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50 Years of Forests and Forestry in India after Independence


This article is an overview of the path of progress of Indian forestry over the last five decades of post-Independence era. The state ofIndia's forests and Indian forestry at the time of Independence is described. Various milestone events over this period are enumerated. The changing trends in forestry thought and practice, evolving legislation, institutions, and the evolving concepts have been detailed. India has been fortunate in having a forestry department established on scientific lines since nearly a century. The period since Independence has accelerated the process of scientific management of forests, despite the constraints faced by way of exploding population and alternate land-use practices which have impacted upon the forests in a big way. The foundations have been well laid. It now remains to the nation and to the foresters to carry the new concepts and thinking forward to preserve and protect the national forest and biodiversity wealth.

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