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Note: Please read carefully. Hi Sir. This is my CV. Will you take me in?  Hi Sir, This is my CV. Will you take me in?   No reply. He doesn’t care. You don’t dare to talk it out.   Hi Sir,...
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THE FIFTH YEARS ARE LEAVINGThe fifth years are leaving: The mooters are leaving, the debaters are leaving, Their trophies, proudly in the library sit, Smiling at the newer faces.   The researchers are leaving, the writers are leaving. Their books and...
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Sati as a practice was not invented by Ancient Indian texts but by the greed of people. Most of the contemporary historians believe that the practice of Sati was encouraged to deprive the widows from the property of their deceased husbands....
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This is a long poem and has no rhyming scheme but if you read it in a rhythm and read it for fun, things will rhyme. Note- What the associate of the firm says is in ‘CAPS’. Note (further) - Something...
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privileges always come with duties and ethics and so is the case with lawyers. The bar council of India is empowered setting Standards of Professional Conduct and Etiquette for Lawyer in India under Section 49(1 )(c) of the Advocates Act, 1961. Among other restrictions, the...
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As I walk into the lift, I’m greeted by a cheery “Hiya mate, you awwright Bob?”. “Very well, thank you”, say I and engage with Robert in the well rehearsed lift-banter about work and holiday plans. However, as a product of one...
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Once there was a shepherd boy and he had sheep, obviously. One day he went up a hillock with his sheep and with nothing to do, pulled out a leaf of the old book and cried out to the villagers below...
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When a petitioner appears in person before a court, the lack of finesse is expected.. The petitioner may not be as articulate and sophisticated as a practiced counsel but then, if you decide to fight it out yourself, you would surely...
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The National University of Study and Research in Law was formally inaugrated by the Chief Justice of Jharkhand High Court and Supreme Court Judge designate Gyan Sudha Misra On Monday, April 26, 2010.The university becomes the 14th of the elite national...
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Some time ago I was sitting on the stairs of this court, as it was vacation time and nothing much was happening... chatting with my friends. Just outside the court premises was a tea stall, apparently illegal! We ordered "chai" and...
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I am seriously considering a career change. Not to worry, I’m not writing a book and this is not a decision made on a mere whim. The idea dawned on me today while speaking on the phone to my cousin who is a real live practitioner of dark legal arts in Indian trial courts and High Courts. He sold me the idea really. 

As an interesting aside, my cousin’s side of the family had to change their last name for numerological reasons.

Excerpts from our conversation wherein my cousin is extolling the virtues of a career in litigation:

“In law firms, you can’t quite experience the unique and delightful smell of the trial courts. Once you’ve smelled that, it calls out to you wherever you may go.”

“It’s like mooting in real life, with sillier party names.”

“People have great respect for those wearing black gowns, especially in summer.”

“Patience is a virtue. Litigation will teach you exactly what that means.”

“Your physical fitness shall improve while running from one court room to the other.”

“Even your boxing, ducking and weaving skills will improve during our fun-filled boycotts.”
(Further to the above)

“When you litigate, you can perfect what you started as a trainee solicitor- looking intelligent without a clue of what’s going on.”

“By your 55th birthday, you will have enough money to launder your jock-strap in London every week.”

“You can always pass your briefs to juniors. Sometimes even seniors will take them without hesitation.”
(Further to the above?)

“You make many lifelong friends along the way- the clerk, the juice wallah, the photocopy guy and so forth.”

“Court food is delicious, wholesome and all claims made re: food poisoning are patently false.”

“Even a slight British accent will ensure that you are designated a Senior Advocate at some point”.

“No, my daddy will not give you a car. I am his son.”

“Facial hair is tolerated in courts and even encouraged. In this matter, the system offers equal opportunity to both sexes.”

I walk into the office determined to let boss know of my decision and inform him how he cannot do a thing to change my mind. On my way up, I bump into Katie, the graduate recruitment officer. She smiles that perfect smile and flutters her eyelashes. Simultaneously. 

I suppose remaining at Colby, Hewitt and Richards LLP for a little while longer can harm no one. What’s all this fuss about litigators anyway?

(Further reading: :http://www.legallyindia.com/746-comfortably-numb)

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Salt and Pepper TurbanMapping the court's corridors, there are many samples to see.. One of them is a senior counsel, of whose name I do not know, comes every time with a wig. Now if it were a regular wig, I'd...
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Crib means ‘to bicker’, says my dictionary. NLS cribs about its hectic schedule: the trimester system which doesn’t allow them to lead a sane college life. NUJS cribs how claustrophobic the 4-5 acre campus can get. NALSAR cribs how the college...
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Earlier it was the thirsty crow, now it is the fox and the grapes.So we have the old fox of the old tales wondering in the old jungle looking for food. She can’t find any. She is hungry. She moves on...
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I ran into an extremely worried Indian trainee in the corridor the other day. The new QLTT regulations had her in a tizzy. What might make her panic so, I wondered while she rattled and I hmmmed. Or were her...
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Legal Poet’s story- Kaun Banega Crorepati: 1000 words of an emotive biography Someone had inadvertently disclosed my identity in a comment on the previous ’15 CV Tips’ posts. I was a bit anxious for I had blasted a law firm here...
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Some lessons and insights for lawyers from cricket:1.) Foreign players are popularAMSS, the leading law firm in India recently hired Niloufer Lam, a Banking law specialist from UK; recruited an Irish lawyer Paku Khan; and had UK Chief Operating Officer (COO) in...
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I’m writing this in a hurry, so apologies in advance if its a bit abrupt. You see, I’m working on a “deal”.For the (mercifully) uninitiated, a “deal” is a mythical creature with no readily identifiable form or substance. It ebbs and...
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Compulsory Voting  On the 16th of December 2009. Gujarat government announced that it will pass an Act on the Gujarat Local Authorities Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2009.The amendment will voting compulsory for all citizens of Gujarat to vote to elections to a self governing...
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“I’ve got it, Bob!”, exclaims Katie (Colby, Hewitt and Richards’s pretty young graduate recruitment officer). “We can use the leftover budget to sponsor a moot in India to increase our visibility among law students, you know.” 

