Two women in Shanghai protested local subway authority that "scantily clad women attract molesters" by holding posters saying "I can be coquettish, but you can't harass me."
They wore a black hood covering their heads and faces except eyes and walked into metro compartments and on platforms on Sunday.
"It was a fight against the company's statement on its micro blog. We believe women have the freedom to choose what to wear, and how people dress should never be an excuse for sexual harassment," a woman who joined the protest and only wanted to be identified as Xiangqi was quoted as saying by the official China Daily.
She said many passengers nodded and smiled at them.
Shanghai’s No 2 subway operating company posted on its official Sina Weibo account on June 20 with a picture of a woman wearing a semi-transparent dress standing on the metro platform.
"It would be a miracle if you dress like this in the subway without being harassed. Girls, please be self-dignified to avoid perverts," it said.
According to a poll on Sina Weibo, 58.7% of respondents think women shouldn’t be scantily clad in summer and they should have self-protection awareness while 35.5% oppose to the subway authority’s statement by arguing that how to wear is one’s own business.
Some said it is rare to see women dressing so scantily in public, and women should not be blamed in this situation, the paper said.
"Can it be reasonable that I'm doomed to be robbed if I drive a BMW car? That's the same," Zhu Xueqin, a professional psychological counselor who also works on gender studies, was quoted as saying by the paper.
She said the post seems to be a reminder for women but is actually gender discrimination.
However, some men said they also feel perplexed by the way some women dress on the subway, the paper said.
"It's embarrassing if a scantily clad young woman happens to stand in front of me. Sometimes I can only bend my head or take out my mobile phone to surf on the Internet," 25-year-old Shao Yuru, a civil servant in Shanghai, was quoted as saying.