Chinese leader Bo Xilai’s son defends lavish lifestyle
Beijing: The son of a disgraced Chinese leader being investigated for abuse of power has broken his silence to deny he enjoyed a lavish lifestyle paid for with the proceeds of corrupt business deals.
Bo Guagua, who is currently studying at Harvard in the United States, has come under intense scrutiny since his father Bo Xilai and mother Gu Kailai became implicated in the biggest political scandal to hit China in decades.
His partying and allegedly extravagant lifestyle have triggered criticism in a country where the rich-poor divide is widening and anger over corruption and perceived impunity among leaders and their children is on the rise.
In a statement to The Harvard Crimson -- Harvard`s university newspaper -- the 24-year-old broke his weeks-long silence, denying reports he drove a Ferrari and addressing questions over his expensive overseas education.
"My tuition and living expenses at Harrow School, University of Oxford and Harvard University were funded exclusively by two sources -- scholarships earned independently, and my mother`s generosity from the savings she earned from her years as a successful lawyer and writer," he said.
Gu is currently under investigation in China for the suspected murder of British national Neil Heywood, who reportedly facilitated Bo Guagua`s entry into Britain`s exclusive Harrow School.
Bo Xilai, meanwhile, was sacked from his post as boss of Chongqing city last month and then suspended from the Communist Party`s hugely powerful, 25-member Politburo for "serious discipline violations" -- shorthand in China for graft.
"I am deeply concerned about the events surrounding my family, but I have no comments to make regarding the ongoing investigation," Bo Guagua said in the statement published on Tuesday in the United States.
Even before his father`s ouster, photos of Bo Guagua emerged online showing him partying at Oxford and posing with girls in an unusually public display for a Chinese leader`s offspring, and rumours spread that he drove a Ferrari.
But in his statement, he said he had never driven a Ferrari, adding that he instead attended parties, like most other students at Oxford.
When it announced his mother`s probe for murder earlier this month, the official Xinhua news agency also implicated Bo Guagua, saying he and Gu "had conflict" with Heywood "over economic interests, which had been intensified".
But in the statement, Bo Guagua said he had never lent his name to -- or participated in -- any for-profit businesses or ventures in China or abroad.
He also sought to quell reports that he had been a bad student, and pointed out he had obtained top grades in 11 subjects in public exams taken in Britain.
He added he had been awarded a 2:1 in his Politics, Philosophy and Economics degree at Oxford -- the second best class of degree.
The statement -- posted on the newspaper`s website -- drew varied comments from readers.
"You need to imagine the kind of pressure he`s been under -- journalists staking out his apartment, stalking his classmates, and even talking to his dry cleaner.... Give him a break," said one.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- DNA: Harmful chemicals found in Maggi, Nestle India still in denial mode
- CM Kejriwal shortlists 39 'unwanted' IAS officers in Delhi
- Rajasthan: Gujjars revive reservation agitation, block rail track
- DNA: Modi-led NDA govt's hits and misses in one year
- J Jayalalithaa sworn-in as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu
- Dr Subhash Chandra Show: Aspiring for more than what you have!
- ISIS to buy first nuclear weapon from Pak?
- Mumbai: CCTV captures assailant with gun at Film City
- Mathura SSP receives death threat letter, message for PM Modi
- BJP now central pole of Indian politics: Arun Jaitley
- Maharashtra FDA sends Maggi noodles for lab testing
- See what can Maggi do to your health!
- Watch: Fast N Facts @ 7:30pm
- Haridwar: Hotel Radisson Blu sealed for polluting Ganga
- Delhi: Two killed in road accident in New Ashok Nagar
- PM Narendra Modi graces Digvijay Singh's son wedding reception
- Goa Board SSC Exam Results 2015 announced
- Rahul Gandhi to pressurise govt to act on one-rank-one-pension issue
- ISIS close to buying nuclear weapon from Pakistan?
- Manohar Parrikar visits forward areas along LoC, reviews security situation
- There will be no delay in appointing CIC, CVC: Jitendra Singh
- Credibility of Prime Minister's Office restored by BJP, says Arun Jaitley
- ISIS justifies raping slave girls, says Michelle Obama is 'worth $40'
- Arvind Kejriwal to highlight AAP govt's 100 days work on Monday
- 'Unhappy' Celina Jaitley asks Sunny Leone to move out?
- BJP's plan for one-year celebration: 200 big rallies, 5,000 public meetings
- IPL 2015 Final: Mumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings - Preview
- Heatwave leaves 153 dead in Telangana, Andhra Pradesh
- Jayalalithaa returns as Tamil Nadu CM: As it happened
- CBSE Results 2015: 10th board exam results to be declared on May 27