Each year at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony, we see Indian women athletes in traditional sarees with blazers on top. But this year, they aim to ditch the saree and just wear blazers and trousers.

India’s women athletes are set to break away from age-old tradition and march in blazers and trousers at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony in Gold Coast, Australia. The event is scheduled to be held on 4 April, The Indian Express reported.

“In the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, the female athletes would be wearing blazers and trousers,” the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) confirmed, Firstpost reported

Also Read: Sakshi Malik, Dipa Karmakar, Deepa Malik Get Padma Awards

“The Indian Olympic Association (IOA), after consultation with stakeholders and principally our athlete representatives, decided to reconsider the ceremonial dress of female athletes in the Indian contingent sent by us for multi-sport Games,” said IOA Secretariat in a release.

READ: Sakshi Malik Secures Spot In Commonwealth Games 2018

Why this sudden change of attire?

“It is a matter of comfort,” said IOA secretary general Rajeev Mehta, explaining how blazers and trousers are more practical and comfortable for the athletes

“We received feedback that wearing a saree for such a long time isn’t convenient for the athletes. Opening ceremonies usually carry on for four-five hours. Also, they need help to wear it, which complicates things for them. So we have decided that men and women will wear similar clothes for the ceremony.”

READ: When Sportswomen Made Us Proud In 2017

An elated Olympian shooter Heena Sidhu supported the decision saying, “Blazers and trousers are definitely more convenient and will save a lot of time, but, at the same time, one may look like a man. Why not blazers and skirts? It’s more feminine.”

Mehta confirmed that the entire Indian contingent — both women and men — will wear navy blue blazers and trousers at this year’s opening ceremony.

Also Read: Olympic victor Sakshi Malik’s training included 12 years of fighting misogyny

Feature Image Credit: Hockey India

Also Read: Don’t let the bronze change the colour of your heart: Mary Kom to Sakshi Malik

WATCH Sakshi and Mary Kom from SHE THE PEOPLE on Vimeo.

Read More Stories By Ria Das

Get the best of SheThePeople delivered to your inbox - subscribe to Our Power Breakfast Newsletter. Follow us on Twitter , Instagram , Facebook and on YouTube, and stay in the know of women who are standing up, speaking out, and leading change.