Deepest condolences and heartfelt sympathies to the family of Vinayak Pradhan. A great partner, colleague and most of all, friend, Vinayak will be dearly missed by everyone in Skrine.
09 March 2020
Vinayak Pradhan was an Advocate & Solicitor of the High Court of Malaya (1974) and Supreme Court of Singapore (1991). He was a Partner and Consultant at Skrine for more than 45 years, recognised throughout his legal career as a talented advocate, whose oratorical brilliance regularly outshone the best and was immensely respected in the arbitration world. Vinayak was a towering figure in construction law and lead the Firm’s Construction and Arbitration Practice Group for many years and has been recognised as a leader in construction, arbitration and litigation in many notable legal publications.
Vinayak was appointed as the Director of the Asian International Arbitration Centre in November 2018. The then Honourable Attorney General of Malaysia, in announcing the appointment, described Vinayak as “the doyen of arbitration in Malaysia and recognised the world over for his ability, experience and leadership in the field of arbitration”.
He was also in 2016 the first recipient of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, Malaysia Branch - Arbitrator of the Year. Mr. Sundaresh Menon, Chief Justice of Singapore, said of Vinayak at the award ceremony, “In the course of my career at the Bar, I acted as counsel in many arbitrations. I therefore have had the opportunity to appear before a fair number of arbitrators from many parts of the world. With the benefit of this perspective, I have no hesitation in saying that I personally rate Vinayak among the very finest of them.”
His legal acumen and skill was recognised by his many appointments including as Commissioner with the United Nations Compensation Commission (1998 to 2003) making recommendations on various construction and engineering claims for compensation by corporate entities as a result of Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait and other related events. He was also the global President of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (2013), Vice Chair ICC Commission on Arbitration (2008 to 2017), Additional Member of the ICC Court of Arbitration (from 2017), Member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (2003 to 2015), Panel of Conciliators and Arbitrators of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (2008 to 2014) and Member of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (2006). Vinayak was also a Commissioner with the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission, Malaysia (2012 to 2017) which had oversight of 21 Federal Government enforcement agencies.
Vinayak will also be remembered as an active sportsman in his youth with his principal sports being hockey and cricket. He captained the Malaysian Combined Schools, University of Singapore, VIOBA (First Division KL League) and the Malaysian Bar cricket teams and played cricket for the State of Johore, Malaysia. In the 2014 – 17th Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea, he was appointed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport as one of the 6 ad hoc judges empanelled to deal with disputes arising out of the Games. He was also an Independent Member of the Trust Management Committee of the Olympic Council of Malaysia (2012).
Notwithstanding his many accomplishments and seniority at the Bar, Vinayak will also be remembered as a man with utmost humility and would always take great pains to insist even to the most junior members of the Bar to address him by his first name.
We extend our deepest condolences and heartfelt sympathies to his ever loving wife, Varsha and his two wonderful children Avinash and Anisha and family.
A great partner, colleague and most of all, friend, Vinayak will be dearly missed by everyone in Skrine.