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India Future Legal Leaders 2022 Banner

Based on the collective views of in-house counsel and India-focused partners at international law firms, the following are India’s 50 future legal leaders. Click here to read the full report.

In November and December 2021, India Business Law Journal invited thousands of in-house counsel in India and around the world, and India-focused partners at international law firms, to nominate outstanding Indian lawyers in several categories, including rising stars who are seen as the future leaders of India’s legal profession.

More than 2,000 nominations and supporting remarks were received from professionals at a wide range of Indian and international organisations, including: ABN, Accela Fiduciary, Accenture, Acciona Energy, Adani Enterprise, Adarsh Group of Hotels, Aditya Birla Sun Life Insurance, Agriculture Insurance Company of India, Airports Economic Regulatory Authority, AkzoNobel, Alen lifesciences, Alpha Capital, Amazon, American Express, Anderson Mori & Tomotsune, Ansal Housing & Construction, Ashok Leyland, Ashurst, AstraZeneca, Aurobindo Pharma, Bajaj Electricals, Baker McKenzie, Barclays, BharatPe, Bird & Bird, Birla Sunlife Insurance, Bosch, Boston Scientific, Brambles, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, Burford Capital, Cadila Healthcare, Canon, Carpediem Capital, Castrol, CCPIT Patent and Trademark Law Office, Clyde & Co, CMS, Corning, Credit Suisse, Cummins, DBS Bank, Deloitte, Deutsche Bank, Dexter Capital Advisors, Dorsey & Whitney, Edelweiss Tokio Life Insurance Company, Ernst & Young, Everstone Capital Advisors, Fertilizer Corporate of India, Flipkart, Foley & Lardner, Ford, Freshfields, G4S, Gail, GoDaddy, Google, Government of India, Havells, HDFC Bank, Hengeler Mueller, Hexaware Technologies, Hitachi, Hogan Lovells, Honda, Housing and Urban Development Corporation, Hyundai, ICICI Bank, IDP Education, Indiabulls, Indus Towers, Infosys, InterGlobe, Jackson, Etti & Edu, JP Morgan Chase, Julius Baer, Karvy Capital, Kennedys, Knight Frank, KPMG, LG Electronics, Linklaters, Lodha Group, Mahindra Logistics, Malindo Air, Matrix Partners, McDonald’s, Mercedes-Benz, Merlin Entertainments, Michelin Tyres, Microsoft, Mitsubishi, Mondelez, Morgan Stanley, Mori Hamada & Matsumoto, Nestle, NIIF Infrastructure Finance, Nippon Paint, Nishimura & Asahi, Nissan, Novistra Capital, Oracle, Panasonic, Pearson, Pernod Ricard, Philips, Pillsbury Withrop Shaw Pittman, Piramal Capital & Housing Finance, PwC, Rajah & Tann, Reebok, Reliance Industries, ReNew Power, Saama Capital, Sahara, Samsung, Scania, Schenker, Seuqoia Capital, Shree Ram Enterprises, Sidley Austin, Simmons & Simmons, Sony Pictures Networks, Squire Patton Boggs, Standard Chartered Bank, Star India, Stephenson Harwood, Sterlite Power Transmission, Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank, Tata Capital, Tech Mahindra, The Atlantic, The Times Group, Toshiba, TVS Automobile, UK India Business Council, UTI Capital, Veeba Food Services, Viacom18, Walmart, Wockhardt, Xiaomi, Zee Media, and hundreds more Indian and international companies, financial institutions and foreign law firms.

Lawyers working at Indian law firms were not permitted to make nominations.

The final list of future legal leaders reflects the nominations received and references provided by those who made nominations, combined with the India Business Law Journal editorial team’s more than 50 years’ collective experience in documenting and analysing India’s legal market.

All Indian private practice lawyers who are currently associated with Indian law firms were automatically eligible for inclusion in the nomination process and, as always, there were no fees or other requirements for entry. Senior counsel and independent lawyers’ chambers were not included.

The names and photographs of all 50 future legal leaders are published on the following pages. Each lawyer was given the opportunity to include their biography and contact details, for which a publishing fee was charged. It is important to note that, while the compilation of the future legal leaders was based solely on independent editorial research, the biographies and contact details that appear alongside many of the listings have been written by the participating lawyers and the content has not been independently verified by India Business Law Journal.

