The Seitovs in the history of the national liberation movement
In the history of the Kazakh people, there are many examples where whole families served their people: for example, the Konyratbaevs brothers from the Syrdarya region, the Satpaevs from Bayanaul, the Dulatovs from the Turgai region and many others. The Seitovs brothers are no exception. They were known for their education and ardent desire to benefit their people. Three Seitovs brothers were members of the Alash party, which was very rare for the northern regions. Two Seitovs brothers received a medical education, one - economic: Musylmanbek was an economist, the youngest of the Seitovs, Muratbek, gained respect in the steppe as a skilled surgeon, who enjoyed a well-deserved authority among his contemporaries. He was arrested in the city of Stepnyak in 1937 and shot for involvement in the Alash movement. The Stalinist system, having used them in the most difficult years of the construction of the Soviet regime and as the totalitarian regime grew stronger, deemed it expedient to get rid of them.
The name of the doctor Asylbek Seitov stands alone. He is a graduate of Tomsk State University. His name has the most direct relation to Astana (Akmolinsk): in 1916 Asylbek together with S. Seifullin participated in the agricultural census of Akmola County. Their work in the County coincided with the beginning of a powerful national liberation movement. He also took part in the construction of the Alash cell in the city.
The origin of Asylbek Seitov, the years of study and formation
Asylbek Zhumanovich Seitov was born on January 22, 1894 in the city of Omsk in the family of an interpreter of the chancery of the governor-general of Western Siberia. His ancestors were from Bayanaul. Zhuman was from the usual nomadic family of Bayanaul Kazakhs, who received a good education at that time in Omsk parish school, which he graduated with honors. For special natural data, the gifted young man was recommended to continue his studies at the Omsk School of Translators - interpreters. And thanks to his brilliant abilities and a rare calligraphic handwriting, he is recruited to the office of the chancery of the Steppe Governor-General. There are reliable facts that he was an excellent rider and on horse races, held in Omsk, took prizes.
The Seitovs were closely related to the well-known families Shormanovs, Valikhanovs and Aitpenovs. The mother of the Seitovs - Kadisha was the sister of Mukan Aitpenov, one of the founders of the "Ush Zhuz" party in the city of Omsk. Kadisha Seitova (Aitpenova) after the death of her husband remained a widow at the age of 26 with six children in her arms: the daughter Zhamal, as well as sons - Musylmanbek, Sultanbek, Asylbek, Omarbek and Muratbek. In a kind memory and in a sign of deep respect to his assistant the Steppe Governor-General gave one of his private houses to the widow. Kadisha was a very educated woman: at one time she graduated from the Omsk Women's Gymnasium. This wise woman, driven by good intentions, performed her own feat in her own way: she gave this house to a boarding school for students of Kazakh youth who came to study from different parts of Kazakhstan. She with the children huddled in the wing - a small annex to the house. On a small widow's allowance, she was able to teach her sons, to give them an excellent education.
Asylbek was one of the most gifted and talented children of the Seitovs. At that time he received a rare, especially for Kazakhs, three-level education: in the beginning, like his father, he studied at the parish school, then - at the prestigious educational institution of the West Siberian region - Omsk classical male gymnasium. Thanks to his outstanding abilities in 1911 he managed to enter one of the oldest universities in the Asian part of Russia - the Medical Faculty of Tomsk University. It is known that this educational institution, originating in 1880, was under the special direct patronage of the ruling family of the Romanovs. Asylbek played beautifully on domra, mandolin and Kazakh Dombra. He was sorting out notes, drawing well. He knew the language of Esperanto. He was an avid hunter: during the search he was seized: "Zaur gun, small rifle with cartridges."
Marriage of Asylbek Seitov to Nafiya Shormanova
In 1917, Asylbek married the beautiful Nafiya, born in 1901, who was the only daughter of Saduakas Shormanov, and also the granddaughter of Musa Shormanov, the colonel of the tsarist army. And Musa Shormanov's sister Zeynep, was the mother of Shokan Ualikhanov.
Shormanov Saduakas had three wives: Nurida, the first wife married Saduakas, having escaped from her wedding. She died on March 31, 1894, shortly after the death of her only son. The second wife is Zeynep Aytbakina, but she did not have any children. Therefore, with her consent, Saduakas married a widow named Badgyl Zhamal (or Sahip Zhamal) with two children. From their joint marriage in 1901, the only daughter is born - Nafiya. The latter graduated from a female gymnasium in Omsk. Saduakas Shormanov often visited the Seitovs' house and was attracted by the calm, smooth-tempered and educated Asylbek. Therefore, at the initiative of Saduakas Shormanov, Nafiya married Asylbek at the age of 16. Young from the first meeting fell in love. Asylbek at that time worked as a district doctor in Omsk.
