Name, Year of Study, College
Komal Parakh, 3rd Year, Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Punjab
Name of the Organization, City
A&P Partners, Mumbai
Duration of the Internship
1st – 29th July, 2016 (4 weeks)
Location, Size, Team Strength of the Office
The A&P office is located on the 3rd Floor of Venkatesh Chambers, Prescott Road, Fort. It’s right above IDBI Bank, so look out for that.
If you’re travelling by taxi, a popular landmark would be JB Petit Girls’ High School – the office is located in the lane right opposite the school.
If you’re travelling by local train, the office is about a 10 minute walk from both the CST station and Churchgate station.
The office is fairly small with a team strength of 5-10 people including the partners and the paralegals.
I learnt about A&P Partners through a cousin and was really keen on interning there since it was a startup firm that was also full-service.
That meant that, firstly, I would get a lot of significant work to do because of fewer people in the office and, secondly, that the work would be varied in terms of fields of law as well as the kind of input required from the interns.
I applied for the internship in the last week of April by sending my CV and covering letter by email directly to one of the partners, Ms. Priyanka Sinha at psinha[at]anppartner.in.
I received the confirmation for my internship from the firm’s info email which is info[at]anppartners.in in a matter of 15 days, so the wait was neither long nor excruciating.
I would suggest that you apply well in advance if you want to secure a spot for your desired period of internship because the slots for interns are quite limited.
Editor’s note: Do NOT apply to the above email IDs en masse. Your application will probably end in the junk folder. Apply if you really are really think you’d make a good match and apply with a customized CV and cover letter.
Duration, Work Hours
My internship was for a period of 4 weeks, and we worked 5 days a week from Monday to Friday.
The timings were flexible and there was no strict regime regarding the number of hours an intern was supposed to clock in. I
would generally arrive at the office at about 10 a.m. and would leave around 6 p.m. because work would usually be done by then. You’re also not expected to work over the weekend, so you’d have all the time to explore the city!
Accommodation for me didn’t require much thought or effort because I was staying at my relatives’ place near CP Tank, which is pretty close to Fort, where the office was.
I didn’t even have to take the local trains and commute was conveniently done by buses or taxis in a matter of 30-40 minutes. That’s a very big plus, considering that it was Mumbai in the month of July (all hail the Mumbai rains!).
First Impression, First Day Formalities
I was quite excited on the first day for this was to be my first ‘firm internship’. I was nervous at the same time because I had only finished my 2nd year and my knowledge of the law was therefore limited.
I was asked to report at 10 a.m. and when I reached the office, there were 2 other interns who’d been working at the firm for a couple of months already. We introduced each other and I waited for the partners to arrive.
I then met both the partners, Ms. Ankita Singh and Ms. Priyanka Sinha. We had a little chat about how I was finding Mumbai, where I was putting up and my travel arrangements.
We spoke about what all I had studied in law school up until that point and what kind of work I was looking to do.
I had gone through their website (anppartners.in) quite thoroughly so I knew the practise areas I was interested in. We also discussed our expectations from this internship and what the outcome of this internship should be.
They were no first-day formalities as such.
I had not taken my laptop to work that day so I mostly just did readings from the books and case files at the office. I even had a discussion on a case with one of the partners later on.
The paralegal at the office offered to show me around the vicinity during lunch time and we had a delicious Dosa lunch.
My first impression of the firm was that there was a lot of emphasis on learning outcomes from every project/reading/research.
I was glad that that was the case because I wanted to take back with me as much as I could from this internship. The people in the office were all very amiable and approachable and that helped ease nerves.
Like I mentioned earlier, I did get to do a variety of work that spanned from case law research on various matters to drafting of legal opinions for foreign corporations.
My work was mainly concerned with Labour and Employment Laws, but I also got the chance to deal with Law of Evidence, Civil Procedure and Negotiable Instruments.
I also had a brush with Trademark Law when I assisted in the drafting of the reply to the examination report of a trademark application.
All interns are also required to submit a research project at the end of the internship on a topic of their choice and help and guidance can be sought from the partners whenever needed.
Work Environment, the Office Vibe
The general vibe of the office was very warm. The co-interns were very friendly and we’d often discuss our work and help each other out. We’d also chill and just talk about random things every once a while when we weren’t too busy.
The small size of the firm also meant that we interacted directly with the partners for any and all work. The partners were just at arm’s length and were always willing to help and review our work.
Both the partners were exceptionally warm and constantly encouraged us to read on new and interesting subject matters. We were also lucky to have them occasionally sit with us, ask us about what we’d read and explain to us the concepts involved.
Good things (In other words, why you should definitely intern at A&P Partners!)
One of the best thing about my stint at A&P Partners was probably the fact that the interns were relied upon and trusted to get important and significant work done.
Despite the fact that this was my first ‘firm internship’, I got to do drafting of legal opinions by myself with a little guidance from the partners. There was never dearth of work, as long as one was eager.
One other thing that I really liked about the office is its location. The office is a mere walking distance from the Bombay High Court (we all know how iconic that is, right?) and being close to Marine Drive is a definite bonus.
There are numerous cafes and food joints alongside a couple of movie theatres in the vicinity, so good food and entertainment after office hours was always close by. For fans of colonial/European architecture, this location is an absolute treat to be working at.
My fondest memory of the internship is of the last day of my internship when the partners took us all out to lunch. Apparently, it’s a tradition in the firm!
We had a really good time discussing things we wouldn’t otherwise get a chance to. The partners were really frank with us too, and they asked me to share my thoughts (good AND bad) on the internship.
We discussed my future plans and they gave me their insight and advise which I was immensely grateful for.
They also gave me feedback on my work and offered their help in whatever endeavour I would take up.
Bad things (Nothing is all good, or is it?)
To be honest, I really had nothing to complain about at the end of this internship. If anything at all, I just wished I got to attend more hearings at the High Court.
There were very few hearings scheduled for the litigation team in that particular month and I was also mostly occupied with other work.
How did we chill?
Chilling during the work day often meant talking short walks in the neighbourhood because the weather would be really pleasant.
We’d sometimes also sit and chat about everything other than work, and I would get recommendations about the things to do and places to visit from the fellow interns who lived in Mumbai.
After office, if I wasn’t heading straight home, I was treating myself at one of the cafes nearby.
Stipend / month
My biggest take-away from this internship was that you have to be proactive about building your network in the industry, especially if you’ve always been at the losing end of ‘jugaad’.
Before this internship, I often fretted over being a first-gen lawyer in the family and not having enough contacts in the legal industry to help me secure an internship.
I realised that an even better way to work yourself into the industry is to build your own network, starting from the place you intern at, and to keep in touch with all those people who you’ve worked with.
That way, they know you and help you for the value of your work. You can start small and still make it big in this industry if you work hard and work smart.