Kritika-Agarwal Kritika Agarwal
Majmudar & Partners
Key practice areas: Competition & antitrust; corporate & commercial; inbound investment; mergers & acquisitions

Bijal-Ajinkya Bijal Ajinkya
Khaitan & Co
Key practice areas: Litigation; private client; succession planning (family office); taxation

Nishchal-Anand Nishchal Anand
Panda Law
New Delhi
Tel: +91 98 9912 1634
Email: nishchal@legalpanda.in

Key practice areas: Blockchain & cryptos; data protection; e-commerce; fintech
Nishchal is an intellectual property and technology law attorney practising in New Delhi since 2009. Besides representing large corporations in contentious IP and data protection matters before the courts in India, he regularly advises tech companies on legal and regulatory compliance including IP structuring, product structuring and data compliance. He has been a part of many landmark decisions that have furthered the jurisprudence on IP and data protection laws in India.

He regularly advises clients across industries on the application and commercialisation of cutting-edge technologies such as blockchain, AI, UAVs, extended reality, and CRISPR. More recently, he has been advising the creative community on the use and monetisation of their works and underlying IP including through NFT projects. He is also actively involved in advising clients on structuring their cryptocurrency/fintech operations and products at a global level, including in India.

Nishchal is one of the founding partners at Panda Law, which started operations in 2019. Panda Law is a full-service law firm with a special focus on technology. The team advises technology clients across sectors such as finance, education, gaming, health, food and agriculture, e-commerce and logistics, and media and entertainment providing them with end-to-end solutions for their businesses.

Rishi-Anand Rishi Anand
DSK Legal
New Delhi
Key practice areas: E-commerce, fintech, blockchain & cryptos; corporate & commercial; mergers & acquisitions; technology, media and telecommunications

Alipak-Banerjee Alipak Banerjee
Nishith Desai & Associates
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; international trade & bilateral investment treaties; litigation; white-collar crime

Nakul-Batra Nakul Batra
DSK Legal
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Data protection; mergers & acquisitions; private equity, venture capital & funds; technology, media and telecommunications

Abhilasha-Bhatnagar Abhilasha Bhatnagar
Ashraya Legal Consultants
Key practice areas: Data protection; e-commerce, fintech, blockchain & cryptos; intellectual property; technology, media and telecommunications

Siddharth-Bhavnani Siddharth Bhavnani
Antares Legal
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; e-commerce, fintech, blockchain & cryptos; mergers & acquisitions; private equity, venture capital & funds

Aditya-Chopra Aditya Chopra
Victoriam Legalis
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; litigation; real estate; restructuring & insolvency

Prateek-Desai Prateek Desai
Khaitan & Co
Key practice areas: Banking & finance

Vara-Gaur Vara Gaur
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Intellectual property; arbitration & ADR; labour & employment; white-collar crime

Veena-Gopalakrishnan Veena Gopalakrishnan
Key practice areas: Anti-corruption & anti-bribery; labour & employment

Sandeep-Grover Sandeep Grover
New Delhi
Tel: +91-9810649994
Email: sandeep.grover@ortislaw.com

Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; corporate & commercial; intellectual property; litigation
Sandeep has almost 17 years of dispute resolution experience and specialises in commercial and civil litigation and arbitration. Sandeep regularly advises his clients on complex corporate issues and transactions. A significant part of his practice has been advising and representing clients in matters relating to patent and copyright infringement issues, joint venture, company and shareholder disputes, employment-related issues, merger and demerger schemes, insolvency, tender-related disputes, white-collar crimes, real estate disputes, infrastructure and engineering disputes, debt recovery matters and consumer litigation.

He represents clients across a variety of sectors, including the diamond industry, aviation, automobile, infra-tech, power, transportation, IT, hospitality, healthcare, apparel and real estate sector, to name a few.

Currently, Sandeep is spearheading high stake and multi million-dollar IP enforcement litigations on behalf of several multinational entities across various forums in India. Sandeep and his team are also actively involved in prosecution and trial of several patents, trademark and copyright litigations. In addition, Sandeep is also regularly involved in formulating IP strategy, managing and strategising patents and trademark prosecutions in India and abroad.

Sandeep also has extensive experience in representing international and domestic clients in all types of complex arbitrations, including disputes pertaining to EPC contracts, infrastructure projects etc.

Sandeep regularly appears before the Supreme Court, high courts across the country, the Patent Office, NCLT and NCLAT, district courts and consumer forums.

