RAI MUHAMMAD SALEH AZAM
PRINCIPAL LAWYER

Bar Admissions:

  • High Courts, 2002 (Punjab Bar Council)
  • Lower Courts, 2000 (Punjab Bar Council)

Education:

  • LL.B. (Hons) (London)
  • B.A. (Government College, Lahore)

Biography:


RAI MUHAMMAD SALEH AZAM was educated at The King's School, Ely in Cambridgeshire, England, 1989-91 (A-Levels); Government College, Lahore, 1992-94 (B.A. in Political Science, History and Economics); and the University of London, 1995-98 (LL.B. (Hons.)). Whilst in London, Mr. Azam attended the famous Bentham Lectures in Jurisprudence at Bentham House, University College London.

Mr. Azam commenced his law practice in Lahore as an Associate at Walker Martineau Saleem, Advocates & Legal Consultants (associated with Walker Martineau of 64 Queen Street, London, a solicitors firm established before 1868, now merged with Penningtons Solicitors LLP). After spending some time in independent practice and, later, as an Associate at Az Zaman, Advocates & Legal Consultants, Islamabad, where he gained expertise in commercial, corporate, energy and telecommunication laws, he rejoined Walker Martineau Saleem, Lahore as an Associate on 1 February 2001 where he continued as such until 31 January 2004.

During his four-years at Walker Martineau Saleem, Mr. Azam had the privilege of being trained by and working under the guidance of some of the leading lawyers, judges and jurists of Pakistan including the late Mr. M. Saleem Sahgal, Barrister-at-Law; Mr. Justice (Retd.) M.S.H. Quraishi and Mr. Justice (Retd.) Fazal Karim, both former Judges of the Supreme Court of Pakistan; and the late Mr. Justice (Retd.) K.M.A. Samdani, former Judge of the Lahore High Court. At Walker Martineau Saleem, Mr. Azam specialized in banking laws, corporate and commercial laws, employment, labour and industrial relations laws and legislative drafting. He also headed the Firm’s Banking Courts Litigation Group between 1 January 2002 and 31 January 2004 during which he was responsible for managing, conducting and appearing in over 150 cases in the Federal Banking Courts, Lahore.

On 1 February 2004, Mr. Azam co-founded Azam & Rai, Advocates & Legal Consultants at Lahore.

Mr. Azam has appeared regularly before various judicial, semi-judicial and quasi-judicial fora, including the High Courts, Banking Courts, District Courts, Civil Courts, Labour Courts, Accountability Courts, the Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), the National Tariff Commission (NTC), the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) and the Foreign Exchange Adjudicator, State Bank of Pakistan. Mr. Azam has also participated in international commercial arbitration proceedings before the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), New York – a division of the American Arbitration Association.

Mr. Azam has also been involved in important legislative drafting assignments for the Government of Pakistan and the Government of the Punjab. He drafted the “Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority Ordinance, 2002” as well as the “Small & Medium Enterprises Development Authority Rules, 2002” for the Government of Pakistan and drafted the “Public Performances (Regulation) Act” – a law to regulate public performances and to check obscenity – as well as the draft of the “Private Hospitals & Healthcare Establishments (Regulation) Act” – a law to regulate private hospitals and healthcare establishments – for the Government of the Punjab. He was part of the legal team that worked on the project of the Government of Pakistan for the consolidation, simplification and rationalization of Pakistan’s labour laws during 2001-2002 pursuant to the Shafiur Rehman Commission Report of 2000. He was also part of the two-member legal team that advised the Federal Ministry of Commerce, Industries & Production and the Federal Ministry of Labour, Manpower & Overseas Pakistanis, Government of Pakistan on the drafting of the Industrial Relations Ordinance, 2002, and the drafts of the Conditions of Employment Ordinance and the Wages Ordinance. Mr. Azam has also advised the Ministry of Labour, Government of Pakistan, the Small & Medium Enterprises Development Authority and the Asian Development Bank on the compliance of Pakistani labour legislation with International Labour Organization Conventions.

In April 2014, Mr. Azam was appointed by the Labour & Human Resource Department, Government of the Punjab on the six-member Committee for the Consolidation, Simplification and Rationalization of Labour Laws in the Punjab Province. In May 2015, Mr. Azam was appointed legal advisor to the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB), Government of the Punjab.

