Roy and Ramanathan go independent from LKS to start competition, insolvency, lit firmRoy and Ramanathan go independent from LKS to start competition, insolvency, lit firm

Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (LKS) Delhi-based partners Abir Roy and T Sundar Ramanathan have left the firm to start-up an independent firm in collaboration with former LKS senior partner S Seetharaman, who left the firm in October.

Roy was part of the firm’s competition practice and also focused on the Insolvency Code, while Ramanathan focussed on general and commercial litigation.

They will be starting their own firm by mid-January as well as collaborating with Seetharaman's independent practice, who focuses on international trade and competition, said Roy.

Roy had joined LKS in January 2015 from his partnership at Khare Legal Chambers, and Ramanathan had joined the firm in 2009. Both had their last working days at LKS yesterday, confirmed Roy.

Both are NLU Jodhpur 2007 alumni and made partner in LKS' annual promotion round this year.

Roy commented: “[Starting up] has been in mine and Sundar's mind, we wanted to do something of our own that was a long drawn ambition. Now we finally decided: if not now, when?”

“[The Insolvency Code] from a company perspective is a huge boon, a lot of creditors are happy, also from the lawyer's perspective there are so many cases going around in a year's time, there is huge scope,” he added.

LKS founding partner V Lakshmikumaran commented: “We wish them best of luck. They have done a good job. They're both good boys and we should allow people to grow. We should encourage them.”

He said that LKS Delhi-based international trade practice partner Dhruv Gupta, who was made up to partner in the same round as Roy and Ramanathan, would take charge of the competition practice post the exit of Roy and Ramanathan, alongside Lakshmikumaran himself.

This story was first published earlier today exclusively for Legally India subscribers on WhatsApp. Please sign up below to get breaking news first, directly.

Click to show 34 comments
at your own risk
(alt+shift+c)
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.
refresh Filter out low-rated comments. Show all comments. Sort chronologically
1
Like +23 Object -0 Vivek Jhaa 02 Jan 18, 18:17  interesting  top rated
Many congratulations to Abir and Sundar!! Wish you both all the very best.
Reply Report to LI
2
Like +14 Object -8 $aM 02 Jan 18, 18:32  interesting  controversial
They are genuinely 'good' boys. May the force be with you. All the best Roy!
Reply Report to LI
3
Show?
Like +5 Object -7 Lexpert 02 Jan 18, 19:35  controversial
Interesting how the 'heir apparent' has promptly left to join his former practice head. VLK unable to retain talent with self-esteem??
Reply Report to LI
3.1
Like +14 Object -6 Reply 02 Jan 18, 21:19  interesting  controversial
You seem to be mistaken. There is no 'heir apparent' except the Prince. Rest all are second fiddles in the Prince's armory.

As far as retaining talent in concerned, the King himself publicly proclaimed long back that he is a like a jeweler who keeps creating many diamonds regularly such that it does not matter to him as to who leaves and who joins his firm.

