Manilal Kher Ambalal & Co., was founded in 1918 only as ‘Manilal & Kher’, consisting of two partners, Mr. Manilal Dahyabhai Nanavati and Mr. Bal Gangadhar Kher.
The Firm was christened on 7th June 1918 and an interesting fact is that the ceremony was performed by a High Court Judge, Mr. Justice F.C.O. Beaman. Justice Beaman had brought with him a Solicitors’ Diary which he signed and dated on its first page and presented it to Mr. B.G. Kher.
History suggests that no other firm of Solicitors in Bombay was christened by a High Court Judge.
In 1930, Mr. Kher decided to join the freedom struggle started by Mahatma Gandhi. As Mr. Manilal Nanavati was not keeping good health, the partners decided to admit Mr. Ambalal Shankarlal Parikh in April, 1930.
When the freedom struggle started, many firms faced difficulties by reason of the frequency of strikes and boycotts and the unsettled law and order situation. Mr. Ambalal Parikh steered the Firm throughout this period by virtue of his abilities, honesty and industry. The Firm was then renamed Manilal Kher & Ambalal.
During this period, The Government of India Act of 1936 introduced political reforms and as a first step, elections to the Provincial Legislature were held under that Act and Ministries formed. In Bombay, Mr. B.G. Kher was elected as a leader of the Congress Legislature Party that won a majority of the seats in the Provincial Legislative Assembly. A Ministry was formed and Mr. Kher became the first Prime Minister of the Bombay Province in 1937 and continued in office till September, 1939 when the Second World War broke out.
In November 1939, Mr. B.G. Kher’s son, Mr. Shrikrishna B. Kher was admitted as a Partner.
In June 1943, Mr. Manilal Nanavati’s son, Mr. Mahesh Nanavati was admitted as a Partner after which the Firm was renamed ‘Manilal Kher Ambalal & Co.’ In 1946, after the end of Second World War, elections to the Provincial Assembly were held again and a Ministry was again formed with Mr. B. G. Kher as the Chief Minister of the erstwhile State of Bombay.
At this stage, Mr. Manilal Nanavati and Mr. B. G. Kher thought that it would be proper for them to retire from the Firm and hand over the reins to Mr. Ambalal Parikh to continue the Firm’s affairs. They, therefore retired in June, 1946 after 28 years of practice.
In June 1972, Mr. R. M. Gandhi was admitted as a Partner in the Firm.
One of the principles of our founding fathers was that the Firm’s office ought to be on the 1st floor for convenience of the Partners and the staff, but most importantly for the convenience of clients.
After enrolling on the rolls of the Bombay Bar, in 1981, Mr. Vikram B. Trivedi was retained by the Firm. Within a short period, Mr. Vikram Trivedi’s hard work and desire to excel were noticed by the then partners of the Firm and he was admitted as a Partner in 1984. He later went on to become the Managing Partner of the Firm and took complete charge in early 2000.
Under his leadership, the Firm has grown exponentially and has carved out a niche for itself.
From the beginning, the partners of Manilal and Kher conceived that even as lawyers they had social obligations to the financially weaker sections of society. The Firm has continued the tradition of actively taking up social causes, pro bono.
Over the years, the strength of our intellectual team, client base and employees has doubled. In keeping with the Firm’s mantra of creating talent, all the present partners have embarked on their careers with the Firm.
Currently, the Firm has 9 Partners and over 40 Associates. The Firm prides itself on the fact that it provides equal opportunities for all. Mr. Vikram Trivedi has risen through the ranks and has ensured that in the Firm only hard work, commitment and dedication are rewarded.