Way forward for young lawyers in the legal world
In 1927, Felix Frankfurter wrote:
"In the last analysis, the law is what
the lawyers are. And the law and lawyers are what the law schools make them."
In our freedom movement, prominent freedom fighters like Dadabhai Naoroji,
Surendranath Banerjee, Madan Mohan Malviya, and Motilal Nehru, were all lawyers
by profession. The eminent lawyers used their legal knowledge to save many
nationalists and revolutionaries from the clutches of the British.
The father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, our first President and the Chairman
of the Constituent Assembly, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the First Governor General,
Shri C. Rajgopalachary, and the Chairman of the Drafting Committee of the
Constituent Assembly Dr. B.R. Ambedkar were also eminent lawyers. Perhaps it is
the understanding of the law and its relation to society that prompted the
founding fathers to devote the energy required to evolve our Constitution of
unprecedented magnitude in both scope and length.
An Advocate is an integral part of the administration of justice. From ancient
times, the legal obligation of the Advocates to conduct the case of a poor
litigant without reward, when so required by the Court, has been recognized not
only in our country but also in other Countries. To ensure justice for poor and
marginalized sections of society, an Advocate is required to provide them legal
assistance even when they are not in a position either to adequately pay him for
his services or pay him at all. The legal profession has to ensure that the rule
of law is maintained and preserved.
Democracy is our heart and soul. We have resolved to secure all citizens justice
� social, economic, and political; liberty and equality. These are inalienable
facets of our Constitution and cannot be amended even by the Parliament. The
legal profession has to take the lead by learning lessons from great freedom
fighters, Constitution makers, Parliamentarians, and others belonging to the
legal professionals who have built the nation and its institutions brick by
brick. All their efforts and sacrifices will go waste if the legal profession
does not take the lead which, I am sure, will be as in the past. What is needed
is genuine efforts that never go waste.
The need is for wholehearted devotion and commitment. A lawyer has obligations
towards society as well as the courts. Our society expects the Bar to render
professional services in the nature of legal aid, advice, and advocacy, in a
free and fearless manner, so as to bring about peace, prosperity and development
for one and all. The judiciary can discharge its obligations in the
administration of justice only with the total commitment and participation of
its main component, the Bar. It would be safe to conclude that the efficiency of
judicial administration largely depends on the competence of the Bar.
We are all aware that you now have a range of opportunities to choose from. you
can start your career by joining Bar and start practicing in Courts or joining
Law firms. With increasing opportunities to study and work in foreign countries,
qualified lawyers can also look forward to careers in international institutions
and multinational corporations. They can go for further study and become law
professors. Joining the judiciary is also a good option.
I do understand that many graduates would like to join the corporate sector in
order to ensure financial security for their families. My request to all these
bright young lawyers is that once you have secured the means to live
comfortably, you should consider moving towards careers in mainstream litigation
i.e. practicing in Court, the judiciary and law teaching,
As part of the legal profession, there may arise occasions when you will harbor
self-doubts. You will question your choices and curse your fate for choosing law
as a career instead of medicine or engineering. You might also feel envious when
you see your friends from other professional backgrounds enjoying a more lavish
lifestyle than yours, while you sit in your office glued to your laptops doing
due diligence or drafting plaints. You will often meet people who will
constantly judge you on your failures and successes. However, it is always up to
you to hold the candle in your steady hands that would light the world.
Once Swami Vivekanand
Said and Quote "Take up one idea, make that one
idea your life; think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the full of
that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success."
Do not be intimidated by failures, or cowed down by defeats. That is part and
parcel of being a legal professional. Every day is an opportunity to learn and
To become successful in this profession one should be having these points in
- Continue to learn in your area
One can be successful if he is up-to-date in the field of law, with new
cases there are new rulings and changing regulations. It is difficult to
know all the changes but if one makes voracious reading an inseparable part
of his life then he can achieve it very easily. Without continuous reading
and learning, one can fall behind easily.
- Keep improving your communication skills
One of the best qualities of a lawyer is the way they talk, whether it be
with a client or in a courtroom in front of a judge. They are supposed to be
calm, collected, and confident while presenting their case. But if you
stumble over words or do not sound confident or conveyancing in what you are
presenting then you may lose the case that will put a halt to your success.
- Develop good research skills
For fighting a case you have to do some background research, technology has
made researching simple for young lawyers as now they don't have to find
case laws in SCC or AIR they can easily find them in a few minutes on the
computer. So good research skills will help not only speed up the process
but also in ensuring that the result of the case comes in your favor.
- Be creative and analytical
In order to get success lawyers have to be creative now and then. Creativity
will help lawyers in thinking on-the-spot solutions, problem-solving, etc.
The more you are, the more success will come behind you. With creativity,
you need to be analytical as well. A successful lawyer takes in everything
he reads, sees, and hears, and then he analyzes it, comes up with solutions,
and applies the one which fits best in the situation. So, take some time and
polish your analytical skills, it will surely help you in the long run.
Finding your niche area is crucial and will help you go a long way. Rather than
opting to take up all kinds of matters, it would be ideal to stick to two or
three areas of practice, if not one. Gone are the days of a general practitioner
who takes anything that comes his way.
I take this opportunity to express my heartiest congratulations to all the
bright young students, I extend my best wishes to all of you and hope that you
will make use of their knowledge and training to create a bright future for
yourselves and to contribute handsomely to nation-building.
I am confident that the law the students will ensure that the legal profession
becomes a beacon light of our society and polity, and provides a helping hand to
the poor and needy.
Written By: Utsav Mishra
Edited By: Ashwani Kr. Dubey
, Advocate-on-Record, Supreme Court of India.