The Forest Management in the state dates back to the Darbar period. The importance of forests and setting aside of the important forest covers were felt and done by the princely state of Manipur in the form of State Forest Reserves before the independence.

After independence and with the merger of the state of Manipur with the Indian Union, all the state forest reserves declared through Darbar Resolutions were incorporated as Reserved Forests under the Indian Forest Act, 1927.

The system of Mahals and the extraction of forest resources through the same was followed til the institution of Working plans in the state.
Presently all the forest in the state are managed either through approved Working Plans or Management Plans.