Dum vivimus, vivamus...
Born in 1925, in a small village in Maharashtra, Mr. Vinayak D. Govilkar, after losing his father at the tender age of 7, moved to the city of Mumbai and started living with a relative. With sheer hard work and grit, he completed his Bachelors in Arts (B.A.) and then also went on to complete his Bachelors in Law (LL.B.) from Mumbai University. Before enrolling himself as an Advocate with the Bar Council of Maharashtra & Goa, he was working with the then Bombay Municipal Corporation (now known as Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai) in the licensing department. He completed his graduation B.A. and LL.B. while in the employment of the Bombay Municipal Corporation.
Having no godfather or mentor in the legal profession, he had a huge challenge in front of him. He worked with the Late Annasaheb Kurulkar, for a short period, a distant relative who was an Advocate. Even at that time, more than 60 years ago, he was advised that the profession had become overcrowded. But, again, determined to make a name for himself, through another relative who was working at that time at the Bombay High Court, he was introduced to a very eminent lawyer at the time, the Late Mr. Madhavrao V. Paranjpe. Thus began the journey of Mr. V.D. Govilkar with a sum of Rs.120 per month and with a promise from his elder brother that he would provide for the monthly groceries for the family.
Steadily, the practice grew more and more in the fields of labour law, Cooperative Societies, Land Laws and Rent Control & Tenancy matters and soon, Advocate Vinayak D. Govilkar found a place for himself in the hallowed halls of the Bombay High Court as a force to be reckoned with.
Rajshekhar, Vinayak's son, joined him in October 1975. It was a very interesting period in those days, as the Government of India had imposed a state of emergency. Mr. Vinayak Govilkar had several opportunities to appear for the Government of India to defend orders of preventive detention, against several detenues. With Rajshekhar's entry into the practice, the scope of work grew into different fields of law. Rajshekhar represented the Shiv Sena, a political party before the the Hon'ble Justice B.N. Srikrishna Commission inquiring into the communal riots that occurred in the year 1992-93.
In November 1995, Rajshekhar was appointed as the Government Pleader, Original Side of the Bombay High Court and held that office for a period of 4 years. He had a team of about 30 lawyers assisting him. The experience of dealing with practically every single field of law, including Public Interest Litigation in various domaines, orders of deportation against Bangladeshi Nationals, at the Hon’ble High Court, Kolkata and also the privilege of representing the Government of Maharashtra at the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, further honed his skills in Advocacy. Rajshekhar Govilkar, today is one of the most respected lawyers at the Bombay High Court, representing several statutory authorities, Government bodies, Universities, co-operative societies private bodies, Public and Private Trusts, etc., being known for his understanding of Constitutional law covering Writ Petitions.
Today, almost 60 years after Vinayak Govilkar started his practice, his grandson, Mihir is growing the practice and taking it into the future. The legacy continues with a mix of the old and the new, with an eye on the future. Mihir completed his Bachelors in Law and his Bachelors in Management Studies from Mumbai University and has also obtained a Masters in Business Administration from Johnson & Wales University, USA and an MSc in Finance from EDEHC Business School, France. He also under his belt the CFA Level 1 and the DALF C1 in French.
Within a short time of joining the practice, Mihir Govilkar has proven his mettle in cases involving finer points of law and being able to deal with complicated matters by regular and constant communication with the clients to ensure that the case is put forth before the Hon'ble Courts in the best possible manner. His understanding and knowledge of the fields of banking and finance has been an invaluable asset. With a global outlook and experience of having worked and lived in the USA and in Europe, Mihir is taking the firm towards being able to serve the clients in a better environment of technological and knowledge enhancement.