No sooner do the words come out of her perfect, round mouth than the taste of bile assails mine. I feel a distant pounding in my ears. For the avoidance of doubt, these phenomena are not caused by butterflies of excitement spreading their wings. 

[Please for a moment ignore the ongoing heated debate about the legitimacy of the Mooting Premier League's scoring system and LegalPoet’s good-hearted exhortation of Tom’s, Dick’s, Alice's(?) and Harry’s efforts in
15 CV TIPS: Make RECRUITERS pounce on you like DOGS ON BONES and The drunk PIPO]

[Listen to ME carefully now.]

My objection to mooting is simple-stripped to its very core, mooting is THE most overrated activity in existence, invented and indulged in by second-rate individuals with diminished libidos. 

You see, several years ago, as a fresher I succumbed to the charms of the convenor, and found myself bailiff-ing for a moot court competition. I see today why those four hours of my life were not entirely wasted- based on this harrowing experience, I can proceed forthwith to destroy myths Katie harbours about mooting. 



Certain rotten and diabolical individuals have led Katie to believe that the competition is between the two teams that are mooting. Nothing could be further from the truth. This disgraceful contest is between the fabulous mooter hero and the villainous moot judge - mano e mano. The other team is just a bonus thrown in to double the fun.

I explain to Katie that it’s the blatant unfairness of the system that gets me worked up.

Here’s the mix. Even the most magnificent mooter has, at best, a vague idea about what he’s arguing. His nemesis, on the other hand, is someone who already knows all the answers (usually by virtue of being provided with a little something called a bench memorandum). The mooter’s faked sincerity mixed with his desperation to triumph against all odds, however, lends to the contest a hint of touching romance.

The audience knows there’s only one way this can end. They may as well have ordered a pizza, rented a slasher movie and stayed at home. Their interest in proceedings is sustained by the variety of methods that are used to humiliate the student gladiator, some examples of which can be found below-

  1. Some judges are not simply content with being all-knowing and all-powerful. They feel the irresistible urge to let everyone else in the room (i.e., friends, foes and most importantly prospective beaus) know that the mooter is actually a dummy. (Well technically- they have good reason to feel smarter than the mooter, armed with that memorandum and being done with law school two decades ago, you’d think?).
  2. Another bunch of judges mistake the mooter’s grand speech for a lullaby and believe a nap would give them greater insight into the meaning of life. Since these judges then go completely dead to the world, they are immune to the mooter’s best weapons- operatic voice modulation and effective hand movements. Disaster.
  3. Another particularly bad kind of judge is the one that is starved of the company of the opposite sex. Stare as much as you want while the pretty girl is speaking, but shouldn’t the ogling stop at least when the fabulous one is strutting his stuff?
  4. By common consensus, the worst kind of judge is a sub-set of 1 and 3 above- the moot judge with great hair who takes a fancy to the mooter’s co-speaker cum prospective girlfriend. Once the mooter realises the threat, caution is cast to the wind and the moot hall becomes an amphitheatre. The only question to be decided is who has the larger manhood. At this point, the moot judge simply performs a delicate CBM operation on the mooter (more commonly known as “Castration-By-Marking”, a procedure pioneered by frustrated law school professors). 

Ergo, no team ever really wins. It's always the moot judge who goes home with his family jewels honour intact and, in most cases, takes the love of the mooter’s life along with him (courtesy: private moot-related feeback sessions for the faultless, devastated co-speaker). 

The mooter swears revenge on the judge and the cycle repeats itself ten years later- only this time, the villainous judge is the ex-mooter himself.



Still reeling from this earth-shattering revelation, poor Katie bravely makes the argument that (despite enduring humiliation on such a regular basis) mooters are still revered as the masters of the law school universe.

I hate to burst this one. I explain gently to Katie that “Coolness” does not associate with an individual who:

  1. has vivid dreams of winning the award for best 'oralist' (not aware that the word actually pertains to the hearing-impaired who communicate by lip-reading, not to mention the word's new-age definition: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=oralist).
  2. has answered a "Whats up?" question at two ‘levels’ (like a duplex apartment);
  3. has worn borrowed spectacles for the intellectual effect;
  4. has sweated profusely in the same black suit several times;
  5. has owned three black ties and never heard of a cummerbund;
  6. shaves rarely, only to miss a spot resulting in a Hitler-Chaplin moustache on D-Day (and a cracked rib for the silently chuckling bailiff);
  7. has never been wrong (especially at interviews where openness to new ideas is assessed);
  8. has carried little post-it notes in his/her pocket on vacations.
  9. cannot tell the difference between non-mooters and annoying insects.
  10. has devoted serious thought and research on whether non-mooters turn out completely normal later in life.
  11. was tolerated in law school solely for his value as a source of late-night cigarettes (so much stress, so many choices- Vienna? Jessup? Lachs?) 


I could go on. But I stop- pretty Katie is crestfallen. I think she realises her graduate recruitment plan isn’t all that grand (or humane) anymore. As a reward for showing her the light, she suggests we spend the excess graduate recruitment budget on dinner for two at Le Gavroche tonight. 

Modern Bob's your uncle (wink wink).

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