Interview with Adv.Chinmay S.Bhosale: Partner, SRB Juris & Gold Medalist from University of Pune
Chinmay Bhosale completed his baccalaureate in law from ILS College, Pune in 2010 and has been a topper in the University of Pune for thrice. He had also made it to the final round of Rhodes scholarship which is regarded as a prestigious opportunity to study in the University of Oxford. He is currently pursuing his doctoral studies on the thesis “Malicious Prosecution” and has also interned with legal luminaries on Civil and Criminal side of law.
He proudly quotes H.M.Seervai’s “From compromise and things half done, keep me with stern and stubborn pride. And when, at last, the fight is won; God, keep me still unsatisfied.”
Q: You come from a reputable family of esteemed legal minds wherein law runs in the veins of all. So was it a spontaneous decision to take up law?
ANS: No. As you said that I belong to a family of acclaimed legal luminaries. In my childhood, I used to visit my dad’s chamber & witness those client meetings. This environment naturally had an impact on my decision. So I grew up in an atmosphere which was conducive enough to enable me take up law as a career. Thus the obvious choice for me was to select law.
Q: Can you shed some light on your college life spent in ILS Pune?
ANS: ILS played a very pivotal role in growing me as a well turned out lawyer. My 5 years at ILS gave me the time to grow up intellectually. It helped me groom my personality with all the array of opportunities it could provide me in different avenues. It also provided me an ample space to do internships under senior advocates, pursue diploma courses, moot court competitions, sports and all the peripheral things which are essential for a law student to learn at that stage to groom your personality.
Q: As you said, that you also did some diplomas in your college days. Can you please elaborate on it?
ANS: Yes, I did my diploma courses simultaneously alongside our normal curriculum. I pursued some courses which the ILS faculty already provided viz. Diploma in Human Rights and Diploma in Medical Jurisprudence and Forensic Sciences. Then I did a Diploma in Securities Law & Investment Management from Asian School of Cyber Law. Appending the above, I also completed a Graphology course in view of handwriting analysis from Institute of Graphology and Personal Success under the expert guidance of Mr.Milind Rajore who besides being the Founder & Director of this institute, is also a guest lecturer in ILS.
Q: You have interned under reputed lawyers of civil and criminal side. How do you describe your internship experience overall?
ANS: In my 2nd year of BSL.LL.B I interned under Sr.Adv. Shrikant Kanetkar. Here I got trained in the skill of doing research work. Also, it was at this stage, where I realised that Civil law is not my cup of tea, and that further emboldened my decision towards taking up Criminal law as my main line of practise. From my 3rd year onwards, I started my internship under Sr.Adv. Ashok Mundargi at the Bombay High Court, who is a giant at the High Court Bar and known for infamous Salman Khan hit and run case. It was a very enriching and enlightening experience to work under him. The second place to learn law after my college, was his chamber. I participated in almost all his client meetings and would also accompany him to the legal conferences. Not just that, but I also had opportunities to assist him in drawing arguments to some of the famous cases. Subsequently, I have also worked with Sr.Adv. Satish Maneshinde known for the infamous Sanjay Dutt case. He has an envious aura around him which is very inspiring. I learnt the nuances of litigation from him. Overall, each and everything taught me atleast something or the other, which helped me gain a good understanding of the criminal law.
Q: It is said that, “Cross-examination forms the very essential part in litigation” but that very important ingredient is missing in the moot courts. Your view please.
ANS: No doubt, the working in the actual Trial Court and in the moot courts, both stand on different footholds but the moot courts gives you a brief insight of those courts in the making itself, and that sometimes may count as a feather to your cap i.e. in your personal experience. Else, there’s a lot of difference in the real working of courts and in the actual involvement and preparation of the case and thus the participation of a student in moot courts doesn’t create the desired impact. But still one may go for it, to have a sip of advocacy, until he or she receives the right to advocacy i.e. sanad.
Q: ‘Malicious Prosecution’ is the topic of your thesis for your Ph.D. What was the need to select such topic?
ANS: There have been numerous judgments of the Supreme Court, whereby the apex court has either ordered or given directions to the police machinery to take the precautionary measures before instituting a prosecution and effecting an arrest. However, as I have observed in many cases that these guidelines are blatantly ignored which further leads to untimely delay in justice, harassment to the litigants and a failure in the criminal justice system. Besides this, the loss of time, money, energy and reputation is irreparable. With an intention to help curb this harassment of people who come out clean from prosecutions and arrests, and stop blatant misuse of law by many, I took up my Ph.D in ‘Malicious Prosecution’.
Q: How much significance do you lay on extra-curricular activities besides one’s academic?
ANS: Well, I have always believed in an overall development of an individual and thus have always strived to be an all-rounder throughout my career. I share a penchant for sports and have played Netball and Basketball on national level and state level respectively. Besides being a voracious reader, I am also an avid trekker and have trekked Himalayas to many major peaks in India. My love for music also persisted me to try my hands onto tabla and thus I encourage on an overall development of a being. Whether be it music, sports or then anything else.
