Should Dhotis be allowed in clubs?

Should Dhotis be allowed in clubs?

Dhotis in night club! It really sounds strange. But the debate has already started on the matter as a Madras high court judge was not allowed to enter into a Tamil Nadu club being dressed in a dhoti. Even the two senior advocates accompanying the High Court judge were not allowed to enter the club. Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa has said that she will cancel the licence of all those club that denies entry to the people who come to club in a dhoti. She is joined with many other leaders in her protest of sartorial apartheid. So what is your say? Is she right in her protest? Should Dhotis be allowed in clubs?


• In the South regions where most of the people wear dhotis, denying the entry on basis of clothes is not fair.

• Even if it is any other region of the country, there should be no discrimination based on sartorial grounds.

• A private institution cannot be allowed to function in any manner they want and government has every right to interfere to demand or make the necessary changes,

• There have been many cases over dress code violations in the other places of the world wherein the legal actions were taken. It’s the right of people in a democratic country.

• In US, school children sued the school as it didn’t allow them to wear black bands to show their protest against the Vietnam War.

• Dhoti is a part of Indian culture and no one has the right to say no to it at any place of the country especially when it is a non-formal place like clubs.


• If we talk about the democracy then even the private organizations are a part of democratic country and they have every right to set the dress code.

• Setting up a dress code in any case is not a type of sartorial apartheid or disrespect to any culture.

• Indian culture is one thing and the club culture is the other matter. It is not fair to mix the pleasure with issues like discrimination and politics.

• A public place is a common place with common interest and therefore, whatever the majority wants should be respected.

• Different clubs make their own set of rules, and these are the rules that provide uniqueness to the private clubs.


There are two aspects in the debate. If it is seen strictly from the perspective of South Indian states, then there might be a need to force the clubs to change their laws. In the South Indian states dhoti is a major part of the people’s attire. But if the larger picture is seen, it will be the hampering of the rights of private institution who have spent a large chunk of investment to set up their business. So it is their choice what rules they want to implement in the private place.
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  • RE: Should Dhotis be allowed in clubs? -Deepa Kaushik (07/23/14)
  • It is not something unacceptable to allow dhotis in clubs, but every place has its own charm. To keep up the beauty of a place, there need to be some disciplinary rules that need to be followed strictly. Attire is one of the things that maintain the charm of the place. Considering dhoti for a club in general doesn’t set very well.

    Considering the root of the discussion being originated from a south Indian state where dhoti is the traditional wear, the clubs could have included dhoti into their dress code, though with some guidelines for the way it should be worn. Majority wearing dhotis in a place could have some clause in the rules of the club. Denying the entry to a public place just on the basis of the dress and that too an attire which is the traditional wear of the region is a matter to give a thought.

    Making laws to include dhoti as one of the wear is not all that incorrect. Still, even the public can give a thought regarding the dress to be worn at the place they are attending. Precisely speaking, the dhotis can be included as the formal attire in clubs in those parts of the country which have the dhotis as their traditional wear, however it would not be fair to impose the same law throughout the country.