Good evening Honourable Minister for Law and Foreign Affairs Mr Shanmugam, Vimila, Sujesh, members of Subhas’ family and all others present who are near and dear to Subhas.
On their behalf and members of my law firm RHTLaw Taylor Wessing, I want to thank all of you for your compassion and for being present here today to celebrate and honour Subhas’ illustrious and amazingly fruitful life — a life of love extended, commitments kept, and faith observed.
All of us have come here with the grief which his death evokes, for, his character and fame are now public property.
For those of you who don't know me, my name is Rajan Menon, having known Subhas since 1967 when I joined the then University of Singapore as a law student. I am Subhas’ fellow senior partner in the Law Firm.
As Subhas’ friends poured into his flat yesterday I was struck but not surprised, by how many distinct sets of friends he had who had come to pay sincere and honourable respects.
My very good friend and professional colleague Subhas Anandan personified a highly principled warrior from his early age, student days, kampong boy, undergraduate, social thinker, legal advocate and supporter of a fair and just society.
He defied convention and criticism to help the underdog, the righteous and his friends and colleagues especially the young ones who felt less than rightly assessed. Unfortunately he was much misunderstood many a time in this regard
Throughout his life, I may dare say, he has constantly been the most loved, and most implicitly followed by family, relatives, friends, and the most dreaded by opponents.
Subhas' predominant sentiment, from first to last, was a deep devotion to the cause of human liberty and right – a strong sympathy with the underdog everywhere, and an ardent wish for their elevation. With him, this was a primary and all controlling passion. Subsidiary to this, was the conduct of his whole life. He loved his family immensely, friends devotedly and most importantly Singapore because he believed it was his own country despite his birth in what is publicized as God’s own country, Kerala India; and he burned with a zeal for the advancement, prosperity and glory of each one, because he saw in each, the advancement, prosperity and glory, of human liberty, human right and human nature.
While in the University of Singapore in the late 60s, his extreme warmth, care and concern was very evident to me, the many undergraduates, the academia and not forgetting the then late bursar Peter Lim, the vice-chancellor the late Dr Toh Chin Chye, law lectures and its dean and others he connected and engaged with. He was an active sportsman and though not a very studious one, got through his exams with little effort.
After graduating in 1970, he quickly got into the depths of legal practice and competently equipped himself with the knowledge and strategy to deal with many challenging cases that came to him. During his colourful career he was feared, sometimes hated but always respected by the prosecutors, practising members of the legal community and officers of the law regulatory bodies.
He was a strong head and shoulder in the founding of my law practice, RHTLaw LLP in 2011. He threw himself immensely and unreservedly into establishing the Firm into what it is today with the rest of the Partners and staff of the Firm despite the acute difficulties we faced.
Thank you very much, Subhas.
As I said recently in a tribute to Subhas, the Singapore Criminal Bar, unlike the criminal bar of some commonwealth jurisdictions, has not been fortunate to produce many well regarded legendary criminal practitioners.
But Subhas was a man of exemplary integrity, boundless energy, passion, compassion, generous and a staunch defender of the Rule of Law. All these called for very hard work and commitment which Subhas gave whole heartedly.
In the 44 years of legal practice, he became an outstanding and legendary Criminal Lawyer of the Singapore Criminal Law Practice.
Having come from a kampong in Sembawang where his family moved to after his father retired as a clerk in the British Royal Navy, Subhas saw how circumstances can force people to turn to crime and yet not be able to defend themselves. Access to justice was a dream which he enthusiastically helped turn to reality.
He said: “While criminal law is not the most lucrative line of legal work, since many clients cannot afford a lawyer, receiving the gratitude of those he represented was enough.” Some of them even offered him their organs.
He also said "I may not have made so much money, but I think the goodwill and affection I got, even the richest lawyer in Singapore will not have.”
My dear Subhas, you have left a lasting legacy of a tireless, compassionate and competent lawyer. I have seen taxi drivers stop, out of awe and regard, to give way whenever Subhas was crossing any road.
All of us, let alone aspiring lawyers, can fondly look at him, draw tremendous inspiration in how and what he did and be encouraged to follow his footsteps.
Subhas, you will be remembered by everyone as honourable, diligent and ever ready to help one in need and the downtrodden.
On Monday 5 January night when Subhas spoke to me, he expressed very deep frustration about his painful ailments and requested me to speak to my Guru, Amma, to end it.
Little did I realise that that would be my last conversation with him. I did not anticipate the turn he chose, as he always wanted to be in charge, yesterday morning while undergoing dialysis.
May I humbly invite everyone here to join me in prayer to Almighty God to bless this very Good Man, Subhas Anandan.
Today RHTLaw Taylor Wessing lost one of our family members and one of its leading lights. Mr Subhas Anandan passed away this morning leaving behind his wife Vimala and only son Sujesh. Our immediate thoughts and prayers are with Vimala, Sujesh and their immediate family in this difficult time. Mr Subhas Anandan was a founding father and a Senior Partner at RHTLaw Taylor Wessing.
Mr. Rajan Menon, Senior Partner, RHTLaw Taylor Wessing LLP, said, “Over 44 years of legal practice, Subhas has established himself as one of the most outstanding criminal lawyers the Singapore Bar has ever had. Subhas was a man of integrity, boundless energy, passion, compassion, generosity and a staunch defender of the rule of law. People who have been helped by Subhas, and there have been so many, will know that beneath that stern and fierce demeanour, was one of the kindest and warmest man you could ever meet. Subhas gave wholeheartedly to those to whom he could. On behalf of my partners, management and staff at RHTLaw Taylor Wessing LLP, we are sad to have lost one of our own but are honoured to have served with this giant of a man who had a heart of gold. Today we grieve the loss of a great man. ”
Mr Subhas Anandan was 67 years old.
An article prepared by Wun Rizwi, Intellectual Property & Technology Partner at RHTLaw Taylor Wessing, titled Singapore’s Regulatory Framework for Electronic Marketing: Practical Tips for Compliance was featured as a commentary and analysis piece in the December 2014 edition of Bloomberg BNA’s World Data Protection Report.
The commentary discusses regulations specific to electronic marketing in Singapore, primarily two main pieces of legislation – The Singapore Spam Control Act (SCA) and The Do Not Call (DNC) Registry established under the Singapore Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA).
The World Data Protection Report helps readers understand the latest developments in privacy laws worldwide. The report ensures that readers have details of all new laws and requirements, in addition to providing practical guidance on issues such as cross-border data flows, monitoring and surveillance.
To read the full article, please log in to www.bna.com
This article was written in conjunction with the Data Protection Practice at Taylor Wessing U.K.
RHTLaw Taylor Wessing Managing Partner Tan Chong Huat and Partner Nizam Ismail have successfully co-authored an opinion piece, which was published in the 17 December 2014 edition of The Business Times.
The piece discusses several reforms that Singapore can undertake to better position itself as an international hub for Islamic Finance, an increasingly important component of global financial markets and a growing practice area for the firm.
To read the full article, please click here.