Chengguan are an urban management force installed in almost every city on mainland China. They mostly clamp down on illegal street vendors but also enforce rules on city sanitation, landscaping and parking. Chengguan officers have been increasingly criticised after some of them used bullying tactics that have resulted in injuries and sometimes death.
Chengguan beat graduate in Nanjing for filming house demolition
A university graduate in Nanjing was beaten by local urban management officers or "chengguan" for attempting to video them demolishing a house, in the latest in a series of violent attacks by chengguan.
The Peking University graduate, who has not been named, was beaten by chengguan when he tried to video them working at a demolition site late last month. The officials grabbed the young man's phone from his hand and forced him into a vehicle. He was also slapped on the face after being taken to the chengguan office, according to China Youth Daily, an official newspaper based in Beijing.
The beating left the young man with thoracic fractures that had kept him bed-ridden for half a month until now, said the report. His neck, back and armpit were also hurt. Because of his wounds, he might lose a job opportunity to work abroad, his mother told Jiangsu City Channel, a local TV station.
A spokesperson for the local urban management force denied the accusation and said the graduate had "disturbed the chengguan's law enforcement with violence," according to the TV station.
Many Chinese netizens reacted with anger to the case. “What? The graduate disturbed the law enforcement violently? The action of the urban management force is illegal itself,” commented one netizen.
“The urban management force is a tumour on society. It hurts people and the country. It’s a huge mistake for the government to install the force,” said another.
The urban management force system, which has been viewed negatively for years, attracted widespread condemnation after a watermelon vendor was beaten to death in July.