A large group of pro-democracy protestors marched through the streets of Mong Kok late Thursday, burning joss paper and paper dolls bearing images of Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying.
According to RTHK, two fires were extinguished by the police, but no arrests were made.
Participants were quoted as saying that the demonstration was held to celebrate CY Leung’s lunar birthday, which coincided with the culmination of the Hungry Ghost Festival.
Protestors first gathered at Broadway Cinema at Sai Yeung Choi Street, where they threw eggs and other stuff at black-and-white pictures of Leung, expressing their discontent over his governance.
Over a hundred passers-by watched the “villain-bashing” activity.
After the “ritual”, protestors started marching towards Argyle Street, shouting slogans, waving numerous Leung paper dolls and tossing joss paper into the air.
It is estimated that over 200 police officials kept a watch on the proceedings, ready to move in if things got out of hand.
The parade stopped outside Wai Fung Plaza, where people lit up a fire burning joss paper and Leung paper dolls. The fire was soon put out by the police.
Later the group tried to set another fire to paper offerings outside a HSBC Building but it was also stopped by the police using fire extinguishers.
The seventh month on the lunar calendar is regarded as the Ghost Month, and the Hungry Ghost Festival falls on the fourteenth day in particular, when the most devilish and homeless ghosts are said to wander around the city.
People are advised to stay home and have no happy celebrations or weddings; otherwise, it would attract bad luck and evil.
To calm the evil spirits, people traditionally burn joss paper and provide offerings such as rice and drinks.
In short, protestors were celebrating Leung’s lunar birthday in the manner of calming evil spirits.
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