Kashmiri scribes asked not to wear 'pheran' in army conference

Several leading journalists of Kashmir today took exception to a Defence Ministry official asking them not to wear 'pheran'– traditional Kashmiri dress – to a press conference to be addressed by the Corps Commander of Srinagar-based Chinar Corps.

Public Relations Officer of the Defence Ministry here Lt Colonel N N Joshi in an e-mail invitation to local mediapersons said "you are all aware of security requirements. However, it is reiterated that you may refrain from wearing pheran."

'Pheran' is a woollen overall worn by Kashmiris to keep themselves warm in biting cold.
In response, the journalists asked the PRO to withdraw the 'advisory' or they would not cover the event.

"You have also asked the journalists, intending to cover the press conference, to refrain from wearing pheran as a security requirement. We fail to understand how can the traditional dress of the people of Kashmir, which has also been an integral part of their unique identity, pose a security threat to anyone!" the e-mail signed by more than a dozen scribes said.

Lt Col Joshi was not available for comment.

Later, the Defence spokesman withdrew the earlier invitation.

"The press invitation issued earlier was erroneously sent due to clerical error and same is regretted. The previous press invite may please be treated as cancelled. There is no bar on dress code and it is as per your convenience," he said.

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