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Indian Forest Service Exam 2022: Latest News, Eligibility, Salary & Vacancies

January 3, 2023

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

About UPSC And IFS – Forest

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) conducts every All India Services exam. One of the exams is for the Indian Forest Services(IFS – Forest). We refer to it as IFS or IFoS. Although, it is one of the prestigious exams, however, it’s the toughest one.

Despite this, the UPSC conducts the IFoS exam once a year. The main purpose is to recruit officials for forest services across the nation. Apart from this exam, the UPSC also conducts The Indian Administrative Services exam (IAS) and the Indian Police Services exam (IPS).

Organization nameUnion Public service Commission
TypeConducting Body
Exam nameIndian Forest Services
AbbreviationIFS/ IFoS

Additional Information

People usually refer to the Indian Foreign Service as IFS. Therefore, the Indian Forest services will be referred to as IFoS further in this article.

India holds a position in the world to have a large number of forests. Besides, these forests need to be taken care of. For this purpose, the UPSC appoints the Indian Forest Officers.


Their responsibility is to protect and preserve these forests and the species within them. These officers have to implement the National Forest Police, and it aims to maintain ecological balance and sustenance of the natural resources present within the country.

These IFoS officers hold various posts in different state forest departments. The highest-ranking officials in the forest services are known as the Head of Forest Forces.

About IFS – Forest Exam

The UPSC conducts the exam for IFoS. Candidates have to appear in this exam. This exam is of three stages. The three stages are:

  • The first stage is the preliminary exam
  • The second stage is the main’s exam, and
  • The third and final stage is the interview/ personality Test

The most important aspect of this exam is that every candidate must appear in all its stages and qualify for them. Moreover, the candidates who qualify for the preliminary stage become eligible for the mains exam. And the candidates who clear both stages of IFoS exams are eligible for its final stage.

Typically, the applicants submit their application forms online on the official website of UPSC. Moreover, the tentative dates for the UPSC IFoS exam are available on the UPSC website.

IFS – Forest Important Exam dates

As we know, all exam notifications are available on the UPSC website. The first notification for the IFoS exam came out on March 4, 2021. The notification was about the availability of exam forms. Moreover, there was also a mention of the number of vacancies for this year. This year candidates have to fight for 110 seats.

However, due to a hike in Covid cases, UPSC changed all the exam dates. The old date for the IFoS prelims exam was in June. Now according to the latest update, UPSC will conduct this exam on October 10, 2021. As most of the exam dates or their result dates are not available yet. It is said, UPSC will nearly declare all the new exam dates.

Instead of this, there are some tentative dates available for the candidates. One of the tentative dates is given for the IFoS mains exam. The UPSC can conduct this exam anytime between February 27-March 8, 2022. Although, the earlier exam date was from November 21, 2021, onwards.

Moreover, there is no information about the availability of admit cards. Also, no tentative dates are available for the last stage of the IFoS exam i.e, the personality test.

NotificationMarch 4, 2021
Conducting bodyUPSC
Exam modeOffline
Apply date (start)March 4, 2021
Apply date (close)March 24, 2021
Admit cardNot yet released
Prelim’s exam dateOctober 10, 2021
Prelim’s resultNot yet released
Main’s exam dateFebruary 27-March 8, 2022
Main’s resultNot yet released
InterviewNot yet released
Final resultNot yet released

Syllabus Candidates need to understand the syllabus properly so as to qualify for each exam stage. Here is all the information required by the aspirants.     Know More – IFS- Forest Important Date & Notifications

IFS – Forest exam syllabus

IFOS Syllabus for prelims

The first stage of the IFS – Forest exam, which we often refer to as the prelims consist of two papers. The first is the General Studies Paper-I and the second is CSAT. CSAT stands for Civil Services Aptitude Test. We refer to this paper as General Studies Paper-II (CSAT). The prelims of the IFoS exam work as a screening stage. However, the marks do not determine the final score of the IFoS exam. As these marks are not added there. UPSC added the CSAT paper in the IFoS exam in 2011.

