CourtRoom Diaries….April 2018 to still continues…

Each new year is different from the previous year, 2018 was one of them. A year in which I officially enrolled myself in a bar, qualified the AIBE exam, published my two magazines “Hope and Her Life” and also a first step towards the litigation being “Advocate”: A life-changing year.

Luggage Packed,

Clothes arranged,

Old stuffs collected

It wasn’t easy as it seems

Memories were heavier than the luggage;

When I left my Hostel room.”

I came back to Delhi permanently; On 24.04.2018; same place; same room; same associates; I started my journey.

Days passed; in the month of June result declared and I completed my Law degree with the first division. Everyone was happy including me as this was one of my dream and the aim can say, since decided in the eighth standard.

ā€Some things you want to live for, foreverā€

In the month of August, we decided to go Udaipur for our re-union and to bring all documents which are required for registration in a bar. ( My first leave). A trip along with my best friend; we reached; I recalled my each and every memory of hostel, college, campus. We met with our professors, Dean, warden, and to my other batchmates and juniors as well. It was a memorable trip. Those days we were tried to live our college and hostel life again. Those three years become an unforgettable memory now. (To be honest, I completed my graduation from Delhi University but I never enjoyed myself much there compared to my Law course). Everyone appreciated and congratulated me for my magazine as well. We all share our experiences and place of jobs some in the corporate sector, some in courts rest of them in politics. I also placed 100 copies of my magazines in college Library ( Demand of Dean Sir and he was so proud of that) Overall, it was great time. Thereafter, we collect our documents and return to Delhi.

Within a day I submitted my form for registration in a bar and continue myself with the experiences and learning of the life of the court. In the month of September which is also my birthday month, I planned with my best friend to visit “Golden Temple” as that year she also enrolled herself as Architect officially. ( My second leave).The plan was for my birthday but due to her busy schedule, we went in the first week. And, On 04.09.2018, My name finally prefixed with ” Advocate”. ( Thankx to Babaji)

After 3 days I came back to court, the day I wear a neckband first time. It was early in the morning, as usual, 9:30 am, Sir was there; happy enough: bought me a neckband; That white colour band on my suit with a black coat; My God! I was feeling like I’m top of the world, I always been so fascinated towards it, and the day when it was on my own neck; that feeling is hard to describe in words. On the other hand, Sir taught me the aspects which being an Advocate I must know and realises: now my every mistake counts, my every words matter, my every action have consequence, a time to be focused more, in order to learn as well as to earn; to work efficiently in an effective manner; a time where I contribute myself in society for the justice. And, In the month of November, I sit for AIBE and qualified that also.

The journey of being Advocate begins; I filed my first Vakaltnama in one of the arbitration matter; we were appealed against the arbitral award. The signing of Vakalatnama is “joie de vivre ” but holding that responsibility is never be easy. One becomes liable for each and every consequence. ( Negligence will not be considered as an excuse anymore) One should walk with steady steps. It becomes a duty towards your client a faith he shows in you. I must say, dealing with a client is an art in this profession.

The matter was listed for argument; it was my first argument; I went; mixed feelings; argued in that matter with the help of my notes; the appeal decided in our favour.

One of the habit I developed within me is to make notes; (a brief of the case)it always helps while arguing in the matter. Most of the time during arguments I always try to memorise the facts and grounds in mind rather open up the file repeatedly; the presence of mind matters a lot; one cannot easily presume what objection would raise. Even I feel reading every sentence and each word to judge, make him bored sometimes; he already read what you have written; how precisely you submit your submissions matters. ( Covering all relevant points) That single page of my notes at the opening page of files not only help me during the submissions, but it also helps sometimes in the absence of sir; when judges are not ready to give adjournments and Passovers.

And, Hustling every day, from here and there: all around, in the courts, I enjoyed and learned every day, the day starts with zero and learning whole even; end of each day I have many things to revise. I learn to take one step ahead, from reading files to arguing in applications, I consistently try to improve myself. Utilizing the free time in reading and discussing, whether it is on a seat or at the library. ( I can’t sit ideal except my tea breaks)

In life, I have been exposed to a challenge called “change”.It can occur in many different ways and dealt with in many different ways. I have come to the awareness that change can be the deepest of all things. fighting with the depressing phase; learned to set aside my emotions. Sometimes, no matter how strong you are there always comes a point of time where you actually started feeling frustrate and there comes a time where you learnt to deal with battles as well. This is the harsh reality; believe it not, But Being a woman as Advocate is tough: because everything around you says that you can’t, and they just want you to get rid off, they come up with free advises which you don’t even ask but you have to listen it ( A formality) Every day I came home back crying; luckily Life experiences helped me to deal with such kind of situations as well. So I fight back, replied them back, the day fighter within me came out (maybe). The day made me realised, running away from situations/ problems is not a solution in life; every day is a battle, in a court, in life or even in your job.

