CUTTACK: The Orissa High Court has imposed a fine of Rs 500 on an advocate for not wearing neckband during online hearing. The single judge bench of Justice SK Panigrahi observed that the legal profession is solemn in nature and its profundity is complemented by its attire.
Accordingly, an advocate is expected to appear before the court in a dignified manner with proper dress, even if it is a virtual mode.
“Every profession has certain dress code and people belong to particular profession are recognised by their attires. The lawyers’ dress code is governed by the rules prescribed under the Advocates Act, 1961, making it mandatory for lawyers to wear black robe or coat with white shirt and white neckband,”Justice Panigrahi stated During Covid-19 outbreak, while following the video conferencing mode, the Supreme Court had directed the advocates that they may wear plain white shirt/salwar kameej, plain saree with white neckband since they were appearing through virtual court.
Some High Courts across the country also invited a new dress code for lawyers to appear through virtual court. Because of medical exigencies, especially during pandemic, such changes were allowed, the HC said in its February 15 order. Justice Panigrahi said, “This Court is duty bound to restore the dignity of the profession including the prescribed dress code. In view of the above, the counsel for the informant is directed to deposit an amount of Rs 500 as cost with the Welfare Fund of High Court Bar Association.”