IFoS pattern and syllabus for General Studies Paper-I and CSAT

Pattern for Paper-I and Paper-II

  • The pattern of Paper-I and II is similar. Both the papers are of two-hour duration. These papers include objective or multiple-type questions.
  • Moreover, all the candidates have to appear in the exam of both papers.
  • Nature wise both the papers are not the same. Paper-I is merit ranking in nature whereas CSAT is qualifying in nature.
  • Furthermore, the candidates need to score more than 33% in the second paper so as to qualify for the mains. Each paper is in a total of 200 marks. 
General Studies Paper-I Merit-ranking2 hours200
General Studies Paper-II (CSAT) Qualifying2 hours200

IFoS Syllabus for General Studies Paper-I:

First, we will talk about the syllabus of Paper-I. It includes a variety of topics.

  • The most important topic in this paper is current affairs. These are both at the national and international levels.
  • Apart from this, some other topics include the history of India and Indian National Movements.
  • Candidates also need to focus on world geography. Some other topics like Polity, Constitution, economics, etc., are also there.
  • Lastly, there is also a mention of biodiversity, sustainable development, ecology, and climate change.

Syllabus for General Studies Paper-II

The second one as we know is the CSAT paper.

  • The most important topic in this paper is comprehension.
  • Candidates also need to focus on interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Topics like logical reasoning, decision making, analytical ability, and problem-solving are there.
  • Apart from these, there are some topics of class 10th level. Moreover, these include numeracy and data interpretation.

IFoS syllabus for mains

As of now, it is quite evident that the mains exam is the second stage of the IFoS exam. Further are the details about its pattern and exam syllabus.

IFS – Forest Mains Exam Pattern

  • In this stage, candidates have to appear in the exam for a total of six papers. However, only two papers are common to every candidate. These papers are Paper-I and Paper-II. All other four papers are optional.
  • Here Paper-III and Paper-IV create the first optional paper. Whereas, Paper-V and Paper-VI constitute the second optional paper. Besides, candidates need to select two optional subjects. For that purpose, they must select the combination from the available subject list. These candidates get a choice to select the desired subjects. Moreover, all these papers are of 300 marks each.
  • In the case of optional subjects, these are descriptive in nature. Candidates get a paper of eight questions. However, there is some relief for the candidates. They only have to answer five questions out of eight given questions.
  • Furthermore, this paper contains two sections, each of four questions. Here the duration of each exam is of three hours. Lastly, another important detail is the overall marks. All these papers make a total of 1400 marks for this stage.

Paper wise syllabus for IFoS mains:

  • Paper-I: The first thing all the candidates have to do is to write an essay. Some questions will be there to judge the candidates’ understanding of English. Further, there will also be a topic on precis writing. It will be in the form of a passage. Lastly, there are topics like short essays and vocabulary.
  • Paper-II: The second paper will be about general knowledge. Every candidate has to cover topics like current affairs. Some topics on Indian politics will be there as well. It also includes the history and constitution of India. The last topic in this paper is geography.
  • Paper-III, IV, V, and VI: The candidates must select the optional papers from the additional subject list. The subjects they chose will include two papers each. A few of optional papers are physics, statistics, zoology, agricultural engineering, agriculture, chemistry, forestry, mathematics, etc.

This subject combination is not allowed:

  • Firstly, Agriculture with Agricultural Engineering
  • The second one is Agriculture with Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science
  • Then, Agriculture with Forestry
  • Fourth is, Chemistry with Chemical Engineering
  • The last one will be, Mathematics with Statistics

IFoS Syllabus for personality test:

In the last stage of the IFoS exam, candidates must appear in front of the board for a face-to-face interview. The interviewers access their overall personality traits. The board questions the candidates about various topics. These can be local geography or history. Moreover, some questions on current affairs or trending topics are also asked.

Know More – IFS- Forest Exam Pattern and Syllabus

IFS – Forest Eligibility criteria


  • Firstly, any aspirant willing to become an IFoS officer must be a citizen of India
  • Secondly, any person of Indian origin or a subject of Nepal and Bhutan or a refugee from Tibet is also eligible. However, they should have settled in India before 1962.
  • Moreover, any person from Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Burma, Zaire, Ethiopia, etc., who are of Indian origin are also eligible. However, the condition is that they should intent to settle permanently in India after their migration.
  • Apart from the citizens of India, all other applying candidates would have an eligibility certificate. Moreover, only the Government of India can issue this certificate for them.
  • Lastly, there is a leniency for some candidates to appear in exams without this certificate. But, they have to submit this certificate to get the offer of appointment.

