•  •  Dark Mode

Your Interests & Preferences

I am a...

law firm lawyer
in-house company lawyer
litigation lawyer
law student
aspiring student

Website Look & Feel

 •  •  Dark Mode
Blog Layout

Save preferences

Lakshmikumaran creates first HR head role from E&Y as chief people officer, hires BMR partner


Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan has hired former BMR Legal partner Raghavendra Rao as an executive director in Delhi, to head its direct tax practice nationally.

The firm has also created its first formal human resource (HR) head with the induction of former Ernst & Young senior manager Anirban Das as its chief people officer.

Rao, who was the senior standing counsel for the government of India’s income tax department before joining BMR in 2005, will replace the firm’s Chandigarh-based director Sumeet Khurana as practice head. He told Legally India that Khurana, who is a chartered accountant, was unable to represent the firm’s clients before the courts.

He has been practicing since enrolling in 1980 after graduating as a lawyer from Bangalore University.

Rao said: “We have very good infrastructure and very good client base. The only thing is we have to convert the clients. We have very good competency. Mr Lakshmikumaran is there, Mr V Sridharan is there. We can handle it.”

“We have to build a team first. Once a team is put in place and we can tell our existing clients that we have a good team in place [the practice will be good]. It will take minimum two to three years, it will not be built overnight,” he added.

The LKS direct tax team currently has around seven associates, all based in Delhi, according to Rao. The firm’s offices in Bombay and Bangalore do not have retainers exclusively focusing on direct tax, even though they do handle the occasional direct tax matters that come in.

“We want to make it as a minimum of 10 or 15 [lawyers] in Delhi and want to have it in Bangalore and Bombay as well,” he commented.

Das: Getting best practices
Das: Getting best practices
People matters

Anirban Das, who joins the firm after stints at the HR departments of PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte and E&Y since 2005, explained that although the firm did have someone heading HR, his was the first formal HR role at LKS.

“On top of my mind is to bring in best people practices [at the firm], the firm needs to grow more in terms of hiring the best talent, we need to bring in a different angle in terms of people strategy, things like how we want to do recruitment, branding, going to various campuses, induction, how to do internal referral, develop more robust appraisal processes, make policies which are more employee friendly and strike a balance between the employees and the management,” commented Das.

He said that the tax teams are on the firm’s agenda first in terms of hiring.

“Because of the [Goods and Service Tax] coming in, tax has immense potential to grow further,” he said.

In September the firm hired former Amarchand Mangaldas principal associate Ajay Joseph as a partner and opened an international office in Geneva.

Earlier this year the firm also added its ninth regional office, in Chandigarh, and made up seven non-founding partners into equity for the first time ever.

Click to show 13 comments
at your own risk
By reading the comments you agree that they are the (often anonymous) personal views and opinions of readers, which may be biased and unreliable, and for which Legally India therefore has no liability. If you believe a comment is inappropriate, please click 'Report to LI' below the comment and we will review it as soon as practicable.