The Indian Army keeps on updating itself with the new aquisition to stay aligned and even ahead of the dynamics throughout the world. On this Army Day of 2022, the Indian Army unveiled a new combat uniform, that will be made available in a phased manner to the nearly 12 lakh personnel of the Indian Army. The new combat uniform was displayed by the soldiers of the Parachute Regiment in the parade.
Why there’s a change?
While all militaries update their uniforms with time, one of the factors that led to this change was the easy availability of the Army’s current combat pattern cloth across the country. Soldiers could get the cloth and simply have the uniform stitched. Likewise, anyone who desires to get the uniform without any authorization could get it. This was leading to many impersonators using it for personal gains.
The new uniform is being designed by the National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) and was finalized by the COAS General MM Naravane. The fabric selected was among the 5 options given which was specifically curated by NIFT for army. The pattern that has been finalized was from 17 options.
What’s new in the uniform?
The present uniform that the Indian Army uses was introduced in 2008. Keeping in mind the changing dynamics of warfare, the uniform has been updated.
Design: The new unique camouflage pattern retains the combination of the same colours — olive green and earthen shades. The pattern changed, is digital now. It has been designed keeping in mind the many kinds of operational conditions that the soldiers function in, from deserts to high-altitude areas, jungles and plains.
Fabric: The fabric for the new material makes it lighter, sturdier, more breathable, and more suitable for the different terrains that soldiers are posted in. The cotton-to-polyester ratio is 70:30, making it quicker to dry, more comfortable to wear in humid and hot conditions, and lightweight. The fabric is 15 per cent lighter, and has 23 per cent more strength against tearing.
Style: The new uniform, unlike the old one, has a combat T-shirt underneath and a shirt over it. Also, unlike the older uniform, the shirt will not be tucked in. The shirt has angular top pockets, lower pockets with vertical openings, knife pleats at the back, a pocket on the left sleeve, a pen holder on the left forearm, and improved-quality buttons. The trousers will be adjustable at the waist with elastic and buttons, and has a double layer at the groin. For the caps, the girth will be adjustable, and the logo of the Army will be of better quality than earlier.
When it will be issued?
To control random proliferation, the new uniform will come in over a dozen pre-stitched standard sizes. The uniforms will be barcoded and QR coded to maintain their uniqueness, and will be available only through the ordnance chain or military canteens.
The Army will issue tenders for private and public companies to manufacture the uniforms, and the uniforms will be issued to personnel in a phased manner. The COAS and other senior officers have been seen recently donning the new uniform.