Kritika Kapoor is a graduate from Pravin Gandhi College of Law. She has interned with Advocate Rajesh Bijlani and SPN Law Associates under the mentorship of Advocate Satish Nagvenkar. After graduation, she started working at B4U Television Network. Meanwhile, she also pursued a Masters in Intellectual Property Rights from Mumbai University. She is currently an Assistant Manager – Legal at Reliance Broadcast Network Limited.
In this interview she talks about:
- Life at Pravin Gandhi College of Law
- Working at B4U Television Network
- Being Assistant Manager – Legal at Reliance Broadcast Network Limited
How would you introduce yourself to our readers who are primarily budding lawyers? Did you belong to a family of lawyers?
Hello Readers! I come from a family with a strong science background. My father is an engineer, my sister is a dentist and my mother is a homemaker who has a degree in home science. I too, was keen on entering the medical profession and hence took up science in junior college. It was during my junior college days that I was drawn to the legal profession whilst working on a personal property dispute. I believed pursuing law would be a challenging and intellectually rewarding career option and would complement my personality and skill sets.
Tell us about your five year journey through law school. Share some highlights from your college days that shaped you as a professional.
The faculty at Pravin Gandhi College of Law encouraged both academics and extra-curricular activities and the college was always buzzing with action and excitement. I participated in various activities like moots, debates, crime scene investigation competitions, essay writing competitions, etc., and the experience indeed helped me refine my research, analytic and reasoning skills.
Signing up for various courses relating to consumer protection, property transactions, professional legal communication, etc. helped me add on to my knowledge base. I did a 4-month course on intellectual property from NMIMS which really helped me get an in-depth understanding of IP laws.
Students should be encouraged and provided a platform to take up research papers and dissertations.
As President of the college’s Sports Committee, I represented PGCL in various tournaments organised by law schools across India. I won individual titles in Table Tennis & Carrom and team trophies in throwball in various sports tournaments such as: ‘Yuvardha’ organised by National Law University, Jodhpur; ‘Symbhav’ organised by Symbiosis Law School, Pune; and ‘Spiritus’ organised by NLSIU, Bangalore.
I was in-charge of managing 50+ members contingent on these trips and that truly honed my leadership, time-management, and interpersonal skills. Sports helped me imbibe essential qualities such as sportsmanship, teamwork, respect, integrity, dedication and crisis management. Above all, sports taught me how to be perseverant during times of failure and to remain humble in success. I learnt that you may not always win, but you must play the game with all your heart.
Did you take up any internships or work during your college days?
Throughout law school I kept myself busy with one thing or the other. I had 5 years of education ahead of me but still wanted to be occupied and financially independent. In my first year, I took up a job at Intelenet and was working as a Sales & Service Manager for an inbound call process for Barclays Bank, UK, servicing bank accounts and up-selling banking products.
My first legal internship was with a practicing criminal lawyer, Advocate Rajesh Bijlani. I assisted in research and drafting on contentious cases relating to murder, rape, etc. Thereafter, I worked with SPN Law Associates, under the mentorship of Advocate Satish Nagvenkar who has a strong practice in property law. It was during my stint at SPN that I acquired a good grip on drafting and pleading. A few months before my final semester exams I got placed at B4U Television Network and started working there.
How did you secure your appointment at B4U? What did your work comprise of? How would you describe your experience working there?
Like all other enthusiastic final year students, I enrolled for the college placement program and simultaneously started hunting for opportunities myself. I was contacted for an opening at B4U, which is one of the world’s leading Bollywood television networks, by a consultant who found my resume on an online job portal. I had to undergo two rounds of interviews, first with the Legal Head, Natasha D’Souza and the second was with the Chief Financial Officer, Sandeep Gupta. In the first round I had to answer a few pertinent questions related to property laws, drafting and copyright in order to verify the veracity of my resume and was then asked to draft a reply to one Public Notice. In the second round I was asked a few more questions to identify my individuality and to see if I was fitting to the company and team.
