Mr Mahesh Rai > Drew & Napier LLC > Singapore, Singapore > Lawyer Profile

Drew & Napier LLC

Work Department

Dispute Resolution


Director, Dispute Resolution
Deputy Head, Construction & Engineering


Mahesh acts for clients in a broad spectrum of litigation and international arbitration matters.

He has handled disputes spanning many sectors including information technology, telecommunications, oil and gas, shipping, construction and commodities. He is adept at handling complex disputes involving multi-disciplinary technical issues. He has also acted in shareholder and joint venture disputes, employment disputes and fraud claims.

Mahesh graduated from the National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2008 as a Shaw Foundation Scholar.

In 2009, he earned an LL.M. in International Arbitration & Litigation from University College London (UCL). He was an oralist in the UCL team that was the runner-up in the prestigious Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition in 2009. Mahesh was part of the Drew & Napier team that won the inaugural Essex Court Chambers-Singapore Academy of Law Moot Competition 2012 for Singapore lawyers.

In 2012, Mahesh was also awarded an Excellence in Advocacy Award by the Singapore International Arbitration Academy.

In 2014, the Supreme Court of Singapore appointed Mahesh as Young Amicus Curiae and he assisted the High Court on novel points of law in an appeal involving money laundering. Mahesh was also awarded the Singapore Academy of Law scholarship which enabled him to work at Fountain Court Chambers with eminent Queen’s Counsel.

In 2017, the ICC appointed Mahesh as one of the regional representatives for the Young Arbitrators Forum.

Mahesh regularly acts as pro bono defence counsel under the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme (CLAS) for impecunious accused persons. He also represents victims who appear as civil parties before the hybrid Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

Mahesh also teaches advocacy to aspiring lawyers as part of the bar course.

Practice Areas:

  • Arbitration
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Construction & Engineering
  • Corporate Litigation
  • Crime
  • Defamation
  • Energy, Transport & Infrastructure
  • Information Technology
  • International Arbitration
  • International Trade
  • Investigations
  • Shipping
  • Telecommunications, Media & Technology




  • Arbitrator, KLRCA Panel
  • Arbitrator, SIAC Reserve Panel
  • Panel of Arbitrators, Thailand Arbitration Centre (THAC)
  • Regional Representative, ICC Young Arbitrators Forum
  • Member, Inter-Pacific Bar Association
  • Member, International Bar Association
  • Member, Law Society of Singapore
  • Committee Member, International Relations Committee of Law Society of Singapore
  • Committee Member, Criminal Legal Aid Scheme
  • Member, Singapore Academy of Law
  • Member, Young International Arbitration Group
  • Member, Young International Council for Commercial Arbitration
  • Lead Counsel, Legal Assistance Scheme for Capital Offences


  • LL.B. (Hons), National University of Singapore (2008), Shaw Foundation Scholar
  • LL.M. International Arbitration & Litigation, University College London (2009)
  • B.Sc. (1st Class Hons) Politics & International Relations, London School of Economics, External (2006)
  • Advocate & Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Singapore (2011)
  • Attorney-at-law of the state of New York (2011)
  • Solicitor of England & Wales (2013)
  • International Lawyer, Bar Association of the Kingdom of Cambodia (2013)
  • Member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators

Lawyer Rankings

Singapore > International arbitration

(Next Generation Partners)

Mahesh RaiDrew & Napier LLC

Local firm Drew & Napier LLC acts for multinational companies (particularly those based in Singapore as well India, China, Brunei and Indonesia) and foreign governments in commercial and investor-state arbitration. For the latter, the ‘outstandingCavinder Bull SC, who jointly leads the team alongside Jimmy Yim, SC and Randolph Khoo, has an impressive reputation. The group is also particularly strong for disputes in the construction and engineering sector, for which Christopher Chong, Mahesh Rai and Kelvin Teo (who recently joined from Cavenagh Law LLP) are key contacts. Other names to note include Siraj Omar SC  and Blossom Hing.

Singapore > Dispute resolution: local firms

(Next Generation Partners)

Mahesh RaiDrew & Napier LLC

Drew & Napier LLC‘s team is lauded as ‘reputable, professional, tactical and knowledgeable‘, particularly in high-profile matters before the Singapore and international courts, alongside a wealth of experience in cross-border arbitration and litigation disputes. Of particular note are Cavinder Bull, Jimmy Yim, Siraj Omar, SC, and Randolph Khoo who have extensive courtroom experience in commercial litigation and arbitration across a number of sectors. Rakesh Kirpalani is a ‘fantastic litigator‘ in the realm of technology and intellectual property; Blossom Hing and Wendell Wong are recommended for shareholder, corporate restructuring, and criminal law disputes, respectively. Adam Maniam, Mahesh Rai, and senior associate Bryan Wong make up the other key figures.

Singapore > White-collar crime - Local firms

Drew & Napier LLC‘s celebrated contentious skills are frequently in evidence in the white-collar crime segment. Wendell Wong is co-head of investigations and criminal law practice; he has an outstanding reputation for representing individuals in bribery and corruption investigations and cases. Mahesh Rai has also impressed in investigations, aside from his work in construction, arbitration, and litigation.

Singapore > Construction: Local firms

Drew & Napier LLC ‘s team ‘excel in bringing in-depth local on-the-ground knowledge’ and ‘responsiveness and efficiency in matters’ in the structuring of projects through drafting and negotiation of consortium, concession and supply agreements, concession agreements, with additional capabilities in project financing, procurement, and insolvency. On the contentious side, the team has bolstered its capabilities with the addition of Christopher Chong, who leads the practice. Deputy head Mahesh Rai represents clients in complex joint venture and contractual disputes arising out of construction, energy, infrastructure, and telecommunications projects.

Singapore > Projects and energy: local firms

Led by Jimmy Yim, SC, Drew & Napier LLC has a broad practice covering projects in areas including manufacturing, shipping, residential property, and energy. In addition to advising on non-contentious matters, the team also acts alongside the firm’s dispute resolution team to represent clients in litigation and arbitration. Yim handles both contentious and non-contentious matters; elsewhere, Ong Sim Ho is known for his work in the oil and gas sectors, particularly working with national oil companies. Dispute resolution specialist Mahesh Rai is another key contact, and handles disputes related to projects for clients throughout South East Asia.

Comparative Guides

Singapore: Litigation June 2021 This country-specific Q&A provides an overview to Litigation laws and regulations that may occur in Singapore.