Zia Mody

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Zia Mody (born on 19 July 1956) is one of the founding partners of AZB & Partners.

It was her childhood dream to become a lawyer and follow her father's footsteps, Soli Sorabjee, India's former Attorney General. She never went through the "trauma" of choosing a career except for a short period of six months in which she wanted to be an air hostess, she's said in interviews. Try imagining the most powerful lawyer of the country demonstrating to an audience the safety precautions in an aircraft!<ref> to India </ref>

She pursued her L.L.B at Selwyn College,Cambridge University and then an L.L.M from Harvard. She then joined one of the world's largest law firms in New York Baker & McKenzie. In 1984 she moved back to Mumbai and married, literally the childhood "boy next door", Jaydev Mody<ref>| Legal Era interview</ref>. Around then she started her litigation practice under the name Chambers of Zia Mody (CZM).

She's said that the Indian market was a different terrain compared to work at a big New York firm. According to her, the turning point in her career was when she won her first case. But even with her background she often says that she's had to work hard to prove the fact that as a woman lawyer, she was as good as any male attorney.<ref>TBC</ref> Provide citation

Nowadays, Zia Mody is less well-known for her litigation days but her successful transactional practice, although her father, Soli Sorabjee, has said that he wishes she had continued with her litigation practice, as she has great argumentative skills.

She's tagged as a workaholic by her colleagues and even rivals, while clients agreee that her quick response time is one of her big assets. Zia is said to be addicted to her Blackberry and to send opinions till the wee hours of the morning - around 4am is her normal bedtime.

She is also a follower of the Bahá'í faith and serves as a member on various Bahá'í organisations in the field of education and empowerment of rural women, though she's often said that she wished she could do more for the community.

Personal Life[edit]

Mody, who turns 56 in July 2012, has three daughters. The second, Aarti, has decided to pursue law while the other two have studied design and mass communication respectively. Zia agrees that work did take a toll on her personal life but she attended every single parent teacher meeting of her children and functions in which they performed. She also adds that she was blessed with an extremely supportive mother-in-law and a best friend for a husband.<ref>TBC</ref>Provide citation

She plays safe with her investments and says would invest money in mutual funds-debt instruments. She also extremely fond of jewellery and cars. If she ever won the lottery jackpot she would give most of the chunk in charity, she claims.<ref>|Interview with Zia Mody</ref>.


  • Business Today listed Mody as one of the 25 most powerful business women in India several times since September 2004.
  • She is a recipient of the Financial Express Knowledge Professional of the Year Award.
  • She was also named one of India's 100 Most Powerful CEOs by The Economic Times in 2004 and 2006.
  • She is also the recipient of the Economic Times Awards for Corporate Excellence as the Businesswoman of the Year, 2010. The awards are given out every year and are seen as the foremost authority in recognizing excellence in the Indian corporate market.<ref>Template:Cite journal</ref>
  • The American Lawyer has identified Zia Mody as being one of ‘country’s leading stars’.
  • She has been featured in Asian Legal Business’ 2009 edition as one of Asia’s top 25 M&A Lawyers.
  • The Asia Pacific Legal 500 & Chambers Global has ranked Zia Mody as among the leading individuals in the Merger & Acquisition sector, Private Fund, Private Equity, Litigation and Infrastructure Sectors.
  • AZB & Partners was nominated as the best Indian National Law Firm 2006 by the International Financial Law Review and received the National Law Firm of the Year Award for India from The Chambers Asia Awards 2010.

Related pages[edit]

Indian lawyers