Beijing: As top leaders of the China`s ruling Communist Party met informally to select new leadership and chalk-out an ideological course, the party`s mouthpiece on Sunday backed President Hu Jintao`s call to "unswervingly" continue reform policy to overcome "difficulties and risks" in future.
Strongly backing Hu, the People`s Daily in a commentary said that by following the socialist theory with Chinese characteristics set out by Deng Xiaoping, the country continuously created "miracles" in improving people`s living conditions.
In his speech, Hu had urged officials to "unswervingly" carry forward the reform and opening-up and "confidently" overcome all difficulties and risks on the road ahead.
Hu, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC), is set to retire later this year along with the top leadership made the remarks ahead of the CPC`s upcoming 18th National Congress, which would select new leadership and chalk out a new ideological path.
In his speech, Hu said taking into account the domestic and overseas situation, China is faced with both unprecedented opportunities and challenges.
Over the past 10 years, China has grasped and made good use of important strategic opportunities and has overcome a number of serious challenges and pushed forward the cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics advocated by Deng to a new stage of development.
Highlighting Hu`s speech the People’s Daily commentary said considering the success achieved by China by following Deng`s line of socialism the party and the country should stick to path to deal with problems like global financial crisis.
By embarking on the socialist road with Chinese characteristics, we have developed ourselves into the world`s second largest economy, established the world`s largest social security system, succeeded in combating the sudden outbreak of SARS and overcome the deadly Wenchuan earthquake, the commentary said.
Deng, who gave a new ideological direction to the party and the state which ensured unlimited economic reforms but only under the total political control of the party, was sidelined and sent on exile to a tractor repairing workshop by Mao Zedong. He later took charge of CPC after Mao`s death in 1976.
Hu`s advocacy of the continuation of reform and opening up ahead of the crucial leadership change makes it clear that, he and present set of leaders who would be retiring later this year strongly pitches of continuation of Deng`s line and wants to ensure there was no return to Mao`s era nor giving up the one-party system in which CPC remained supreme ruler.
Speculation is rife since early this year that sections of the party headed by the disgraced leader Bo Xilai tried to revive Mao`s Marxian policies playing up on the growing rich poor divide.
Bo, who headed the Chongqing city hit the headline in China last year after he ordered the local television to play Mao era`s revolutionary songs every day, which was largely interpreted as attempts to revive the past.
Bo was subsequently sacked and placed under investigation after his wife Gu Kailai was charged with the murder of a British businessman.
The trial was expected to start on August 9.
The People`s Daily commentary came as members of the 370 strong Central Committee of the CPC reportedly holding an informal meeting at the resort town of Beidaihe near here to brain storm about the 18th Party Congress expected to be held in November to select new leadership to replace Hu and other top leaders to rule the country for the next 10 years.
The Party Congress also was expected to set out the ideological path for the new leaders to follow. Vice President Xi Jinping, a follower of Deng`s line, is expected to succeed Hu.