Police fired tear-gas at a relatively peaceful group of several hundred protesters who had gathered near Sham Shui Po police station on Wednesday evening.
With the realms of heaven and hell open open to the living on Hungry Ghost night, local residents and young protesters burned joss money printed with the images of senior figures such as the Chief Executive Carrie Lam and Police Commissioner Stephen Lo.
A woman explained they were making the unusual offering, saying that "We need to give this to police because they are as evil as ghosts."
Later there was plenty of chanting against the police, and laser pointers were shone at the police station, but no obvious indication that the protesters were planning any other action. Nonetheless by around 8.30pm dozens of police reinforcements had been bused in from elsewhere, the first warnings were issued, volleys of tear-gas fired soon after.
The area was full of locals taking part in Hungry Ghost traditions, and many were left coughing and red-eyed by the tear gas, which also affected people people inside the MTR station.
On man who was among those affected said: "I don't know what's happening today because it's a working day and not a weekend. There's no real protest here I think. A small amount of people is nearby but I don't think the situation is so bad that [police] need to use tear-gas."
Similar Hungry Ghost demonstrations were held outside Tin Shui Wai and Tai Po police stations.