About the Author: Fauzia Khan provides us an insight into the life of a law intern in Mumbai.
I interned with a High Court Advocate Zaid. S. Ansari from October 2015 till February 2016. It was a truly amazing experience. In just a few months, the kind of exposure I received is something that I couldn’t have imagined. This internship broadened my perspective towards the field of law and made me realize how even the slightest of details can change the entire outlook of a case. However, it was not all bright in the beginning. In fact, getting an internship was pretty difficult for me as I was not pursuing law and for one to get an internship at a law firm it is essential to be a law student and not just someone planning to pursue it. After weeks of trying my luck, I approached High Court Advocate Zaid. S. Ansari. The fact that he even considered my application for an internship was like a silver lining in the midst of all my confusion, doubts, and uncertain decisions. Thereafter, my interview was scheduled. I had no exact idea pertaining to the field of law, but I really wanted a chance to prove my willingness to enter this field and to make a name for myself in the coming future. I expressed my urge of wanting to work before I start studying law so that I have a better idea of the field that I was planning to enter and whether or not I would be able to keep up with it. To my advantage, he did see potential in me, and I was asked to join from 1st October.
I started reading cases and different acts, trying to prepare myself so that I don’t blank out at work. I was the only girl there but I was given equal opportunities to learn and to explore. I was made to read cases from day one. Within a week, I was given the work of drafting plaints and agreements. For someone who had no knowledge of a plaint or legal drafting, I was getting the chance to make the initial drafts all by myself. I was super excited. I learned so much just by reading cases and listening to my mentor as he framed a case for his clients. My mentor was extremely motivating and encouraging. When I made errors, Sir and my fellow colleagues would correct me and take time out from their work to explain things in detail.
Within a month, my boss took me along to the City Civil Court in Dindoshi. I was really excited as it was the first time I was going to a court to witness live court trials. Though my first visit was brief but it was totally worth it. And I must add, it was not remotely close to how they portray it in the movies. This was an eye opener. I was simply awestruck by the way Sir argued his case. The way he approached the bench, his arguments, and his confidence made it even more fascinating for me to attend court hearings in the coming weeks. To broaden my perspective and for further exposure, my boss asked me to accompany him to the High Court. That was a really big day for me. When I entered, it was nothing like the city civil courts or the sessions court. It was different! Some of the court rooms were so exquisite that I thought a movie could be shot there. The aura there made my desire to enter the field of law even stronger. It was truly inspiring. I heard, read, and dealt with cases relating to property disputes, marriages, land grabbing, and even public interest litigation. In a matter of just 4 months, the kind of diversity I experienced in terms of cases was massive. After talking to fellow students currently pursuing law, I was told that the kind of exposure I received even before starting off is something most students don’t get a chance to experience until their final year. I was on cloud nine.
This internship has made me more confident and logical. It also broadened my outlook and taught me so much. I will always be thankful to Sir for believing in me and taking this risk of taking a non-law student as his intern. He has groomed me for becoming a lawyer, and I hope that someday I’ll get the chance to work on a case with him again. In my opinion, practical knowledge is what is going to get us places. We can most definitely intern alongside our studies but sometimes if it gets exerting, it is not wrong to take a break from studies and start working. Internships give us the exposure we need to deal with the world. It makes us meet new people, makes our interaction skills better, gives us that push to achieve our goals and most importantly, grooms us to deal with the world. It shows us the realities of life, that the world we have known is not the same and that there is a lot more to do and a lot more to learn.