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After 10 years in charge, Chinese President Hu Jintao steps down

November 14, 2012 19:50 IST

China's President for a decade Hu Jintao on Wednesday stepped down from power, leaving a stamp of his own on the ruling Communist Party, which incorporated his theory of Scientific Outlook in its constitution to figure along with the theories of top leaders like Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping.

An amendment to the Constitution of the Communist Party of China was approved on the last day of the leadership change, with Congress making the Scientific Outlook on Development as part of the Party's guide for action.

Unanimously agreed on by 2,270 delegates to the Congress, the amendment juxtaposes the Scientific Outlook on Development along with Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory and the important thought of Three Represents credited to Hu's predecessor Jiang Zemin.

Hailing the Outlook as "the crystallisation of the collective wisdom of the CPC and a long-term guiding ideology the Party must adhere to", the resolution said it represents the Party's latest achievement in adapting Marxism to China's conditions.

Hu, 69, a strong follower of Deng's reform policies, discarded Mao's hard-line Marxist policies and opened up China's economy in the last ten years, even while keeping a strong lid on political reforms.

His decade-long reign ended on Wednesday as a new set of leaders was elected by the Congress.

The new leaders, including Hu's successor Xi Jinping, would be formally unveiled on Thursday.

Besides emerging as the second largest economy, China's annual per capita income during Hu's era has increased from US$ 931 to US$ 3461.

Grain Yield went up 457 million tonnes to 571 million tonnes, while economy registered an average growth of around 10 per cent.

He is stepping down at a time when the Chinese economy has started sliding down.

His regime has also been marked by heavy deterioration of China's environment as the country sped on feverish growth, emerging as the world's largest carbon emitter, surpassing even the US.

Also as an offshoot of economic reforms, China for the first time witnessed a ballooning wealth gap between the rich and the poor, prompting the party to make it a priority issue to be resolved by the new leadership.

In his opening address of the Congress on November 8, Hu identified corruption as the main issue confronting the Party and warned that China would collapse of it is not curtailed.

K J M Varma and Anil K Joseph
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