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Raj Singh

Associate Director, South Asia Hub

With 37 years of distinguished public service, he retired on May 31, 2023, as Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF), Head of Forest Force in Karnataka. Throughout the career, he played pivotal roles in various domains, including afforestation and forest regeneration, where he implemented a highly effective and cost-efficient model for rejuvenating degraded forests, providing employment to marginalized communities and contributing significantly to soil conservation and biodiversity enhancement. As the Director General of Environment Management and Policy Research Institute (EMPRI) and Member Secretary of Karnataka Biodiversity Board, he spearheaded initiatives promoting applied policy research in climate science and environmental compliance, formulated strategic policies for environment and climate change, and recommended legal mechanisms for their implementation. His tenure at the Karnataka Biodiversity Board involved establishing a groundbreaking methodology for People's Biodiversity Registers, documenting over 6000 People’s Biodiversity Register (PBRs), later adopted by other states. He championed Forest Management programs involving local communities, operationalizing Village Forest Committees to ensure sustainable forest management and create livelihood opportunities. He also initiated human-animal conflict mitigation programs, engaging closely with communities, creating awareness, and providing alternative livelihood options, reducing conflicts with wildlife. Law enforcement, addressing issues like deforestation, illegal logging, and wildlife protection, remained integral to his roles. At Jungle Lodges and Resorts Ltd, a government enterprise, he established eco-resorts in Karnataka, collaborating with the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, to promote community development, sustainable livelihoods, environmental conservation, and community empowerment.

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