The Kashmir Pheran and why it is making news
Srinagar, Dec 19: A fresh controversy has erupted in Jammu and Kashmir. This time it is the traditional Kashmiri pheran, which is a loose gown worn during the winters.
The controversy erupted after the education department in Langate banned the dress in its offices.
"All officials visiting the office are advised to visit in proper dress code during any official visit. It is recommended that no official will visit this office wearing pheran, traditional trousers and sleeper/plastic shoes," the circular read.
This snowballed into a major controversy, with people taking to the social media to register their protest. "My father and I have worn pherans to official functions many times over the years and will continue to do so, silly government orders notwithstanding," Omar tweeted, with hashtags #dontbanourpheran and #revokepheranban.
Amidst all the controversy, the education department withdrew the order. Officials however said that the circular was issued to maintain office decorum and not hurt the sentiments of the people.
This is not the first time that the Pheran has been mired in controversy. In 2014, the Indian Army had to withdraw its advisory urging journalists not to wear the Pheran while visiting its Corps Headquarters.
A Pheran is a traditional Kashmir dress that is worn by both men and women. While women don it almost all through the year, the men wear it mostly in the winter to stay warm.