China parliament: no flowers, gifts and keep speeches short

BEIJING Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:21am IST

A general view showing delegates attend the opening ceremony of 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, November 8, 2012. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/Files

A general view showing delegates attend the opening ceremony of 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, November 8, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Carlos Barria/Files

Related Topics

A statue of the Ganesh, the deity of prosperity, is carried in a taxi to a place of worship on the first day of the ten-day-long Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Mumbai August 29, 2014. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

Ganesh Chaturthi

During Ganesh Chaturthi idols will be taken through the streets in a procession accompanied by dancing and singing, and will be immersed in a river or the sea in accordance with Hindu faith.  Slideshow 

BEIJING (Reuters) - No flowers, no banquets, no gifts, no welcoming ceremonies and more importantly no useless long-winded speeches -- Chinese state media on Wednesday laid out strict instructions for this year's annual meeting of parliament.

Normally a bastion of sycophancy, as the hand-picked delegates seek to out-compete each other in lauding the Communist Party, the official Xinhua news agency said that would change when the largely rubber stamp parliament meets in March.

Incoming president Xi Jinping has made cutting back on extravagance and waste a key theme of his first few weeks in office since becoming party chief in November, seeking to assuage anger at corruption and restore faith in the party.

"Deputies will be encouraged to focus on key issues and avoid empty talk," Xinhua cited a government statement as saying.

"There will be no flowers in deputies' hotel rooms and no welcoming ceremonies at the airport or railway stations," it added.

"All deputies will eat at buffets without expensive food or alcohol, while extravagant galas, gifts and performances will not be arranged."

Unpopular traffic controls, which often include shutting down the busy main road which bisects Beijing and worsening already terrible traffic, will also be kept to a minimum, Xinhua said.

Parliament is unlikely to be dull this year in any case, as it will mark Xi's formal assumption of the title of president and the beginning of a new generation of leaders taking on the reins of state power.

Xi has already told officials to end their normal practice of giving stultifying speeches and pre-arranging fawning welcomes from local people and banished alcohol from military functions, as he tries to project a man-of-the-people image.

The party, which has shown no sign of giving up its tight grip on power, has struggled to contain public wrath at a seemingly endless stream of corruption scandals, particularly when officials are seen as abusing their posts to amass wealth. (Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Michael Perry)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Ferry Trial

Ferry Trial

Captain of doomed S.Korea ferry says lack of checks was customary - Yonhap.  Full Article 

Syria Crisis

Syria Crisis

Syrian refugees top 3 million, half of all Syrians displaced - UN.  Full Article 

Pakistan Protests

Pakistan Protests

Pakistan's powerful army steps in to resolve political crisis.  Full Article 

Ebola Outbreak

Ebola Outbreak

Gene studies of Ebola in Sierra Leone show virus is mutating fast.  Full Article 

Brangelina Wedding

Brangelina Wedding

Quietly, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie say, 'I do'.  Full Article 

US-China Faceoff

US-China Faceoff

Chinese interceptions of U.S. military planes could intensify due to submarine base.  Full Article 

Turkey Politics

Turkey Politics

Turkey's Erdogan sworn in as president, consolidates power.  Full Article 

Mideast Conflict

Mideast Conflict

Hamas leader says Gaza only "milestone to reaching our objective".  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage