The key distinction between civilised and uncivilised societies is the administration of law. Individuals, groups, urbane, rural, socio-cultural-economic-political, and professional entities, private and governmental institutions, and industrial and corporate organisations dispersed across local and worldwide demographics are all able to benefit from the rule of law. In actuality, the rule of law facilitated the transition from men to humankind.
Over decades, the legal domain, like many other human concerns, got increasingly complex, branching into specialised sectors such as labour, service, industry, company, and corporation law governing businesses, enterprises, trade, economy, finance, banking, and so on. All ambitious individuals/groups/entities find it nearly difficult to avoid disputes, problems, and controversies resulting from the contradictory nature of human activity while going about their everyday business.
When these issues intersect in the legal realm, businesses must either confront them or hire an adept, pragmatic, trustworthy, and credible legal counsel like Sharma and Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants-a boutique, a full-service law firm on a noble mission of bringing in a positive sociolegal impact and furthering the civilizational character.
In 2006, Advocate Sidhartha Sharma, Founder and Managing Partner, founded the firm. Currently, the firm has offices in Kolkata, New Delhi, and Mumbai, with associate lawyers, chartered accountants, and company secretaries in most major Indian cities, and significant representations in employment (Labour law and Service Law), transactional, real estate, insolvency matters, particularly related to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016, company matters, and numerous litigation and arbitration matters. This network of partnerships benefits clients of a single-window service provider by allowing them to deal with a variety of issues across the country under one roof. The firm’s headquarters are in Kolkata, conveniently close to the Calcutta High Court.
The principled vocation of law inspires ardent talents due to its challenging nature. Sharing his own, Sidhartha says that being a second-generation lawyer working in the courts, looking at voluminous documents and spending long hours in the library was not new to him. He reminisces, “Since the formative years of my education, I was always inclined towards the legal profession and court craft. My father, Mr. Satyanarayan Sharma, is a reputed labour law practitioner in Kolkata and has authored numerous books on the subject. My elder brother, Mr. Anand Sharma, also a Senior Partner at Sharma & Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants, further inspired me to take up the noble profession, which has the potential to impact society positively.”
Sidhartha started his practice in the year 2001 and was Chamber Junior of one of the foremost practitioners of Hon’ble High Court, Calcutta, who was awarded as the BEST EMERGING LAWYER OF HON’BLE CALCUTTA HIGH COURT, Late Hon’ble Mr. Justice Protik Prakash Banerjee, Judge of Hon’ble Calcutta High Court. “In 2006, I laid the foundation for Sharma & Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants, which has acquired immense recognition in the legal fraternity since then as well as expanded from its head office in Kolkata to New Delhi, Chandigarh, and Bhubaneswar,” he informs.
A Journey of Excellence
The firm was started in a small chamber near the High Court at Calcutta in 2006, majorly dealing in labour and industrial laws and related fields of master-servant relationship, followed by appearing in different courts, tribunals like Provident Fund Appellate Tribunal, and other forums created to adjudicate master-servant disputes, and also handling various matters pertaining to labour laws/service law.
Sidhartha furthers, “As my existing Clientele started reposing their faith and trust on my abilities and acumen, I started practicing in corporate and commercial disputes, property law, company law, restructuring and bankruptcy matters, and other corporate advisories in addition to the major practice in labour and industrial relations and insurance laws.”
Soon thereafter, as Mrs. Priyanka Sharma Tibrewal joined the firm, the firm’s practice expanded from the company, commercial and corporate laws to criminal law, family law, and constitutional matters.
In his 22 years of professional experience, Sidhartha has successfully handled various notable cases and regularly appear before the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, Hon’ble High Court at Calcutta, Hon’ble High Court at Delhi, Hon’ble High Court at Bilaspur, Hon’ble High Court at Guwahati, Hon’ble National Company Law Appellate Tribunal, Hon’ble National Company Law Tribunal (Principal Bench, Bengaluru, Guwahati, Mumbai, Allahabad, Indore, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Cuttack Bench). “Moreover, I have also handled cases at various fora created under the SICA Act, 1985, like BIFR and AAIFR at Delhi, the Employee State Insurance Court, Employees Provident Fund Tribunal, and others,” he shares.
