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Elderly Couple Refuse to Move Out of Their Home, Are Forced to Live in the Middle of the Road

Ayesha Muhammad
May 28, 2022
10:40 P.M.

When an older couple refused to relocate or allow their house to be demolished, the local authorities decided to do something to make things work. Surprisingly enough, their plan didn't involve bulldozing the residential building.

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Life is unpredictable because we never know what the next moment has in store for us. Some people like to map things out and follow a proper plan to handle new tasks. Others might prefer facing challenging situations head-on without any prior preparations.

But sometimes, we might not have enough time on our hands to put foolproof plans in place and act accordingly. How do you think someone would act under such circumstances?

As is often said, desperate times call for desperate measures, and something similar seems to be the case for the story we're sharing today.

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AN ELDERLY CHINESE COUPLE

Luo Baogen and his wife were a Chinese couple who lived in the city of Wenling in the Zhejiang province of China.

In 2012, the then-67-year-old Baogen and a handful of other neighbors living on the city's outskirts reportedly refused to vacate their homes in response to the state's orders.

Multiple images of Baogen's home started circulating widely online in China, and the news of reported arguments between Chinese homeowners and local officials spread like wildfire.

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OFFICIALS REACHED OUT TO THE LOCALS

The photos showed a lone apartment building standing in the middle of a newly built road. It was also reported that local authorities approached several homeowners, including Baogen and his wife.

Baogen told local reporters that his electricity and water were still running, and he and his wife slept in different rooms to avoid partial demolition.

It turned out that when the government officials told the residents to leave their homes in the wake of major redevelopment projects, many of them refused to do so.

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"NAIL HOUSES"

Like the duck farmer, Baogen, Chinese homeowners said that they were offered too little compensation to meet their rebuilding costs. Over time, people who reportedly resisted the government's orders to demolish their homes became widely popular all over China.

In fact, the buildings that were left standing as their owners resisted redevelopment projects were said to have earned the name of "nail houses" because the homeowners declined to have them taken down.

Per sources, some nail house families occasionally resorted to extreme measures, with some holding 24-hour vigils because developers would likely refrain from bulldozing homes when people were inside.

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HE WAS OFFERED TWO DEALS

The Baogens reportedly insisted on living in the half-demolished building, which became a dramatic sight as vehicles drove around the five-story block with the couple still inside. To ensure their safety, adjacent rooms in the building were left intact, even after all the other neighbors reportedly moved out.

Xiayangzhang village chief, Chen Xuecai, shared that the city planners decided that Baogen's village of 1,600 had to be moved for a new business district. Xuecai added that most families agreed to the government-offered compensation in 2007, except for Baogen and some other neighbors.

He said that Baogen's house building cost was about 600,000 yuan ($95,000) when the government first offered him 220,000 yuan ($35,000) to move out. After Baogen refused the first offer, the village chief explained that a second one of 260,000 yuan ($41,000) was made.

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Baogen told local reporters that his electricity and water were still running, and he and his wife slept in different rooms to avoid partial demolition.

The new road built around Baogen's home was completed in a few weeks but was yet to be opened for traffic. Village chiefs like Xuecai and Luo Xuehua hoped that Baogen could soon strike a deal with the government.

What are your thoughts after reading this story? Do you think Baogen and the other homeowners were justified in their demands for increased relocation compensation? If you liked this story, please share it with your family and friend.

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