History of Indian Forest Services

The Indian Forest Service was established in 1966 for protection, conservation as well as regeneration of forest resources.

India was the first country, who introduced scientific forest management. In 1864, the British Raj established the Imperial Forest Department. In 1866 Dr. Dietrich Brandis, a German forest officer, was appointed Inspector General of Forests. The Imperial Forestry Service was organized under the Imperial Forest Department in 1867. The British colonial government also constituted provincial forest services and executive and subordinate services similar to the forest administrative hierarchy used today.

Officers appointed to the Imperial Forestry Service from 1867 to 1885 were trained in Germany & France and from 1905 on at Cooper's Hill, London, then a well reputed professional colleges of forestry. From 1905 to 1926, the University of Oxford, Cambridge and Edinburgh had undertaken the task of training Imperial Forestry Service officers.

From the year 1927 to 1932, forest officers who were well trained at the Imperial Forest Research Institute (FRI) at Dehradun had been established in 1906. The Indian Forest College (IFC) was established in the 1938 at Dehradun and officers recruited to the Superior Forest Service by the states and provinces were trained there. Forestry, administered by the federal government until then was transferred to the “provincial list” by the Government of India Act 1935 and recruitment to the Imperial Forestry Service was discontinued.

The modern Indian Forest Service was established in the year 1966, after independence under the All India Services Act 1951. The first Inspector General of Forests, Hari Singh; had played a crucial role in the development of the IFS.

Around an area of 6, 35, 400 km2 designated as forests in India and about 22.27% of the country. India's forest policy was established in the year 1894 and revised again in 1952 and then again in the year 1988.