The death of Chu Lanlan, a 40-year-old opera singer, last month shocked many people, because he was young.
His family said they were saddened by his “sudden passing”, but did not give details on the cause of his death. China abandoned its strict Covid-19 lockdown in December and saw a rapid rise in infections and deaths.
There is a thorough investigation of hospitals and crematoria. But the country has stopped publishing daily case information and has recorded just 22 Covid deaths since December, using its own strict standards.
Now only those who die from respiratory diseases reminiscent of pneumonia are counted. On Wednesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that China is representing the true picture of Covid in the country – especially death.
However, the deaths of Chu Lanlan and others lead to speculation of higher losses than reported in official accounts. According to business site Operawire, Chu Lanlan is a soprano who specializes in Peking opera – a theatrical performance in which actors tell a story using speech, song, dance and combat – and has also been involved in charity work.
On New Year’s Day, the news of the death of actor Gong Jintang broke the hearts of many Chinese netizens. Gong, 83, was welcomed by many families for his work on the long-running local television series, In-Legal, Out-laws. His portrayal of Father Kang has captivated fans for over two decades since the show premiered in 2000. The cause of his death is unknown, but many media outlets have linked it to the recent deaths of other elderly people.
“Please God, please treat the elderly,” member Hu Yanfen wrote on the Chinese-language social media platform Weibo. “R.I.P Father Kang. This wave has killed many old people, let’s make sure we protect the old people in our homes,” one customer wrote on Weibo. Famous TV writer Ni Zhen was also among the new dead. The 84-year-old is best known for his role in the 1991 film Raise the Crimson Lantern, which is considered by many to be one of the best Chinese-language films by critics. Meanwhile, Hu Fuming, a former reporter and retired professor at Nanjing College, died on Jan. 2 at the age of 87.
He is the main author of the famous explanation which was revealed in 1978 which marked the beginning of China’s “Boluan Fanzheng” era – the era of eliminating chaos and returning to normalcy after the chaos of the revolution. Mao Zedong. According to a tally by Chinese media, 16 scientists from the country’s science and engineering colleges died between December 21 and 26.
None of these deaths were related to Covid from their obituaries, but that hasn’t stopped the rumors online. “And he died of a ‘bad flu’?” one of the top quotes below points to Mr. Ni’s death.
“Even if you search all over the web, you won’t find the reason for his death,” said another netizen. But there has also been criticism of protesters who took to the streets in November during a rare political demonstration calling for Xi Jinping’s blanket ban.
“Are these people now happy to see the first people… paving the way for their freedom?” asked one media buyer. This new era is fueling Chinese protests
Mr Xi appeared to be referring to the protests and his New Year’s arrest, saying it was natural in the city for people to have different views.
But he urged people to come back together and show solidarity as China enters a “new phase” of its strategy against Covid. Chinese authorities are aware of widespread skepticism as they work to downplay the severity of the Covid-19 pandemic sweeping the country.
In an interview on state television, the director of the Beijing Institute of Respiratory Diseases admitted that the number of elderly deaths this winter was “significantly higher” than in previous years, while also pointing out that Important cases are still a minority of the general population. different types of Covid. This week, the People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Communist Party, urged residents to work for a “permanent victory” over Covid and rejected criticism of the previous zero-Covid coverage.