Sokolynska
Photo: Chuhuiv FB