Beijing, Feb 27: A Chinese judge has been suspended after he mocked on social media a picture of a traffic police officer working in heavy snow. The punishment, which is unusually harsh even by the Chinese government standards, came ahead of the annual meeting of the legislature, the National People's Congress, Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post reported on Monday.
It appears to be another example of the authorities attempting to strictly control comments and actions by cadres deemed embarrassing to the authorities, the Post said.
Li Bingxiang, a judge at intermediate court in Lijiang in Yunnan province, ridiculed pictures of the police officer working in the snow in Shaanxi province that were published on the social media account of People's Daily on Saturday.
The pictures of the 57-year-old officer received praise from others for his dedication to duty. Li, however, wrote on his social media account, "When a 57-year-old policeman is on duty in the wind and snow, there could be three explanations. Firstly, he was receiving punishment due to mistakes; secondly, he was trying to make a show; and thirdly, it was a show".
An official statement said Li had been suspended and would be dealt with 'seriously'. The court statement also said Li had made wrong comments that had hurt the policeman. Li later apologised on his Weibo account and pledged not 'to disseminate the remarks inconsistent with the interests of the ruling Communist party and the nation'.
"My wrong comments hurt the feelings of an old comrade and his family," he wrote.