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UPSC Eligibility: Quick Look

The UPSC Eligibility includes four categories:

Age The minimum age limit for all aspirants is from 21 – 32 but there are relaxations for certain categories as per the considerations of the UPSC and government
  • the minimum requirement to appear in UPSC CSE exams is to be an Indian Citizen
  • But that is only applicable to Indian administrative, police, and foreign services
  • Otherwise, there are provisions for Bhutanese, Nepalese people to be considered
  • Certain Tibetan refugees are considered under certain conditions
  • Indian migrants from specified countries are also considered for eligibility
  • the minimum requirement to appear in UPSC CSE exams is to be an Indian Citizen
  • But that is only applicable to Indian administrative, police, and foreign services
  • Otherwise, there are provisions for Bhutanese, Nepalese people to be considered
  • Certain Tibetan refugees are considered under certain conditions
  • Indian migrants from specified countries are also considered for eligibility
  • Here, the eligibility is that candidates must have a degree from any government recognised university
  • There are different provisions for different categories
  • ST/SC can apply as many times as they want until the age of 37 years
  • OBCs can apply only 9 times whereas the General category can apply only 6 times


UPSC CSE Eligibility Criteria 2022

Candidates who are preparing for UPSC 2022 examination need to meet the eligibility criteria in terms of nationality, age limit, number of attempts, minimum educational qualification, etc which are set by the UPSC board.

1. Nationality

Candidates should adhere to the nationality standards to be eligible for UPSC examination.

(i) The candidate must be an Indian citizen to be eligible for Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), or Indian Police Service (IPS).

(ii) Apart from the above, here are the eligibility criteria for other services:

  • The candidate must be a citizen of India, or
  • The candidate must be a citizen of Nepal, or
  • The candidate must be a citizen of Bhutan, or
  • The candidate is a refugee from Tibet who came and settled permanently in the territory of India before January 1st, 1962, or
  • The candidate is a person of Indian origin who migrated to settle in India permanently from Burma, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Eastern African countries of Kenya, The United Republic of Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, Ethiopia, and Vietnam

(iii) The candidates belonging to the category B, C, D, and E are required to have a certificate of eligibility from the Indian government.

(iv) The candidates whose eligibility certificate is mandatory will be allowed to sit in the examination but the appointment letter and offer may be given to them after the verification of the certificate or the issuance of the certificate by the Government of India.

2. Age Criteria

There are certain age limit standards that the candidates require to fulfil before they apply for the examination. Here are the eligibility criteria:

  • A candidate must have reached the age of 21 and must not have reached the age of 32 on August 1, 2022, which means the candidate must have been born not earlier than August 2nd, 1990 and not later than August 1st, 2001
  • The below-mentioned upper age restriction will be flexible:

a) up to a maximum of five years if a candidate belongs to a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe;

b) up to three years maximum in the case of applicants from Other Backward Classes who are entitled to take advantage of the reservation available to such candidates;

c) up to three years in the case of Defense Services Personnel who are disabled in operations during hostilities with any foreign country or in a disturbed area and are released as a result;

d) up to  five years maximum in the case of ex-servicemen, including Commissioned Officers and Emergency Commissioned Officers (ECOs)/Short Service Commissioned Officers (SSCOs), who have served  five years at least in the military as of 1 August 2022 and have been released:

(i) on completion of assignment (including those whose duty is expected to be finished within one year after the 1st of August, 2022, unless dismissed or discharged for misconduct or inefficiency); or

(ii) due to a physical handicap caused by military service; or

(iii) on invalidity;

e) In the case of ECOs/SSCOs the limit is up to five years and must complete an initial period of assignment of military service for five years as of 1 August 2022 and whose assignment has been renewed for a period of more than five years, in which case the Ministry of Defense issues a certificate stating that they are eligible to apply for civil employment and that they will be released on three months’ notice upon selection from the date of receipt of the appointment proposal.

f) Candidates who come into one of the Persons with Benchmark Disabilities (PwBD) categories may be eligible for a maximum of ten years. These are the following:-

(i) Blindness And Low Vision;

(ii) Locomotor Disability Including Cerebral Palsy,  Leprosy Cured, Dwarfism, Acid Attack Victims And Muscular Dystrophy;

(iii) Deaf And Hard Of Hearing;

(iv)  Autism, Intellectual Disability, Specific Learning Disability And Mental Illness;

(v) Multiple Impairments, Including Deaf-Blindness, Among Those Listed In Clauses (I) To (Iv).

