No Coats and Gowns till further orders: BCI relaxes dress code for all lawyers across the country

Shruti Mahajan

The Bar Council of India has passed an administrative order informing all the lawyers across the country that wearing of coats, gowns or robes is not required for the time being till further orders, in light of the threat of spread of coronavirus.

Shortly after the Supreme Court issued a circular stating that the lawyers appearing before the Apex Court via video conferencing need not don their lawyers' gown owing to the threat of spread of the coronavirus, the BCI has passed an administrative order on the same lines for lawyers across the country.

The BCI, in its order said that any lawyer appearing before any Court, Tribunal, or Commission in the country may do so without donning the "coats or Gowns/Robes".

The lawyers may appear wearing a White Shirt, white Salwar kameez, or white Saree with the white neck band. The order says,

"...all Advocates may presently wear “Plain White Shirt/White SalwarKameez/White Saree With Plain White Neck Band” during hearings/proceedings before all the High Courts and all other Courts, Tribunals, Commissions and all other forums and no coats or Gowns/Robes are/is required to be worn during such time period..."

This order will remain in place, the BCI said, till the time the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic is looming large or until any other overriding order is passed by the BCI.

On May 13, the Supreme Court had relaxed the dress code for advocates appearing before the Apex Court and for the time being, in light of medical advice received, done away with the wearing of the lawyers' gown and coat while appearing before the Bench.

Read BCI's order

BCI Administrative Order dated 14.05.2020.pdf
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