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The Tribal Development Department came into existence in June, 1976 with the objective/purpose to give special focus on the social and economical upliftment of most deprived class of society i.e Scheduled Tribes. In the field level i.e. in Scheduled Area of Himachal Pradesh five Integrated Tribal Development Projects (ITDP) had been opened viz. ITDP Kinnaur at Reckong Peo, ITDP Lahaul at Keylong, ITDP Spiti at Kaza, ITDP Pangi at Killar and ITDP Bharmour with its Headquarter at Shimla. In the year 1981 the work relating to the welfare of scheduled caste i.e. Special Component Plan had been given to this Department and thereby changing its name from Tribal Development Department to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes Development Department.

In May, 2002 the whole work relating the welfare of Scheduled Castes i.e. Special Component Plan has been transferred to Social Justice & Empowerment Department. Now this department is known with the name of Scheduled Tribes Development Department.

These areas have also been declared as Scheduled Areas under the Fifth Schedule of the Constitution by the President of India as per the Scheduled Areas (Himachal Pradesh) Order,1975 (CO 102) dated the 21st November, 1975. The five ITDPs are Kinnaur; Lahaul; Spiti; Pangi and Bharmour. Except Kinnaur which is spread over 3C.D. Blocks, rest of the ITDPs comprise 1C.D. Block each. The Kinnaur and Lahaul-Spiti districts, in their entirety, and Pangi and Bharmour (now tehsil Bharmour and sub-tehsil Holi) Sub-Divisions of Chamba district constitute the Scheduled areas in the State, fulfilling the minimum criterion of 50% S.T. population concentration in a C.D. Block.

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