Educational qualifications for the IFoS exam:

This section is about the educational qualifications of IFoS candidates.

  • The minimum qualification for candidates applying for this is graduation in science or engineering.
  • Apart from that, a candidate with degrees in agriculture or forestry is also eligible.
  • However, there is no barrier of minimum passing percentage for candidates to appear in exams.
  • The candidates who are in their final year of graduation with results awaited are also eligible.

Age Limit

UPSC has set different age limits for candidates of different categories.

  • The minimum applying age must be 21 as of August 1, 2021.
  • Also, the candidates must not have been born before August 2, 1989.
  • However, the upper age limit varies for different categories. In the general category, the upper age limit is 30 years.
  • For SC and ST there is an age relaxation of five years.
  • Moreover, it’s three years for OBC.
  • Whereas, for citizens of Jammu and Kashmir, it is of five years.
  • Lastly, for differentially abled, it is of 10 years

Number of Attempts

When we talk about the number of attempts, there was no such thing till 1984. However, this restriction if effective since then. These attempts also vary for different categories.

SC/STNo limits
Differentially abledNine attempts for General and OBC whereas unlimited for SC/ ST
OBCNine attempts

Application Form For IFoS exam

UPSC does not release any separate IFS – Forest application forms. However, candidates can directly apply on their website in Civil Services Preliminary Section. Moreover, candidates need to take some points into consideration. These are:

  • All the eligibility criteria must be met.
  • Candidates must qualify for the screening test. In this case, it is the preliminary exam.
  • Then, the candidates who qualify for their prelims can fill in the Detailed Application Forms before the mains exam.

Exam centers for IFS – Forest

  • Andhra Pradesh: Aurangabad, Tirupati, Vijayawada, and Visakhapatnam
  • Arunachal Pradesh: Itanagar
  • Assam: Jorhat
  • Bihar: Gaya
  • Chhattisgarh: Bilaspur
  • Goa: Panaji
  • Gujarat: Ahmedabad and Rajkot
  • Haryana: Faridabad and Gurugram
  • Himachal Pradesh: Shimla
  • Jharkhand: Ranchi
  • Karnataka: Ananthapura, Bangalore, Dharwad, and Mysuru
  • Kerala: Kochi, Kozhikode, and Thiruvananthapuram
  • Madhya Pradesh: Bhopal, Gwalior, and Jabalpur
  • Maharashtra: Mumbai, Nagpur, Navi Mumbai, Pune, and Thane
  • Manipur: Imphal
  • Meghalaya: Shillong
  • Mizoram: Aizawl
  • Nagaland: Kohima
  • Odisha: Cuttack and Sambalpur
  • Punjab: Ludhiana
  • Rajasthan: Ajmer, Jaipur, Jodhpur, and Udaipur
  • Sikkim: Gangtok
  • Tamil Nadu: Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai, Puducherry, Tiruchirappalli, and Vellore
  • Telangana: Warangal and Hyderabad
  • Tripura: Agartala
  • Uttar Pradesh: Aligarh, Bareilly, Ghaziabad, Lucknow, Gautam Buddh Nagar, Gorakhpur, Prayagraj, and Varanasi
  • Uttarakhand: Dehradun
  • West Bengal: Siliguri
  • Andaman and Nicobar Islands: Port Blair
  • Chandigarh: Chandigarh
  • Delhi: Delhi
  • Jammu and Kashmir: Jammu and Srinagar

IFS – Forest Salary

The salary of IFoS officers is dependent on their posts and years of experience. The Ministry of External Affairs posts these officers across India. Sometimes they are also posted outside the nation. The IFoS officers in foreign countries get some extra allowances. Here are some details about their salary structure which includes their grade, basic pay, and grade pay.

GradeBasic pay (INR)Grade Pay (INR)
Junior scale15,600-39,1005,400
Senior ScaleN/AN/A
Senior time scale15,600-39,1006,600
Junior Administrative Grade15,600-39,1007,600
Selection Grade37,400-67,0008,700
Super Time Scale37,400-67,00010,000
Above Super Time ScaleN/AN/A
Super super time scale37,400-670012,000
Apex scale80,000 (Fixed)N/A
Cabinet Secretary90,000 (Fixed)N/A


Some of the perks for these IFoS officers are: Car, free landline services, house help, medical expenses, free water, and electricity. Apart from this these officers also get pension and some retirement benefits. They also get abroad study options.  

