Gropers boast that college entrance exams are the perfect season for chikan

In mid-January, Japan is gripped by a short, sharp season: it’s the time of the college entrance exam.

Up and down the country, high school students sat down last weekend for the exam that will determine which university they will go to from the spring.

But there’s another factor involved in the exam: chikan. This, as regular readers will know, is the Japanese word for groping or molesting, especially if done on public transport like trains.

What’s the connection between the exam season and train groping? Apparently, in the darker corners of social media and the internet where chikan folk gather to share advice, some were boasting that this is the perfect time for indulging in some groping because young students will be too preoccupied mentally to protest or chase you away at the time.

japan chikan train groping college entrance exam

Moreover, students will be traveling on public transport a lot to campuses, so they’ll be away from their usual routes and safety zones.

The last thing they want to do is be late for the exam, even if they experience someone groping them on the way.

There was some feverish reporting in the mainstream media about this in the run-up to the exam last week, along with efforts to promote awareness of chikan among students and tactics to avoid it (primarily, going early to avoid crowded trains and standing on trains in places where other passengers can see you easily), though we don’t know if the fears were justified and there was a spike in chikan cases.

japan chikan train groping college entrance exam

But then, as the gropers boasted, perhaps we wouldn’t even know if there was a rise in cases, because the poor schoolgirls — since the victims are almost always female — wouldn’t have time to report an incident over the weekend of the exam.

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