The ideological views of Asylbek and his coming to the Alash party
Ideological views of Seit led him to the party "Alash", where he was not an ordinary member, but an active participant, and in the decisive 1917 - the secretary of the congress.
He was fluent in foreign languages. He published a lot in newspapers and magazines. He urged compatriots to create funds to help needy students. In 1916, like a whole group of literate Kazakh intellectuals, was an active participant in the agricultural census of the population of the Steppe region.
By 1917 Akmolinsk had become one of the centers of political life in the Steppe region. An educated part of the Kazakh intelligentsia was reaching here. For example, in August the district congress of Kazakhs was held, where Asylbek was elected as a delegate. Representatives of the national intelligentsia discussed the issue related to the creation of the national party "Alash". In December 1917, A. Seitov was a delegate to the All-Kyrgyz (All-Kazakh) Congress, which was held in Orenburg, where he was elected to the secretariat. In 1918 Asylbek and Musylmanbek were co-leaders of Omsk youth organization "Birlik".
Memories of contemporaries about Asylbek
Of course, the life of such an extraordinary and wonderful person could not pass by his generation. For example, Saken Seifullin writes about him in detail in his novel "The Thorny Path", where many information about him is purely documentary. It is known that they met in 1916 during the agricultural census of the Akmola County. Then the territory of the county was divided into two parts and for the better organization of this work two commissions were set up: the southern and northern commissions. The southern part was headed by A. Seitov, only that he graduated from Tomsk State University, and the northern one - S.Seifullin. The writer writes in a respectful tone about Asylbek Seitov, despite the fact that in the first years of confrontation between the Soviet authorities and representatives of the Alash movement, they were practically ideological opponents and political opponents. In his book, the writer mentions the name of Asylbek Seitov more than 15 times.
The well-known mathematician Alimkhan Yermekov also spoke warmly of him: "In my student years, I was pretty close to Seitov Asylbek. He was a modest man, straightforward, exceptionally honest, a big hard worker. He was sufficiently infected with the idea of serving the people." Wherever he was, in whatever job he was, he always urged the Kazakh youth to enlightenment, to knowledge, for this was almost the only way out of the colonial yoke of the tsarist administration. For example, he played a decisive role in the professional choice of K.I. Satpayev, Shaybai Aymanov, who once worked under the leadership of A. Seitov, wrote in his later memoirs: "Actually Satpayev Kanysh and Barlybayev Habib, on Asylbek's insistent advice, went on to continue their education." He was close to the great Kazakh poets M. Zhumabaev, A. Yermekov. Let's say more: they were close friends. Despite the difference in age, he was a spiritual brother of A. Bukeikhan, A. Baytursunuly, and M. Dulatuly.
Years of work in Bayanaul and Semipalatinsk
After graduating from high school, after a little work in Omsk, he was sent to the Cossack village of Bayanaul, Pavlodar County of the Semipalatinsk region, where he worked until 1922. During the Soviet era, the former Alas Horde participants were not allowed to power and to great positions. But there were not enough competent cadres. Therefore, the Soviet government was forced to use the knowledge of "royal specialists". A. Seitov worked hard in the field of public health. He was the chief doctor in Bayanaul, then for 15 years he held the post of the head of the Semipalatinsk gubzdrav (provincial health department). Contemporaries often saw him in places of epidemics, saving hundreds and thousands of his fellow countrymen from disease. During the Civil War, devastation, famine and epidemics, along with his small team of military paramedic Beldeninov, paramedics Gabbas and Shaybai Aymanovs, fought against typhus, malaria, cholera, tuberculosis and other infectious diseases. Here is what Shaybai Aymanov wrote about his mentor and difficult years of working together: "Beldeninov, Razmaznov, 4 nurses died of typhus and he (Asylbek Seitov) had to work alone, there was no place to demand workers, since both in Pavlodar and Akmolinsk an epidemic was raging, the workers did not have enough, compared with Akmola, Pavlodar, the mortality rate in our region was much lower." It is known that it became possible for asceticism and professional skills such as Asylbek Seitov. But as the professor of KazNPU named after Abai, the historian Saduakas Bakshylov remembers about Asylbek: "In 1929 I was in very serious condition from pneumonia. I was cured and put on my legs by our brother Asylbek Seitov. He was a humane, kind and open person."
