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Indian Forest and Tribal Service

Topics Covered:

  1. Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
  2. Role of civil services in a democracy.


Indian Forest and Tribal Service


What to study?

  • For Prelims: Key facts on Indian Forest Service- historical background.
  • For Mains: Need for renaming, issues, significance and related measures for the upliftment of tribals in the country.


Context: The Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions has initiated an inter-ministerial consultation note to rename the Indian Forest Service as Indian Forest and Tribal Service. The consultation note also contains the proposal to train the cadre to be more receptive towards tribals and forest dwellers.



The renaming is based on the recommendation made by the NCST which highlights the close ties between tribals, the forest and forest ecosystem. Merging forest and tribal welfare administrations will further the participation of ‘tribals’ in forest management. Renaming will also engender greater sensitivity on the forest department’s part towards the needs of ‘tribal’ communities.


About the Indian Forest Service:

During the year 1864 the then British India Government started the Imperial Forest Department and appointed Dr. Dietrich Brandis, a German Forest officer Inspector General of Forests in 1866.

Having recognized the need to have a premier forest service to manage the varied natural resources of the vast country and to organize the affairs of the Imperial Forest Department, Imperial Forest Service was constituted in 1867.

The subject of “Forestry” was transferred to the “Provincial List” by the Government of India Act, 1935 and subsequently recruitment to the Imperial Forest Service was discontinued.

The Indian Forest Service, one of the three All India Services, was constituted in the year 1966 under the All India Services Act, 1951 by the Government of India.

The main mandate of the service is the implementation of the National Forest Policy which envisages scientific management of forests and to exploit them on a sustained basis for primary timber products, among other things.


Sources: the hindu.