Empowered women empower women’
We begin with our inaugural ceremony for the first edition of NLUJDMC with the participation of 32 teams from law schools across India. We were able to take this competition off on such a successful note, due to the consistent effort of our CORE team which is primarily composed of women.
As our VC explains, the primary facet of ‘deal’ mediation is that it is a mediation without a dispute, which differs from the traditional mediation competition. Being one of its kind in India, we hope that it fosters the spirit of negotiation and acquaints the participants with the nuances of consensual dispute resolution processes.
Training Session- The First NLUJ Deal Mediation Competition, 2019
The first edition of NLUJDMC started with two training sessions. The first session titled ‘Changing the way we look at Challenges and Impasse’ was conducted by Kritika Krishnamurthy, who is a certified mediator from International Centre for Alternative Dispute Resolution, Ministry of Law & Justice, Government of India. This session was extremely relevant, as it discussed some real-life situations and involved various exercises aimed at enabling a mediator to identify the issues involved in a dispute and how to ‘tackle the Gorilla in the room’. She discussed various stages involved in a dispute and how to tackle it at each of these stages.
The second session by Mrs. Lalit Mohini Bhat who has been a practicing advocate from last 22 years and is currently a senior partner at Lawlinks, New Delhi. She has also been enrolled as a mediator with the Delhi High Court Mediation Centre. She sought to help the participants understand the procedure of mediation by breaking it down into various stages and addressing the various nuances associated with each stage. The sessions were concluded with a Q&A hour, where Ms.Krishnamurthy and Mrs. Lalit Mohini Bhat addressed various queries of the participants.
7:30-8:30pm- Orientation Session
The orientation session was conducted by Jonathan Rodrigues and Nisshant Laroia representing PACT, where they briefly informed the participants about PACT and GAADR and the various training programs offered by them. The first half of the orientation revolved around perfecting the nuances of an opening statement, the key behind calling a caucus and understanding its significance. They also discussed, in great detail, what should ideally be present in a general session and closing statement. It was followed by an interactive question and answer session which addressed participants’ queries regarding various aspects of the competition rules and format.
Day 2: March 9, 2019
Preliminary Round 1 began at 2 PM
Aggressive counsels trying to win the game for their respective clients and willing to wreck the heads of the opposing counsels.
NLIU v. GNLU sounds like a CLAT aspirants dilemma. Dilemma there was, but it was for the judges this time as they had to decide the better one as the well-equipped teams locked horns in the round.
Room 3, 4, 6 & 7
Mediators call for caucus as parties hit a deadlock.
The agreement has been reached and the session concluded on a positive note when the parties decided to come together and have another mediation session to help build stronger relations.
Preliminary Rounds 2 began at 4:15
Prepared counsels are a delight to watch especially when they are emotionally involved in the issue. Their level of preparedness shows their involvement and their commitment to the issue at hand.
Who said lawyers aren’t good with numbers. The myth named math was solved by the sharp legal minds that were at work discussing the nuances regarding their position and holding in the market.
The parties reached an impasse which lead to a deadlock in the negotiation. This is the time when we are utterly grateful for the presence of the mediators. They took charge and helped clear the issue at hand.
Some put their point up straight while the others play a really silent role. They like to open up their cards gradually. We did witness both kinds of teams in this round as one team held back, calmly testing the waters while the other was pretty open with what they wanted. It was a great display of two very different kinds of strategies that can be efficiently used.
Preliminary Round 3 began at 6:30 PM
It seemed as if the parties had set their eyes and prioritized separate grounds. However, the mediators made sure did not let the parties deviate from one agenda to another making their role crucial to the session.
An enthusiastic counsel takes on the mantle of the mediator as she placates the other party and tries to explain the needs and interests of the first party.
The mediators seemed to be taking an active role in order to bridge the gap in understanding between the two parties. With this, the mediators made sure the parties come to terms with each other.
The main strategy of one of the parties was to play good-cop, bad-cop. However, the creative solution given by the other party made them come to terms with each other in several aspects.
Preliminary rounds were successfully concluded at 7:30. Participants are waiting for the breaks to be announced.
The negotiating teams from NALSAR University of Law, National Law University Delhi, AURO University and Symbiosis Law School, Pune and mediators from NLIU Bhopal, School of Law, Christ, Symbiosis Law School, Hyderabad and Symbiosis Law School, Pune have qualified to Semi-Finals.
Day 3: March 10, 2019
Semi-Finals began at 9:30AM
“If I want to fly 8000 miles in the air, I think security is pretty important for me” They started on a good tone with a good structure as well. The session helped them to get some information about each other that they would use towards a solution in further sessions.
Both the sides have put forth their issues and the mediators are putting forth the order in which they believe the agendas should be discussed. The teams do not seem to be happy with the given order of agendas and are trying to ensure that issues that they consider more important are discussed first. After a long discussion, the agenda has been laid down.
Negotiating Teams from National Law University, Delhi and Symbiosis Law School, Pune and Mediators from Symbiosis Law School, Pune and NLIU, Bhopal have qualified to finals.
Finals began at 11:30AM in the NLUJ Auditorium
Negotiating Teams NLUD and SLS Pune
Mediators- SLS Pune, NLIU Bhopal
The mediators drew a beautiful analogy between mediation and sharing the pulp of an orange. The process of confidentiality was explained in depth and parties were made at ease. The negotiators spoke about their ethnicities and origins and how they understand the business and their ability to take it forward better than anyone else. Questions were raised regarding the future of the company and at the very outset a mood of settlement and togetherness was laid down and discussed by the negotiators to the best of their abilities. Assurances being provided from both sides regarding the same. The attorneys got straight to the point and raised the relevant questions regarding where the dispute lies and what the fundamental issues are and what could have possibly lead the other party to believe that a siphoning of funds took place. One of the negotiators also spoke about her problems as a woman in the business and felt that she had been aloof of the procedures within the company. Towards the end, both parties seemed to rise above all their differences and amicably come to a solution regarding the problem laid down in front of them.
Valedictory Ceremony began at 1PM
Negotiating team comprising Arudra Rao and Anmol Mittal from National Law University Delhi won the title of best Client-Counsel Pair. Negotiating team comprising Pranay Tuteja and Mishika Rathore from Symbiosis Law School Pune took home the title of Second Best Client-Counsel Pair.
Paavni Jain from Symbiosis Law School, Pune won the Best Mediator title and Shefali Chawla from NLIU Bhopal was adjudged as the Second Best Mediator.
Paavni Jain from Symbiosis Law School, Pune also won the Best Mediator title in preliminary rounds and Aakash Aggarwal from Bennett University won Second Best Mediator title in preliminary rounds. Further, negotiating team comprising Arudra Rao and Anmol Mittal from National Law University Delhi won best won the title of Best Client-Counsel Pair in preliminary rounds. Negotiating team comprising Abhishek R and Rohan J Jacob from School of LAw, Christ Bangalore won the title of Second Best Client-Counsel Pair in preliminary rounds.
Congratulations to all the position holders.