September 17, 2021

On Maritime Law and Career Opportunities, With Aishwarye Dubey

Aishwarye Dubey

Mr. Aishwarye Dubey is an Associate fellow at National Maritime Foundation and a Partner at MNG Legal. His area of interest includes maritime law and in this interview his discusses all about maritime law and the related career opportunities.

How would you like to introduce yourself to our readers?

I am a Maritime Lawyer and I am currently working for the National Maritime Foundation (New Delhi) in the capacity of an Associate Fellow. I graduated from National Law University Odisha in the year 2016 and thereafter I have appeared for the UPSC Civil Service Examination thrice. With no luck shining upon me in the domain of civil services, I pursued an LL.M in Maritime Laws.

Are you a first-generation lawyer in your family? What were your ambitions before joining law? What led to your inclination towards law?

I am a first generation lawyer in my family and I had no intention of pursuing law while I was in school. It happened to me accidently since I had no inclination in pursuing Engineering (as I was a science-stream student). I opted for a career in law out my reluctance of pursuing Engineering. However, I have no regrets that I made the choice of pursuing law.

Your area of interest revolves around Maritime law. Please introduce this subject to our readers.

The domain of Maritime Law and Practice is an area of law which is of an international character. It is bifurcated into two main divisions-Public International Maritime Laws and Private International Maritime Laws. Public International Maritime Laws deal with that maritime legal interactions taking place between States (countries). Private International Maritime Laws deal with the commercial aspects of the maritime industry such shipping, freight forwarding, etc. Employment opportunities exist in both the arenas. However, the choice rests with the candidate.

Currently you are an associate fellow at National Maritime Foundation. Please share your working experience with our readers.

The National Maritime Foundation is the sole maritime think-tank in the country. It focuses on areas concerning the national maritime interests of our country ranging from blue economy, climate change, energy infrastructure, maritime strategic affairs and public international maritime laws. The work is quite interesting considering the issues that we deal with are unconventional and not much is known about them in the public domain.

The workforce comprises of serving as well retired officers from the Indian Navy, Indian Army and the Indian Coast Guard. Civilian research scholars (like me) also form a major part of the workforce in the National Maritime Foundation. Our office is located in the Varuna Complex (Delhi Cantonment, New Delhi). For more information, you can visit our website at www.maritimeindia.org .

Please tell our readers about the career opportunities in maritime law.

The career opportunities are immense in the arena of maritime law and practice. If a candidate wishes to enter the commercial maritime legal sphere, he/she can seek employment in maritime law firms, shipping companies, ship building yards, port authorities, ship charterers, ship brokers, shipping agents, ship operators, ship chandlers, freight forwarders, maritime consultancy firms and independent maritime law practitioners.

What would you suggest to our readers for developing these career opportunities?

In order to capitalise upon the opportunities in the maritime legal sector, the candidate must have some amount of experience (either practical or academic) in dealing with maritime legal matters. I would suggest that before venturing into this sector, students should acquire a formal qualification (LL.M or Post Graduate Diploma in Maritime Laws) in order to increase their chances of employability. While they are pursuing their maritime studies, they can intern in the aforesaid mentioned organizations so as to gain first-hand experience.

What would be your advice to our budding lawyers?

My advice would be that young lawyer should be fearless and explore your options. Listen to your heart and only then will you find your calling. In the initial days, you will feel that the investment (emotional, financial and otherwise) is just too much and you will, certainly, want to give up. But, in those moments of despair you must not lose hope. Keep going and keep taking risks- but with your eyes open. Keep trudging along. I say this because life works in mysterious ways and you never know how you might find your calling, unless you take the leap of faith.

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