January 26, 2006

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T.P.Kelu Nambiar, Puzhathi, Kannur

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Reputation is sometimes sufficient to ‘win’ a case that is lost legally, as experience of noted advocate T.P.Kelu Nambiar testifies.  15 years ago he was approached by a litigant who insisted on engaging him to present his case in the High Court.  After going through the case history, Nambiar categorically ruled out success in the venture.  But the complainant was in no mood to give up.

So when the petition was rejected by the court, Nambiar returned the fees by post.  But after 7 months, the same man appeared before him, this time to give thanks.  It appears that he had spread the word in his native village that Kelu Nambiar was arguing his case.  Hearing this, the opposing party sent feelers through intermediaries and finally came to a mutually amicable settlement.

Such is the respect that this veteran advocate of 50 years’ experience commands.  Nambiar was working as a junior advocate in Chennai when the Kerala State was formed.  In 1956 some cases were transferred from Madras to Kerala High Court.  Among the 26 advocates who followed these cases to Kerala was Nambiar, who has since then made an impression in the judicial realm of the State.

“To be a sincere advocate one has to go through a lot of hardships.  In this profession it is difficult to be a fighter and a survivor at the same time,” he says.

Born in Puzhathi in Kannur in 1927, Nambiar did his studies at Kozhikode, Ooty, Chennai and Mangalore.  The 3rd graduate from his native village, he worked for sometime as a teacher in the Rajas High School, Puzhathi before he joining Law College at Chennai. Later he enrolled as a junior under the then noted lawyer Achyuthan Nambiar.

He sums up his professional belief system thus: “I do not take up public interest litigations because, often, the motives of the clients cannot be ascertained.  Similarly I am not ready to argue against temples in any case.  And in cases involving habeas corpus, I will only argue on behalf of women.”


Courtesy: S.Sunderdas (text), India Today, October 6, 2006
Contributed by: Administrator 



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