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NLS visiting faculty Prashanth Sabeshan on his new book: Investing in India’s Infrastructure and Energy Sectors – Laws and Practice.

February 10, 2021

We congratulate NLS alum and visiting faculty Prashanth Sabeshan on his new book ‘Investing in India’s Infrastructure and Energy Sectors – Laws and Practice.’ Mr Sabeshan, NLS’ LLB 1997, is a Partner at AZB & Partners and teaches Investments and Infrastructure Laws at NLSIU.

His book, published by Thomson Reuters, covers a specific practice area of corporate law called Infrastructure and Energy. While the practice area is quite vast and covers 20-25 sectors, his book particularly focuses on the legal aspects of commercial issues for those who want to undertake infrastructure work and related projects, as well as the legal challenges that come along with it.

We spoke to him to find out more about his book and what readers can learn from it.

What is the vision behind this book? What made you choose to write it?

As a law practitioner, I have focused on the area of infrastructure and energy for more than 20 years. I have always been fascinated by this area of law where there is a mix of law, commerce and science. However there are not many book in this field. So, when I got an opportunity from the publishers (Thomson Reuters), the idea was to use that opportunity to write on these areas of law as a practitioner. Also, it was a privilege to write on this area as they are very few practitioners in this area of infrastructure and energy law in India. It is a good way to explain the nuances of this area of law to those who may be interested.

What are the focus areas of the book? Are there any specific issues or challenges that the book addresses?

The main focus areas of the book is the challenges faced in undertaking infrastructure projects in India – policy, concessions, joint venture challenges, due legal diligence of these projects, development, construction – managing EPC risk, operations, and exits from these projects (e.g. lock in/change in control issues). The first few chapters of the book deals with general and common issues that arise in these sectors – foreign investment paths & challenges, type of PPP projects, Government policies, tendering and bid related issues etc. The subsequent chapters are more sector specific and deal with specific developments in each of these sectors – like electricity sector, ports sector, oil & gas sectors, airports sector etc.

Does this book cater to a target audience?

There is no single target audience. The book will be very useful for commercial law practitioners (be it as part of corporate advisory work or litigators/arbitrators) as well as in-house counsel in both government/public sector companies as well as the private sector. It will also be very useful for academics/ researchers/ students who focus on these areas. It is a very practice oriented book and explains practical nuances and experiences that need to be kept in mind whilst undertaking these projects or negotiating these contracts.

Do you think there is a need for more books in this field? If so, why?

Yes, definitely, the area of infrastructure and energy is very vast and nearly encompasses 20-25 sub sectors. Each sub sector has it own challenges in terms of policy, concessions, regulatory issues and control of investments and exits. So, there is a lot of work and a lot of writing that can be done in this area.

About the Author:
Prashanth Sabeshan has over 20 years of experience working with law firms like Amarchand and Mangaldas, Herbert Smith Freehills and AZB & Partners among others in India, Australia and Singapore. His areas of interest include Foreign investment, Commercial contracts, General corporate, Infrastructure, Electricity & Renewables, Oil & Gas, Ports, Project Finance, Regulatory and Policy advisory.

His book ‘Investing in India’s Infrastructure and Energy Sectors – Laws and Practice’ published by Thomson Reuters is available online. Please click on the following links to access the book: