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Kaitlyn in Conversation with Molina Swarup Asthana - A Melbourne based Lawyer and a Social Worker!

This week we have's Kaitlyn Isham in conversation with Melbourne based lawyer and a social worker – Molina Swaroop Asthana.

Molina, is one of the leading Indian origin lawyers in Australia, who has been recognized among the top 50 Indian community members, she has also received the Victorian Multicultural Award for Excellence in Community Services. In addition, Molina has also won two awards at the Indian Executive Club Awards 2013, the Young Executive of the Year Award Female. She also received the prestigious Person of the Year Award, which was given by Hon. John Howard, ex-Prime Minister of Australia.

Molina Swarup Asthana is a Principal Solicitor with the Victorian Government Solicitor's Office (VGSO) and is looking after Major Projects for the State of Victoria. She has broad-based commercial and litigation experience and localised expertise in mergers and acquisitions.

Molina's areas of expertise include commercial law, tendering and procurement and contract management. Her previous Australian experience includes working in top tier firms Minter Ellison (Mergers & Acquisitions) and Clayton Utz (Banking & Finance).

She also has significant experience in the Indian jurisdiction having practiced in the Supreme Court, with law firms in the commercial area and also as an in-house counsel of a big conglomerate. Whilst practicing in India she was involved in a number of Public Interest Litigations that were reported in the national newspapers. Some of the significant cases Molina was involved in included PIL's on behalf of the parents of students of public schools challenging the unjustified fee hikes by the schools and also a PIL to enforce rules in Colleges to prevent and take action against ragging.

Molina is also the Victorian Convener for the Asian Australian Alliance which is a collective of various sub communities covering all Asian Australian communities, with the purpose of challenging policies and advocating for change in seeing better diversity and representation of Asian Australians in the mainstream society.

In addition Molina is associated with many other organisations and groups such as, Director on the Board of NGO, Australian Center for Human Rights and Health, Committee Member for Legal Affairs of the South Asian Public Affairs Council 2013-2014, Director of an Australian based NGO Asha Global, President of the Victorian Chapter of the International Law Association, Deputy Chair of the International Law Section of the Law Institute of Victoria, Treasurer of the Asian Australian Lawyer’s Association.

Molina speaks on SBS Hindi radio regularly on legal issues of interest to Indians living in Australia with wide ranging topics from racial discrimination to consumer protection. She also writes in Indian newspapers on these issues.

She is very passionate about creating a link between the Indian and Australian legal committees and have been working on this personally and through the various organisations with which she is involved. She accompanied the Minister for Trade Hon. Andrew Robb on a trade delegation to India in 2015, advocating for enhanced legal ties between the two countries. Further she has made submissions to DFAT on legal services in the Australia India FTA at their behest and has spoken at various forums both in India and Australia on the regulation of legal markets and FTAs.

Check out Kaitlyn in Conversation with Molina Swarup Asthana here on

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