IIFT 2011 Question Paper

Instructions

Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given at the end.

When Ratan Tata moved the Supreme Court, claiming his right to privacy had been violated, he called Harish Salve. The choice was not surprising. The former solicitor general had been topping the legal charts ever since he scripted a surprising win for Mukesh Ambani against his brother Anil. That dispute set the gold standard for legal fees. On Mukesh’s side were Salve, Rohinton Nariman, and Abhishek Manu Singhvi. The younger brother had an equally formidable line-up led by Ram Jethmalani and Mukul Rohatgi.

The dispute dated back three-and-a-half years to when Anil filed case against his brother for reneging on an agreement to supply 28 million cubic metres of gas per day from its Krishna-Godavari basin fields at a rate of $ 2.34 for 17 years. The average legal fee was Rs. 25 lakh for a full day's appearance, not to mention the overnight stays at Mumbai's five-star suites, business class travel, and on occasion, use of the private jet. Little wonder though that Salve agreed to take on Tata’s case pro bono. He could afford philanthropy with one of India’s wealthiest tycoons.

The lawyers’ fees alone, at a conservative estimate, must have cost the Ambanis at least Rs. 15 crore each. Both the brothers had booked their legal teams in the same hotel, first the Oberoi and, after the 26/ ll Mumbai attacks, the Trident. lt’s not the essentials as much as the frills that raise eyebrows. The veteran Jethmalani is surprisingly the most modest in his fees since he does not charge rates according to the strength of the client's purse. But as the crises have multiplied, lawyers‘fees have exploded.

The 50 court hearings in the Haldia Petrochemicals vs. the West Bengal Government cost the former a total of Rs. 25 crore in lawyer fees and the 20 hearings in the Bombay Mill Case, which dragged on for three years, cost the mill owners almost Rs. 10 crore. Large corporate firms, which engage star counsels on behalf of the client, also need to know their quirks. For instance, Salve will only accept the first brief. He will never be the second counsel in a case. Some lawyers prefer to be paid partly in cash but the best are content with cheques. Some expect the client not to blink while picking up a dinner tab of Rs. 1.75 lakh at a Chennai five star. A lawyer is known to carry his home linen and curtains with him while travelling on work. A firm may even have to pick up a hot Vertu phone of the moment or a Jaeger-LeCoutre watch of the hour to keep a lawyer in good humour.

Some are even paid to not appear at all for the other side - Aryama Sundaram was retained by Anil Ambani in the gas feud but he did not fight the case. Or take Raytheon when it was fighting the Jindals. Raytheon had paid seven top lawyers a retainer fee of Rs. 2.5 lakh each just to ensure that the Jindals would not be able to make a proper case on a taxation issue. They miscalculated when a star lawyer fought the case at the last minute. “I don’t take negative retainers”, shrugs Rohatgi, former additional solicitor general. “A Lawyer’s job is to appear for any client that comes to him. lt’s not for the lawyers to judge if a client is good or bad but the court”. Indeed. He is, after all, the lawyer who argued so famously in court that B. Ramalinga Raju did not ‘fudge any account in the Satyam Case. All he did was “window dressing”.

Some high profile cases have continued for years, providing a steady source of income, from the Scindia succession battle which dates to 1989, to the JetLite Sahara battle now in taxation arbitration to the BCCI which is currently in litigation with Lalit Modi, Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab.

Think of the large law firms as the big Hollywood studios and the senior counsel as the superstar. There are a few familiar faces to be found in most of the big ticket cases, whether it is the Ambani gas case, Vodafone taxation or Bombay Mills case. Explains Salve, “There is a reason why we have more than one senior advocate on a case. When you're arguing, he’s reading the court. He picks up a point or a vibe that you may have missed.” Says Rajan Karanjawala, whose firm has prepared the briefs for cases ranging from the Tata's recent right to privacy case to Karisma Kapoor’s divorce, “The four jewels in the crown today are Salve, Rohatgi, Rohinton Nariman and Singhvi. They have replaced the old guard of Fali Nariman, Soli Sorabjee, Ashok Desai and K.K. Venugopal.” He adds, “The one person who defies the generational gap is Jethmalani who was India's leading criminal lawyer in the 1960s and is so today.”

The demand for superstar lawyers has far outstripped the supply. So a one-man show by, say, Rohatgi can run up billings of Rs. 40 crore, the same as a mid-sized corporate law firm like Titus and Co that employs 28 juniors. The big law filik such as AZB or Amarchand & Mangaldas or Luthra & Luthra have to do all the groundwork for the counsel, from humouring the clerk to ensure the A-lister turns up on the hearing day to sourcing appropriate foreign judgments in emerging areas such as environmental and patent laws. “We are partners in this. There are so few lawyers and so many matters,” points out Diljeet Titus.

