India continues to see more new law firms, independent practices


India continues to see the emergence of boutique law firms and independent practitioners, with lawyers from Khaitan & Co, Economic Laws Practice, Dhir & Dhir and Naik Naik exiting to launch their own ventures.

Supreme Court advocate-on-record Anurag Soan and former ELP attorney Shrey Bhardwaj have teamed up to establish tax-focused law firm First Principles Advocates in New Delhi, where they will focus on direct, indirect and international tax advisory and disputes. The firm’s founding partners have experience working in the alcoholic beverages, construction, IT services, telecommunications and energy sectors.

Soan and Bhardwaj were colleagues at Delhi-based Reina Legal, after which Soan joined DMD Advocates’ tax practice, and Bhardwaj moved to J. Sagar Associates in Mumbai. Bhardwaj spent then a year at ELP.

Another Delhi-based attorney, Yashvardhan Ranahas launched his own intellectual property-focused law firm, YVR Law Offices, in the capital city. The firm will also look to build capabilities to advise on start-up compliance, contract drafting and commercial advisory. Rana has advised clients on all aspects of trademark, copyright, design and technology law. He has previously worked at law firm Inttl Advocare and Amarjit Associates.

Former Dhir & Dhir associate partner Ashish Pyasi has set up disputes boutique Aendri Legal in Mumbai. Pyasi started his career with law firm Kartikeya & Associates in 2008, following which he had stints at Krishnamurthy & Co and Universal Legal. He then spent eight years at Dhir & Dhir. The new firm will focus on litigation, arbitration, and also look to build up its real estate and transaction practices in the future.

Other new firms that have launched in India this year include T&A Law Chambers, Legal Scriptures, Counsel & Council, Unum Law, Sarvagya Legal and Kumar & Sardana Associates.

Additionally, disputes attorney Aditya Ganju has left the partnership at Khaitan to set up his own counsel practice in Delhi, AG Chambers. Ganju has been with Khaitan since 2013 and became a partner in 2020. His practice focuses on commercial, infrastructure and construction disputes.

Meanwhile, Naik Naik in Mumbai lost senior associate Nisha Kaba, who has gone independent with a practice focused on commercial dispute resolution, insolvency and white-collar crimes. Prior to joining Naik in 2020, Kaba was an associate at Link Legal (now Dentons Link Legal).