Male Passengers Fear False Molestation Charges

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    Many train lines around Japan’s major cities have women-only cars to protect women from unwanted groping during crowded rush hours. The problem still persists, however, making some men worry that they could be falsely accused of molesting nearby women during their commute. The solution? How about men’s only carriages:

    The recent arrest of an Osaka couple for trying to set up a middle-aged man by falsely accusing him of fondling a woman train traveler has large numbers of salarymen shaking in their boots at the thought of being blackmailed by crafty commuters looking for a quick buck. This has heightened calls on railroad companies to set up sanctuaries where men can travel in peace, safe in the knowledge that they won’t be accused of molestation.

    Most railroad companies say they consider the issue a serious one.

    “It’s true we’ve received over 20 formal requests for the establishment of men’s only carriages since the false accusation arrest (early last month). But actually, we’ve been receiving requests for theses carriages for a long time now. It’s not something that has started recently,” a spokesman for the Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau, which runs the city’s subway network, tells Weekly Playboy.

    But the outlook for men’s only carriages seems dim.

    “We get a lot of requests for them and take note of these, but we have no plans regarding carriages exclusively for men at this time,” a spokesman for the East Japan Railway Co. (JR East) says.

    Keio Electric Railway Co., which back in 2000 became Japan’s first railroad to introduce women’s only carriages, also has no current arrangements in place to correct the gender imbalance on its routes.

    “We’re aware that there are these demands, but we have no concrete plans for men’s only carriages at this stage,” a company spokesman says.

    Train experts say railroad companies are quite content to sit back and let men travel in fear of being falsely accused of groping.

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