IFS – Forest Admit Card

The admit card for the IFS – Forest mains and prelims is available three weeks before the exam. The candidates can visit the official website for this purpose.

Applicants can download admit cards after meeting the required conditions. One of them is to pay their fee finally after submitting their application form.

How to download IFoS admit card

We will first start with the downloading steps:

  • The first step is to open the UPSC website.
  • The second step is to click on admit card.
  • The third step is to click on admit cards for various examinations.
  • In the fourth step, read the constructions and click yes.
  • In the fifth step, enter your roll number or registration number.
  • Lastly, click on the download admit card.

IFoS Admit Card Details

Important details available in the admit card are as follows:

  • Firstly, the IFoS roll number.
  • Secondly, the candidate’s name.
  • Thirdly, exam center details.
  • Lastly, IFoS exam timing.
IFoS Roll NumberCandidates NameExam Center
Mothers nameFathers nameExam timing
Email IdSubjectsExam Date
Reporting TimeAddressImportant Instructions

Some extra details

  • First, UPSC will not send any admission certificate via post.
  • Candidates have to check their e-admit cards. Moreover, they have to make sure there are no discrepancies in there.
  • Above all, candidates have to bring their admit cards to their exam centers. This is done to make sure they get their entry into their exam centers.
  • As a rule, no candidates will be allowed in any other exam centers apart from the ones they have been allotted.
  • Lastly, on precautionary basis candidates have to bring their identity proofs along with them. These can be Aadhar Card, Driving Licenses, Voter ID cards, or Passports.

Steps to follow if candidates fail to download admit cards:

There are two situations under which candidates cannot download their admit cards.

  • First Situation: Candidates who have made any mistake while filling their application forms. These candidates cannot produce their admit cards.
  • Second Situation: The candidates who are not eligible for the exam cannot download it.

Moreover, there can be some technical issues due to which this happened. For such a situation, candidates can contact UPSC in the following ways:

  • The first way is to visit the UPSC’s Facilitation Centre near Gate C.
  • The second way is to call them on working dates during office hours. Here are the contact numbers: 011‐23385271, 011-23381125, or 011-23098543.
  • Lastly, the candidates can visit their website for assistance in any issue.

Normally, the candidates who fail to report their issues are liable for the non‐receipt of their e‐Admission Certificate.

Documents to carry with admit cards

Following are the documents candidates must carry:

  • The first and most important IFoS admit card.
  • Candidates have to carry two passport-sized photographs
  • Lastly, identity proof like Aadhar card, voter ID card, passport, driving license, or PAN card.

IFoS admit card main points:

Here are the basic details stated on the IFoS admit card:

  • Firstly, entry depends upon admit cards.
  • Another important thing is to write the correct roll number as printed on the admit card.
  • Candidates have to reach exam centers earlier than the specified time.
  • Lastly, candidates cannot carry any devices with them.

Steps to get back forgotten login details:

To get back the login details, candidates need to follow the steps given below:

  • The first step is to visit the UPSC’s official website.
  • In the second step, candidates need to click on forgot registration Id (RID).
  • Step three is to enter the asked details. These can be mother’s name, father’s name, date of birth, and captcha.
  • The subsequent step is to click on submit key.
  • The last step is to follow the instructions sent on the candidate’s email ID or phone number.

IFS – Forest Interview Call Letter

Candidates can download their call letters for the final stage in the following way:

  • Just like admit cards, call letters are available on the UPSC’s official website. For this purpose, visit
  • Then click on IFS e-Summon call Letter
  • The next step is to put in your details like roll number and click on submit button.
  • In the end, the call letter will appear on the screen. Candidates can then save it.

Certificates to be carried on the day of Interview

  • First and foremost, the e-Call letter
  • Then, second, comes the educational certificates like degree and matriculation.
  • On the condition, a candidate belongs to any caste, carry that certificate as well. These can be certificates like Scheduled Caste (SC)/ Scheduled Tribe (ST), etc.
  • Lastly, carry two passport-sized photographs.

Know More – IFS- Forest Admit Card and Interview call letter

IFS – Forest Results

The UPSC will announce the IFS – Forest result for all its exam stages only on its website. In the form of a PDF, the UPSC will release the cut-off list. Subsequently, the candidates can download it later. However, the list will hold the name of the qualified candidates only. As a matter of fact, UPSC will conduct the IFoS prelims exam in October.

