By: Scout Xu、Maggie LiuEdited by: Lam Ka Sing

Society

Lifelong suffering of women in India

Women in India suffer from violence throughout their lives, according to a veteran journalist covering the issue for years. The violence starts from infancy, from infanticide and infancy neglect to domestic violence, said Nita Bhalla, the chief correspondent in South Asia at the Thomson Reuters Foundation, in a forum of Hong Kong Baptist University today. Based in New Delhi, Nita Bhalla works as a foreign correspondent for about 20 years and wins an award for her coverage on human rights. Meanwhile, since females are often considered inferior to males, if a family can only support one child for education, the opportunity always goes to the male ones, resulting in deprived opportunities in education, said Bhalla. About half of Indian women get married under the age of 14, according to a government report, and the youngest was only aged 6, said Bhalla. After they get married, sexual abuse within the family, wife-sharing and domestic violence tend to follow, she said. Six out of ten men admitted they have committed domestic violence, including hitting their wives, confiscating their money and devaluing them, according to a United Nations report. At the end of her talk, she says because there are still many positive stories, she can recover from overwhelming frustrations after witnessing disasters. A famous case of brutality to females is the Delhi gang rape, in which a 23-year-old female student was raped by six men in a bus, resulting in her death and worldwide attention. Under social pressure invoked by the protests, four attackers were sentenced to death by the government, while one of them, who was under 18, was charged with a three-year sentence. "The death penalty can't solve the problem as we find in researches," said Bhalla. "Our main focus should on the change in mindset and how we regard …

CE to rebuild housing ladder with "Starter Homes" scheme

  • 2017-10-11
  • The Young Reporter
  • By: Erin Chan、Caroline Kwok、Michael Shum、Candice WongEdited by: Lam Ka Sing、Nicole Kwok
  • 2017-10-11

CE to rebuild housing ladder with "Starter Homes" scheme Reported by Caroline Kwok, Erin Chan, Candice Wong,  Michael Shum Edited by Alfred Lam, Nicole Kwok,  Sean Hsu, James Ho Hong Kong's Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor revealed details of the "Starter Homes" scheme in her maiden policy address today. The scheme is to provide more affordable private housing for young, middle class first-time home buyers who are struggling with the city's endless price growth in private housing. The scheme's applicants must have an income level not exceeding $34,000 a month for singletons and $68,000 for households with two or more members, about 30 per cent higher than the income limits for Home Ownership Scheme applicants, she said. Land supply for the units will come from sites owned by private developers or bought by the Government. Lam said the government will dictate the scheme at the end and developers will only help building the homes. Poon Wing-cheung, senior lecturer of Building Science and Technology at City University of Hong Kong, agreed that the government should work with private developers to speed up the scheme. "Developers are well-equipped with land resources and are experienced in maximising land use," Poon said. Thomas Lam, senior director of property consultancy, Knight Frank, also thought that "Public-Private Partnership" can provide certain incentives for both parties. "For example, developers will supply farmland for "Starter Homes" in exchange for discounted land premium arrangements," Lam said. However, he also pointed out some limitations of the scheme. "The targeted income-group of the "Starter Homes" scheme  only makes up around  one-tenths of the labour force. Large number of "Starter Homes" units may also affect the private market of small-sized units," he said. Sammy Po, chief executive of Midland Realty's residential division, said the application requirements and resale restrictions of "Starter Homes" should be tight …

Politics

Activists call for support of jailed mainland dissidents

  • The Young Reporter
  • By: Raphael Blet、Tracy Zhang、Jade LiEdited by: Lam Ka Sing、Tracy Zhang
  • 2017-10-05

An activist group organised a temporary exhibition in Hong Kong's Tsim Sha Tsui Wednesday evening, calling for support of jailed activists in mainland China.     The Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China hopes the Democracy Lantern Action can make the public pay more attention to the "patriots" in custody and the human rights issue in the mainland, said Richard Tsoi Yiu-cheong, vice president of the organisation, referring to dissidents such as the 709 lawyers, a group of lawyers under government surveillance.   The number 709 refers to the fact that the lawyers were arrested on July 9 in 2015.   "The annual event we hold next to the Tsim Sha Tsui harbour every year at Mid-Autumn Festival is to advocate for those in custody who cannot get united with their family members," he said.   "We also hope to increase awareness on the suppression on the defendants of human rights in mainland on the night of a traditional Chinese festival when people unite with their family members," he added.   Chow Hang-tung, barrister and vice president of the Hong Kong Alliance, also regarded the Mid-Autumn Festival as a symbolic time to call for the activists' reunion with their families as it is when Chinese families traditionally gather to celebrate.   "The most vocal lawyers have been either placed in jail or put on probation since the 709 crackdown, severely reducing the number of human rights lawyers who can still work effectively" said Chow, who believes that the situation for mainland human rights lawyers has worsened since the jailings in 2015. The alliance has delivered moon cakes to the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government on Chinese National day on Monday, asking for the release of jailed mainland dissidents to reunite with their families. …

Politics

Banning EdU students from taking up jobs would potentially be "not fair"

  • The Young Reporter
  • By: Zoya Zhao、Raphael Blet、Scout Xu、Windy LIEdited by: Lam Ka Sing
  • 2017-09-13

Timeline of Education University's democracy wall saga Banning The Education University of Hong Kong's (EdU) students from taking up jobs would potentially be unfair, said a spokesperson of the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC), referring to the university's recent democracy wall saga. Employers should avoid applying non-essential requirements, conditions or making groundless assumptions, EOC said. Some school principals sent emails to EdU saying they would never hire the university's  graduates, said the university's student union. "If these claims happened to be true, it would be unfair", said EOC. However, EOC also pointed out that due to the lack of details, there was no evidence to show that these possible actions would be against the Discrimination Ordinance. "To prevent discrimination in the workplace, the EOC encourages employers to make all employment decisions based on merit, job experiences and education qualifications regardless of a person's gender, marital status or other irrelevant criteria."     Student unions of some other universities have been criticized for not openly denouncing the incident. However, some students also studying education did not approve of what was posted on the university's democracy wall. "I feel a bit ashamed actually. Cursing and mocking the deceased son of a person is never appropriate" said Joanna Wong, a student of English Language Education in a local university. Nevertheless, she does not think that the claims of internship cancellation will be true. " I don't think the principals who joined the petition really meant that they are not hiring those from EdU" About 10 internships at the university have been cancelled, said Lala Lai Hiu-ching, the president of the university's student union. "Some institutions claimed that they were "cancelling" internships and would "never" hire EdU students," Lai said. If these claims are true, this would affect all students in this university. "This is …