We say ‘Yes Minister’ to JGU alum Wali ullah Zadran as he powers through the ranks in the Afghanistan Government

“Working in the Government allows you to serve the whole country, not just a particular company, firm or organisation. It entrusts you with responsibilities, power, and ability to do something for the greater common good,” says Afghan national and O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU) alum, Wali ullah Zadran. As his country was on the crossroads of rebuilding after years of domestic strife, Zadran dreamt of making a change to the system from within. That’s why he dropped out of med school and directed his attention towards law. After an LL.M. degree from Jindal Global Law School (JGLS), his dreams became a reality. Just five years since, Zadran is now serving his country as the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum. That too, at just 29 years of age. Now, that’s a legend in the making! For the young leader who’s just getting started with unleashing his political potential, a promising future awaits.

You will find many an alumnus from Ivy League or Oxbridge colleges like Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Cornell, Stanford, Oxford, Cambridge, etc. in the top ranks of governance across the globe. It takes that level of academic excellence to get you a seat at the big table. For Zadran and his peers at O.P. Jindal Global University, that was exactly what was in store in the small town of Sonipat, Haryana that was quickly making a name for itself in the academic scene worldwide. A global university with a world-class offering is just what he needed to make the leap. Indeed, he landed on the massive platform quite successfully.

After completing his LL.B. in Mysore, Zadran ventured up north to Sonipat. Zadran specialized in International Trade and Investment Law at the Centre for Post Graduate Legal Studies, JGLS. “I was questioned about choosing India for my Master’s as I had done my Bachelor’s there as well. But I believe whether you study at a European or Asian university, what matters is how you explore and utilise the opportunities,” he says looking back. Clearly, he made the right choice.

Familiar with the length and breadth of the country, and thanks to the welcoming reception he received on the campus, Zadran feels at home in India. In fact, he calls it his second home. Remembering the time Afghanistan’s Chief Executive Officer visited the JGU campus, Zadran was overwhelmed by the way his fellow students’ paid respect to the national anthems of both countries. He vividly remembers the flags of the two nations flying proudly next to each other. The symbolic moment really hit home for Zadran. His training in one nation would one day help him launch a successful career in the Government of his homeland. In a beautiful way, it seemed to hint at the special place and deep link between the two countries that was growing in his heart and later, in his life’s work.

As his peers aspired for corporate careers, Zadran was focused on working in the Government. His previous work experience which includes working as legal officer and legal expert in the same ministry and few other organizations [Z1] and academic qualifications helped him pass a competitive recruitment exam for the position of Senior Legal Adviser in the Ministry. He then passed the rigorous Civil Service Examination, and was appointed as Director of Legal Affairs at the Ministry. At a young age of 29, Zadran won the complete trust of his country’s President for his professional knowledge and advice. He represented the Ministry in courts of law and presented large mining project reports to government authorities like the Cabinet, High Economic Council, and National Procurement Commission; all chaired by the President.

Zadran’s meteoric rise through the Government ranks recently earned him the title of Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum. While he considers it one of his biggest achievements in life, he understands the responsibility and is focused on developing policies, frameworks and new programs for the people of his country. He reveals that he still delves into his learning at JGLS to work on ideas and strategies. “It has given me a fresh perspective on the work in the Ministry, especially in the dealings with other countries,” he says with refreshing candor. He strongly believes that though people and personalities change, honesty, sincerity and integrity must be an essential in life. As those attributes remain his driving force, the future beckons bright for the young leader.


 Before appointment as Senior Legal Advisor I have worked as legal officer and legal expert in the same ministry and few other government organizations. He then passed the rigorous Civil Service Examination, and was appointed as Director of Legal Affairs at the Ministry. At a young age of 29, Zadran won the complete trust of his country’s President for his professional knowledge and advice. He represented the Ministry in courts of law and presented large mining project reports to government authorities like the Cabinet, High Economic Council, and National Procurement Commission; all chaired by the President.

Zadran’s meteoric rise through the Government ranks recently earned him the title of Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum. While he considers it one of his biggest achievements in life, he understands the responsibility and is focused on developing policies, frameworks and new programs for the people of his country. He reveals that he still delves into his learning at JGLS to work on ideas and strategies. “It has given me a fresh perspective on the work in the Ministry, especially in the dealings with other countries,” he says with refreshing candor. He strongly believes that though people and personalities change, honesty, sincerity and integrity must be an essential in life. As those attributes remain his driving force, the future beckons bright for the young leader.

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