Mr. Azam is a member of the Adjunct Faculty at the School of Law & Policy, University of Management & Technology, Lahore, where he teaches Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) to students of the LL.M. in Commercial Law degree programme. Mr. Azam has also remained a member of the Adjunct Faculty at the Punjab Law College, Lahore where he designed and taught the Banking Law course for the College's Certificate in Banking Law and the University of the Punjab's LL.B. degree programmes, which was the first time that a Banking Law course had been designed and taught in Pakistan as part of a formal legal education programme.

Mr. Azam is the author of various research papers and numerous articles on law and law-related issues that have appeared in leading Pakistani national English-language newspapers such as The Nation and Business Recorder and professional and academic journals such as the All Pakistan Legal Decisions, Pakistan Law Journal, Corporate Law Decisions and Superior Law Review.

In addition to Pakistan, where he currently resides, Mr. Azam has lived in Egypt, the Lebanon, Iraq and England. He has visited the USA, France, Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the UAE. He is a member of the Lahore Polo Club and the Pakistan Rangers Polo Club, Lahore where he plays polo in his spare time.

Areas of Expertise:

  • Banking & Finance
  • Building & Construction
  • Civil
  • Constitutional
  • Commercial/Business Transactions
  • Competition/Anti-Trust
  • Constitutional
  • Contracts
  • Corporate
  • Dispute Resolution (Arbitration & Litigation)
  • Employment & Labour
  • Energy
  • Information Technology
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Trade/WTO
  • Investment (Foreign & Domestic)
  • Land, Property & Real Estate
  • Legislative Drafting
  • Telecommunications

Professional Affiliations:

  • Punjab Bar Council
  • Lahore High Court Bar Association
  • Lahore Bar Association

Recognition:

  • Chambers Global: World's Leading Lawyers for Business in the category of Corporate/Commercial Law (published by Chambers & Partners, London)
  • Chambers Asia-Pacific: Asia-Pacific's Leading Lawyers for Business in the category of Corporate/Commercial Law (published by Chambers & Partners, London)
  • The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific
  • Recipient of Certificate of Appreciation from The World Bank Group
  • Recipient of Certificates of Contribution from The World Justice Project

Participation in Conferences/Seminars/Workshops/Courses/Lectures:

  • Stakeholders’ Consultation Session on “Introduction of Limited Liability Partnership in Pakistan” held under the auspices of the Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore on 21 October 2014
  • "Corporate Governance Dispute Resolution Workshop for Lawyers" held under the auspices of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) (World Bank Group) at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore on 23 September 2014
  • "South Asia Labour Conference" held under the auspices of the Labour & Human Resource Department, Government of the Punjab with support from the Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resources Development, Government of Pakistan, the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the European Union (EU) at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore from 24-26 April 2014. During the Conference, Mr. Azam participated in the Working Group on “Harmonization of Labour Laws” and delivered a presentation titled “Harmonization of Labour Laws and Polices in Pakistan in line with International Labour Standards” on behalf of the Labour & Human Resource Department, Government of the Punjab. Mr. Azam also gave inputs on the recommendations of the Working Group, which were presented in the Plenary Session of the Conference
  • Stakeholders' Consultation on the "Draft Punjab Labour Policy 2014" held under the auspices of the Labour & Human Resource Department, Government of the Punjab and the International Labour Organization (ILO) at the Avari Hotel, Lahore on 8 April 2014
  • Stakeholders' Consultation Session on "Labour Law Reforms" held under the auspices of the Labour & Human Resource Department, Government of the Punjab at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore on 24 March 2014
  • Seminar/Workshop on "Trade Defence Laws" held under the auspices of the National Tariff Commission (NTC), Government of Pakistan, in collaboration with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Trade Project at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI), Lahore on 8 October 2013
  • "Corporate Governance Dispute Resolution Workshop for Lawyers" held under the auspices of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) (World Bank Group) at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore on 5 April 2012
  • Stakeholders’ Consultation on "Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanisms for Resolving Labour Disputes" held under the auspices of the Workers Employers Bilateral Council of Pakistan (WEBCOP) with the support of the Solidarity Centre, Islamabad at the Hotel Regent Plaza, Karachi on 30 June 2010
  • International Conference on "Challenges in Implementing Competition Law in Developing Countries" held under the auspices of the Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore on 11-12 May 2010
  • Seminar on "The Role of Lawyers in Helping Companies Implement Good Corporate Governance and Mediating Corporate Governance Disputes" held under the auspices of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) (World Bank Group) at the Avari Hotel, Lahore on 11 March 2008
  • Roundtable Seminar on "Survey on Corporate Governance Practices in Pakistan" held under the auspices of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) (World Bank Group), the Pakistan Institute of Corporate Governance (PICG) and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) at the Royal Palm Golf & Country Club, Lahore on 24 July 2007
  • Delivered lecture as Guest Speaker on "The Constitutional & Judicial History of Pakistan (1947-2007)" at the National University of Computer & Emerging Sciences, Lahore on 25 May 2007
  • Conference on "International Negotiations: Processes & Dimensions" held under the auspices of the Department of Political Science, Forman Christian College, Lahore and the International Institute of Applied Systems Analysis, Vienna, Austria at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore on 11 February 2007
  • Lecture on "Amendments to the Pakistani Constitution: The Law and the Politics" by Abid Hasan Minto, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of Pakistan, held under the auspices of the Distinguished Lecturer Series by the Department of Law & Policy, Lahore University of Managements Sciences, Lahore on 17 November 2006
  • National Services Workshop on "Export of Services" in context of WTO/GATS held under the auspices of the International Trade Centre (UNCTAD/WTO) as part of the European Commission-funded Trade Related Technical Assistance (TRTA) Programme in Pakistan in conjunction with the Institute of Business Administration, Karachi at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Karachi on 26-27 May 2006. Mr. Azam read a paper titled “Export of Legal Services from Pakistan: Challenges & Opportunities”. His recommendations on ways and means to improve and increase the exports of legal services from Pakistan were adopted in a report prepared by the International Trade Centre for the Ministry of Commerce, Government of Pakistan
  • Lecture on "Alternative Dispute Resolution" by Prof. Dr. Nomita Aggarwal, Head and Dean, Faculty of Law, University of Delhi, held under the auspices of the Pakistan College of Law, Lahore in January 2006
  • Certificate Course on "International Commercial Arbitration" conducted by Toby Landau, Esq., Barrister, Essex Court Chambers, London, UK, held under the auspices of the Pakistan College of Law, Lahore from 6-20 January 2006
  • Lecture on "Bilateral Investment Treaties" by Samuel S. Wordsworth, Esq., Barrister, Essex Court Chambers, London, UK, held under the auspices of the Office of the Attorney General for Pakistan and the Board of Investment, Government of Pakistan at Islamabad on 1 December 2005
  • ICC Arbitration Conference "The Right Formula: International Arbitration" held under the auspices of the International Chamber of Commerce Pakistan at the Sheraton Hotel & Towers, Karachi on 23 November 2005
  • Conference on Arbitration titled "Privatization of Justice" held at the Marriott Hotel, Islamabad on 15 November 2005
  • Conference on GATS titled "Trade in Services: Challenges and Opportunities for Pakistan" held under the auspices of the Planning & Development Department, Government of the Punjab at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore on 14 November 2005
  • Seminar on "SME Development: Myths & Realities" held under the auspices of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA), Government College University (GCU), the British Council and the Lahore Chapter of the British Alumni Association at GCU, Lahore on 30 July 2004
  • Seminar on "Access to Justice & Alternative Dispute Resolution" held under the auspices of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan at the Supreme Court Building, Islamabad on 22 May 2004
  • "WTO/GATS Conference 2003: The State of Preparedness" held under the auspices of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan at Lahore on 8-9 August 2003
  • Seminar on "Privatization Laws & Infrastructure Financing" held under the auspices of the British Council at the Federal Judicial Academy, Islamabad on 8 January 1997
  • Sixth Pakistan Jurists Conference on "Law & Democracy" held under the auspices of the Pakistan Bar Council at the Supreme Court Building, Islamabad on 28-30 November 1996

Languages:

  • English
  • Urdu