In Conversation with Salman Khurshid, Senior Advocate-Supreme Court of India
Name: Salman Khurshid
Position at Firm: Practicing Senior advocate at the Supreme Court of India, Salman Khurshid Chambers and member of the Congress Working Committee in July 2004.
Short Bio: A dynamic leader of mankind. Who has combined in himself the introspection of a man of learning and the boldness of a man of action, former Minister of State for External Affairs. His deep sense of nationalism and secular outlook has led to the setting up of a chain of Delhi Public Schools both in India and abroad.
He is a celebrated author and a lawyer who has been a key member of Congress since the time Indira Gandhi was in power. He was the Union Deputy Minister of Commerce and the Union Minister of State for External Affairs before he finally ascended to his current position. His book, Beyond Terrorism: New Hope for Kashmir, is a poignant tale that has received many rave reviews. He is grandson of Dr. Zakir Hussain who was the third President of India.
He completed his graduation from the University of Delhi, before which, he was a student at St. Xavier’s High School in Patna, Bihar. After completing his graduation from University of Delhi, Salman Khurshid went to England for higher studies. He pursued a course in law from the prestigious St. Edmund Hall, Oxford University. Before this writer-politician started his career in politics, he was a lecturer in law at the renowned Trinity College, Oxford.
Question : Describe about your Law Firm, Foundation, Partners and Work areas?
Answer: The firm works on the principle of Earl Warren who once said “IT IS THE SPIRIT AND NOT THE FORM OF LAW THAT KEEP JUSTICE ALIVE.” We seek to achieve justice amidst the complex and lax process of the Indian Legal System. We amalgamate the simplicity of a counsel’s chamber with the mannerism in the approach of a law firm. Thus achieving the best possible outcomes. The firm has 29 associates working in different areas of law. The firm was grounded in 2014.
The chamber deals with all kind of matters pertaining to SC, DC, HC and also conduct religious ‘briefing sessions’ in which they(interns) too are given a chance to make an argument and validate their stands.
Question: What skills are required in your position on a day-to-day basis?
Answer: A Practitioner needs a lot of calmness and patient; sometimes he has to skip his life for others to get justice. The main skill is never getting too much attached because sometimes it becomes a weakness. Sometimes being less sensitive takes you to a long run. Reading, increasing your knowledge, getting updated of your surroundings, presenting your point of perspective are the few other skills in this field.
Question: What parts of your job do you find most challenging?
Every profession has its toughest part. In litigation the toughest part is to be at your client expectation. For achieving an order on your side a lot of struggle and convincing skills are required. Legal knowledge should be at your tips.
Question: How many hours do you work in a typical week?
I work for 19 hours from morning 9 to 11 at night. I have given myself for other’s sake of justice.
Question: How would you describe the corporate culture in law?
The corporate gives a safe life to the upcoming fresher and law graduates, but according to me if you want to explore the real world of practicing law and what is legal life, be a practitioner. Legal practice is a sea of oceans and has various ups and downs but patience will give you one day a flying colour. It is a short spam of struggle and hard work to reach a height.
Question: Is this field growing enough so that there’s room for someone who is a first generation lawyer?
Yes the field grows with the development in law graduates in this profession. There is a need to support and aware young law graduates about the overwhelming life of a practitioner and he should begin with district level so that he can be aware of all the little gratitude’s which has to be in mind to be successful in this profession.
Question: This industry has changed dramatically in the past years. What is your experience from inside your company? Where do you think the changes will happen in the next five years?
If you want to bring a change in the society began as a small change and things will change slowly and steadily. We take new freshers as an associate because giving the opportunity to the deservers is the best contribution to our society. Since I joined litigation in 2014, things have been changed a lot and drastically law became the most demanding profession of India.
Question: What qualifications do you seek in a new hire?
A law graduate and a person should do further studies also in search of exploration and be knowing the depth of the legal aspects. It is advisable to do masters or PhD from foreign as this will give you a gesture around the world. Always take all the risks and then play the game of life.
My views on the three latest judgments:
Right to Privacy was a fundamental right and fell under the purview of Article 21 (Right to Life) of the Indian Constitution. The Right to Privacy, the Chief Justice said, was intrinsic to the right to life and was hence, a part of Article 21, part 3, of the Constitution of India. The ruling on the highly contentious issue was to deal with a batch of petitions challenging the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory for availing the benefits of various social welfare schemes.
Others members of the bench comprising Justices J Chelameswar, SA Bobde, RK Agrawal, RF Nariman, AM Sapre, DY Chandrachud, SK Kaul and S Abdul Nazeer also shared the same view.
Triple talaq was not an acceptable form of behaviour between a man and a woman. “All the five judges deciding the triple talaq case, more or less, accepted that the practice was not an acceptable form of behaviour between a man and a woman. The top judges came to different conclusions in the case. Some may say that minds of judges are programmed in post-colonial India…constrained by colonial education. Some may say this is the way human beings differ…every mind responds differently because of different experiences, education, DNA, family, cultural background. Somebody may say it is acceptable and somebody may say it is unacceptable,” he said.
Question: Your feedback for Legal Desire Website (www.legaldesire.com) :
I wish you all best of luck and try to bring the real legal world in your reports because people are interested to know what actually our life and work is. So all the best, Keep moving never stop, because move on is best way to grab new opportunities in life.
Interviewed by Gunjan Bhagchandani, Executive Manager at Legal Desire
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