From RFA Unplugged:
On June 8, 1957, by the decree of Mao Zedong, an anti-rightist announcement entitled “Why is this?” appeared in the People’s Daily. Deng Xiaoping immediately took charge of the anti-rightist rectification working group set up by Party central, and rooted out 550,000 “rightists” from among five million Chinese intellectuals nationwide.
Their collective crime was to have criticised the Party’s policies and work style. The fate of those 550,000 was as follows: some died right there during the struggle sessions; many died later in prison or labor camp, or as a result of kangaroo courts and summary executions. A small number survived to see their relatives suffer discrimination and oppression. [Full Text]