Indian Forest Service (IFS) Exams

Indian Forest Service (IFS) Exam is a premier exam conducted every year in India. Officers under Indian Forest Service are selected and recruited via competitive examination conducted by the UPSC and then trained for about two years by the Central Government at Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy in Dehradun. It is one of the toughest exams conducted in India. Candidates need to appear in the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination and qualify the same for going to the second stage of Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination.


Candidates are required to apply Online for Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination only by using the UPSC official website.  It is act as a screening mechanism for selection of candidates for the Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination. Candidates who wish to apply for Civil Services Examination also, have to apply once by appropriately indicating in the on‐line application form that they intend to appear for both the Indian Forest Service Examination and the Civil Services Examination. Candidates, who will qualify for the Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination, will have to fill in a Detailed Application Form subsequently as per further instructions to be provided to the candidates through the website ( of the Commission.

Persons already in Government service, whether in a permanent or temporary capacity or as work charged employees other than casual or daily rated employees or those serving under Public Enterprises are however, required to inform their Head of Office/Department that they have applied for the Examination.



A candidate must be either a citizen of India or a subject of Nepal or a subject of Bhutan or a Tibetan Refugee who came over to India before 1st January 1962 with the intention of permanently settling in India. Also a Tibetan Refugee who came over to India before 1st January 1962 with the intention of permanently settling in India or a person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania (formerly Tanganyika and Zanzibar), Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, Ethiopia and Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India are also eligible to apply if some prerequisite conditions are fulfilled.


A candidate’s age must not below 21 years and must not have attained the age of 32 years. There is a relaxation of 5 years for Candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe category. For Other Backward Classes there is a relaxation of 3 years.

Also a maximum of 5 years relaxation if a candidate had ordinarily been domiciled in the State of Jammu & Kashmir during the period from the 1st January, 1980 to the 31st day of December, 1989. Same is applicable for ex-servicemen including Commissioned Officers and ECOs/SSCOs who have rendered at least five years Military Service. A 10 years relaxation for Persons with Benchmark Disabilities. Maximum of 3 years relaxation in the case of Defence Services personnel disabled in operations during hostilities with any foreign country or in a disturbed area.


The candidate must hold a Bachelor's degree with at least one of the subjects namely Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science, Botany, Chemistry, Geology, Mathematics, Physics, Statistics and Zoology or a Bachelor's degree in Agriculture, Forestry or in Engineering of any of the recognised Universities.


A candidate can apply maximum six times for the exam. Other Backward Classes can apply maximum nine times. There is no limitation to the candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and candidate with benchmark disability.


Candidates can deposit the money in any Branch of SBI by cash, or by using net banking facility of State Bank of India or by using Visa/Master/RuPay Credit/Debit card.


The competitive examination comprises two successive stages:

(i) Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination (Objective Type) for the screening & selection of candidates for Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination; and

(ii) Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination (Written and Interview) for the selection of candidates against the vacancies identified and reported for the Indian Forest Service Examination.

The preliminary Examination consists of two papers of Objective type (multiple choice questions) and carries a maximum of 400 marks. The Examination comprise of two compulsory Papers of 200 marks each. The General Studies Paper-II of the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination will be a qualifying paper with minimum qualifying marks fixed at 33%. In both Question Papers there is negative marking for wrong answers.

Since there may be common candidates for Civil Services Examination and the Indian Forest Service Examination, after the common Screening Test done through Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination, separate lists will be prepared for the candidates eligible to appear in the Civil Service (Main) Examination and Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination, based on the criterion of minimum qualifying marks of 33%.

The number of candidates to be admitted to the Main Examination will be about twelve to thirteen times the total approximate number of vacancies to be filled in the year through this examination.

The Main Examination consists of written examination and an interview test. The written examination will consist of 6 papers of conventional essay type. The written examination consisting of the following papers:—

Paper I—General English 300 Marks

Paper II—General Knowledge 300 Marks

Papers III, IV, V and VI.—Any two subjects to be selected from the list of the optional subjects set out below. Each subject will have two papers of 200 marks for each paper.

(i)  Agriculture

(ii)  Agricultural Engineering

(iii)  Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science

(iv)  Botany

(v)  Chemistry

(vi)   Chemical Engineering

(vii)  Civil Engineering

(viii)  Forestry

(ix)  Geology

(x)  Mathematics

(xi) Mechanical Engineering

(xii) Physics

(xiii) Statistics

(xiv) Zoology

Provided that the candidates will not be allowed to offer the following combination of subjects:

(a) Agriculture and Agricultural Engg.

(b) Agriculture and Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science.

(c) Agriculture and Forestry.

(d) Chemistry and Chemical Engg.

(e) Mathematics and Statistics.

(f) Of the Engineering subjects viz. Agricultural Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering and Mechanical Engineering—not more than one subject.

Candidates who obtain such minimum qualifying marks in the written part of the Main Examination are invited for an interview. The number of candidates to be summoned for interview will be about twice the number of vacancies to be filled. The object of the Interview is to assess the personal suitability of the candidate for the Service. The interview will carry 300 marks (with no minimum qualifying marks).

Marks thus obtained by the candidates in the Main Examination (written part as well as interview) would determine their final ranking.

For more information you can visit UPSC website.