New Delhi: The Rajya Sabha marshals on Monday switched back to their original traditional uniforms, a week after a massive controversy erupted after they were seen wearing new, ‘military-style’ uniforms on the first day of the Parliament’s winter session.
The two marshals, who flank the chair of the upper house’s presiding officer, were today seen wearing dark-coloured Indian bandhgalas along with turbans. The turbans, however, were not the ones that they used to wear earlier as part of their dress code during winters.
The change came after Vice President Venkaiah Naidu, who is also the Rajya Sabha chairman, ordered a review of the marshals’ new uniforms, which triggered criticism from MPs, as well as veterans, including former Army Chief General VP Malik. The new dress code also featured a peak cap worn by senior army officers during ceremonial occasions.
In his tweet, General Malik, who was the Army chief during the 1999 Kargil War, had called wearing of military uniforms by non-military personnel ‘illegal’ and a ‘security hazard.’
Objection was also raised by another former Army chief, General VK Singh, who is currently a minister in the Narendra Modi government.
The uniform, which was deep blue in colour, featured, among other things, gold aiguillette, shoulder insignias, gold buttons etc. Reacting to it, senior Congress MP Jairam Ramesh had asked the Speaker if martial law had been imposed in the house, earning himself a rebuke from the Chair.
Parliament’s winter session began on November 18. It was an historic occasion for the Rajya Sabha, which held its 250th sitting on the day.