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Senior Advocate Gaurav Pachnanda has joined Fountain Court Chambers, London as a Door Tenant (an overseas associate) with effect from the beginning of this month.
As per a press note, the Fountain Court Chambers is a set of self-employed commercial barristers, with Chambers in the Temple.
The senior counsel joins the small but significant club of Indian lawyers associated with a set of Barristers’ Chambers in London. In August 2014, Nakul Dewan was invited to join 20 Essex Street. A few months later ASG and Senior Advocate Gourab Banerji joined Essex Court Chambers. Former Solicitor General Gopal Subramanium is a member of 3 Verulam Building while leading senior counsel, Harish Salve is a member of Blackstone Chambers.
Speaking to Bar & Bench, Pachnanda said that the entire process was initiated two months ago after discussions with the Head of Fountain Court Chambers.
“It is an interesting opportunity for me as I do a significant amount of work in international commercial arbitration. It gives me a formalized presence in London so I can address my Singapore, Dubai and London practice.”
Pachnanda is a Registered Foreign Lawyer at the Singapore International Commercial Court. He read law at the University of Jammu and at Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford (B.C.L., 1997), where he was elected a Felix Scholar. From 2010 to 2015, he was the Senior Additional Advocate General for the State of Jammu and Kashmir, at New Delhi.
An expert in international commercial arbitration, Pachnanda is optimistic about how the commercial arbitration scene in India is progressing.
“However, I still see that other jurisdictions like Singapore has brought about progressive changes much faster than us. Even if we make significant improvements in the manner in which arbitrations are done in India, there is a lot more that is required to be done to compete with Singapore or London. There is a lot of scope of improvement if we want to make India an arbitration hub and improvement not in just terms of law but also culture.”
“The MCIA is a step in the right direction and centres of this nature will help us in making the institutional improvements and improvement in terms of culture.”