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PXV breakaway RDA spawns Arindam Pal’s Augustus, also with national plans

Cal courts: Fairly good work
Cal courts: Fairly good work
Exclusive: Arindam Pal, who had left PXV Law Partners late last year with co-founding partner Rohit Das but ended up starting Augustus Law Chambers in Kolkata independently, is planning to aggressively expand the six-lawyer firm to other cities.

“It’s been three months of fairly good work we've done,” Pal told Legally India two weeks ago but added: “I definitely plan on opening up in Bombay.” The timing would depend on forging the right local relationships, which should not be hurried.

“First the intention is to get good people on board, then to aggressively recruit and to expand to other cities,” he noted. “It’s very easy to grow fast but retaining that structure is difficult.”

Augustus was set up by Pal as partner and Adwitiyaa Das as designated partner after the split from PXV became effective on 15 February.

The firm currently specialises in representing banks and financial institutions in security enforcement proceedings in court and before the Debt Recovery Tribunals (DRT), as well as assisting local developers in real estate matters.

The name, Augustus, was a personal preference of Pal's derived from the ancient Roman name that means “the illustrious one” or “someone who is respected”, Pal said. “It conveys royalty, seriousness and combines intellect and hard work.”

Pal and Rohit Das, who had separated from PXV with Das intending to jointly re-start PXV's precursor firm RDA Legal, eventually decided to both be independent, they explained. Augustus’ offices are near Minto Park and neighbouring the offices of RDA Legal.

“We had our discussions: we wanted to get together but were not able to finalise on the terms and conditions so right now we’ve kept it a bit open ended. If the opportunity is there then we can do something,” said Pal.

“Rohit still remains one of my closest friends – I’ve known him now for a decade,” added Pal, who both graduated from NUJS Kolkata in 2006. “He keeps referring work and since I don’t have a Bombay office as of now, I keep using services of Rohit and his team when the situation arises.”

Das said: “We had a very mature discussion – the business models were different and it appeared that it could be better if we started two firms rather than one.

“We are on very good terms, we are still referring work to each other, so it’s a very, very amicable thing.”

Das added that RDA, which has just crossed 10 lawyers in size, was currently consolidating the Mumbai and Kolkata offices, with “plans for expansion throughout the year” to other cities, including Delhi.

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