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Donations flood in for worker whose savings flew away

By Shi Yingying  (China Daily)

08:40, February 06, 2013

Qin Xiaoliang, a migrant worker, receives money returned or donated by Shanghai residents on Monday. Passers-by grabbed most of the cash after wind blew 17,600 yuan ($2,790) of hardearned money out of Qin's hands on the street on Sunday. (China Daily/ Wang Juliang)

Donations have flooded in for a migrant worker who lost his savings when it fell to the ground and was blown away in Shanghai on Sunday.

Qin Xiaoliang, 31, has so far received 14,650 yuan ($2,350) from well-wishers who read about his plight in newspapers and on social media networks.

According to police, the parcel courier had been carrying 17,600 yuan in cash when it was swept away by a strong gust of wind. Instead of helping, many passers-by simply pocketed whatever they could grab.

Qin, who comes from Anhui province's Fengtai county, was able to recover just 7,800 yuan as of Monday, police said.

The story has triggered a discussion on public morality in the nation.

Some people have donated money to cover Qin's losses after tracking him down through a police hotline and a local television station.

"He (Qin) came to help us develop the city, now he is in trouble, and we should help him enjoy a happy Spring Festival," said a donor surnamed Zheng.

Xuan Kejiong, a reporter for Shanghai TV, said more than 300 people contacted him through his micro blog to offer financial help after he wrote a post about the incident online.

Chinese businessman and philanthropist Chen Guangbiao, famed for his high-profile charity work, and prolific micro-blogger Xue Manzi also said they would make up any losses.

Qin said he never dreamed he would recoup the lost money.

"I want to thank them (the donors) and I will donate the extra (4,850 yuan) to charity after Spring Festival, when I return to Shanghai," he said.

He said he had wrapped 17,600 yuan in paper and had kept the money in his jeans pocket, but the money was blown away by the wind when he was rushing to the bank on his electric bike to deposit it on Sunday afternoon.

A witness told Shanghai Morning Post that Qin got down on his knees and begged people in the crowd who were scrambling to get the scattered 100-yuan notes to give him back the money.

"He said it was hard-earned money and that it was money he was saving to return to his hometown for Spring Festival," the witness said, adding that some people still took the money.

Another witness told the newspaper the money was gone in minutes.

"Only three people, all sanitation workers, gave me back the money at the scene," the paper quoted Qin as saying.

He said some of the money was the earnings of his 83-year-old father who worked as a road sweeper.

Related News: Windswept money triggers morality discussion

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