In January 2022, Sandeep was identified as one of India’s Future Legal Leaders by IBLJ. Last year, Sandeep was recognised among the “Top 100 LEX-FALCON 2021” in the Legal category at the LexTalk World Conference, Dubai. Sandeep was also recently selected by the Advisory Committee of the In-house Corporate Counsel Association of India to be featured in the ICCA Coffee table book on the role of lawyers in taking India and the world forward. He is also frequently quoted in prominent newspapers/publications for his views on contemporary legal issues.

Prior to establishing ORTIS Law Offices, Sandeep headed the dispute resolution team of IndusLaw, New Delhi. Prior to that he was part of Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co, New Delhi and L&L Partners – Law Offices, New Delhi.

Yashwant-Grover Yashwant Grover
Intll Advocare
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Intellectual property

Rahul-Gulati Rahul Gulati
Key practice areas: Capital markets; securitisation & structured finance

Ashutosh-Gupta Ashutosh Gupta
HSA Advocates
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Compliance; corporate governance; inbound investment; risk management, strategic planning and implementation

Rishabh-Gupta Rishabh Gupta
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; joint ventures; mergers & acquisitions; private equity, venture capital & funds

Savitha-Jagadeesan Savitha Jagadeesan
Kochhar & Co
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; intellectual property; labour & employment; technology, media and telecommunications

Rohit-Jain Rohit Jain
Economic Laws Practice
Key practice areas: Compliance; defence; taxation

Sameer-Jain Sameer Jain
PSL Advocates & Solicitors
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; defence; infrastructure; litigation

Komal-Joshi Komal Joshi
ALMT Legal
Tel: +91 98200 77210
Mail: kjoshi@almtlegal.com
Key practice areas: Arbitration; corporate & commercial litigation; dispute resolution; shipping & maritime litigation
Komal Joshi is a partner at ALMT Legal, a leading Indian law firm. She has two decades of rich and diverse experience in advising various private and multinational clients. She is commended for her expertise in various practice areas, including corporate & commercial litigation, shipping and maritime litigation, aviation, white-collar crimes, and civil and criminal litigation.

Komal graduated from Sydenham College, University of Mumbai, with a bachelor’s degree in commerce and studied law at KC Law College, University of Mumbai. She has worked at a prestigious law firm in Mumbai for several years, and thereafter she practiced independently till she joined the firm as a senior associate. She was made a partner at ALMT Legal in 2018.

Komal has represented her clients before various fora including high courts all over India, the National Company Law Tribunal and the Supreme Court among others. She has a substantial amount of experience in dealing with disputes in various domestic, international and institutional arbitration proceedings. She has also represented clients in high-profile family disputes and matrimonial matters, and has facilitated the settling of complex family disputes.

She has advised her clients on matters relating to high-stake cybercrimes and white-collar crimes under the special acts of MPID, PMLA, SFIO and representation of clients before the Economic Offences Wing (EOW), Directorate of Enforcement (ED), Special Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) and local police stations. She has also successfully represented multinationals before the National Company Law Tribunal. She has also assisted a number of her clients with estate planning, testamentary issues, trust matters and transfer of property.

Professional appointments and activities

  • Bar Council of Maharashtra & Goa, India
  • Member of the Bombay Bar Association
  • Co-Chair for the Indian Merchants Chambers Law committee since April 2020
  • Member of FICCI
  • Member of IAG

Shruti-Kanodia Shruti Kanodia
Sagus legal
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Banking & finance; corporate & commercial; mergers & acquisitions; restructuring & insolvency

Shruti is the founding and managing partner of Sagus Legal, considered among Asia’s 30 fastest growing law firms in 2021. Sagus is a full-service law firm and has achieved a five-fold increase in fee earners during the pandemic. It has also been ranked by several well-known international legal publications, such as IFLR 1000, Benchmark Litigation, ALB and Asia Law, for corporate, M&A, banking, energy, projects and disputes resolution. Shruti was one of the finalists for Managing Partner of the Year, India and Middle East, by ALB Women in Law Awards, 2021.

Shruti has nearly 14 years of experience in mergers & acquisitions, private equity, banking & finance, complex transaction structuring, regulatory advisory, restructuring & insolvency and commercial disputes resolution.

Shruti graduated from NLS, Bengaluru, and started her career with S&R Associates. Subsequently, she was a partner in the corporate transactions team at Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co.

She serves as an independent director on the boards of Shalimar Paints, Nalwa Sons Investments and Jindal Stainless Steelway.

