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Perennial optimism / Issue 113

Legally India newsletter
Legally India newsletter

In the seemingly never ending story of Indian legal market liberalisation a new player has entered the field.

Of course seasoned UK Tory politician Ken Clarke may have been playing to the gallery at the London Magic Circle-hosted event last week when he said he would make a ‘forceful’ case for liberalisation on his upcoming visit to India and criticised the capabilities of domestic legal representation.

This wouldn't be the first time fighting words have been uttered by politicians abroad only to find that in India existing lobbies and politicians prove hard to convince. But it does show that although foreign firms' expectations may have decreased lately, interest remains as high as ever.

Former Competition Commission of India (CCI) chairman and merger control architect KK Sharma too criticised Indian lawyers on a different note, accusing some of having jumped on the competition law bandwagon without sufficient expertise, having exacerbated the case load of the young regulator. Read Legally India’s exclusive interview with KK Sharma for more of his insight about the competition law landscape.

Unfazed, the Indian law firm market continued in expansion and fragmentation.

Sanjay Kumar, Lakshmi Kumaran patents head and alumni of IP giant Remfry, has set up a new technology law firm in Delhi, while projects boutique ILS has opened a Bangalore office, and venture capital house Bessemer has started its first India legal role with an Amarchand principal associate.

The Pendency Project
The Pendency Project
Somewhat happily, the Supreme Court under the lead of Kapadia has just managed to cling on to last month’s dent in its caseload, according to Legally India’s Pendency Project – although more than 50,000 are still there.

While many say that inducting new judges to the bench is the solution to all the woes – three newcomers were sworn in last week - Court Witness’ latest Supreme Court postcard shows that being a judge is a nigh impossible challenge amid the insane expectations of the bar and public.

Deals & Cases of the Week

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