Why I chose IFS?

I have cleared IFS at 3rd attempt. I still have 4 more attempts left. I went till interview in Civils.

Many were asking why I didnt write again .Why not once for IAS or IPS? . Why IFS, what is special in it? .These questions keep on coming in my inbox.Though i have written about IFS here and there many times, i would like to finally write once, “WHY IFS”?.

As like everyone, i too came into civil services examination for IAS only. And yes, my first preference is IAS only. Till my 2nd attempt my second preference was IPS (I even reduced my weight by undergoing strict exercise routine and diet) as i was sure about my interview call.

Till my second attempt, i was away from reality.My decision was based on movies, external things like media,some festivals were IAS/IPS were cheif guests etc… But during my third attempt (failure of going till interview and not securing rank might have given me that), i was little mature.

I started to ask myself,

1.Why IAS

2.Why Civil services ?

3.Why I came to write this exam?

My decision of Why IAS/IPS ,why not IFS created a huge war inside me.

Then i sat for an analysis which i often do when i make any decisions. That is, Suitability test.

A comparative analysis between What is my character and desire Vs What is the character of the job.

My Character and DesireCharacter of IASCharacter of IFS
I need a field job.I dont want a desk job.Field job -yesField job-yes
I want to interact with my people and beneficiaries of my job oftenyes yes
I like constant appreciation to push my limits.Works of IAS are covered in various news paper articlesComparatively less but IFS officers getting recognition via social media etc…
I cant do just one job at a time.I need diverse domains.Diversity is huge.Diversity is less compared to IAS but it has enough domains like Forest,wildlife,tribal welfare,climate change,law and order wing like WCCB. Good enough for my 30 years of tenure.
I would like to visit many places in IndiaLittle difficult as work is related to villages and citiesIFS provides immense opportunity to visit pristine locations of India. Its training itself covers almost 25+ states
Service for peopleYesService for people indirectly through service to nature
Need all facilities and perks of being a Public ServantYesYes (As its All India Service, one gets all the perks and facilities equivalent to IAS and IPS) – Aspiration of every middle class guy!. AM not an exception
Want to go abroadYesYes , both during training and also during service.
I would like to be in my home cadreOnly if i Secure top rankOnly if i secure top rank. Else i have to opt for Central services .
Here both are equal, with respect to zonal system,getting even neighbor state of our home cadre is difficult.So,cant write once just for cadre as all the expectations of mine is fulfilled by IFS itself and uncertainty owing to zonal system.
My Suitability Analysis

Thus i made a table and finally concluded that ,when IFS gives me almost all that i wanted ,why to write again ? . Just for sake of writing, just because others writing ?,why I should write ? . I didn’t have solid reason to write,many are settling with their second preference like IPS ,IRS IT. Likewise i settled for my second preference. I am happy till now and i will be ,as I settled in IFS not because of any aimless goal but a thoughtful decision.

Proud Me!

These kind of analysis is much needed for any major decisions like buying a home, car, shifting to new place. Just sit, write your expectations and desires on one side and the character or outcome of what u want on another side, if both matches atleast 80-90% then goahead.Else, think once again.

And i want to goto field soon.I dont want to waste my 20’s in writing an exam. So, when i got IFS at 26 years of age, i entered with full energy and now at my 29 I am in field. This doesn’t mean that one shouldn’t keep on trying, its more of a personal decision but i took after knowing that IFS can give me what i always wanted for. And it does!. Its upto you to decide.

I already have written about opportunity in IFS, once again copy pasting :

What are all the Duties of IFS officer , we don’t know much about IFS officers, tell us about their duty and powers!

Most asked question, i am listing out basic functions.

DutiesIn field ,as DFO (Like DM in IAS and SP in IPS . IAS,IPS and IFS are administrative pillars of a district each with their own set of duties and powers)

  • Conservation – Protecting forest and wildlife as per all the environment acts present in India.
  • Establishment function – office and function ,as like any other office ,taking care of your employees.
  • Development function -for forest dependent communities and tribal communities. In urban area – for urban people and tourism.