Sukrit-Kapoor Sukrit Kapoor
Hammurabi & Solomon Partners
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Litigation; restructuring & Insolvency; policy & regulatory

Prithvi-R-Kapur Prithvi R Kapur
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; corporate & commercial; international trade & bilateral investment treaties; litigation

Avinash-Kumar-Khard Avinash Kumar Khard
DSK Legal
Key practice areas: Banking & finance; infrastructure; power & energy; project finance

Tarun-Khurana Tarun Khurana
Khurana & Khurana
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; data protection; intellectual property; technology, media and telecommunications

Anand-Lakra Anand Lakra
Key practice areas: Capital markets; mergers & acquisitions; private equity, venture capital & funds; securities

Shantanu-Malik Shantanu Malik
Hammurabi & Solomon Partners
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Arbitration; litigation; real estate; technology, media and telecommunications

Rudra-Pandey Rudra Pandey
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial

Sathvik-Ponnappa Sathvik Ponnappa
Khaitan & Co
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Capital markets

Moiz-Rafique Moiz Rafique
Privy Legal Service
Managing Partner
Tel: +91 11 4655 2925
Email: shruti@saguslegal.com
Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; corporate & commercial; litigation; restructuring & insolvency
Moiz Rafique graduated from Nirma University in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in law with honours and with a focus on constitutional law. After a few years of apprenticeship, he started his own firm Privy Legal Services in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. With a sharp mind and keen commercial sense, Moiz grew from strength to strength appearing before almost all judicial forums making dispute resolution, corporate advisory and due diligence his core forte in the state of Gujarat.

He has become well known in the legal fraternity by defending causes requiring the attention of the courts and by acquiring immediate protection through writ remedies. He has argued on uncommon and complex issues, and has succeeded in getting relief. He has also negotiated with financial institutions and helped clients to settle debts.

Moiz has been retained by high net-worth individuals to defend their companies in corporate insolvency proceedings across various NCLT benches. He has also been engaged to advise, settle and negotiate contracts for several US-based multinationals on their project investments in India. He has advised startups in various market sectors and holds expertise in disputes arising in the arena of beverage and bottling, tobacco, ceramics, pharmaceutical, textiles and chemical industrial sectors. Moiz has also rendered pro bono services to many religious and charitable trusts, solely to upkeep institutions of good virtues unfettered from vexatious litigation. He has been engaged by several families for settling their disputes premised on the dissolution of high-net partnership firms.

Moiz believes in knowledge acquisition and has been objective-driven since day one. He has been a contributor to several international journals and is also an active columnist for several reputed dailies rendering his opinion on tax reforms and other regulatory policies. His work has been striking par excellence and, as a result, he is frequently given opportunities to represent firms based outside Gujarat.

Praveen-Raju Praveen Raju
Spice Route Legal
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; mergers & acquisitions; power & energy; private equity, venture capital & funds

Lakshmi-Raman Lakshmi Raman
Numen Law
Key practice areas: Anti-corruption & anti-bribery; criminal litigation; litigation; white-collar crime

Nidhi-Rani Nidhi Rani
Key practice areas: Banking & finance; project finance

Shraddha-Ray-Menon Shraddha Ray Menon
Tag & Bench Associates
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; data protection; e-commerce, fintech, blockchain & cryptos; mergers & acquisitions

Deepto-Roy Deepto Roy
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co
Key practice areas: Infrastructure; power & energy; projects finance

Saket-Satapathy Saket Satapathy
Tuli & Co
Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; insurance; litigation

Anshul-Sunil-Saurastri Anshul Sunil Saurastri
Krishna & Saurastri Associates

Tel: +91 22 2200 6322
Email: anshul@krishnaandsaurastri.com
Key practice areas: Intellectual property; joint ventures; licensing & franchising; litigation
Anshul is a partner, advocate (attorney-at-law) and patent attorney at Krishna & Saurastri Associates. His practice includes both contentious and non-contentious matters in intellectual property and corporate-commercial law.

Anshul handles patent, trademark and design preparation and prosecution, oppositions, and invalidations in addition to appellate work. He is regularly involved in litigation relating to patent, trademark and design infringement, and unfair competition claims such as passing off, disparagement and defamation. He is actively involved in the protection of trade secrets, confidential information, data and privacy. He also handles complaints and disputes related to consumer protection and advertising. From time to time, he counsels and provides opinions on infringement, and the invalidity of patents, trademarks and designs, biodiversity laws, etc. He has hands on experience in handling breach of contract claims. From time to time, he is engaged in conducting due diligence, structuring, negotiating and preparing agreements such as NDAs, JVAs, M&As, business transfers, distribution, agency, licensing, franchising, technology transfer, employment, and so on.

