Plea in SC seeking to exempt Advocates from wearing Black Coat & Gown

Advocates Lawyers Law Insider (1)

Greeva Garg – 

Published on: August 30, 2021, at 11:00 IST

An Advocate has filed a plea in the Supreme Court of India seeking to exempt all the Advocates from wearing black coats and gowns in the summers, in the Supreme Court and High Court.

Lawyers’ dress code is governed by the Bar Council of India under the Advocates Act, 1961.

Under the rule it is exceptional to wear a formal black coat or gown except when the lawyer is appearing in the Supreme Court or in a High Court.

The writ petition has been filed by Advocate Shailendra Mani Tripathi against the rule of Bar Council of India, for Advocates to mandatorily wear black coats and gowns even in summer.

The plea sought Amendment in the rule.

 “The Bar council of each State to amend their rules and determine the months of prevailing summer for that particular state during which Black coats and Gowns can be exempted according to the temperature and humidity variation,” the plea stated.

In the plea, Tripathi cited the example of the United Kingdom’s Apex Court upon its relaxation for the dress code and indicated that “It is important to change the current system to address prevailing problems, which may turn into a burden later.”

The petitioner pointed out the difficulties for all the practicing Advocates at the Supreme Court and High Court.

The petitioner stated it is not affluent enough for everyone to afford an air conditioned mode of conveyance in the months of summer with aggravated heat effect.

Tripathi also emphasized on the unnecessary economic burden of maintenance, as Coats are needed to be dry-cleaned regularly due to excessive perspiration in summers.

Also, the petitioner added that uncomfortable attire leads to unproductive representation of matters in Court, and causes frustration and irritation. 

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