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'Illusion To Think Great Cases Are Won Or Lost Because Of Their Inherent Strength Or Weakness, Advocacy Plays a Crucial Role': Senior Advocate Fali Nariman

Aaratrika Bhaumik
9 Nov 2021 4:54 AM GMT
Illusion To Think Great Cases Are Won Or Lost Because Of Their Inherent Strength Or Weakness, Advocacy Plays a Crucial Role: Senior Advocate Fali Nariman
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Senior Advocate and eminent jurist Fali S Nariman on Monday underscored the importance of advocacy in the outcome of a case. Addressing young lawyers on the nuances of 'good advocacy', he stated, "It is an illusion to think that great cases are won or lost because of their inherent strength or weakness. Advocacy plays a crucial, nay, a vital role. Good advocacy consists how much and...

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Senior Advocate and eminent jurist Fali S Nariman on Monday underscored the importance of advocacy in the outcome of a case. Addressing young lawyers on the nuances of 'good advocacy', he stated, 

"It is an illusion to think that great cases are won or lost because of their inherent strength or weakness. Advocacy plays a crucial, nay, a vital role. Good advocacy consists how much and how well you have thought about and how ultimately you have presented your case in Court."

The eminent jurist was sharing his wealth of wisdom on the topic "Striving for excellence" at the award ceremony for the Prathiba M Singh Cambridge LL.M. Scholarship 2021 held on Monday evening. 

He also advised young members at the bar to graciously accept one's mistakes and make an effort to rectify them. "Another important thing in the law is the willingness to learn from ones own mistakes, cultivating a cult of humility. If you take up the practice of law, you will often be mistaken in your views or in your assessment of men and matters and a small step towards excellence in the law is to be able to admit to and rectify the mistakes you may have made", he highlighted further. 

The senior counsel further encouraged young lawyers to observe court proceedings and to especially watch senior lawyers argue in Court. "Lessons in advocacy are often imbibed from the great and the successful", he stated further. 

Opining that lawyers in general tend to be habit loquacious, senior advocate Nariman opined that it is important to talk less and introspect more about the case one is slated to argue. 

"Talk less, devote more thought to the case at hand. Listen and learn from the senior brethren speaking in court and outside", he advised further. 

He further reiterated that in India striving for excellence in law can only be achieved by striving for and achieving some degree of proficiency in the language of the law that is the in the English language. He further emphasised that constitutional concepts such as liberty, equality, justice are all Anglo-Saxon in origin and thus it is important to be proficient in English. He however acknowledged  that all this was not to make students of law more anglicised but instead to help them excel in the art of advocacy. 

"In India, striving for excellence in the law can only be achieved by striving for and achieving some degree of proficiency in the language of the law. In colonial times, for over 200 years, English, as spoken and written in British India, had always been looked upon as a foreign language, but no longer. English has now become a language in independent India we have now accepted as our own by choice," he said.

Before concluding, the senior counsel cautioned young lawyers, 

"Be smart but never too smart and you will excel in whatever you do!"

He also referred to a quote from the Oxford Book of Quotations which states, "How man could have excelled had he chosen to suppress his cleverness rather than indulge in it."

Also Read: How To Become A Good Lawyer: 10 Tips From Senior Advocate Fali Nariman

[Read account of event below]


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