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Sustainable forest management in Madhya Pradesh



Prologue: The objective of Madhya Pradesh Forest Department is management of forest resources through strong institutional infrastructure for conservation and ecological security in order to meet the needs of the present and future generations. The state is a repository of rich

natural resources. Its landscape with magnificent mountain ranges of Vindhyas Satpura, Maikal and Aravali with a fine network of lifeline rivers like Narmada, Chambal, Mahi, Tapi, Betwa, Ken and Son offers a unique watershed and home to Tiger, Gaur, Panther and Vultures. Besides all this, avian, aquatic and terrestrial large and small species inhabit the lush green forests. The forests are mainly Moist and Dry Tropical Deciduous Group and a small part of the state in north is occupied by the Thorn forests.


Institutions in Forest Department are :

MP Ecotourism Development Board


Forest Department Established in


State Forest Research Institute


MP State Forest Development Corp.


MP Minor Forest Produce Federation


MP Ecotourism Development Board


MP Bamboo Mission



The aim of forest management in MPFD includes the ways and means to protect the resources available, develop additional resources and maintain harmony between needs and availability. The country’s largest forest department organization consists of 296 IFS and 380 SFS officers supported by 20630 uniformed staff which includes Range Officers, Dy. Rangers, Foresters and Forest Guards. About ten thousand ministerial and contract staff support the office and field jobs.


Administrative Units : The structural statistics of MPFD is :

Territorial Forest Circles


Research & Extension Circles


Working Plan


Territorial Divisions


Production Divisions


National Parks




Forest Development Corporation Units


Primary FP Collection Coop. Societies





The presence of 11 Agroclimatic zones in the state provides a unique variation in forestry practices. The Working Plans for Territorial and Management Plans for Protected Area units are formulated and implemented in letter and spirit. The scientific management of flora and fauna is integrated with the development of human inhabitants of the ecosystem.


Training Strategy:

MPFD is managing 12% of India’s forest area. The objective of capacity building to ensure professional excellence of the personnel is important to achieve sustainable development in the state. The nine training institutions in the state train them on forestry issues along with social and soft skills to equip forest staff to adapt the changing trends of management approach with time. These institutions are:-

  • Forest Training College, Balaghat

  • Forest Training School, Amarkantak, Anuppur

  • Forest Training School, Betul

  • Forest Training School, Shivpuri

  • Forest Training School, Lakhnadon, Seoni

  • Forest Training School, Govindgarh, Rewa

  • Forest Training School, Jhabua


The training of newly recruited Forest Guards is conducted for 6 months in these schools and Foresters promoted from Forest Guards are trained for 45 days. Wildlife training for staff in Protected Areas and outside is planned in the two training schools below:-

  • Forest Training School, Tala, Umariya

  • Forest Training School, Pachmarhi, Hoshangabad


Training Methodology:

The forest staff is trained on Induction, Promotion, Refresher and On-The- Job. Induction training of Forest Guards is held for 6 months in which 187 theory classes, 68 practical classes and 65 days of touring is conducted. There are 9 major subjects for training: Silviculture 1&2, Forest Protection & Law, Survey & Engineering, Forest Utilization, Wildlife Conservation, Accounts & Procedure, Community Forestry and Environmental Conservation


The training for wildlife crime detection, investigation and processing of the cases with legal attributes are also discussed with case studies and examples. The trainees are updated with the latest forestry practices in the state and are groomed to adopt the technological advancements in forestry sector.


The field training on measurement and assessment is imparted by hands-on exercises by experienced officers. The practical skills developed on subjects like Survey and Engineering enables them to perform measuring forest boundaries and tallying locations for management purposes. They are also trained in building water harvesting structures, small buildings in remote areas like forest check posts, patrolling camps and watch towers etc. Touring helps trainees to appreciate best forestry practices implemented in the state. Training on Joint Forest Management aims to enable them to seek active participation of local communities to protect and develop forests. The skills provide them to interact amicably and empathize with their dependence on forests for their livelihood.


Training Schedule

A comprehensive training calendar is prepared for annual events and training package is developed along with the list of potential resource persons. There are about 24-30 refresher training courses annually to cover about 900 uniformed staff members on a variety of issues ranging from Information Technology, Climate Change, Wildlife Crime control and investigation to behavioral skills. The Director, Forestry Education, Government of India also sponsors refresher training courses for serving staff. These courses aim to impart knowledge, develop skill and change attitude through on-the-job training courses regularly and renew the vigor in the work force. The capacity of training institutions is enhanced to accommodate larger number of trainees. However, the strength and quality of trainers and faculty is the limiting factor. In an attempt to cope up with this, the officers posted in the vicinity of schools are identified for delivering sessions specific to their capacity. The training material is made available on the website of MPFD. Presentations on regular and specific topics are uploaded on MPFD website. A number of relevant films are also uploaded on the website to supplement the concept.


Ensuring a sound mind in a sound body

The proverb Mens sana in corpore sano, a Latin phrase, meaning "A sound mind in a sound body." was coined by Aristotle, a Greek philosopher. Foresters generally work in remote areas and have to respond to situations in isolation. This is an inherent quality inculcated in foresters during training. Physical training, drills and sports activities are mandatory for the trainees in all institutions.