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The Globe and Mail

A family tomb moves - finally - to make way for development

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A labourer watches as an ancestral tomb is being moved away from a construction site of a residential compound in the city of Taiyuan. The tomb, measuring 10 metres high with a surface 10 metres square, has been left in the middle of the construction site since the building project started about seven months ago.


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The family who owns the tomb, with the help of some felllow villagers, relocated four coffins on Tuesday morning.


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The case is similar to China’s famous ‘nail houses’ - situations where a single house or building is left intact as a large building or infrastructure program continues. Chinese property rights allow landowners, in some cases, to refuse to sell to developers.


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According to local reports, village officers have reached an agreement with the family of the deceased to move the grave before this Saturday without raising compensation. The family is now contacting a feng shui master.


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Villagers carry a gravestone from the ancestral tomb away from the construction site.


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