The funeral of Rui Xingwen , a top aide to the late Communist Party general secretary Zhao Ziyang , has been scheduled for Friday next week. Mortuary officials said the main hall of the Babaoshan Revolutionary Cemetery in Beijing had been reserved for Rui. He died of heart failure in a Beijing hospital on Sunday at the age of 78. A native of Jiangsu province who joined the communist revolution at the age of 15, Rui rose through the ranks and eventually became Shanghai party secretary in 1985. He was promoted to the secretariat of the Communist Party's Central Committee two years later. In Beijing, Rui was in charge of propaganda and public opinion and worked closely with Zhao. He was credited for a number of liberal policies, including a brief period of relaxation of the authorities' control over the media. He also reportedly clashed with former president Jiang Zemin, who was Shanghai mayor during Rui's tenure as party secretary. With the purge of Zhao in the aftermath of the Tiananmen Square crackdown in 1989, Rui soon lost his Central Committee position. However, in 1991, he was made a vice-director of the State Planning Commission, which has since been disbanded. According to media reports, Rui had been in poor health for years. He was confined to a wheelchair and unable to use his left hand as a result of a heart attack five years ago. His friends said his mind remained sharp and was able to have coherent conversations with visitors and family members. When Zhao died in January, Rui and his wife sent a wreath to mourn his former mentor's death. Mainland state media have yet to report Rui's death and it is unclear whether any state leaders will attend his funeral. Current National People's Congress chairman Wu Bangguo , Vice-President Zeng Qinghong and Vice-Premier Huang Ju were once Rui's subordinates in Shanghai.