Wildlife Preservation Society (India) Dehradun is a non profit NGO registered under the Societies Registration Act XXI of 1860 with Registration number 2730 of 1960-61. Current renewal number 329/2011-12 (File no. 100291).
History: The idea of framing a non official organization to serve the cause of Wildlife was first floated in 1954 by Wildlife lovers and enthusiasts like PD Stracey and JN Onial who assembled under the able leadership of Late His Highness Maharaja Sir Pratap Singh of Nabha. The foundation of the “Wildlife Preservation Society of North India” was laid in April 1958. The Society expanded and changed into “Wildlife Preservation Society of India” in 1960. The Maharaja remained the President of the Society from the conceptual meeting in 1954 till 24.07.1995, the day he breathed his last. He was Patron of the Society and helped it all through his life. After his demise Maharani Sahiba of Nabha was the Patron of the Society till she breathed her last. Before her death she donated Rs. 250000/- to the Society by legal Will which came very handy when the Society was in financial crisis. The Society purchased its office accommodation at 7A, Astley Hall, Dehradun on 17.10.1978 at a modest cost of Rs. 24000/-. This place became very crowded and attempts to encroach its premises twice could be thwarted with police help. The premises had to be sold and a new office accommodation has now been purchased at Heritage Apartment, 18, New Road, Dehradun.
The Society became very popular in the very beginning and by September 1959 it had following membership.
- Patrons –: 17 all Maharajas of erstwhile States of India.
- Life Members- 14- including Mr MD Chaturvedi IFS and Mr.PD Strecey IFS.
- Honorary members – 7 including EP Gee, Dr. Punjab Rao Deshmukh, Union Minister and great Dr. Salim Ali of BNHS.
- Affiliated Members -2
- Ordinary members – 95, including Stalwarts like RL Holdsworth of Doon School, Brig. Gambhir Singh, Surveyor General of India, Commandant Military College, SSNegi, first Chief Wildlife Warden of UP, President FRI, GG Takle , IGF, GoI, Chief Conservators of Forest J & K, MP & HP , Dr Gardiner Bump, Biologist, US Fish and Wildlife Service and James A. Sutherland Dy. News Editor. The Statesman with many other important personalities.
- Educational Members – 5 including HK Dang of Doon School and Narender Singh, Principle Col. Brown School.
- Professional Members – 17
- Student Members – 10, including Mr. Kamal Nath, presently Cabinet Minister in Union Cabinet Minister and Mr. Vijay M Nath who is even now as a life member of the Society.
- The first annual general meeting of the Society was held on 19th April 1959.
- The Society had the privilege of having HE Sri. V.V. Giri and HE Sri Fakhrenddin Ali Ahmed former Presidents of the Republic of India as its Chief Patrons in 1969 & 1975 respectively.
- Among Noted office bearers of the Society who worked tirelessly to further the interest of the Society, the following are worth mentioning.
- Institutional Members: 15, including IAF Selection Board, IPS officers Mess, Military College Dehradun, Kumaon Regimental centre. SFRC Dehradun, Jat Regiment, Dogra Regimental Centre, Punjab Regimental Centre, BEG Roorkee and others.
- Late Mr. ND Bachkheti, IFS (as President)
- Late Mr. PD Strecey, IFS (as Vice President)
- Late Mr. JN Onial, Gurukeerat Singh Mann,
- Dr. RN Mishra & IS Negi,IFS (as Hony. Secretaries).