Given that, the UPSC will declare its result later. This is because the UPSC has not announced the result date till now. Moreover, the candidates can check their results simply by putting in their details. These can either be their roll number or their registration number with date of birth details.

How to check IFoS exam results?

Normally, UPSC releases results on its official website. Whether it be results for prelim’s or main’s exam, results are only available there. Furthermore, carry out the following steps to get the result of IFoS exams.

  • Firstly, visit the official website of UPSC IFoS
  • Then, search for results.
  • Subsequently, click on the results
  • Besides, search for the desired result link.
  • The next step is to enter the necessary details. These can be either your roll number or registration number.
  • Lastly, Download the PDF and save it. Candidates can use it for future references.

Details mentioned on the IFoS exam results

Details mentioned on the IFoS results are:

  • First and foremost, the candidate’s name
  • Then, the candidate’s roll number
  • Also, candidate’s rank
  • Lastly, serial number

Know More – IFS- Forest Result & Cut off Marks

Selection criteria for IFoS exam:

Typically, the UPSC declares the IFoS results separately for each stage. In fact, only the candidates clearing the prelims stage will qualify for the next. Moreover, in the prelims stage, candidates have to give an exam for two papers. The first one is the General Studies Paper-I and the second one is General Studies Paper-II.

Furthermore, the last stage of the selection process is the personal interview. Eventually, the final result is available after this stage.

Calculation of result for IFoS exam

For IFoS exam prelims

To begin with, UPSC will conduct the IFoS prelims exam on October 10, 2021. Most of the time UPSC announces its results 40-50 days after the exam. For this purpose, a PDF file will be available on their official website.

Generally, the candidates have to appear for two papers in the prelims exam. These papers are of 200 marks each. But, include multiple-choice questions.

Normally in the IFoS prelims exam, there is a negative marking for each wrong answer. In the end, UPSC calculates the results based on marks obtained in both papers. These papers are qualifying in nature.

General Studies Paper-IQualifying nature200 marks
General Studies Paper-IIQualifying nature200 marks

For IFoS exam main’s:

In this stage of the IFoS exam, candidates need to qualify for six papers. Together these constitute 1400 marks. Marks obtained in the mains exam stage help to prepare the merit list for the final stage. This exam is descriptive in nature.

For IFoS exam Personal Interview:

This is the third and concluding stage of the UPSC IFoS exam. It constitutes 300 marks of the total. The marks obtained in this stage help to prepare the final merit list and the final result. Moreover, in this stage, there is no requirement for minimum marks.

The IFoS exam cut-off marks:

For each stage of the IFoS exam, UPSC prepares a separate cut-off list. However, only the eligible candidates make it to the next selection stage. For the year 2021, UPSC will prepare the cut-off list after it conducts the IFoS exam of all stages.

Meanwhile, here is the IFoS exam cut-off result for the year 2019

CategoryCut off marks

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q.1 How many times can a candidate apply for the IFoS exam?

Ans: Candidates of the general category get seven attempts to qualify for this exam.

Q.2 What is the new prelims exam date?

Ans: UPSC will conduct the IFoS prelims on October 10, 2021

Q.3 What are the total number of vacancies for the IFoS exam?

Ans: The total vacancies for the IFoS exam 2021 are 110.

Q.4 What should be the educational qualifications of candidates to appear in the IFoS exam?

Ans: Candidates must have done graduation in science or engineering subjects.

Q.5 Does IFoS syllabus changes yearly?

Ans: As such there are no major changes. If there will be any future, UPSC will mention it in one of their notifications.

Q.6 What is the exam duration of IFoS mains?

Ans: Each paper of the IFoS exam is of 3 hours duration.

Q.7 Does UPSC release candidates’ names in the IFoS merit list?

Ans: Ofcourse, UPSC releases a PDF file that includes candidates’ names as well as roll numbers in their merit list.

Q.8 What is the cut-off score for the IFoS exam?

Ans: The cut-off score for the IFoS exam will be available on the official website of the UPSC after the interview round.

Q.9 Can I carry my mobile, laptop, or any other communication devices, with me for the Interview or Recruitment Test?

Ans: Candidates cannot carry any devices with them.