New Delhi: The Indian Army has expressed concern over some Central Paramilitary Forces deployed in Delhi to control riots, wearing Army pattern combat dress. Indian Army has written to defence ministry, saying that home ministry should issue instructions that combat dress should not be worn by Central
Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) while being deployed to handle law and order situations or being deployed in urban areas affected by terrorism, as the surroundings do not demand such a requirement.
The Indian Army said that use of distinctly different (both in colour and pattern) disruptive dress by CAPFs and state police forces should be restricted only to deployment in jungle terrain in left wing extremist affected areas. The Army said that the bulletproof jackets (BPJs) worn by CAPFs and state police forces should be of plain khaki colour and not of combat colour.
Certain personnel deployed with the Delhi police on Sunday to control riots at Jaffrabad were seen wearing Indian army pattern combat dress.
Army sources said that over a period of time, CAPFs and state police forces in India have started wearing combat uniforms which are just slightly different from the ones worn by Indian Army personnel.
“These minor variations cannot be distinguished by most civilians giving them the impression that the personnel wearing such dresses in cities and towns of India while engaged in Internal security duties, escorting VIPs, on policing duties, static guard posts are Army personnel,” said sources.
Sources said that today, events in our country are under constant domestic and international media glare and wearing of combat dress by CAPFs and state police forces may be misinterpreted as the army being deployed for internal security duties and elections.
“This may have an adverse impact on our image as a vibrant democratic nation and would be detrimental to our national Interests. Accordingly, Army from time to time has brought to the notice of the defence ministry in order to approach MHA about the increasing trend of CAPFs and State Police forces wearing combat uniforms similar to the Army pattern,” said sources.
The Indian Army has also asked defence and home ministry that the sale of Army pattern clothes in the open market needs to be regulated. “Private vendors in open market should establish identity and maintain a record of personnel to whom the Army pattern clothes (including accessories and accoutrements) are being sold,” said sources.