On his initiative and with direct participation, sanatoria "Aul" and "Berezovka" were created for the treatment of tuberculosis patients. As a prominent organizer of the republic's healthcare, he was a delegate of the first congress of doctors and the first congress of Soviets in the first capital of the autonomous Kazakhstan in Orenburg. Along with the practical work, he did not cease to engage in socio-political activities. So, on the pages of the monthly socio-political and literary-ethnographic magazine "Tan" ("Morning") he appeared with topical articles. By the way, in this same publication were published articles by S. Seifullin, M. Auezov and other representatives of the creative intelligentsia. In one of the issues of this journal as of 1925, touching on the problem of high infant mortality among Kazakhs, he wrote with regret: "According to the census in the Semipalatinsk province, out of 100 newborns, 48 die before reaching the age of one, while in the Norway and Sweden - 7, England - 11, France - 13, Germany - 17 ".
In 1931-1933, together with his wife Nafiya, they saved the lives of hundreds of their compatriots who came to Semipalatinsk from the neighboring region. Among the rescued from hunger was the outstanding historian Yermukhan Bekmakhanov. Here is how the daughter of the Alash figure Rosa Asylbekovna recalls these hard days: "I remember the 1932 - 1933 hungry years. Our house was overcome by hungry countrymen. Dad and Mom tried to arrange them, to help with anything. Many of them traveled to us from far Bayanaul. They were not relatives, but countrymen. In order not to burden the father with expenses, my mother gave her family silver, gold in Torgsin, as only there it was possible to get cloths and shoes for these people. Among them were the Zhantemirovs, both pensioners, until recently worked in the Central Committee of the party."
Work in Alma-Ata
In June 1937, he was invited to the Kaznarkomzdrav (Kazakh People's Commissariat of Health Care) to the post of department head. In parallel, he did not leave medical practice. At the end of November 1937 the People's Commissar for Health of Kazakhstan was instructed to head the planning department of the People's Commissar A. Seitov on the basis of an outpatient clinic at a tobacco factory to organize a polyclinic. He ahead of schedule fulfilled the task of his department: on November 25, 1937 polyclinic No. 5 in the city of Alma-Ata started to work and Asylbek by the general decision of the assembly of the collective was unanimously elected its first chief doctor. The polyclinic then served the residents of the Leninsky (now Zhetysusky) District of the city of Alma-Ata, which was the only medical institution here. The polyclinic was placed in a one-story building adjacent to the tobacco factory, having only 3-4 doctors in its state provided the needs of almost 18 thousand people.
Arrest and political repression
But at the behest of evil fate, he ran the polyclinic for only 5 days: on December 1, 1937, Asylbek was arrested and sentenced to 10 years without the right to correspond, which at that time meant a "firing" article. I managed to flick through the fabricated materials of his criminal case: Asylbek did not extradite any Alash figure. The investigator had questions about Alikhan and other Alash figures. When he was asked if he knew any representative of the intelligentsia, he answered categorically if his former party member was alive. But he agreed to get acquainted with those who had already been shot. Soon the investigator himself remarked: "Why are you “acquainted” with those who have already been shot?" It was a clever trick of Asylbek to take the blame away from his brothers and companions. Here are the dry lines from the archival copy of the State Archive of the Almaty region as of October 22, 1996: "Seitov was convicted of having been a major Alash from 1917 to 1921, from 1930 to 1933, working as a doctor among the people surrounding him, led an anti-Soviet Agitation". One of the scammers from his close associates, A., in his testimony to his comrade, showed that "in his talk with Seitov in 1933 he spoke of a whole series of facts of the plight of a part of the Kazakh population, and that this was allegedly a consequence of the policy of the Soviet government and a salvation from this situation may be the transition of the Kazakhs to China." And in the extract from the protocol of the meeting of the NKVD of the Alma-Ata region as of December 4, 1937, it was stressed that "He participated in a number of meetings (counter-revolutionary) where the cases of seizure of the Soviet apparatus and the removal of Russians from Kazakhstan were considered. Kept in contact with the enemy of the people Bukeikhanov and others, he discussed with him the issues of the systematic conduct of counter-revolutionary work in Kazakhstan."
His wife Nafiya almost every day came to the prison building. But already on December 8 of the same year her husband was shot as an enemy of the people.
The fate of the brothers of Asylbek Seitov
Soon his two brothers, Musylmanbek and Muratbek, were shot. Muratbek's wife Rauza Sadvokasovna was a prisoner of KARLAG and ALZHIR. And Sultanbek miraculously escaped repression, living to old age in the circle of his family, working as a forester in Semipalatinsk. He, fearing a new wave of repression, did not communicate with the children of repressed brothers. One of his sons Seitov Nazymbek Sultanbekovich worked in the Semipalatinsk Medical Institute. Relations between the children of siblings were not supported. Muratbek before his arrest worked as a surgeon in the city of Stepnyak, Kokchetav region. The children were taken to the orphanage, and the wife was sent to the camps. The children of Musylmanbek (the elder was called Dinshe) also did not take place as "children of the enemies of the people".
