The latest gimmick in the ongoing campaign against chikan, or groping, on trains involves a stamp.
The idea here is that the chikan stamp, made by a Nagoya-based stationery company known for personal seals and stamps, can be used by the victim to mark the perpetrator.
When and after they are groped, victims — who are often young and vulnerable — may feel too shocked or scared to speak out, or physically unable to hold onto the perpetrator to prevent him (or her) from getting away. This stamp is a solution, since it lets the victim “brand” the criminal easily and clandestinely.
Known in Japanese as the Meiwaku Koi Boshi Sutanpu (迷惑行為防止スタンプ), Shachihata’s stamp uses a colorless, transparent ink that only becomes visible under ultraviolet light, according to a Kyodo News report.
It will come with a blacklight that can be used to shine on a stamped object to illuminate the seal mark, which is the figure of an open palm, the company said.
The product is hoped to aid in the identification of perpetrators of indecent acts if stamped onto their hands or belongings.
The set of stamp and strap costs ¥2,700. No doubt as the result of the strong publicity the item has attracted, it is currently listed as sold out on the Shachihata online shop.
“We hope it will be of some help in encouraging society to keep an eye on troublesome behavior and addressing the issue,” Shachihata’s public relations spokesperson said.