BEIJING, Feb. 6(Xinhuanet)-- The leader of China's top advisory body said here Sunday that ethnic and religious work is imperative to secure harmonious social development in China.
Jia Qinglin, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference(CPPCC), made the remarks when he visited the Niujie c
ommunity, a compact area inhabited by the Hui nationality, and the Islamic Association of China and two religious institutions for the upcoming Chinese Lunar New Year.
Jia was warmly greeted by the Niujie residents as he has made the annual visit here for 12 consecutive years.
During a workshop with religious people, Jia said that the Chinese government and Party departments at all levels should showspecial concern to ethnic minorities and religious groups, and trytheir best to solve difficulties of the needy people, to ensure a happy Spring Festival.
"We should hold up high the spirit of patriotism and national unity to solidify and develop an ethnic relationship of equality, unity and mutual help, and to further enhance economic and social development and uplift the standard of living in areas inhabited by ethnic minorities," he said.
China's State Council introduced the country's first statute onreligious affairs on Nov. 30 last year. The statute is scheduled to take effect on March 1.
The working facilities of religious groups and institutions in the country have been much improved, Jia said.
After hearing reports on infrastructure construction of two Islamic and Buddhist institutions, Jia said the central authority has decided to allocate special funds to upgrade the working facilities of religious groups and institutions nationwide.
Representatives from religious groups said they would try to bring up high quality religious people and make more contributionsto the realization of a harmonious society in China.
Secretary of the Beijing Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China(CPC) Liu Qi, Vice-Chairwoman of the CPPCC NationalCommittee Liu Yandong and other senior officials were present on the occasion.