As the trust between individuals has broken down, governments have questioned corporates and corporates are questioning each other, and an array of new issues has come up. The courts have become stronger. “The lawyer,” says Sundaram, with the flourish that has seen him pick up many Dhurandhares and Senakas at pricey art auctions, “has emerged as the modern day purohit.” Each purohit is head priest of a particular style. Says Karanjawala, “Harish is the closest example in today's bar to Fali Nariman; Rohinton has the best law library in his brain; Mukul is easily India's busiest lawyer while Manu Singhvi is the greatest multi-tasker.” Salve has managed a fine balancing act where he has represented Mulayam Singh Yadav and Mayawati, Parkash Singh Badal and Amarinder Singh, Lalit Modi and Subhash Chandra and even the Ambani brothers, of course in different cases. Jethmalani is the man to call for anyone in trouble. In judicial circles he is known as the first resort for the last resort. Even Jethmalani’s junior Satish Maneshinde, who came to Mumbai in I993 as a penniless law graduate from Karnataka, shot to fame (and wealth) after he got bail for Sanjay Dutt in 1996. Now he owns a plush office in Worli and has become a one-stop shop for celebrities
in trouble.

Question 11

What does a ‘negative retainer’ refer to?

Video Solution


Question 12

What does the phrase ‘pro bono’ mean?

Video Solution


Instructions

Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given at the end.

The second issue I want to address is one that comes up frequently - that Indian banks should aim to become global. Most people who put forward this view have not thought through the costs and benefits analytically; they only see this as an aspiration consistent with India’s growing international profile. In its 1998 report, the Narasimham (II) Committee envisaged a three tier structure for the Indian banking sector: 3 or 4 large banks having an international presence on the top, 8-10 mid-sized banks, with a network of branches throughout the country and engaged in universal banking, in the middle, and local banks and regional rural banks operating in smaller regions forming the bottom layer. However, the Indian banking system has not consolidated in the manner envisioned by the Narasimham Committee. The current structure is that India has 81 scheduled commercial banks of which 26 are public sector banks, 21 are private sector banks and 34 are foreign banks. Even a quick review would reveal that there is no segmentation in the banking structure along the lines of Narasimham II.

A natural sequel to this issue of the envisaged structure of the Indian banking system is the Reserve Bank’s position on bank consolidation. Our view on bank consolidation is that the process should be market-driven, based on profitability considerations and brought about through a process of mergers & amalgamations (M&As;). The initiative for this has to come from the boards of the banks concerned which have to make a decision based on a judgment of the synergies involved in the business models and the compatibility of the business cultures. The Reserve Bank’s role in the reorganisation of the banking system will normally be only that of a facilitator.

lt should be noted though that bank consolidation through mergers is not always a totally benign option. On the positive side are a higher exposure threshold, international acceptance and recognition, improved risk management and improvement in financials due to economies of scale and scope. This can be achieved both through organic and inorganic growth. On the negative side, experience shows that consolidation would fail if there are no synergies in the business models and there is no compatibility in the business cultures and technology platforms of the merging banks.

Having given that broad brush position on bank consolidation let me address two specific questions: (i) can Indian banks aspire to global size?; and (ii) should Indian banks aspire to global size? On the first question, as per the current global league tables based on the size of assets, our largest bank, the State Bank of India (SBI), together with its subsidiaries, comes in at No.74 followed by ICICI Bank at No. I45 and Bank of Baroda at 188. It is, therefore, unlikely that any of our banks will jump into the top ten of the global league even after reasonable consolidation.

Then comes the next question of whether Indian banks should become global. Opinion on this is divided. Those who argue that we must go global contend that the issue is not so much the size of our banks in global rankings but of Indian banks having a strong enough, global presence. The main argument is that the increasing global size and influence of Indian corporates warrant a corresponding increase in the global footprint of Indian banks. The opposing view is that Indian banks should look inwards rather than outwards, focus their efforts on financial deepening at home rather than aspiring to global size.

It is possible to take a middle path and argue that looking outwards towards increased global presence and looking inwards towards deeper financial penetration are not mutually exclusive; it should be possible to aim for both. With the onset of the global financial crisis, there has definitely been a pause to the rapid expansion overseas of our banks. Nevertheless, notwithstanding the risks involved, it will be opportune for some of our larger banks to be looking out for opportunities for consolidation both organically and inorganically. They should look out more actively in regions which hold out a promise of attractive acquisitions.

The surmise, therefore, is that Indian banks should increase their global footprint opportunistically even if they do not get to the top of the league table.

Question 13

Identify the correct statement from the following:

Video Solution


Question 14

Identify the correct statement from the following:

Video Solution


Question 15

Identify the wrong statement from the following:

Video Solution


Instructions

Each sentence below has four underlined words or phrases, marked A, B, C and D. Identify the underlined part that must be change to make the sentence correct.

Question 16

Neither the examiner (A) nor his assistant (B) were informed (C) about the cancellation of the examination. No Error (D).

Video Solution


Question 17

Being (A) a short holiday (B) we had to return (C) without visiting many of the places (D)

Video Solution


Instructions

Each question below consists of an incomplete sentence. Four words or pharses marked A, B, C and D are given beneath each sentence. Mark the option that best completes the sentence.

Question 18

____________made after English settlers came to Jamestown was a map of Virginia by john Smith, the famous adventurer.

Video Solution


Question 19

The concept this weekend promises to attract ___________ than attended the last one.

Video Solution


Instructions

In the question below, there are two sentences containing underlined homonyms, which may either be mis –spelt or inappropriately used in the context of the sentence. Select the appropriate answer from the option given below:

Question 20

I. A vote of censur was passed against the Chairman.
II. Before release, every film is passed by the Censor Board.

Video Solution


Register with

OR

Boost your Prep!

Download App