With the enactment of West Bengal Private Forest (Amendment) Act, 1954 along with West Bengal Estate Acquisition Act 1953 and abolition of Zamindary system in 1955 and resumption of surplus lands of the tea gardens, forest area in the state increased. Prior to the above, two events viz. merger of Cooch Behar State with West Bengal took place in 1950 and due to reorganization of States, part of the former Manbhum district of Bihar was transferred to West Bengal on 1st November, 1956 with creation of the District of Puruliya.
Presently the State of West Bengal extends from the Himalayas in the north to the Bay of Bengal in the south. It lies between 20° 31′ N and 27° 12′ N latitude and 85° 50′ E and 89° 52′ E longitude, covering a geographic area of 88,752 sq.km. Five States (Sikkim, Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand and Orissa) and three countries (Bhutan, Nepal and Bangladesh) surround West Bengal – Sikkim to the North, Bhutan to the North-East, Assam and Bangladesh to the East, Nepal, Bihar and Jharkhand to the West and Jharkhand and Orissa to the South-West.
Total recorded forest land in the state is presently 11,879 sq.km., of which 7,054 sq.km. is Reserved Forest, 3,772 sq.km. is Protected Forest and 1,053 sq.km. is Unclassed State Forest, thus constituting 13.38% of the geographical area of the state.