God bless Indian law firms.
Reply Report to LI
3.1.1
Like +10 Object -1 Princeton 03 Jan 18, 07:55  interesting
Inside scoop: Prince had an issue with both of them because of multiple factors
Reply Report to LI
4
Show?
Like +14 Object -24 Tejesh 02 Jan 18, 19:42  controversial
Congrats Abir & Sundar on this wonderful move!! You guys are bound to do well.
Reply Report to LI
5
Show?
Like +7 Object -7 Budoli 02 Jan 18, 20:08  controversial
Clients will go to Sundar. He is a good litigation guy.
Reply Report to LI
6
Show?
Like +5 Object -3 U-Bae-Roy 02 Jan 18, 20:56
Can I apply for an internship?
Reply Report to LI
7
Show?
Like +3 Object -1 Congrats 02 Jan 18, 21:22
Congrats Sundar Sir
Reply Report to LI
8
Show?
Like +11 Object -10 Cyril sends his regard 02 Jan 18, 23:58  controversial
7th or 8th job change for Abir! I am sure you will hear similar stuff in a years time again from Abir. Nevertheless, a great guy! Very helpful and very hardworking.
Reply Report to LI
8.1
Show?
Like +5 Object -6 U-Bae-Roy 03 Jan 18, 06:30  controversial
Its not a job, its a profession, and its called professional advancement. I've done the same. This is what happens when you remain in a 'job' for too long!
Reply Report to LI
9
Show?
Like +2 Object -3 Once an .... 03 Jan 18, 07:39
Congratulations Abir!!! Great guy .... way to go ....
Reply Report to LI
10
Show?
Like +7 Object -5 Observer Extrordinaire 03 Jan 18, 14:19  controversial
Freedom is the key. Young lawyers need new avenues, free from the shackles of law firm pressures. Abir is excellent, and no doubt will be the go to guy for competition in a few years time. Very best to him! :)
Reply Report to LI
11
Like +31 Object -5 Varys 04 Jan 18, 14:44  interesting  top rated  controversial
"Your days are numbered Mad King!!" With those words, the Tribunal Partner, the last of the lot rose in rebellion. BLN's rebellion, or so it was called, brought the beginning of the end for the once proud kingdom set up by the brothers two!
The Warden of the North and West have left already. The young Lords are leaving slowly. With the Warden of the South slowly planning to leave the Kingdom, the Mad King has finally lost it all.
The Warden of the East is marred by allegations. Now the time is ripe! Because there is hope! Rebellions are built on hope! With those words, the Wardens finally drove their swords deep in the Mad King's heart!
Valar Morghulis Mad King! All Men Must Die!!
Reply Report to LI
11.1
Like +12 Object -2 Littlefinger 04 Jan 18, 20:03  interesting
My Dear Varys, whoever you are! You are a stud! What a beautiful piece of writing. Littlefinger in this case loses to Varys! Btw who will the Kingslayer be in this case?
Reply Report to LI
12
Show?
Like +4 Object -21 being rational! 04 Jan 18, 16:25
i only know...Badri is a nice person...a solid guy...he looks at people with compassion...he has ability to steer this ship. Captain o captain! All this will change...he shall rise and rule justly!
Reply Report to LI
12.1
Show?
Like +2 Object -3 Being irrational 04 Jan 18, 20:33
Your comment and your name "being rational" are contradicting. prince good lawyer yes but compassion is an overkill
Reply Report to LI
13
Show?
Like +2 Object -16 I C U 04 Jan 18, 19:54
Young men and women let us rise to this oppurtunity. This is the age of youth. The firm (L&S) has power of YOUTH. We must explore each other....and sacrfice ourselves for the greater goal of the FIRM. Let us exploit ourselve and enjoy fruits of labour. This is the time to shine and not critisize folks!!
Reply Report to LI
14
Show?
Like +0 Object -0 I C U 05 Jan 18, 09:24
I remember folks! Consulting wing of L&S is top class! The attorneys and CAs explore each other and support each other’s assets! This is the spirit in which the firm works! There were partners who came as street kids and now have become obediant !! Thats the spirit. VISION 2020. We have nurtured and explored them folks!
Reply Report to LI
15
Like +14 Object -2 Real Picture 05 Jan 18, 12:55  interesting  top rated
Its all because of factor system. Sallaries of attorneys cannot be deducted for not meeting 3.5x of sallary target. Thats unfair thing to do. And ofcourse the commission system for getting new clients was closed. There was no incentive. Young Partners from Tax/GST Consulting Division were getting clients everyday but they were denied their share. Is that correct? The firm is also suffering because of the shame that has been collected because of the misdoings of senior tribunal litigation partners and their conduct both in Court and in Chambers. young talent r leaving or forced to leave if you dont pay respects to the mighty Delhi Tribunal Partner. A regime of Chamchaas have been created.
Reply Report to LI
16
Like +11 Object -1 Bagulesh 05 Jan 18, 18:09  interesting
Dear ‘real picture’ you are right. But this firm has been built on the hard work of its founding members. If the 3.5x factor is nt adjusted...how will the equity of the Principal’s be paid? How will future offices in Dubai and Singapore will be purchased? Entry level associate’s sallaries were deducted. Unki kya galti thi... partners didnt have enough money to buy Rajnigandha!
Reply Report to LI
16.1
Like +6 Object -0 Sach hai 05 Jan 18, 19:20  interesting
The rajnigandha part got me rolling on the floor! :P
Reply Report to LI
16.2
Show?
Like +3 Object -4 Anonymous 7 05 Jan 18, 21:37
where did rajnigandha come from? i think making personal comments on any person is unwarranted and not called for.
if a person is a partner in a prestigious firm, let us give him the credit that he earns, which is a lot more than all of us commenting here and deserves some respect.
Lets stick to the constructive criticism. :)
Reply Report to LI
16.2.1
Show?
Like +1 Object -0 Correct 06 Jan 18, 13:47
Even Mr. Salve has Rajnigandha. Am sure it vindicates the claim of this partner.

