Army to have uniformity in uniform

Based on inputs by Shahid Kazi

The Army has decided to adopt a common uniform for the one-star Brigadiers, two-star Major Generals, three-star Lieutenant Generals and the four-star General or chief, irrespective of their parent cadre and appointments, from
August 1 onwards, official sources said on Tuesday.

The decision for this uniformity-in-uniforms was taken in the recent Army commanders’ conference to “promote and
strengthen a common identity and approach in service matters among the senior leadership beyond the boundaries of regimentation” in the 12-lakh strong force.

The senior officers, for instance, will wear black belts with the Indian Army’s insignia instead of their regimental ones.
Similarly, they will wear anodised golden-coloured stars, Ashoka lion and crossed swords as their shoulder rank badges.

At present, while most wear the golden-coloured ranks, “rifle regiments” like Gorkhas and Garhwalis wear black ones,
while the Assam regiment has silver ones. All the uniform buttons will also be green, unlike the brass ones that the
Guards or the black ones the Gorkhas wear. Brigadiers and above ranks will also not wear lanyards, different colors of which are worn by different regiments. They all will also wear dark green berets instead of the five existing colours ranging from maroon ones for Para-Special Forces to black ones for armoured corps as of now.

Junior officers, in the ranks from Lieutenants to Colonels, will however continue to wear their different types of uniforms and accoutrements that have specific association to their respective arms, regiments and services. This distinct identity is essential for the junior leadership as well as the rank and file to “further strengthen camaraderie,
esprit de corps and regimental ethos”, which is the bedrock of soldiering. “At the unit or battalion level, a distinct sense of identity reflects a strong bond among officers and men in the same regiment,” the source said.

Brigadiers and senior ranks are those who have already commanded their battalions or units and are posted in
higher formations or headquarters where officers from all arms and services work together.

At present, the 43,000-strong officer cadre in the Army has around 80 Lt-Generals, 300 Major Generals and 1,200
Brigadiers. “A standardised uniform for them will ensure a common identity and reflect the true ethos of the Army,” the TOI source said.

The Army last year had also introduced a new ergonomically-designed combat uniform with a “unique digital disruptive pattern” that is lighter, stronger, breathable and easier to maintain. The shirt is not tucked into the
trouser in the new combat uniform, obviating the need for a belt

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