China / Politics

China closes high-end clubs in campaign

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-02-26 17:32

BEIJING -- High-end clubs and restaurants in public parks have either closed or undergone an overhaul since the central government issued a call to stamp out "unhealthy practices" in such places.

The Communist Party of China (CPC) ordered officials to shun high-end clubs and promised severe penalties for partygoers in December, as part of its campaign to clamp down on unacceptable practices.

The Shanghai municipal government has inspected 158 parks in the city and ordered three private clubs and eight high-end restaurants to rectify problems, said the office of the CPC's "mass line" campaign in a statement on Wednesday.

Beijing municipal government summoned operators of 27 high-end restaurants in parks and cultural relic protection sites to discuss their operations. Some were told to suspend business until they resolved outstanding issues.

The government of Hangzhou, capital city of east China's Zhejiang Province, has closed or suspended business at 15 high-end restaurants and clubs in parks or scenic spots.

In a similar move, the government in east China's Jiangsu province has shut ten clubs, according to the statement.

Eight central government departments including the Ministry of Public Security and the State Administration of Taxation have also inspected businesses. Their focus was on how often government organs, government-sponsored bodies, state-owned companies and financial institutions were visiting such premises.

Private clubs are often illegally built using public resources, sometimes in historical buildings or parks, and frequented by the rich and powerful.

"Some clubs are luxuriously built, illegally operated and infringe on the interests of the public, triggering discontent," the statement added.

The "mass-line" campaign was launched last June to bridge gaps between CPC officials and members, and the general public, while cleaning up undesirable work styles such as formalism, bureaucracy, hedonism and extravagance.

The CPC's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, which is also the steering group of the "mass line" campaign, in December ordered Party officials not to enter nor accept membership of private clubs.

The office on Wednesday said clubs would continue to be investigated and punishments handed down to violators.

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