Chandigarh: The Haryana Government on Wednesday defended its dress code orders issued recently by the Women and Child Development Department that asked its employees to wear "decent" clothes at work.
The order issued on April 18 by the Department`s Superintendent on behalf of the then Director Renu Phulia with regard to wearing of "decent clothes in the office" said, it has been observed that some officials (both males and female) are coming to office in jeans, T-shirts and western dresses, "which sometime not only look awkward, but are also in contravention of the government rules."
Therefore, all the officials at the headquarter (Panchkula) including field in the Integrated Development Scheme (ICDS) and Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) are advised to wear decent clothes in office, that is saree/salwar kameez with dupatta by females and pant-shirt by the males.
"These orders are to be complied with strictly with immediate effect, failing which it will be viewed seriously.
All Branch officers may also ensure that the officials working under their control also comply with these orders strictly," the order said.
On the order itself one of the employee objected saying, "decent clothes can not be defined as saree, salwar kameez with dupatta and pant kameez (shirt) only. Kindly state which government rule states that."
Defending these orders, Haryana`s Social Justice and Empowerment, Women and Child Development Minister, Geeta Bhukkal said an unnecessary controversy should not be created.
"Every department has a dress code. Even our Anganwari workers have a salwar-kameez and a dupatta as a dress code. I think some people seem to have objected to the use of word decent in the order," Bhukkal said here today.
She said under the ICDS and ICPS, the female staff of the Department is also required to interact with pregnant women and lactating mothers.
Bhukkal said there was dress code even for the Judges, lawyers, doctors, private schools, ITIs and polytechnics.
She said, likewise the issue of dress code for ICDS and ICPS should not be made controversial.
The Minister, who also holds the Education portfolio, however, added "if anyone is hurt, we can rethink (referring to the order)".