On the past two Wednesdays, large numbers of petitioners gathered in front of the Shanghai Letters and Visits Appeal Office and also the Beijing City Hall respectively. Accompanying the visitors was a massive police contingent, dispatched by local governments to maintain order and monitor the petitioners. No officials were seen.
On February 11, among the over 2,000 petitioners in Shanghai, most of them were victims of forcible relocations, laid-off state owned company employees, peasants who lost their lands and victims of relocations during the Cultural Revolution period. While the petitioners in Beijing were mostly victims of Beijing’s Yi-Lin Forestry illegal finance scandal, SARS, and forcibly relocated families.
During the Cultural Revolution, youngsters responded to the Chinese Communist Party’s call to move to remote areas to work. The movement changed millions of those youngsters’ lives and left them with bitter and painful memories. Over one million have returned to Shanghai.
Ms. Chang, one of the petitioners in Shanghai, told Epoch Times, “We have appealed to the local authorities for 6 years. There’s no word from them. We are over 60 years old now. We followed the Party’s orders and we have been deceived. Now we are left with no benefits.”
She continued, “There were thousands of us there today to defend our rights. We sang and a speech was given. After we went home, the police called and warned us not to do it again.”
[caption id=”attachment_81076″ align=”alignleft” width=”320″ caption=”A Shanghai petitioner with a lawsuit form entitled,