The National Company Law Tribunal has issued an order on the dress code for the NCLT President, NCLT Members, Legal Practitioners, Authorized Representatives, Interim Resolution Professionals, Liquidators, Resolution Professionals, and parties in person dated January 27, 2023. Dress standards in Indian courts are vital for maintaining civility and creating a ceremonial atmosphere. They also demonstrate respect for the court and its proceedings. In India, the dress code for courts is often formal and modest. Men should dress formally in a suit or a formal shirt and trousers, while women should dress in a sari or a salwar kameez.
In particular, Rule 16(f) of the NCLT Rules 2016 and Section 432 of the Companies Act, 2013, read with Rules 51 and 124 of the NCLT Rules 2016, prescribe the following dress code:
- Members and President, Long pants (white or black, black striped or grey), National Dress with a white shirt and collar band, and a black coat or buttoned-up black coat, shall be worn by the President and Members. A female president or member shall wear a sober-colored saree, national dress, and collar band, with a black coat or buttoned-up black coat.
- Legal practitioners must follow the dress code established by the Bar Council of India Rules under Section 49(1)(gg) of the Advocates Act of 1961.
- Regarding IRP/RP/Liquidator: A male member must wear a sober-colored dress or a national dress, a suit, or a buttoned-up coat and tie. In the case of a female member, a sober-colored saree or national clothing is required. It is optional to wear a suit or a buttoned-up coat.
- Chartered Accountant, Company Secretary, and Cost Accountant, as stipulated by their individual codes of conduct. In the absence of a dress code, a male member must wear sober-colored clothing or national dress with a buttoned-up coat or a coat with a tie. A female member must wear a neutral-colored sari or traditional national attire. It is not necessary to wear a suit or a buttoned-up coat.
- Parties attending in person before the NCLT must be appropriately attired in any national dress and in a neutral colour.
- The NCLT has a few particular requirements that must be followed in addition to the formal dress code. Lawyers, for example, must wear a black coat, a white shirt, and a white collar band. The coat must be a specific length and not contain any pockets. Lawyers must also wear either a black or white tie. The Indian court dress code is essential for creating the correct environment and maintaining decorum. For the NCLT, this entails dressing formally and following the court’s special norms. Lawyers can demonstrate respect for the court and its procedures by adhering to the dress code.
It is vital to highlight that the NCLT’s dress code is enforced not only for aesthetics but also for safety and security. To ensure the security of the proceedings, it is critical that all guests and NCLT members follow the dress code. The dress code also applies to visitors, who must follow the formal dress code. Attendees during hearings should also be dressed formally.