The teaching of Statistics was started in 1953. Dr. A.R. Kokan was appointed as the first Lecturer. Ours has been a pioneer Institution in this respect as only a few Universities of the country were teaching Statistics at that time. In the year 1958 at the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, a course leading to M.Sc. Statistics was instituted and the first batch passed out in 1960. Credit for this achievement goes to a group of dedicated teachers including Dr. A.R. Kokan, Dr. Jagdish Saran Rustagi, Dr. A. Salam Qureshy, Dr. Haseeb Rizvi, Professor R.A. Khan, Professor S.M. Ali, Dr. S.N.U.A. Kirmani, Dr. Zahirul Islam, etc.
To keep pace with the fast developing World of Statistics along with the new emerging areas and concepts it was thought to establish a separate and independent Department of Statistics. It was in these circumstances that the Department of Mathematics and Statistics was bifurcated and an independent Department of Statistics came into existence in April 1975. Professor S.M. Ali was the first Head of the Department of Statistics. Necessary infrastructure was created and courses of study were redesigned, revised and updated. Though emphasis was given mainly to the teaching of theoretical and academic Statistics, nevertheless the applied aspect of the subject was not altogether ignored. By the time the new Department came into existence a fairly large number of research articles had already been published by the faculty members and several Ph.D. students were actively involved in research work.
During the period 1980-1985 two major academic events took place. A research Journal entitled "The Aligarh Journal of Statistics" was introduced to the academic community, the first issue of which was released in 1981. The journal has been warmly received the world over and continues to publish original research articles of high academic value. It is a refereed Journal and indexed in Mathematical Reviews, Current Index to Statistics (CIS) and Statistical Theory and Methods Abstracts. It has been placed in the list of core journals by CIS. The other major event was the institution of a Master's degree in Operations Research in 1983. The first personal computer based laboratory was established in 1986.
The Department has been renamed in 1989 as the Department of Statistics and Operations Research.
The first International Symposium on Optimization and Statistics was held in Dec.1989 and the VIII International Symposium concurrently with VIII International Symposium on Statistics and Optimization in conjunction with XXXVI-Annual Convention of Indian Society for Probability & Statistics and Seminar on Statistical Inference, Sampling and Optimization Techniques & Related Areas (Under SAP-DRS-II), was held in Dec., 2016 (related pictures): https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B9z2RIzHa7_qQ2JGN2pnR2tncUk . The Department received Special Assistance Programe DRS-II (SAP) UGC in financial year 2016-2017. It has to continue up to 2021 and may get extended for next phase. Department enhanced its academic and research facilities which includes establishment of a new Computing Lab. for research scholars and a Smart Class Room for PG Students.
The Department also caters to the needs of researchers and scientists from other disciplines seeking guidance and advice in handling the Statistical work involved in their research projects. The Department, since its very inception, has been championing the cause of Statistics and has every intention to continue to do so in future.