China fires official for saying 'devil' Mao's birthday is world's largest cult activity

The Weibo account of Zuo Chunhe has been deleted and the post removed.

Mao Zedong
A portrait of former Chinese leader Mao Zedong on a yuan banknote Reuters

The Shijiazhuang Bureau of Culture, Radio, Film, TV, Press and Publication has fired its deputy director for calling Chinese leader Mao Zedong a "devil" and the annual commemoration of Mao's birthday "the world's largest cult activity".

Zuo Chunhe took to Weibo to post the comment which caused immense backslash. The Bureau released a statement saying that the official has been removed from his post for "posting wrong remarks" on social media and "serious violation of political discipline". The authority demanded Zuo to "deeply reflect" on his mistakes, reported Reuters.

Though his Weibo account had been deleted and the post removed, screen shots of it continue to circulate online. Reuters also reported that Zuo was not available for any comment on this matter.

This is not the first time that a person has been punished for going against Mao or his ideas. On 9 January, a Chinese professor was sacked after he criticised Mao on the 123rd anniversary of his birth.

Mao Zedong is eulogised as a reverent figure in China after the communist revolutionary founded the People's Republic of China. Leftists of the country generally go by his Marxist–Leninist theories, military strategies and political policies which are collectively known as Maoism or Marxism-Leninism-Maoism.