Lawctopus’ HNLU Campus Manager Aunnesha Dey recently interviewed alumnus Arpit Guru who is currently serving as a Law Clerk in Supreme Court of India.
1. Why did you choose law? How was the law school journey like?
Taking up law as a profession was never a matter of serendipitous coincidence but a conscious decision churned out after a long drawn thought process.
A process that started at the age of 10 when I used to observe my father working tirelessly to enforce rule of law and ensuring guilty being punished by the court as a police officer.
With my thought process attaining maturity, I was convinced that the legal profession was best suited for me to creatively exhibit my potential.
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My journey through law school remains and will remain the most memorable part of my life.
Law school is not only a place where we go to study; it is a place to expand our outlook towards life/world.
I would personally say that in law school the atmosphere you get is the best to develop ones capabilities not only in the field of law but in all the aspects of life.
The best thing, which I am sure, every student is fond of is going to new places. It is through exploring, meeting new people, making friends etc we get to expand out outlook.
This can be done by mooting (National and International), going for conferences, debates, MUN’s, Fests (Cultural and Sports) etc.
2. Your biggest achievements in law school? If you could reverse some aspects of your college life – what would they be?
There have been many things, which may be called as achievements like moots, paper publications etc. But there are two things, which I call as an achievement that are:
(a) Coaching the team for the 4th Annual International ADR Mooting Competition at School of Law, City University of Hong Kong which brought laurels to the University.
(b) To teach the junior students (as teaching assistant) of my college.
3. Subjects you liked the most? Any particular Professor who inspired you?
Subjects that I enjoyed the most were Constitutional Law and Arbitration.
My inspiration is Prof. Uday Shankar who is currently teaching at IIT, Kharagpur.
4. Some important things which law school didn’t teach you but ‘working’ did?
Law School doesn’t exactly equip us for the outside world and specially the “working” aspect. Still law student have an idea what they have to face after graduating when to go for internships. Having said that, when we step in the real world we need a different perspective towards things.
When you are working in a law firm or with an advocate the situation becomes very serious as in there are people relying on you and your work affects your client as well it affects you. So the level of sincerity goes up.
5. Does ‘specialization’ in any field of law help in the early stage of one’s career?
In some universities there is no concept of Honors paper but some Universities do offer it.
In my view specialised paper should be given only when the basic subjects are covered and the whole concept of having specialised paper is to train the student for a particular field.
Still it’s upon the students who can change the field even after doing specialization. So there is no harm is going for specialisation.
6. What, according to you, should be the focus of the law students at law school?
Students should be clear with the basic subjects of law. Academics should always be the priority as in India everything boils down to marks/CGPA. So it’s always better to maintain a decent GPA and also go for co-curricular activities.
What I think is before choosing a particular field (job/career) a student should at least intern at a particular place to get a first hand experience.
And as far as shaping the career graph is concerned I can only suggest that a student should develop ‘curiosity’. By developing curiosity a student will learn new things and it is very important to learn new things as it leads to a value addition to our knowledge.
7. What survival instincts should lawyers-to-be develop?
In this competitive world what I personally feel is that when a joins student the profession, he/she should be patient.
There is no straight-jacket formula for becoming a good lawyer or to survive in the field of law.
A lawyer should always think himself as a student of law who is ready to learn new things.
Also a lawyer should develop good communication skills.
8. What is the real world like? Please throw some light on your schedule.
Things change on the other side of law school.
I am doing Clerkship under a Supreme Court Judge and it’s different kind of work compared to litigation or a firm.
My schedule depends upon the work as I have to attend court and work at the judge’s residence, in toto it’s a great learning experience.
9. What would be your 3 biggest pieces of advice to law students entering the profession?
Be patient, be confident and have faith in your self. Good Luck!