Xi, Premier Li disagree over role of street vendors in post-Covid-19 China

Topics Xi Jinping | Li Keqiang | China

Xi’s regime has previously cracked down on street stalls. Photo: Twitter @arabnews
Disagreement at the top?

According to Germany-based observer of China, MERICS, China’s president Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang seem to disagree over the role and treatment of street vendors in reviving the Chinese economy in the aftermath of the coronavirus epidemic. In the beginning of June, Li openly addressed employment concerns and praised street vendors for creating jobs. The term “street stall economy” soon became a popular buzzword. Xi’s regime, however, has previously cracked down on street stalls.

Another face-off

A war of words has broken out between Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tejashwi Yadav and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. It all started with Yadav alleging that the CM was missing in action as the Covid-19 infection spread in the state.

Yadav said that in the last 100 days, only about 123,000 people had been tested for the disease whereas the state government was claiming that 40 million people had been tested of whom 400,000 had tested positive.

Yadav asked how many ventilators did the state government have? He topped this with the slogan: (all Bihar is asking: Nitish Kumar, where are you hiding?).

Kumar replied almost instantly,: “He’s asking where I’m hiding. Maybe he doesn’t know that there’s a lockdown in place. Everyone across the country is being told: stay at home. I am working round the clock, reviewing, analysing. We’re working right through the lockdown. How would it look if I were the one to impose a lockdown on people and would go gadding about all over the place myself.” 

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