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People's Daily Online>>China Society

Artificial roses deliver real love for Valentine's Day

(Xinhua)

08:45, February 14, 2012

YINCHUAN, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- Qian Fang believes she will experience a very romantic Valentine's Day this year, as the roses she made with her own hands will be used by thousands of people to proclaim their love or propose marriage.

When the wheelchair-bound woman and her husband -- both without a steady job at the time -- started selling handmade fabric flowers in 2008 in the city of Yinchuan in northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, they rarely sold more than five flowers a day.

Without a business permit, she had to be careful to avoid urban management authorities, who might fine her or confiscate her flowers. Qian said she was broke and had nowhere to turn at the time.

Qian got a break in May 2011, when she complained about her flowers being confiscated on Weibo.com, a popular Chinese microblogging site.

Her post caught a great deal public attention, with netizens accusing urban management authorities of being "cold-blooded" for not offering help to the disabled.

Under great public pressure, local urban management authorities visited the couple and promised to help them establish legal sales channels.

Since then, Qian has been able to sell flowers on the city's vehicle-free promenade undisturbed, although she still has no business permit.

"Thanks to the netizens, life has become easier for me," said Qian.

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