In 2017, the firm established its offices in Chandigarh and Bhubaneswar, with the addition of new partners in the firm, thereby further expanding its practice areas in mining laws and electricity laws, amongst others. In 2018, the firm set up its New Delhi office, centrally located near the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, the Hon’ble High Court, and the NCLT/ NCLAT.
Over the years, the firm has expanded its practice areas and services from dispute resolution and arbitration to corporate advisory, mergers and acquisitions, and regulatory work.
The firm’s specialized proficiency coupled with effective, prompt and practical solutions are the factors which are predominant in choosing the firm by the clients and considering the long-standing and continuous professional services offered by the firm to corporates and industries, Sharma & Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants was awarded as the ‘Top 10 Legal Consultants of 2020 by CEO Insights Magazine’ in 2020.
Ensuring Legal Innovations
According to Sidhartha, keeping pace with the evolving times and needs of the industry and corporates, the firm specializes in various areas. It is proficient in providing effective, prompt, and practical solutions, making the firm a favoured choice by domestic and international clients. The firm aims to provide clear, concise, and practical advice with time-bound deliverables to support its clients and achieve business objectives in the long run. The firm’s innovative and pragmatic solutions extend beyond practices and borders to suit all the client’s business needs.
The team of professionals understands issues across a broad spectrum of business and legal practices to deliver commercially pragmatic advice. The firm specializes in various practice areas such as corporate restructuring and insolvency, banking and finance, capital markets and securities, corporate advisory, cross-border transactions, real estate laws, mining, energy, dispute resolution and arbitration, employment, environment, FDI, governance risk and compliance, intellectual property rights, joint ventures, M&A and private equity.
Standing tall amidst the league of eminent legal consultants in Sharma & Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants has grown to an incredible extent where clients acknowledge them for their array of services being offered under one umbrella within a time frame.
“The firm comprises of advocates, chartered accountants, company secretaries, professionals with specialization in management of business and engineers to understand both the legal and commercial aspirations and expectations of our Clients, which has set apart the law firm from its contemporaries,” states Sidhartha.
With a clear-cut vision and an intense mission, Sidhartha puts that they have achieved all their milestones in their journey. The firm’s vision is to provide a prompt, feasible, and pragmatic solution to the client for an overall increase in productivity and ease in carrying out trade and commerce.
Stating the core values and philosophies, Sidhartha says, “We believe in the importance of the partners’ involvement and accessibility to its client. We also ensure that the clients are kept well informed about industrial development on a regular basis.” The firm’s mission is to provide dedicated, efficient, commercially sound, and result-oriented solutions to its clients.
Regarding the challenges they faced and the most difficult obstacles they surmounted, Sidhartha says that litigation is a profession that thrives in challenges. Every day in the court, you will encounter some challenges or the other. Every brief given to a practicing advocate brings with it a challenge. Every matter is as challenging as the next, and you cannot distinguish any one case as the most challenging.
“However, one key challenge I particularly noticed in my professional career was appreciating the commercial and operational practicalities while running an organization. I had observed that advocates often underplayed the commercial and operational practicalities and failed to give credence to the same,” he mentions.
He explains, “Sharma & Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants, we have a dedicated team of professionals ranging from advocates to chartered accountants, company secretaries and also professionals with specialization in management of business and engineers to understand and appreciate the operational and commercial aspirations and expectations of our Clients.”
Law evolves as it is subjected to amendments continuously. Speaking about the same, Sidhartha believes that law is never static; it is always changing, being interpreted or redefined, as regulators and judges strive, with varying degrees of success, to ensure that the law constantly reflects changes in society itself. They, as lawyers, have always adapted to the change due to the evolving law and shall continue to do so.
Their firm deals with various aspects of law; however, they have certain niche practices, which include the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016, Electricity laws, etc. Significant amendments have taken place in their niche practices, and they believe there are more to come. They at Sharma & Sharma have specialized teams for such practices, especially when it comes to corporate laws. They have a team that comprises Chartered Accountants and Company Secretaries along with lawyers who are specialized in the field of corporate law and therefore assist the firm in not only interpreting the laws but also making sure that all the members of the firm, including the partners and the associates, are always up-to-date and well-versed with any amendment that takes place regarding corporate law.
“In addition, the firm is equipped with professionals with specialization in management of business and engineers to understand and appreciate the operational and commercial aspirations and expectations of our Clients,” he states.
