In the last three years it has become an annual practice for Premier Li Keqiang to make an inspection tour in a remote area of China before Spring Festival. There, he brings gifts and greetings and learns more about the living conditions of the local people.
Before Spring Festival in 2014, the Premier visited impoverished areas in Shangluo and Ankang, two cities in Northwest China’s Shaanxi province.
In Jinpo village of Ankang, Premier Li called on Yang Kang, whose father, a migrant worker, labors thousands of kilometers away, as most grown-ups in the village do.
Yang called her father, Yang Xiufeng, who had not come home yet for Spring Festival.
Taking the phone from the daughter, Premier Li told Yang Xiufeng, “It is not easy to work away from home. The family is expecting you to return home for Spring Festival.”
“Migrant workers are heroes of the country,” he told the father.
Prior to Spring Festival in 2015, the Premier visited with poor villagers in Pudong village, a remote village of the Dong people in the mountainous area of Liping county, Southwest China’s Guizhou province.
Premier Li pledged that the government would step up renovation of their dilapidated houses and build a primary school to improve their living standards.
He also gave the villagers several packets of food for the festival that he had bought from the market earlier that day.
This year, the Premier went to a nursing home in Yuanzhou District of Guyuan, Northwest China’s Ningxia Hui autonomous region, where he arrived on Feb 1 to celebrate Little New Year with the seniors.
He brought gifts of packets of food and new clothing and hung two pendants on the wall with the Chinese characters “Fu” and “Shou”, representing blessings and longevity.
He also ate dumplings for lunch with the elders and made a toast to their longevity and happiness.