In conversation with the winners of the 16th National Client Consulting Competition, 2015 organized by Kerala Law Academy

Ujval Mohan and Sakshi Sharma are Second year students of law at Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar. It was their debut client consulting competition and they won it by retaining the top position in every round of the competition. They are regular visitors of the SCC Blog also.

  • Congratulations Ujval and Sakshi. You are the winners of this prestigious competition. What is your first reaction?

Sakshi: I think it is still not sinking in because it is our first win.

Ujval: It came as a surprise, taken aback by it. But it is a great feeling. It is our first client consulting competition and as a team we did it well and it is good to have GNLU’s name coming in.

  • One thing that I have noted throughout your performance is your chemistry as a team. It was really very good. What about it?

Sakshi: I think we were just very amicable with regard to the preparing as well. So when we started we were sure that we will be able to work together and I think it resulted.

Ujval: I think a lot of it is based on how we did before our practice round. It is a good equation that by our personal relation as well as our friendship it worked.

  • You have already told that it is your first client consulting competition. How did you learn the key elements of client consultation?

Ujval: In our college, we have an intra round whereby within the college we met some and participated. That’s our first introduction to it and as soon as that happened we were allotted this competition and we took it up.

  • What about this competition, the Kerala Law Academy and the hospitality?

Sakshi: I like this college a lot. It is very beautiful place plus the weather at this point of time added a lot to the beauty.

Ujval:  What we felt comfortable is the legacy behind it. We entered Kerala Law Academy; it has a legacy, so many years of experience and things like that. And the hospitality was on point, it was amazing. Whenever we needed water, we got it within thirty seconds. Accommodation was great and food was good. We loved the experience and ‘sadhya’ and taking us for the city tour was also fantastic. I think these are the things that all should learn.

  • In all rounds of the competition, both of you suggested ‘out of court settlement’ to the disputes of your clients. How do you considered ADR as an efficient method of dispute resolution?

Ujval: Yes. Alternative Dispute Resolution is proved to be a successful method for finding a solution to a problem. Take an example of negotiation. I feel that it is something where you understand, you sit across a table and it gets over faster than taking years and years in a court.

Sakshi: I also advised our clients that the litigation is a time consuming and resource consuming exercise. It will take a long time so all the ADR methods -arbitration, negotiation, conciliation, mediation- is something which is faster. You get what you want, so it is a win-win situation for both parties.

Ujval: In regular course by the time the reliefs come to you, you have no value for it.

  •  What about the clients and the judges?

Sakshi: Both the clients and judges were attached with the quality of professionalism. The entire judging criteria were remarkable and transparent. Personally we really liked the last round, because, in the last round the client was very good and judges were very good. We felt really very well. We researched when we talked to the judges so that we knew something what we talked to them.

Ujval: Apart from that, throughout the rounds the clients were very well prepared. So at no point did we have to go out of our way to make sure that the client knew something. The clients were very prepared so ‘kudos’ to KLA and the judges were really excellent. So that in every round we got constructive feedbacks which we definitely needed. Especially in our Semi finals and Finals when we were questioned multiple times, we knew that we were in good hands to be judged.

  • What do you want to become?

Sakshi: I haven’t thought that.

Ujval: No idea. We are only at the second year of law learning. I will take a decision about career only after taking some more time.

  • And your advice to the upcoming participants of this competition?

Ujval: Think out of the box.

Sakshi: Exactly. Think differently. That is the main thing and make sure that you have a very good teammate.

  • Ujval, it’s really glad to know that you are a reader of the SCC Blog. What about the Blog?

Ujval: For a law student or a lawyer or for anybody in this sphere, the most important thing more than knowing from the books is to know what is going on around. A law student may not have a lot of time everyday going through all the judgments. I really like the SCC Blog, because I get the newsfeed, I get the crux of what is happening so that enriches me. I am able to have a conversation about legal system with anybody. So I really appreciate the initiative of the SCC blog and hope to see it grow.

  • Thank you friends and once again congratulating you for your achievement. Wishing a very successful academic life and a successful career to both of you.

Ujval & Sakshi: Thank you so much.

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