Guangxi official Li Daqiu is third senior cadre under scrutiny
A vice-chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Committee in Guangxi has been placed under investigation - the third vice-ministerial-level official in as many weeks ensnared by the Communist Party's anti-graft campaign.
Xinhua said Li Daqiu, 59, was being investigated for "serious disciplinary violations" - a party euphemism for corruption - although it did not disclose the specific allegations against him. The party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection is engaged in a nationwide graft crackdown under the orders of party general secretary and national president Xi Jinping.
Last month, Wang Suyi, 52, the head of Inner Mongolia's United Front Work Department, and Guo Yongxiang, 64, chairman of the Federation of Literary and Art Circles in Sichuan, where separately implicated in disciplinary violations.
Although all three hold vice-ministerial - and thereby senior - ranks, their posts do not hold much power. The lack of top officials caught in the graft campaign has caused some to question whether the party is falling short of Xi's pledge to catch both "tigers and flies".
Vice-ministerial-level officials would normally take a back seat at 60, and retire at 65.
"Corruption has become perfectly normal for many cadres and the top leaders can only punish those with relatively little power," said Professor Hu Xingdou, of the Beijing Institute of Technology. "The three officials investigated recently could hardly qualify as 'tigers'."
Xinhua praised discipline watchdogs yesterday, calling the investigations into senior officials "awe-inspiring".