Prior to practising law, he worked as an analyst in an investment firm in the US. He also spent time in the lab doing R&D work for which he received recognition as an author in different journals and scholarly publications. Holding degrees in the sciences, engineering and law and training in legal and technical areas, he has amassed cross-functional expertise. Anshul holds a Master’s in Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Sciences from Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, and a Degree of Law from the Government Law College, Mumbai University. Anshul is registered to practise at the Bar Council of India and the Indian Patent & Trademark Office.

Anshul is a member of INTA’s Unfair Competition Committee, AIPPI’s Standing Committee on Trade Secrets and the Executive Council of the LES (India). He is an active member of APAA, AIPLA, IBA, IPBA, and ABA. Anshul frequently lectures at different seminars, conferences and universities on IP and other commercial legal issues. He has published numerous articles on these subjects in national and international legal publications.

Aashit-Shah Aashit Shah
Key practice areas: Banking & finance; bankruptcy & insolvency; restructuring & insolvency; securitisation & structured finance

Bhushan-Shah Bhushan Shah
Mansukhlal Hiralal & Co
Key practice areas: Corporate & commercial; litigation; mergers & acquisitions; private equity, venture capital & funds

Ragini-Shah Ragini Shah
Literati Juris
Key practice areas: Intellectual property; life sciences and pharmaceuticals; litigation; technology, media and telecommunications

Avnish-Sharma Avnish Sharma
Khaitan & Co
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Real estate

Rishabh-Shroff Rishabh Shroff
Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas
Key practice areas: Inbound investment; mergers & acquisitions; private client; succession planning (family office)

Anand-Srivastava Anand Srivastava
Link Legal
New Delhi

Tel: +91 98110 43316
Email: anand@linklegal.in
Key practice areas: Aviation; infrastructure; mergers & acquisitions; restructuring & insolvency
Anand is a partner at Link Legal with over 20 years of experience. Having been with the firm since its inception, he has played a pivotal role in its growth as an equity partner and is dual qualified to practice in India and New York. Within the firm, he has nurtured and developed practice areas such as banking, aviation, project and construction, corporate/M&A and disputes. He has represented various multinationals, conglomerates, government bodies, etc. Some of his key clientele include SpiceJet, GMR Group, Jindal, JSW, Aurobindo, among many others.

Anand is recognised as a “leading individual” by The Legal 500 and is highly recommended by various global legal directories such as RSG, Chambers and Partners, Asialaw, IBLJ and IFLR1000.

Anand completed his LLM from Columbia Law School, New York and has been recognised as a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and awarded the Edwin Parker Certificate for International Law. He is also qualified as a trained mediator with the New York Peace Institute. Anand divides his time between the New York and India offices of the firm.

Dipti-Lavya-Swain Dipti Lavya Swain
HSA Advocates
New Delhi
Key practice areas: E-commerce, fintech, blockchain & cryptos; power & energy; private equity, venture capital & funds; restructuring & insolvency

Kunal-Tandon Kunal Tandon
Tandon & Co
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Banking & finance; intellectual property; litigation; restructuring & insolvency

Atmaja-Tripathy Atmaja Tripathy
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; competition & antitrust; intellectual property; technology, media and telecommunications

Anand-Varma Anand Varma
APT Legal
New Delhi
Key practice areas: Arbitration & ADR; bankruptcy & insolvency; litigation; power & energy

Parul-Verma Parul Verma
Kochhar & Co
New Delhi
Tel: +91 99 5300 8975
Email: parul.verma@kochhar.com
Key practice areas: Banking & finance; infrastructure; project finance; real estate
Parul is a partner with Kochhar & Co and focuses on projects and financing. Her core areas of expertise include advising various corporates and business groups on construction and development of domestic and international projects, advising foreign and Indian banks and financial institutions on lending for airports, roads, power and other infrastructure projects, structured financing transactions, mezzanine debt structures, real estate financing and stressed assets financing. She has also extensively advised clients on real estate acquisition deals.

Notably, clients say that “Parul comes across as a very dependable and sincere lawyer, someone with whom you can leave the transaction and she will control it with full sincerity and dedication. It is not easy to convince her, but once she is convinced, leave it to her to convince the other side and she will get you the right results.” Another client says that “Parul adds tremendous value to deals, with sharp business acumen, searing intellect and a close understanding of market positions in negotiations, and pragmatism in deal closures while preserving the client’s best interests at all times.”

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