On this day, 32 years ago, students organized their first Maidan, the Revolution on Granite. Youth protested and went on a hunger strike for 15 days, from October 2nd to October 17th, 1990. This Maidan was the peak of opposition to the Soviet regime. On the granite slabs of the Kyiv center, then the Square of October Revolution, now known as the Independence Square, the students changed the country with their non-violent resistance.
All the protesters wore white headbands, which later became a symbol of this uprising.
The protesters have laid out five demands:
To terminate the Ukrainian SSR's Verkhovna Rada powers early and organize an election on a multiparty basis in the spring of 1991;
To call for the resignation of the Chairman of the Ukrainian SSR's Council of Ministers, Vitalii Masol;
To nationalize the property owned by the Communist Party of Ukraine and the Leninist Communist Youth Union;
To prevent the signing of the new union agreement;
To bring home Ukrainian soldiers serving outside of Ukraine.
Different people would come to the student's tent camp. Among them were politicians, dissidents, and artists. People's deputy, Yakiv Zaiko, joined the protests. In February 2014, he became one of the Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred.
The Revolution on Granite had immediate consequences. Among them are the resignation of the Chairman of the Ukrainian SSR Council of Ministers, Vitalii Masol, and the fulfillment of several demands.
The Revolution on Granite, aimed against the communist government in Ukraine, laid the foundation for future democratic forms of protest, changed the vector of Ukraine's development, and became a catalyst for the collapse of the USSR. The students expressed the will of Ukrainian society and brought closer the restoration of our independence.