Several urban management officers, or chengguan, in Leting county, Hebei province, have been punished for taking watermelons from a peddler who selling them illegally, mainland media reports.
The official Weibo account of the Hebei Youth Daily released a video on September 17 that shows chengguan taking two watermelons from a peddler’s tricycle and placing them in their vehicle, saying netizens alleged the incident occurred in Tangshan.
The Hebei Youth Daily called on authorities to investigate the officers’ behaviour.
According to a Youth.cn report, the video first appeared on June 27 and drew public attention.
The incident happened in Leting county and the peddler was violating rules by selling on the street, the news portal cited government officials as saying.
An official said yesterday that the chengguan confiscated only two watermelons in consideration of the vendor’s difficult life.
The official said the officers involved had been criticised and punished as their act was defined as misbehaviour by the local urban management bureau.
Much concern has risen over the behaviour of chengguan on the mainland in recent years because of heavy-handed and sometimes violent treatment of street hawkers.