In Conversation With Rajul Bohra, Partner, JSA Advocates & Solicitors| BW Legal World 40 Under 40

In this fireside chat with Chandril Chattopadhyay, Junior Correspondent, BW Legal World, Rajul talks about her glorious journey in law. She talks about her practice area, her growth as a leader in the industry, her mentors and much more.

Many Congratulations on winning the BW Legal World 40 under 40. How was your experience interacting with the Jury and of the event?  

RB:Firstly, many thanks, for choosing me as one amongst the 40 lawyers. My experience with the jury and of the event was fantastic. It was very well organised and structured. The conference which preceded the award ceremony had great speakers and very relevant topics were chosen for discussion. The jury comprised of eminent lawyers, and  was quite independent and had spent quality time with the candidates to choose the 40 under 40 club members. The team at BW was professional and .  

Please walk us through your journey in the field of law? When did you first realize that law was your life’s calling?  

RB:I personally was drawn to the field of law from a very early stage of my school life. Having incidentally met some senior lawyers on some occasions, it made me feel that this is one way I could contribute to the society and play a role in law-making for the nation. I also enjoyed reading judicial pronouncements while I was preparing for the law entrance examinations. I was also intrigued by some of our national leaders who were academically trained as lawyers. I realised that studying law will give me various perspectives. Eventually as I studied law, I realised my inclination towards corporate/business law due to my keen interest in business and commerce, and genuine fascination with the world of business and how companies operate.  

What would you say has helped you emerge as a leader in your industry and what advice would you have for others who want to set off in a similar direction?    

RB:Corporate law involves complex legal issues that require strong analytical and problem-solving skills. I enjoy analysing intricate legal scenarios and finding effective solutions for our clients. I have always believed that the client does not come to you for just discussing/discovering problems but also for effective solutions to those problems. It is important to step into their shoes and render a practical and workable advice. We also need to focus on fostering strong client relationships by providing exceptional service and understanding your clients' needs and objectives. My advice would be to display a strong work ethic and maintaining high standards of professionalism, including timely responsiveness, attention to detail, and ethical conduct. One should seek to build a reputation for being reliable, trustworthy, and dedicated to serving clients' best interests. 

We have seen a spate of legislative changes in recent years that have been monumental in reforming India's legal framework across all sectors. Would you please highlight a recent development concerning your practice area that has positively impacted the industry?   

RB:The liberalisation of foreign direct investment (FDI) policy has had a very positive impact on the economy (including on cross border deal making). The opening up of media, retail/e-commerce, defence and insurance sector has attracted foreign investment and has led to increase in M&A (both strategic and financial investment) in these sectors. India is being considered the preferred investment destination due to a series of measures such as liberalisation in the FDI policy, steps to further promote ease of doing business, reducing the compliance burden for industry, the rollout of the PLI schemes among others. 

What are the top three trends that are going to rule the legal sector for the next five years? 

As we all know, the legal sector in India is witnessing huge transformation both on account of legislative changes and a fast-growing Indian economy. Further, the last few years have seen technological advances that promise to disrupt the modern information technology landscape in a way not seen, since the advent of cloud computing. I can see following trends impacting the legal sector in the next few years: 

  1. The effort on easing and consolidation of laws by the Government and enactment of new age laws to cater to AI, crypto tokens, space, machine learning etc.  

  1. The trend of global corporates operating in different sectors establishing and growing their captives in India. 

  1. The entry of foreign laws firms in India and interplay with domestic law firms.  

Also, there has been substantial work on regulation of personal data, with four iterations of personal data law being introduced (so far) and the Government promising that 2023 will be the year that finally sees a standalone personal data protection law being implemented.    

Who according to you has been your guide and mentor in this illustrious journey as a lawyer? 

RB:My father has been my true guide and mentor throughout. In fact, my entire family has been very supportive and understanding of the needs of the profession. I also had the pleasure of being around and working with some senior counsels (in extended family), who helped me shape my understanding of law. My senior partner at the law firm, Rupinder, has been my mentor and has shown tremendous support during my journey at the law firm. Also, I have considered each of my clients, team members and counterparts as ‘guides’ in their own way.  

As a parting note, would you please recommend a favorite book that left a lasting impression on you? What has been your most recent read? 

RB:I recently read this book, When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi. It is a painful, solitary but an engaging autobiography of a neurosurgeon. It’s an insightful read and asks us to question what makes life worth living in the face of death. I enjoy reading Indian history and particularly fond of the historical narratives of William Dalrymple, ‘The Last Mughal’ being my favourite.    

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