Written: Written on May 20, 1921
Published: First published in 1932 in Lenin Miscellany XX. Printed from a typewritten text with Lenin’s additions and signature.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1976, Moscow, Volume 45, pages 149b-151a.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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On February 2, No. 785/y&whatthe;. I Sent you, through Gorbunov, Comrade Kotlyarov’s letter, containing the proposal that idle lifts and all their equipment in the big cities should be used by the mining industry, with the following resolution:
“We should make inquiries and find out whether anything can be done in this case to help the mining industry. Take away what can be spared.” The documents at the S.E.C. show that 5 commissions have worked on the assignment:
1) Conference at the Prodrasmet on the use of lift equipment by the Donbas (February 11).
2) A special commission for the examination of lifts in houses (worked until February 23).
3) A technical conference of specialists under the Metals Technical Department (roughly about March 22–24).
4) A conference at the Mining and Technical Department of Central Coal Administration (April 16) on the question of using lifts in the city of Moscow and other big cities for mining purposes in the coal industry and, finally,
5) A meeting of the Central Production Commission on April 22, minutes 321, § 238.
Commission No. 3 had already quite clearly established that the lift equipment could unquestionably be used in part for the mining industry. However, nothing-has yet been done in practice; this business is being dragged out endlessly and to no purpose.
I propose that the question should be raised in the Council of Labour and Defence on May 25, with a draft resolution of roughly this content:
“To authorise the S.E.C. Presidium, by co-ordination with the People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs, to make use of parts of lifts in Moscow, Petrograd and other big cities, which ,are suitable for the mining industry, such as: winches, drums and cables.
“Parallel to this, the necessary tests should be made for using the lift equipment in conformity with the minutes of the March 24, 1921 conference at the Technical Section of the Metals Department, designating these tests, in view of their importance, as having top priority.”
I add (a) Appoint a responsible person.
(b) Punish for red tape (from March to May). Report to N. P. Gorbunov.
V. Ulyanov (Lenin)
Chairman, Council of People’s Commissars
 The words “through Gorbunov” are written in N. P. Gorbunov’s hand.—Ed.
 Chief Committee for the Allocation of Metals Under the Metals Department of the S.E.C.—Ed.
 From the words “I add” to “Report to N. P. Gorbunov” the text is in Lenin’s hand.—Ed.
 On May 25, 1921, the C.L.D. adopted Lenin’s draft resolution, with small amendments, and instructed the People’s Commissariat for Justice “to carry out an inquiry and punish those guilty of the red tape, owing to which the assignment to the Presidium of the S.E.C., issued by the Chairman of the Council of People’s Commissars on February 2, 1921, through the C.P.C. business manager under No. 785/yII, remains virtually unfulfilled to this day” (Central Party Archives of the Institute of Marxism-Leninism of the C.P.S.U. Central Committee).