As it turns out this already didn't work anymore long before systemd came along. And that's because Fedora and RHEL 6 used Upstart for a while, and Upstart already dropped support for inittab entirely.
In systemd, we could actually relatively nicely have provided compatibility with most features of inittab with a "generator" tool, which can extend systemd's dependency tree nicely from external configuration in other formats, such as inittab. However, given that Upstart already dropped support for inittab we decided there was no point in reintroducing it again.
So anyway, for this specific issue you cannot actually blame us systemd folks, blame Upstart instead please. (Not saying you can't blame us for a lot of other changes, but hey, for this specific one we do not take any credit.)
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