Being a major law firm, there are many special services provided by Sharma & Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants to its clients. In the fast developing revolutionary world of the internet, people and their services are accessible just a click away. Sidhartha conveys, “We at Sharma & Sharma are in line with the latest technological development and have a strong and distinctive presence on the internet, having a reserved domain name and website by the style of .” In addition to the above, they have a strong and responsive social media presence on LinkedIn, Google, and other professional social media platforms.
“We at Sharma & Sharma have evolved a unique reporting system, styled as the Record of Proceedings (ROP), wherein the reporting of the hearing before a court/ tribunal is explained in detail to our clients to make it easier for them to understand and comprehend the main issues involved in their disputes which in turn makes our services and expertise accessible to our clients. It has been observed over a while that the ROP has proven to be of great assistance to our clients for being completely up to date about their legal matters,” mentions Sidhartha.
They at Sharma & Sharma Advocates and Legal Consultants also issue periodic newsletters to their connections and clientele to keep them aware of the latest legal developments and judicial precedents on numerous law subjects. “We recommend any person / or entity who wishes to receive the newsletters may communicate to us at email@example.com, and we shall duly circulate the newsletters,” he says.
A Flourishing Professional Family
Regarding Employee Welfare, opportunities, and facilities provided to them, Sidhartha reveals that Sharma & Sharma, (Advocates and Legal Consultants) invests in its people.
“We treat our associates and staff members as one family and ensure they can maintain work-life balance. We have an environment that supports both personal and professional growth. We also believe in creating opportunities for young minds and constantly strive to support and provide them with a platform to enable themselves to flourish professionally and otherwise.”
They at Sharma & Sharma strongly emphasize continuous learning of the professionals. In this regard, Sharma & Sharma publishes a monthly newsletter to keep its members in line and up to date with the latest judicial pronouncements and amendments in law. The firm also promotes and encourages its associates to participate in numerous seminars, workshops, conferences alike, etc., with the object of exchange of ideas and knowledge development. “We offer internship programs to final year law students, select candidates based on their potential/merits, and accordingly offer them pre-placement offers. Our employees can attend in-house training programs to inculcate work-life discipline as well as stay abreast,” he adds. They also regularly attend conferences and workshops as speakers and moderators.
Legal Social Contributions
As a law firm, a huge responsibility is placed upon the institution. When probed about how it fulfils its social responsibilities and contributes to society, Sidhartha says, “Advocacy in itself is a very rewarding profession, but at Sharma & Sharma, we always believe that the greatest reward lies in the pleasure of giving back to the society. Not only does the firm, particularly our Managing Partner, Ms. Priyanka Sharma Tibrewal, invest in pro bono matters, but it also makes an effort to contribute to society in many ways. We believe that individuals and professionals should be aware of their rights and duties and any other such laws/statutes that may affect their day-to-day functioning and assist them in conducting their businesses smoothly without any hindrance. Keeping the same in mind, we organize seminars for trade associates, stakeholders’ associations, individuals, etc., to enlighten them regarding all the relevant laws that may affect such individuals or professionals.”
They have also been successfully executing specialized virtual legal aid clinics from 5.00 PM to 7:30 PM every Saturday, where they deliver a free legal opinion to individuals or entities who cannot afford quality legal assistance. Other than that, they also publish newsletters on several virtual platforms which contain details of all the recent developments in law and summaries of the latest landmark judgments.
In his advice to the young generation trying to create change or achieve something through the law, Sidhartha says that every individual who is a practicing lawyer may have a very different prospective when it comes to achieving success in this profession. “But I believe that every experienced successful lawyer will agree that perseverance, diligence, and hard work has no alternative in this profession,” he feels, adding that often, such young lawyers will have to burn the midnight oil, and many times they may feel dejected. However, it is only at this moment that their passion and determination will lead them in the right direction.
Speaking about their future strategies and plans, Sidhartha shares that growing in the field of law is what every lawyer wants.
They at Sharma & Sharma believe that the same can only be achieved through team effort and productive output by all members of the firm. To attain and maintain the same, they shall adopt such software that keeps track of the deliverables by the professionals, thereby keeping track of productivity. By implementing such software, they shall target to maximize productivity but shall also keep a check on the health of the professionals. “It has come to our knowledge that several unfortunate incidents had taken place due to work pressure, and we at Sharma & Sharma want to invest more in healthcare for our professionals,” he concludes.