Dispute surfaces in Chinese city over discarded cigarette butt for money exchange

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New Delhi, Oct. 28 (ANI): A dispute has surfaced in the Chinese city of Xianyang over residents being offered cold hard cash for each discarded cigarette butt they pick up.

The drive, which started on September 18, was part of an effort to help Xianyang in the competition for National Health City title. The government pays locals 0.05 yuan (0.0075 dollars) for each cigarette butt they pick up from city streets.

In the past month, loyal citizens have handed over seven million cigarette butts to the government and more than 100,000 yuan has been paid out for two million butts. A shortage of funds has kept the other five million butts from being paid for.

Local leaders said they are sticking to the campaign.

The China Daily quoted Hou Xi'an, deputy head of the city office in charge of the effort, as saying: "We started the drive as part of an effort to make our city more clean and civilized, increase public environmental awareness and warn against the dangers of smoking."

Han Baofeng, deputy secretary-general of the city, told China Daily on Wednesday that the campaign will not stop until the end of December.

"We will improve the imperfect measures of the drive and continue our good efforts," Han added. (ANI)

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