Alexey Navalny’s latest project is the Web site RosPil. The site would not be possible without Medvedev’s initiative, two years ago, to post online all government requests for tender—the documents whereby government entities announce their need for goods or services to potential bidders. Almost immediately, reports of strange deals started surfacing in the press. One regional governor arranged to buy thirty gold-and-diamond wristwatches; a spokesman explained that they were gifts to honor local teachers, but the deal was abruptly cancelled when the press got wind of it. The Interior Ministry ordered a hand-carved bed made of rare wood, gilded. St. Petersburg authorities ordered two million rubles’ worth of mink for seven hundred patients in a psychiatric institution.
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