No ‘Shri’ to be prefixed before names of Indian Coast Guard, defence forces officers: President Secretariat in RTI reply

New Delhi [India], April 4 (ANI): Amid instances in the recent past where Shri was being used before names of Indian Coast Guard officers instead of their ranks, the President’s Secretariat in an RTI reply has explained that only ranks have to be used before names of Indian Coast Guard and defence officers in official communication.
The ceremonial section of the President’s Secretariat in May 2023 issued a letter that stated that for both serving and retired officials, only their ranks have to be prefixed before their names and Shri was not to be used.

In an RTI application filed by an individual, the President’s Secretariat confirmed that the order in this regard was applicable to Indian Coast Guard officials also, the RTI reply accessed by ANI showed.

Defence officials said that this is a step towards upholding protocol for the usage of titles for Indian Coast Guard Officers.
“In recent developments, a number of instances were coming where incorrect usage of titles for Indian Coast Guard (ICG) officers in various communications were noticed. This discrepancy is contrary to established service traditions, and notified government directives,” they said.

The usage of correct ranks in official communications is not merely a matter of formality; it is also an integral part of our service traditions.
This practice plays a pivotal role in maintaining mutual respect between services, fostering a professional environment, and upholding the dignity of the armed forces.
Defence officials have foreseen hope that the discrepancy would be promptly rectified by all services to ensure that the correct ranks of ICG officers are appropriately acknowledged in all official communications.

The President of India is the supreme commander of the defence forces of the country.
The Indian Army, Navy and Air Force along with the Indian Coast Guard are the four forces under the Defence Ministry and are governed by their different acts.