The fate of his wife and daughters
A serious threat looms over the family. The eldest daughter of A. Seitov Rosa (Rauza) was on the day of his father's arrest only 14 years. The youngest daughter Clara was about to be born. This joyful event was so strongly awaited by Asylbek Seitov. Grief-stricken wife of the repressed Seitov (Shormanov), Nafiya Saduakasovna, rescuing her family, ran away with her daughter to Omsk, the fatherland's home, on January night, 1938. At that alarming time, an original method of protection against millstones of mass repression was practiced: from Kazakhstan they fled to Russia, and from Russia - to Kazakhstan. But the rumor about the arrest of Asylbek Seitov somewhat outstripped the fugitives. And Omsk relatives - Aitpenovs and Shormanovs, afraid of contact with the family of the "enemy of the people", practically remained indifferent to the fate of this family. Foreign people helped: they were sheltered by a Russian family, who lived in a semi-basement house in Omsk, without taking a penny for a stay. Soon the second daughter of Asylbek - Clara was born. But the deep psychological trauma, received from the shooting of her husband, the experience of her beloved husband, poor living conditions, progressive disease, led to the fact that on April 9, 1939, Nafiya passed away. Her children - a teenager and a baby were left homeless, without the closest people, without material and moral support. As the younger daughter of Asylbek Clara recalls: "I do not know how I survived, for many years after the birth of the first child, my mother could not have children: all attempts failed: the children did not survive. And I was born in such a tragic time for my mother, I survived! Sometimes I think that the Almighty has saved my life so that my father's name and a bright memory of him would reach people!"
In 1941, they, ragged and hungry were caught by their grandfather's second wife, maternal Zeynep. She insisted that after graduating from school in the same year, Rosa urgently left for Kazakhstan to study. But unexpectedly, from the aggravation of rheumatism, the newly arrived grandmother also died. For a long time, Rauza did not know about this circumstance. Soon Clara, roaming the streets of the city, was taken by Shormanov Nurmukhamed, who then married a Russian woman Polina Ivanovna. And it was at her insistence that Clara found herself in a new family, which experienced material difficulties.
Return of Clara Seitova to Kazakhstan
Clara until 1947 was in Omsk. In 1945, Rosa marries a former front-line soldier, and then an investigator for particularly important cases Zheldybai Shulenbayev. And in 1947, Rauza said that she wants to find and return her sister to Kazakhstan. The reaction of the former front-line soldier was instant: he immediately left for Omsk and soon found the exhausted Clara, who was to have an amputation of the leg due to an exacerbation of the gangrene. He quickly took her to the sanitary aviation in Pavlodar and handed her over to local surgeons who were strictly forbidden to amputate her leg under the threat of depriving party tickets. For her treatment, they found a new medicine, which was offered by a front-line soldier: once in the course of a severe wound in the war, this medicine saved him from the consequences of a bullet wound in the lungs.
Like other relatives of the enemies of the people, they had to go through numerous thorns and trials. But in one thing they were true: both received higher education and carried a bright memory of their father. Before her death, Nafiya Seitova bequeathed her daughter Rosa to find her father's traces.
The return of the father's name
In 1993, the daughters had the opportunity to get acquainted with the criminal case of their father. When Asylbek’s eldest daughter Rauza found out the names of informers on her father, she was paralyzed, and soon died. They closely communicated with informers in Almaty and did not suspect that they had surrendered their father to NKVD officers.
Today in Almaty lives the son of Rauza Murat and the youngest daughter of Asylbek - Clara, who keep a good memory of the name of the Seitovs. The youngest daughter of Asylbek - Clara leads a large search work. For almost 60 years the name of an outstanding figure of the Kazakh people was deleted from history, although he was rehabilitated, as well as the bulk of illegally repressed in 1956 with a banal legal formulation "for lack of evidence." The youngest daughter of A. Seitov recalls: "The life of children of the enemies of the people is of little interest, we were outcasts in our native Fatherland. However, no one could erase from our lives the memory of our beloved father who gave us life." They carried love and respect to their father through their whole life. She carried her father's name with pride, trying not to tarnish his bright and good name. On May 31, 1997, on the day of memory of those repressed on the building of Almaty polyclinic No. 5, founded by A. Seitov, a memorial plaque was inaugurated in memory of him. One of the streets in Semipalatinsk and Almaty is named after him. A book about Asylbek Seitov was published.
By Ziyabek KABULDINOV
Translated by Raushan MAKHMETZHANOVA
Use of materials for publication, commercial use, or distribution requires written or oral permission from the Board of Editors or the author. Hyperlink to National Digital History portal is necessary. All rights reserved by the Law RK “On author’s rights and related rights”. To request authorization email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call to (7172) 79 82 06 (ext.111).