BEIJING–Chinese authorities have detained a driver and a local government official on suspicion of causing the accidental death of a 13-month-old boy who was run over by a van during an argument between his parents and local officials demanding the couple to pay a fine for violating China’s strict family planning limits.
The boy was the rural couple’s third child. China limits most couples in the countryside to no more than two children.
The communist party propaganda department for the city of Rui’an in eastern province of Zhejiang said in a statement Thursday that a group of 12 government workers, including a driver identified only by his family name of Cheng, visited the couple in their home in Dongshantou village on Monday, and urged them to pay the fine.
The accident occurred after the mother was told to board the officials’ van, the statement said. When she got into the vehicle, the father, who was holding the baby, also insisted on going.
The government official, identified by his family name of Bai, pushed away the father, closed the van door and told Cheng to drive off, the statement said. The father dropped the baby, and a rear wheel ran over him. Cheng immediately stopped, and the baby was rushed to a local hospital where he died, according to the statement.