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Senior officials banned from playing Mahjong in southeast China's Ningdu
   2017-02-23 16:27:15    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Shi

Chinese Mahjong. [Photo: baike.sogou.com]

Local officials in Ningdu, in southeast China's Jiangxi Province, have been banned from playing Mahjong in order to help clamp down on gambling.

The ban was contained in a circular sent to local deputy county-level officials by the Ningdu County Committee of Communist Party of China (CPC).

According to the circular, the officials may not play Mahjong at any time, either while on or off duty, on any occasion, whether at an entertainment venue or at home, in any form, whether it be for fun or for gambling.

If they are caught, they face losing their job.

Mahjong is a traditional Chinese tile-based game with a very long history. It is said to be one of the most popular games ever devised in China, and involves skill, strategy, calculation and a certain degree of chance.

The circular has sparked an intense discussion on Chinese social media. Some netizens have said it is overcorrecting, arguing that normal entertainment should not be included in the ban.

Supporters, however, see the measure as "an iron fist" against unhealthy social trends. They hope to have academic cheating, lavish funeral customs, and other activities highlighted and tackled in a similar way.

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