Duties : Once you are going up in your career ladder:

  • Policy making
  • Representation of India in meetings and international organizations
  • heading institutions like IGNFA,FRI,ICFRE etc…
  • Join secy,Additional Secy and Secy posts

Post retirment :

  • NGT judge
  • Environmental consultant
  • Expert in climate change,global warming,tribal welfare etc..

Opportunities in IFS:

Many have doubts about working of Forest department and IFS officers in a district. Is their work restricted to Forest and wildlife alone?. Big no. Since their works are in remote parts of India its not getting adequate attention in general media.
Their works are
1. Forest – which is wide including water conservation, plantation, urban forestry including establishing parks, eco tourism sites, smart city mission
2. Wildlife – national parks, sanctuaries, tiger reserves etc… 3. Tribal welfare – employment generation and general welfare.
4. Employment generation for forest department communities
5. SHG in forest villages
6. Construction of roads, bridges etc… In forest areas and dependent villages.
7. Crime detection, investigation, quasi judicial power etc...
8. Disaster management in forest and tribal areas – eg: kerala flood.
9. International projects – JICA
10. In agriculture sector – social forestry, agro forestry etc…
11. International assignments – UNFCC, UNEP, IUCN etc..
12. Water bodies – wetlands, ocean and seas and biodiversity in the same.
13. Environment clearance – mining areas, development activities etc…
14. Tribunals – NGT.

Thus it provides diversity which gives you enough learning experience.
Their work is combination of administrative (IAS) and law&order (IPS) in forest areas and dependent communities.Shorty it’s a combination of IAS and IPS in environment sector. NITI Ayog listed around 166 districts of India as aspirational Districts most of which falls under tribal areas. So development is need of the hour there. Let the best minds come to IFS.

18 Responses to “Why I chose IFS?”
  1. Karan mehta says:

    Sir your answer make our vision more clear … Thank you so much sir..🙏🇮🇳

  2. VIJAYRAJ says:

    I’m from karur very near to your native place namakkal.
    I have become most serious and fascinating ifs aspirant after watching your activities. We always need some guidance and help from you and Prasanth ifs sir till we get into service. So I request you to available for serious aspirants like me to reach ifs as we are unique (IFS) from other aspirants like ias, ips etc. Thank you

  3. sohail says:

    IFS is underrated because it doesn’t serve the commercial purpose of the UPSC Coaching industry !!

  4. Swaroop Subudhi says:

    Thanks Sir for helping me in being a little more decisive about my career. I am in my final year of Graduation with a core course of Zoology, and listening to you in your Youtube interview on the channel “Study IQ education”, and this post here, I think forest services might just be the career I was looking for. The only demotivating factors are the fact that I Have knock knees and am not very physically fit. However, I am planning to work on those, as well as on the academic preparations for the exams. Hope I will be able to achieve what I want (or what I think I want.) Thanks again.

    • knock knees are nt allowed in IFS,sorry

      • adhavan says:

        sir, will they give a re medical test for temporary knock knees…?.

        some physiotherapists says we can correct it by some excercises.
        in some cases knock knees are severe and permanent. ..for those cases only surgery will takes place..

        please share about your medical and physical test..

  5. Jaswanthi says:

    Sir, I am from Hosur. Is IFS really suitable for women?

  6. ARTHI g says:

    Am highly inspired by your blogs related to wildlife and forest. Is there any way to be in association with forest apart from being an IFS.

  7. Sushmita says:

    Hello sir ,
    Firstly thankyou so much for sharing your Views about the service ,it is vey helpful, it cleared many doubt I had about the service.
    About me : I have started my preparation for IFoS 2022.
    I have a query regarding the physical eligibility for Indian forest service : I met with an accident last year and have two plates and screws in my right forearm.fortunately It does not hinder any activity. It functions normally.
    Does this make me ineligible for the service?
    Please guide me on this sir
    Thanking you in anticipation.

  8. Govind Narayan A says:

    Sir ifos is my dream job but I have a sort of colour deficiency it doesn’t affect my real world colour identification I could pick apart colour effortlessly but when it comes to ishihara plates the story changes , so should I go after my dream job or leave it where it is😔

  9. Pragati says:

    sir please will uh tell me…what was your source for geology and forestry or the coaching institute because it is very new subject to me and im dont have any idea about it….

  10. ANIL KUMAR P says:

    Sir is height is necessary for IFS?

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