| Forest(Conservation) ACT, 1980
with Amendments Made in 1988
An Act provide for the conservation of forests and for matters connected
there with or ancillary or incidental there to.
Be it enacted by Parliament in the Thirty-first Year of the Republic of India as
|1. Short title, extent and commencement :-
(1) This Act may be called the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980.
(2) It extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu & Kashmir.
(3) It shall be deemed to have come into force on the 25th day of October, 1980.
2. Restriction on the dereservation of forests or use of
forest land for non-forest purpose
Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law
for the time being in force in a State, no State Government or other authority
shall make, except with the prior approval of the Central government, any order
(i) that any reserved forest (within the meaning of the expression "reserved
forest" in any law for the time being in force in that State) or any portion
there of, shall cease to be reserved;
(ii) that any forest land or any portion thereof may be used for any non-forest
(iii) that any forest land or any portion thereof may be assigned by way of
lease or otherwise to any private person or to any authority, corporation,
agency or any other organization not owned, managed or controlled by Government;
(iv) that any forest land or any portion thereof may be cleared of trees which
have grown naturally in that land or portion, for the purpose of using it for
For the purpose of this section, " non-forest purpose" means the breaking up or
clearing of any forest land or portion thereof for -
(a) The cultivation of tea, coffee, spices, rubber, palms, oil-bearing plants,
horticulture crops or medicinal plants;
(b) any purpose other than reafforestation,
but does not include any work relating or ancillary to conservation, development
and management of forests and wildlife, namely, the establishment of
check-posts, fire lines, wireless communications and construction of fencing,
bridges and culverts, dams, waterholes, trench marks, boundary marks, pipelines
or other like purposes.
3. Constitution of Advisory Committee :-
The Central Government may constitute a Committee consisting of such number of
persons as it may deem fit to advise that Government with regard to :-
(i) The grant of approval under Section 2; and
(ii) Any other matter connected with the conservation of forests which may be
referred to it by Central Government.
3A. Penalty for contravention of the provisions of the
Whoever contravenes or abets the contravention of any
of the provisions of Section 2, shall be punishable with simple imprisonment for
a period which may extend to fifteen days.
|3B. Offences by authorities and Government Departments :-
(1) Where any offence under this Act has been
(a) by any department of Government, the head of the department ;or
(b) by any authority, every person who, at the time the offence was committed,
was directly in charge of, and was responsible to, the authority for the conduct
of the business of the authority as well as the authority;
Shall be deemed to be guilty of the offence and shall be liable to be proceeded
against and punished accordingly;
Provided that nothing contained in this sub-section shall render the head of the
department or any person referred to in clause (b), liable to any punishment if
he proves that the offence was committed without his knowledge or that he
exercised all due diligence to prevent the commission of such offence.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), where an offence
punishable under the Act has been committed by a department of Government or any
authority referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (1) and it is proved that the
offence has been committed with the consent or connivance of; or is attributable
to any neglect on the part of any officer, other than the head of the
department, or in the case of an authority, any person other than the persons
referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (1), such officer or persons shall also
be deemed to be guilty of that offence and shall be liable to be
proceeded against and punished accordingly.
4. Power to make rules :-
(1) The Central Government may, by notification in the official Gazette, make
rules for carrying out the provisions of this Act.
(2) Every rule made under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is
made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session, for a total
period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more
successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session immediately
following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in
making any modification in the rule or both Houses agree that the rule should
not be made, the rule shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or
be of no effect, as the case may be, so, however, that any such modification or
annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done
under that rule.
5. Repeal and Saving :-
(1) The Forest (Conservation) Ordinance, 1980 is hereby replaced.
(2) Notwithstanding such repeal, anything done or any action taken under the
provisions of the said Ordinance shall be deemed to have been done or taken
under the corresponding provisions of this Act.
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