Snigdha Ghosal is from the batch of 2005-2010. She is currently working with as the Assistant Manager at Bharti Airtel, Ltd. In this interview Snigdha talks about the time she spent in college and how the corporate life is treating her.
The Blue Pencil: What made you choose Law as a profession and How did AIL happen?
Snigdha Ghosal: I always loved debating in school, was quite a chatter box in class as well, so choosing law was like putting my energy into something worthwhile. Also, AIL happened as it was an institution under the aegis of AWES just like the various Army Public Schools I studied in. It was definitely a natural choice.
The Blue Pencil: How was your journey at AIL? Any experiences you’d like to share with us?
Snigdha Ghosal: I loved every bit of my journey at AIL. Made friends for life, learnt to become independent, staying away from home, managing life at hostel.
I could hone my singing skills,albeit amateur at AIL with the many cultural activities at the college. Also, participation in moot courts was one experience I will always cherish. We had great teachers who guided us through the five years. Time at AIL was the best time of my life without a doubt.
The Blue Pencil: Upon Graduation you chose to study further for a Masters in Law, by IGNOU. How was distance and open education and in what ways did it help you? Also, how did you balance studying and interning?
Snigdha Ghosal: Throughout the five years of college, I kept exploring new avenues. The moot courts I participated in varied from SAARC International Moot Court in Competition Law to Surana and Surana Minority Rights Moot and further to Technology Moot on Pharmaceutical Patents at IIT Kharagpur. I wanted to discover what I loved doing the most since law had a huge expanse. Even my internships were not confined to one kind. I did an NGO internship one year, a litigation and law firm internship in another and Corporate one in another year. MIPL from IGNOU happened as I loved intellectual Property as a subject in college and I wanted to study it further. The course was very interesting and enhanced my knowledge of the subject.
The Blue Pencil: You’ve worked with Bajaj Allianz Insurance Co. Ltd. and were elevated to the position of the Senior Executive, how was it working with them?
Snigdha Ghosal: Bajaj Allianz happened as a result of the campus recruitment process. I spent close to 4 years in the Company with 2 years at the Head Office as a Legal trainee at Pune and 2 years at the Regional Office at Kolkata. The two profiles had the same laws involved, consumer litigation, Third Party Motor Claims and other such litigation however, the Head Office role was more of coordination and overseeing litigation than actually getting involved in it while the Kolkata role helped me be at the ground involved in litigation, Insurance Ombudsman Hearings and overall functioning of the Legal Claims of the Company.
The Blue Pencil: You’re currently working as the Assistant Manager at Bharti Airtel, Ltd., how did the appointment take place?
Snigdha Ghosal: After my stint at an insurance company for a considerable amount of time, I looked for a change to a different industry. I got interested in the profile of Legal and Regulatory affairs at Airtel as the Telecom Industry offered a lot of dynamism to one’s profile as the industry is transforming each day. Further, I wanted a holistic profile as an in -house counsel which Airtel, I thought, could provide.
The Blue Pencil: What exactly does your work entail at Airtel?
Snigdha Ghosal: At Airtel I look into both Legal and Regulatory aspects of the Telecom Circle of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The Legal profile includes Drafting of Contracts, Civil, Criminal and Consumer Litigation and general legal advice to all other departments. On the Regulatory front I represent the AP Telecom Circle before the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and Department of Telecommunications (DoT) as the Alternate Nodal Officer. The profile involves interaction with the Govt. bodies and liason with them on various legal compliances and be the channel connecting the Company and the Govt bodies.
The Blue Pencil: How does it feel to complete almost 3 years at the Company and what do you have planned for the future?
Snigdha Ghosal: It has been an enriching experience working here. Every day brings something new .The industry is changing so much with digitalization and I’m glad to be part of the Legal team here to witness the change. It is my good fortune to be working for a brand like Airtel. For the future, well if something new and exciting comes along, that will give me a new domain to explore and hone my existing skills, I surely would be open to it.
The Blue Pencil: Does the Corporate life leave you any time to pursue your interests and hobbies? (We’ve been told you won a lot of accolades in college for Singing)
Snigdha Ghosal: Singing!! Yes! It has been with me since childhood. At school, at college and well even the corporate life as you call it, welcomes the hobby. At all the offices I’ve worked at, somehow the cultural angle always drew music into it and yes I have kept up with my music. My husband Arnav and I often have little jam sessions with me on vocals and him on the guitar. So, yes its not that one doesn’t get time to pursue one’s hobbies. If you want to, you can.
I also took time for playing squash over the weekends once in a while.
The Blue Pencil: You’ve worked in almost three major cities now, Pune, Kolkata and Hyderabad. Which among the three had the best working environment?
Snigdha Ghosal: Tough one! Pune will be close to my heart. My first job, Kolkata well I’m a Bengali so it was a different experience getting in touch with my roots. But, leaving all the diplomacy alone-Hyderabad it is! The city welcomes everyone. You would never feel like an outsider, the people, the overall infrastructure, and work environment as a whole is the best here I feel.
The Blue Pencil: Do you have any advice for students who wish to work in a Corporate Setup?
Snigdha Ghosal: I would say go for it if you want a mix of everything. If you love litigation to the core then you must go for practicing law as that is what will be fulfilling for you. If you wish to do be in a law firm and assist corporate transactions, M &A and corporate law, you should take that path. As an in house counsel, you have to be a jack of all trades, if you like being so and enjoy variety, go for it!
The Blue Pencil: Lastly, is there anything you wish you would have done while you were in College?
Snigdha Ghosal: I would leave 2005 to 2010 etched in my memory- as it is. There is nothing I would like to change about those five golden years.