Osgoode Hall Law School students Harmanjit Mavi and Chanakya Sethi are in India for a month to participate in a prestigious new judicial internship program with the Supreme Court of India.
In the first of what is expected to be a growing number of internship opportunities for Osgoode students in India, Mavi and Sethi start today clerking for Justice Dalveer Bhandari of the Supreme Court of India.
|Above: From left, Dean Lorne Sossin, Chanakya Sethi, Harmanjit Mavi, Professor François Tanguay-Renaud|
“I see it as a fantastic opportunity to learn more about a different legal system, but one with which we share a lot in common,” said Sethi, a second-year Juris Doctor (JD) student who has also been chosen to clerk for Justice Ian Binnie of the Supreme Court of Canada when he graduates from Osgoode next year.
“At the same time, India is a developing nation with many fundamentally different social challenges. To learn more about the law in that context will be fascinating.”
Osgoode Professor François Tanguay-Renaud, faculty coordinator of judicial clerkships in India, said the new judicial internship program with the Supreme Court of India is indicative of “Osgoode’s growing interconnections with the Indian legal system.”
Tanguay-Renaud, who has been involved from the start with Osgoode’s outreach on the subcontinent, has served as a visiting professor at the National Law School University of India in Bangalore. He was also one of eight Osgoode faculty members who recently visited India, where they continued a conversation about global legal challenges with their counterparts at Jindal Global Law School whom had visited Osgoode last fall.
“This internship program is yet another affirmation of Osgoode’s status as Canada’s leading transnational law school,” Tanguay-Renaud said. “Not only do we send our best and brightest to clerk with the Supreme Court of Canada, but we now also place them with the Supreme Court of India and, I would hope, other leading high courts to be added to the list in the near future.”
Osgoode Dean Lorne Sossin, who was part of the faculty entourage that went to India in March, is in the process of setting up a South Asian Advisory Council, with ties to South Asian academics and business and law professionals, see YFile, April 4. He hopes that the Advisory Council can help pave the way for more and more Osgoode students to go to places like India, and for longer periods of time than the month that Mavi and Sethi will spend.
“It’s a fabulous experiential learning opportunity for our students,” Sossin said. “The South Asian Advisory Council will be put to work, especially on ideas for fundraising, so we can send more of our students over to India for a one-year unpaid clerkship.”
Sethi, who has family in India, was there as recently as last December and he also spent five weeks last summer interning with a law firm in New Delhi.
Mavi was born in India and came to Canada with his family in 2002. He is seriously thinking of moving back to India when he graduates from Osgoode next year with a JD/MBA degree. He sees the internship as “a great start” to becoming more fully acquainted with his homeland’s legal system.
“I’m going to take in everything I can,” Mavi said. “Hopefully, be a good clerk – and learn a lot.”