Ms. Neha Verma
Ms. neha Verma currently works with the Ministry of Steel, Govt of India in Jan 2022 where she is posted as Director in the energy and environment management division, with focus on decarbonization of 'hard to abate' steel industry, while working in areas of Climate Change Mitigation, Sustainability, Circular Economy, Energy Efficiency, Clean Energy Transition, Green Hydrogen, CCUS (Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage), Technology Transition etc.
Ms. Neha Verma received her bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from IIT Kanpur in 1998, and thereafter worked in the IT industry for 6 years both in India as well as USA. Passion for forests and wildlife; exposure to issues and challenges faced by wildlife and natural world; and commitment to contribute effectively towards wildlife conservation led her to return to India to join Indian Forest Service in 2005. She secured All India Rank 1 in the entrance exam for IFS as well as received Gold Medal along with many other awards in her IFS training at Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy, Dehradun. She completed Master of Management Studies in Public Policy from Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore in 2020, and was again awarded the Director's Gold Medal.
She served as a committed, dedicated, bold and upright Forest Officer in the state of Uttarakhand for 17 years in various capacities, including manager of wildlife rich territorial divisions and protected area in the Corbett Landscape of Uttarakhand, where she contributed in the field of forest and wildlife protection, biodiversity and wildlife conservation, ecosystem restoration, watershed management, natural resource management, adaptation and mitigation of climate change, ecotourism, fringe community upliftment, sustainable livelihoods to name a few. She followed "zero-tolerance-policy" for controlling rampant illegal river bed mining in her tenure as DFO, Lansdowne Forest Division and Ramnagar Forest Division and incessantly worked for stopping illicit tree felling, wildlife poaching and encroachments in the forest area.
She always believed in creating institutional mechanisms for making changes and gave priority to capacity building, nurturing and improving working conditions of forest staff. She also relentlessly worked for women empowerment by creating new income generating activities for local women Self Help Groups (SHGs).
She received appreciation by Hon'ble Chief Justice of Uttarakhand High Court in the judgements for bold and uncompromising stand taken during seizures and rehabilitation of illicitly-held captive elephants and encroachment eviction drives. She spearheaded Ramnagar Forest Division to receive prestigious International Global Tiger Forum -Conservation Assured Tiger Standards (GTF-CA|TS) accreditation, second to be awarded in India and fourth in the world, by steering the whole Division with a workforce of over 300 personnel to deliver the highest standards of tiger conservation. Subsequently, she served as Additional Secretary, Forest and Environment in Govt of Uttarakhand where she worked with legal, financial, administrative and policy related matters pertaining to Forests, Wildlife, Biodiversity, Conservation, Environment, Sustainability and Climate Change. She was also actively involved
in the establishment and functioning of the State Environment, Conservation and Climate Change Directorate in Uttarakhand.