Disgraced KGB spymaster Oleg D. Kalugin has come in from the cold to a safe seat in the Soviet Parliament, according to preliminary election results announced Monday.
Kalugin, a former KGB general who went public in June with accusations that the spy agency was continuing its abuses and refusing to reform, was stripped of his medals and honors by order of President Mikhail S. Gorbachev in June and could face charges of disclosing state secrets.
But, as the representative of the southern Russian region of Krasnodar in the Congress of People's Deputies, he will enjoy a deputy's immunity, subject to prosecution only if the Parliament votes to allow it.
Kalugin won 58% of Sunday's vote, the state-run Tass news agency reported, in a runoff with a prominent agriculture official in a traditionally conservative region known as the Kuban.
As Election Day approached, the public battle between the one-time head of counterintelligence and his former bosses heated up.
On Saturday night, the national news show "Vremya" broadcast a statement from the KGB information office denying several of Kalugin's allegations and accusing him of slander. It hinted that his incompetence--or collusion--allowed a traitor in the KGB to remain uncaught for years.
The KGB attacks may actually have helped Kalugin, because the Soviet public tends to support figures who appear to be persecuted by authorities. He showed his defiance by initiating a legal suit against Gorbachev's order stripping him of his rank and medals.
Kalugin told the independent Soviet news agency Interfax on Monday that he sees his victory at the polls as "incontrovertible proof that the process of democratic change that developed in the center has reached the periphery" of the country.
He said he hopes the parliamentary committee that oversees the KGB will listen to his inside view of the agency's activities and agree that the sections that deal with domestic politics should be dissolved.
Kalugin has said he was forced into retirement early this year after 32 years of service because of his own growing doubts about the KGB's mission and disputes with his superiors. He surfaced at a meeting of a liberal faction of the Communist Party with unexpected disclosures about the intelligence business. His election campaign centered on accounts of dirty tricks that he said the agency continues to play--among them, tapping phones and infiltrating domestic political groups.
Kalugin has said he worked as an agent in the United States from 1958 to 1970.