For the first time, the Indian Navy has introduced camouflage uniform on the lines of the Army and the Indian Air Force (IAF) as part of a larger uniform rationalisation and standardisation measure, ThePrint has learnt.
Navy sources said officers started using the new uniform with digital camouflage pattern a few months ago.
Camouflages or battle dress uniforms (BDU) are fatigues that are worn by the armed forces as the standard uniform for combat. The battle dress is generally camouflaged, either in monochrome such as shades of green or brown to approximate the background or in a disruptive pattern as in the latest change.
The new camouflage uniform will be worn by Navy personnel only on Fridays and ashore as of now, the sources said. For sea, there are existing fire retardant overalls, which would be used by the personnel.
Based on a study, which included looking at uniforms worn by navies around the world, the Indian Navy adopted its digital camouflage pattern, the sources said.
The pattern is formed of small rectangular pixels of colour. This is much more effective camouflage than standard uniform pattern as it mimics the dappled texture and rough boundaries found in natural settings,” said a Navy source.
The Navy has the largest number of uniforms at 16 — each for different occasions — among the three services. The Army has nine and the IAF has 15. All the uniforms are numbered.