Working at B4U, I was exposed to the niche practice of media laws. My work primarily involved drafting specialised agreements related to film acquisition & distribution, hiring of transponders, channel distribution, hiring talent, corresponding with government authorities and administrative bodies like MIB, TRAI, FDA, DAVP, IPRS and ensuring regulatory compliance. During my stint at B4U, I undertook extensive research on TRAI Regulations, content laws and the amendments to the Copyright Act. The company provided me a great learning platform and I was fortunate to work with veterans like Sandeep, Natasha and Manisha, who were extremely kind to invest their valuable time in mentoring and training me.
Tell us about your work as an Assistant Manager – Legal at Reliance Broadcast Network Limited. How has the journey at Reliance been so far?
Reliance Broadcast provides me with simultaneous exposure to the radio & television businesses. I am blessed with a young and vivacious team of lawyers, company secretaries, Charted Accountants, etc. with whom I closely work. My job requires me to juggle between various duties such as drafting & negotiating contracts, regulatory compliance, litigation management, liaison with counsels, intellectual property management & protection, research & strategy, setting SOPs, providing opinions, prescribing S & P procedures, corresponding with government authorities on business and policy related issues. At the office, I’m always on my toes and that’s one of the reasons I love working here.
The exposure I’ve gained at Reliance has helped me grow professionally as well as personally. My work has been recognised and appreciated due to which I was recommended for a promotion to Assistant Manager within a few months of joining.
While working under the leadership and able guidance of Asheesh Chatterjee, our Chief Financial Officer, I have been able to develop a strong commercial acumen and now have a more pragmatic & business focused approach. I am very grateful to my bosses – Asheesh Chaterjee, Gururaja Rao and Shikha Kapadia, who always reposed their faith in me and motivated me to perform better.
Please tell us about the recruitment process at RBNL. What do they look for in their prospective employees?
I have observed that employers are looking for candidates who are eager to learn and are optimistic about work. They want someone who is hard-working and a team-player.
Tell us what your typical work day is like. What kind of work does an Assistant Manager – Legal at Reliance Broadcast Network generally deal with? How has the journey at Reliance been so far?
A normal day at work would involve one or more of the following:
- Drafting Agreements
- Legal Research
- Regulatory Compliance and correspondence
- Opinion to S&P Team
- Due Diligence
- Court Visit
- Strategy meetings
- Liasoning with counsels
At RBNL, I learn something new each day. I am often assigned tasks that are completely new to me and there is always scope for improving as a professional.
In the meantime, you managed to pursue Masters in Intellectual Property Rights from Mumbai University. Was it a professional requirement to enhance your career?
Since I was working in the media industry, I thought it would be prudent to pursue a Master’s in Intellectual Property. Besides, I’d like to be a guest lecturer of law, few years down the line.
How can one apply for an internship at RBNL? What qualities do you look for in an intern?
The desire to learn and basic understanding of legal concepts are qualities we look for. Usually and candidates pursuing CS and Law are preferred.
What do you think of the young law graduates/students and the standard of education in the field currently?
I think young law graduates feel inadequately equipped in their initial years of practice. The legal education system should be revamped so as to prepare students for the skills required in practice. Various internships during college years should be encouraged, giving students exposure to litigation, corporate set-ups, judicial jobs, research roles, etc. Once a student is aware of the various options available after graduation, he can make a more informed decision regarding his career path.
Lastly, what would be your message for our readers?
Well, considering my target audience is a group of aspiring lawyers I’d like to say, please make the most of your time during law school and explore the various options available to you. Don’t be swayed into choosing a path just because many of your colleagues are opting for it. Know your own strengths and weaknesses and figure what is best suited to you. Set goals for yourself and work hard towards achieving them. Remember if you are passionate about your dreams and pursue them diligently, success will inevitably follow.