Q: Today, Corporate law is flourishing in the legal fraternity and many law aspirants are eyeing onto make a big name in that. Then, why Criminal law was your cup of tea?
ANS: “Law is the king of kings” irrespective of whether it is civil, criminal or corporate law. I do agree with you to some extent. However, I consider corporate law and its practice as somewhat superficial or virtual. Many a times the “corporate practice” is “created” than it being actually existing as a need of the client. However, this proliferation of legal hassles is resulting in huge economic gains in corporate law sector which is very lucrative to majority crowd. Secondly, my father who is an eminent name in the circle of criminal law always motivated me and may be that aura hinted me to practise in criminal side.
Q: How do you see the growth of NLUs & NLUites in comparison with the non-NLUites? Your view please.
ANS: National Law Universities or National Law Schools have been in India for more than 20 years now. The recent to come up being the Maharashtra NLU which was announced by the Government last year. Coming to the point. Let me illustrate you this with an instance; the worst performer of a NLU might be much better than the worst performer of a non-NLU . However, the top brass of non-NLU insitutes will be at par or even better than students from NLUs. So there it balances. Secondly, the legal luminaries who are currently counted in India’s top ten do not belong to any of NLUs. Thirdly, given such a long period of their existence in India, it would have been evident to see few of these NLUites in that list or even in top twenty, but presently which is not such case, except for a very few. Thus, I would infer that it all depends upon an individual and differs from every student to student, rather than the NLU making a major impact.
Q: You have topped the University of Pune not just once, but for whopping three times. Any study secrets for our readers?
ANS: Having an eidetic memory, I was a vivid visual learner. I believed in the theory of peer-to-peer learning. So it was either me or anyone amongst our friends, topping the university. We used to always discuss law within our group of friends and in that exchange or sharing of knowledge, we also kept abreast with the legal updates or amendments in law. Also, I made it a point that I never studied from the notes available in the market. Each and every time I used to thoroughly go through all the relevant commentaries and prepare my own notes. But now the law students can thank the Legal Bloc too, as they are fortunate to find the similar resources from you guys.
Q: Nowadays, it’s been seen that many of the students prefer doing LL.M from foreign universities. How do you see this whole scenario in a wider scope, whether in reference to India & in foreign?
ANS: I was one amongst those fifteen who had made in the final round of Rhodes Scholarship, that was one my major reasons for pursuing my LL.M. from abroad. Now as you asked, the reasons why one wants to pursue LL.M. from foreign universities may be various. Some might just intend to booze and wind away their time in foreign land under the guise of higher education or some might just for the sake of experiencing the approach or curriculum there, might wish to go for it. However, what most matters, is the career you want to pursue post LL.M. Thus, keeping that view in mind, you may find it easier to choose, of pursuing LL.M from India or from some foreign university. So if you want to settle in a certain foreign country, a foreign degree will surely help you in the long run. However, if you want to come down and practise herein India only, and that too in litigation, then there is absolutely no necessity of a foreign degree.
Q: You have also been very active in the sphere of social work. Can you shed some light on it?
ANS: Yes, I truly believe that we should do our part of service towards the society and give them back in whatever way possible by us. So earlier in my college days, I used to always volunteer in social causes whenever and wherever possible for me. But now due to the restraint of time, I mostly help the organisations by monetary terms or sponsorships to those working in field of education and in providing food. Some of them are Make a Difference (MAD), Robin Hood Army, whom I know personally or have seen their work from a close angle.
Q: What’s your view on All India Bar Examination (AIBE)? Don’t you think that, it’s an unnecessary burden on students, since although he has qualified the law exam, but still has to appear for the AIBE in order to attain a sanad?
ANS: The question is not of the exam but of the quality which an advocate is expected to possess. The level of this noble profession is to be maintained and thus it’s the lawyers who will have to raise their bar or ability in order to qualify themselves to practise in this noble profession. The Maharashtra state govt. has recently issued a Government Resolution (GR) to start with the Common Entrance Test (CET) from next academic year 2016-17 for admission to law. What’s your point of view? As I said previously, that law is a noble profession and the field of law is not meant for any Tom, Dick or Harry. It’s a profession which calls for devotion towards justice, hard work and dedication in upholding the confidence of the society at large. The implementation of CET will bring transparency in the admissions process and also it will help to a large extent to filter good minds towards this profession. This should be the key behind changing the outlook of the society towards lawyers in general down the line.
Q: Any 5 books which you recommend for our readers, based out of our curriculum?
Ram Jethmalani: An Authorized Biography by Nalini Gera.
Before Memory Fades : An autobiography by Fali S. Nariman
Evoking H.M.Seervai by Feroza Seervai, which has unfortunately now run out of markets.
It’s not about the Bike by Lance Armstrong.
Q: Sir, last but not the least. Your encouraging words of wisdom for LB readers?
ANS: If you are destined to enter law, then you should also have a clarity about your goals, or an idea as to what do you expect from this field or yourself after getting into it. This field can be very rewarding for the one who has the determination to work hard and stick through the hard times.