BTW, I am sure that many other partners or most law firms also have upon this mouth-freshner.
Reply Report to LI
17
Like +9 Object -2 ambience mall reporter 06 Jan 18, 13:52  interesting
Right to eat Rajnigandha is a fundamental right. But the fundamental duty is not to spit Rajnigandha in office dustbin and make the office aromatic. Folks! Understand this please. bandikoots will eat rajnigandha from dustbins and become addicts. In office there is just one addiction, that is ‘knowledge addiction’!
Reply Report to LI
18
Like +4 Object -0 chivas regal 06 Jan 18, 22:30
All this pushes the core topic aside which has the ability to steer the consulting ship of the firm. All I can say that if this is the reason for growth of consulting practice of the firm then all firm should make this part of their offerings to their Partners.
Reply Report to LI
19
Like +9 Object -0 a1 07 Jan 18, 00:11  interesting
A limited set of people have a flair for developing a practice which these young partners have. young breed at lks is brilliant in getting assignments not only for their practice but for other verticals also. This really calls for incentivising these skilled and let us give them their dues.
Reply Report to LI
19.1
Like +5 Object -0 a1 u r off the mar 07 Jan 18, 18:59  interesting
My dear a1,

You are way off the mark. What you call as the reason for 'incentivising' is the exact reason why they are not acceptable in LKS. VLK does not want anyone who knows the skills of business development. Remember one who can bring clients can also take them away. So these people are the cause for fear.

Instead VLK wants only the also-rans in the firm such that the entrepreneurship is confined to 'the family' and rest all are pawns who just execute errands to the satisfaction of 'the family'.

The insistence on 'knowledge', 'quality', etc. is all drama as hungry mouths cannot be fed with these. Those who have the skills or work hard to make a living expect to take back the reward for their efforts. However, as someone pointed out above, the greed of 'the family' is reflected in getting to open a new office (somewhere across the globe) every two years. This ensures that the old office (which was in any case owned by VLK and not by the firm) get back in their hands after it has been paid for by the blood of the pawns.

So a short piece of advice. If you have the talent, explore it elsewhere. It will not be appreciated in this place. Nothing will change here. People with more than decades of their life spent here will confirm the above.
Reply Report to LI
20
Show?
Like +1 Object -0 Idlidosa 07 Jan 18, 22:19
Vlk said that he is like a jeweller who creates diamonds. It does’nt matter to him who joins or leaves the firm. He can still steer the ship
Reply Report to LI
21
Show?
Like +1 Object -0 Guest 09 Jan 18, 16:48
This firm also needs to understand that lawyers cannot be replaced by CAs. Both professionals have different expertise. For some reason they feel that lawyers are costly and too ambitious whereas CAs just get used to all the circumstances (read salary). No wonder C3PO is again looking for only CAs for International Trade team, which used to be a forte of very sharp lawyers.
Reply Report to LI
22
Show?
Like +1 Object -1 Anonyms and all 10 Jan 18, 13:23
Rumour is these two had a spat with 'warden of the south's' prince and therefore, while leaving, he warned VLK about it. Having turned a blind eye towards them, VLK is now left with no team at all.

Also, the South King has not attended any of the office meetings is over 6 months owing to his prince having quit the firm. Coincidence much?
Reply Report to LI
22.1
Show?
Like +1 Object -0 outsider 10 Jan 18, 16:38
who are these 'warden of the south's prince', 'south prince' & 'south king'
Reply Report to LI
23
Show?
Like +1 Object -1 Hr?? 11 Jan 18, 20:52
Surprisingly the number of exits at the senior level have coincided with the entry of the new HR head aka Chief People Officer.
Reply Report to LI
23.1
Show?
Like +2 Object -0 Ex LKS 12 Jan 18, 09:36
Most of the reforms in HR practices has also happened after his joining only. Else HR was non-existent during our times.
Reply Report to LI

refreshSort chronologically Filter out low-rated comments. Show all comments.