What I am going to write about would have been experienced by most men in India, some will admit, others won't. It is prevalent during routine commute or anywhere, let it be the park nearby or in subways. I used to look at men, in fact, all men who passes near me. I ogle them, look at their derriere clad in skin tight jeans, their crotches or wedgies, but I will never go beyond the look at those hommes. I love it when men wear low waist jeans, which gives immense opportunity to see what is lying beneath and beyond that an arousing curiosity, a titillating view of the underlying jockeys and hairy abdomens. Even by looking, I know that I am invading their privacy, but being a harmless habit, I think if is pardonable. What I am going to say about is even beyond this, it is embarrassing even to a gay man like me, let alone heterosexuals then. It stems from the prejudice, fear and the restrictions imposed in the society. Most gay men in India consider themselves to be bisexual and they lead a double life. Well, sometimes they cannot control their own hands and minds.
In India, buses and trains form the basic mode of public transport. With the spawning population and sprawling streets coupled with a totally disorganized public transport system, the crowds in buses and trains are mostly unimaginable to a Westerner. People are packed like peaches in a box and we are totally adapted to such crowds. It is a gargantuan task to get into a bus at times, and you will feel like hell if you have some luggage too. Trains are worse and phenomenally crowded; the invasion of personal space is unthinkable. If you split your legs a little farther, somebody will take that space to sit down. People from cities are okay with all those and the diameter of their flight zone is considerably lesser compared to a person from rural areas. I grew up in a rural setting and I am totally uncomfortable with such breach of personal space. I avoid trains because of that and will wait for long in order to catch a bus with lesser crowds.
As you are aware, such crowded spaces are hunting grounds for a closeted gay man or as society calls, a perverse man. They can touch the body parts of any man deliberately and can pretend that it happened inadvertently. Well, they need some knack for that though. I am not able to determine what to call such men, "perverse", "opportunists" or "victims of circumstances". If society was tolerant to the "gay thing", then they would not have been forced to seek pleasure in such surreptitious ways. Such experiences are so common, but nobody likes to admit it in public, but in private conversations among friends it will come up regularly.
The modus operandi differs slightly from person to person, but more or less the same. I was on my way back home from office, caught my routine bus, occupied my more or less reserved window seat, put my ear phones and got lost in pop music. Soon a middle aged man, nearly 45-50 years of age, well dressed sat beside me and the bus got moving. I didn't pay any attention to him, as older guys don't act as head turners for me. The bus was not crowded and many seats were unoccupied. As the bus got moving, that man started sleeping and I was viewing the scenery outside. I was totally unaware of the person sitting beside me. Suddenly I felt a hand over my thighs. I looked down and found that his hand was resting over my thighs. I didn't mind. I continued listening to my music and ignored that hand as I thought that he was sleeping and his hand may have slipped down. After some time, the position of hand changed and it had gone up. I was getting suspicious by then. Still I did not react as I was not sure whether it was deliberate or not. I remained guarded. After some time, the hand moved more closer to my crotch. Then I understood that it was deliberate. I slowly removed his hand from my thighs. For some time, nothing happened, soon the hand retained the same position and the whole process started again. His hand again reached closer to my crotch and I was forced to react. But being a gay man myself, I could not make it a big fuss. If I did that, I would be ethically wrong. So without looking at the man, I just got up from the seat and occupied another vacant seat. I was pretty sure that I did the right thing by not reacting violently; he will definitely do this to another man in future, my reaction is not going to make a difference. I didn’t react because of the sympathy I felt for him as I believe that he was doing doing this out of his desperation.