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Student charged 'pollution fee' for smoking on campus

Updated: 2015-09-25 09:22

Student charged 'pollution fee' for smoking on campus

This photo shows the fine ticket by a middle school in northwest China's Yan'an city. [Photo/hsw.cn]

A student at the Yuying Middle School in northwest China's Yan'an city was fined 400 yuan (about $62.7) for smoking on campus, according to Xi'an-based China Business View.

The punishment, which the school authority claimed was a method to deter smoking among students, is rare across China.

A post circulated on Weibo, China's twitter-like service, revealed the fine was labelled as a "pollution fee."

Some comments on the post revealed doubt over the school's right to levy such a fine and questioned eventual use of the money.

Zhang Bingke, head of the school's administrative office, said the fine was introduced only this semester after previous measures failed. It was added that students used to pay 20 yuan for each cigarette they smoked while their remaining stash was confiscated.

According to Zhang, the measure has turned out to be effective, though not backed by any written policy.

Stressing the "educative meaning" of such a measure, the school authority promised to return all the money to the parents of students.

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