The Shanghai government wants residents to drop their pyjamas — as street wear.
The Communist Party thinks pyjamas in public make China’s financial capital look uncivilised.
Last year, Beijing had ordered residents to mind their manners and dress for the Olympics. Shanghai has started pyjama patrols with an eye on the World Expo, which it will host from May to October next year.
On Friday, Chinese media said 500 volunteers have been posted at 20 neighbourhoods near the expo site. Every morning for a month, they will convince residents to change into proper street wear before leaving home and conduct free courses on proper dressing, reported the state-run China Daily.
“I see less people wearing pyjamas in public. More people are queuing up at bus stops and offering seats to the elderly,” Liu Lin, a student, told Hindustan Times.
In addition, manners are being taught on TV. Etiquette lectures have been organised and 4.5 million booklets on ‘civilised travel, communication, entertainment and inhabitation’ published.
Shanghai will spend $4 billion (about Rs 19,200 crore) — nearly twice the cost of the Olympics — to host 70 million visitors to the Expo, where 200 nations will exhibit urban practices themed on a ‘better city, better life’.