Ban on Pheran in Press Briefings by Army triggers trouble in Kashmir

Srinagar: A guideline to Kashmiri journalists not to wear ‘pherans’, a traditional Kashmiri attire, to army press briefings has triggered a row, with Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Saturday calling it “unacceptable”.

An invitation to the press briefing for Saturday of the commander of army’s Srinagar-based 15th corps said that journalists should not come wearing ‘pherans’ during the briefing.

Local journalists Friday protested the army’s guideline saying a ‘pheran’, which is a tweed over garment worn by Kashmiris during the winter months, is a traditional Kashmiri dress.

Omar Abdullah tweeted Saturday: “If the army has in fact told journalists not to wear a pheran to Corps headquarter events that is unacceptable and the order should be withdrawn.

“People wear their pheran with pride. It’s part of our identity aside from the best way to stay warm in the cold. Can’t ban pherans.”

The army’s Srinagar-based PRO has withdrawn the guideline, saying it had been inadvertent.

Alia Bhatt wearing Pheran in Movie Highway

Pheran is a loose gown worn in Kashmir. Actress Alia Bhatt wearing Pheran in Movie Highway

Pheran is a loose gown worn by people in kashmir, traditionally ,during winters to provide warmth and comfort while going about their daily chores.

The Pheran is something in between a coat and a cloak It has evolved over the centuries in form as well as use. While men’s pherans are simple, ladies pherans are considerably more ornate and are used as daily wear at home , office or social occassions

(With Inputs from IANS)