“The great insight of the enlightened, Gautam the Buddha, was the everything that is, will change and the changed will change further. Hence, one must neither get attached to joy (happiness) because that will pass away; nor get depressed with sorrow (suffering) because that too will pass away.”

During the winter vacations, I got my first independent case “Suit for money recovery”.. Civil suit??? I never did C.P.C thoroughly before; moreover, I found it boring enough, I remember during college time it took me 4 months to complete the notes of C.P.C as like others fresh Lawyer I also like criminal law but an Advocate should be all-rounder ( at least have basic knowledge) So I started studying eventually I developed interest too; from drafting to arguing I did everything by my own. Very first drafting with a lot of mistakes corrected by Sir. And in January 2019 matter put up for hearing. With a blue (my favourite) colour file in my hand; notes along with the bare act of C.P.C,I enter in the courtroom, Same room(one of my favourite ) reached before 10 minutes ( Habit; never like to wait for the second call except, under some circumstances).The matter proceeded.

As I already said, court life is always been different from academic life, one can learn better with their own experience and mistakes. One of the days of the hearing in the same matter, I went for my master’s exam (LL.M) I told one of my friend ( Co-Counsel )to gave the appearance, he appeared and the judge directed him to take some appropriate steps in one of the clause. He told to me and that whole night I spent my time reading Order 37 of C.P.C” tried to find out which clause he was talking about”? The day which got fixed was little long ( I prefer to take short dates, I don’t want to be part of those pending matters which we everyday talk about for our judicial system and failed to provide justice on time; Duty of Advocates as well) So I filed a pre-pondment application;as in my case the defendant failed to appear within the prescribed time and I being a plaintiff ; entitled to decree according to the provisions of Order 37 of C.P.C

Every Courtroom consists of thousands of stories and in each court, you experience lots of things, those can be funny, happy, emotional…This was one of the stupiest thing I have done and whenever I recall it, I still laugh. That day my application confused the judge (Sweet enough) instead to be treated along with matter, it got separately treated due to wrongly filed by me in filing centre and kept for the date as it was already fixed. ( I respect)

One of another funny moment; I always remain hurry during working hours, My matter was listed and followed up the ritual of Sharma and Associates to always have lunch together; I rush to court. I was sitting outside, He was new judge, coming towards the room, instead to get up I look at him and started looking at my phone again. I failed to recognise him as a judge and didn’t greet him too. And the next moment when I enter in the the courtroom, I found him sitting on the chair. ” Shitts! He is the judge’. My God! I forgot to greet! Now, what if he thinks ” How mannerless I am and those endless thoughts simultaneously running and I appeared with a full smile, somehow it got done. ( Court life is fun)

On 21.08.2019 I argued in the matter and got an ex-parte decree. That small happiness of mine. Passing with all the stupidity stages got a decree in favour was one of the happiness.

And, Life constantly changes, arguing in Dwarka court for waiving back the mediation settlement and ( client get hostile suddenly) kind of (unexpected moments) arguing before court and hairband got loosened up ( blushing moments) arguing for withdrawal and judge didn’t let you do ( fight moments) arguing for bail application; hit with previous conviction reports, arguing on execution; attachment of properties, ( emotional moments) I live each of the moment and also try to live today as well.

Sometimes I feel: At the age of 50/60 ( If I would alive) I am sure to have a lot of courtroom stories which could be funny, full of dramas, emotions and happiness as well with lots of wonderful and adventurous experience.

A lot of people imagine happiness as something, that is very huge and should be every day. But for me it lies everywhere, Since the very first appearance of mine as “Learned Counsel”, first fees, cards, boards, examinations, exhibiting documents, raising objections, arguments, interlocutory orders, each and every single work of the court and in relation to a court, gives satisfaction.

Winning or losing a case is part of this profession; one cannot lose hope. I loose my first bail application but I continue with the other one. I learned, immaterial who comes as your opposite counsel, one have to prepare and try to acquire deep knowledge as much as you can. One should never feel distracted in court from public or other senior counsels. Just stand and give your best; rest is the discretion of the court, there you hold responsibility as “Advocate”

The life of the court always serves as a challenge and test to elevate us. It always helps us to grow from tackling real-life experiences. I remember it took 3 hours to file my own case at a very initial stage, for drafting the matter it took 4 days to me, some of the days I couldn’t even sleep too, I keep thinking ” What happens if this comes? What to do? How to do? Just tried to memorize all the facts and relevant provisions regarding the case. One just need to look around themselves and you will see, your court life is full of different surprises and positive moments.

This journey is beautiful,

This is a noble profession.

The life to be a part of this legal fraternity is beautiful.

This struggle is beautiful.

Litigation is Love.

Keep collecting the courtroom stories and seize every opportunity to learn with and grow.

Safar khoobsurat hai, Manzil se bhi”

The journey continues…

~Adv Ankita Wadhwa

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