HONG KONG MARCH: DEMOCRATIC SPIRIT IS ALIVE AND KICKING

The protest march on the annual handover day in the Central Business District of Hong Kong was an expected success and that is the big news about it, this beautiful banner photograph from the South China Morning Post coverage tells us.

There were clashes with police and over 500 were arrested, that is the big news about it.

The protesters sounded motivated by the outcome and warned of more intense protests later this year demanding democratic reforms and that is the big news about it.

Over half-a-million turnout was expected and it did happen and it tells people are becoming more and more vocal and determined about their struggle.

And the slogan of this year’s July 1 handover day protest march, “defending Hong Kong Authority: No fear of Beijing’s threat of comprehensive control” explains this attitude well.

Two protest marches with largest turnouts in the recent history of Hong Kong, the June 4 Tiananmen protests vigil night and the July 1 handover day march, that has changed its character from being a ceremonial day to a day of protest, within a month, and that, too, against the might of a manipulative and oppressive government, give us inspiring shots for pro-democracy resistance movements.

Residents of Hong Kong who migrated from the mainland to have a life away from the Chinese wars during the imperial period and subsequently from the Communist rule are fighting to reclaim the life they had during the colonial years especially in the later half of the 20th Century that saw rapid economic growth making its per-capita-income among the highest in the world.

Hong Kong was a global city, an economic powerhouse, driven by positive non-interventionism of the city administration.

Hong Kong is still an Alpha+ world city – a nodal point on the global economy map – but is now seen as a semi-authoritarian regime – with rising inequality – highest among the developed economies.

The 17 years of Beijing efforts have undermined much and are working to crush whatever is left in the name of the democratic spirit of Hong Kong.

And the surging protests and the rising people tell the spirit is well alive and kicking now. Protests led by students and youngsters are drawing people from every segment of the city-state. Reports say Hong Kong’s chief executive Leung Chun-ying was heckled by politicians in the legislative council for the police action against the protesters.

Hong Kong has economic freedom. It has financial competitiveness. Its Human Development Index is very high. The basis of the judicial system is still the English Common Law.

But these don’t matter until there is personal freedom and civil liberties to choose your own government and decide on your days and your future.

The global residents of Hong Kong know a sweeping mainland governance with its in-built autocratic culture if implemented in Hong Kong, something China is trying for years, will change this all, as is the case in the mainland.

And they are protesting this – to preserve what Hong Kong was.

They are fighting to remain the free global citizens of the third most important global business centre of the world.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

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