Note-I: Candidates belonging to the SC, ST, or OBC categories who are also covered by any of the other clauses of para 3(II)(2) above, namely Ex-servicemen or PwBD, would be entitled to cumulative age-relaxation under both categories.

Note-II: The term “Ex-servicemen” refers to those who meet the criteria outlined in the Ex-servicemen (Re-employment in Civil Services and Posts) Rules, 1979, as modified from time to time.

Note-III: The age concession will be available to ex-servicemen, defined as anyone who has served in the Regular Army, Navy, or Air Force of the Indian Union in any rank, whether as a combatant or a non-combatant, and who has been retired, relieved, or discharged from such service, whether at their own request or being relieved by the employer after earning pension.

Note-IV: Despite the fact that the provision for age relaxation in para 3(II) (2) (f) above, PwBD category candidates will be considered eligible for appointment only if they are found to satisfy the requirements of physical and medical standards for the concerned Services to be allocated to the candidates of the PwBD category by the Government (after such Medical Examination as the Government or appointing authority, as the case may be, may prescribe).

Note-V: Save as indicated in paragraph 3(II) (2) above, the age limitations stipulated cannot be relaxed.

3. The date of birth accepted by the Commission is the one that is entered in the Matriculation or Secondary School Leaving Certificate, or in a certificate recognized by an Indian University as equivalent to Matriculation, or in an extract from a University’s Register of Matriculates, which extract must be certified by the University’s lawful authorisation, or in the Higher Secondary examination certificate or an equivalent examination certificate. A candidate is only needed to present a certificate in support of his or her date of birth while applying for the Civil Services (Main) Examination. No other age-related documents, such as horoscopes, affidavits, birth extracts from municipal corporations, service records, or the like, will be allowed.

Note-I: Candidates should be aware that the Commission will only accept the date of birth as recorded in the Matriculation or Secondary School Leaving Certificate or in an equivalent certificate as mentioned in para 3(III) (3) above and issued prior to the date of application submission, and no subsequent request for its change will be considered or granted.

Note-II: Candidates should also be aware that once a date of birth has been provided in the application form and placed in the Commission’s records for the purpose of admission to an Examination, no alteration will be permitted thereafter or at any future Commission Examination for any reason.

Provided that if a candidate makes an error in inadvertent/unintentional/typographical and error in filling date of birth in the online form, the candidate has a chance to submit a request for future correction to the Commission, together with supporting documentation, as specified in Rule 5(3) of the Examination, and the request may be considered by the Commission if made no later than the date of the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination, 2022.

3. Educational Qualification Standards

There are some minimum education qualification criteria that the candidates need to fulfil before they apply for the examination. A candidate must have a Graduate degree from one of the Universities established by an Act of the Central or State Legislatures in India, or from another educational institution established by an Act of Parliament and declared to be deemed as a University under Section 3 of the University Grants Commission Act, 1956, or an equivalent qualification.

Note-I: Those who have appeared at a qualifying exam that would have prepared them educationally for the Commission’s Examination, as well as candidates who plan to take such a qualifying exam, shall be eligible for admission to the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination. All candidates who have been declared qualified to take the Civil Services (Main) Examination by the Commission must submit proof of passing the required qualifying examination with their application (i.e. Detailed Application Form-I) for the Main Examination; otherwise, they will be denied admission to the Main Examination. Such proof of passing the appropriate qualifying examination should be dated before the Main Examination’s Detailed Application Form I date (close date).

Note-II: In exceptional cases, the Commission may treat a candidate who lacks any of the aforementioned qualifications as a candidate, provided that the candidate has passed an examination administered by any other institution, the standard of which, in the Commission’s opinion, justifies admission to the Civil Services Examination.

Note-III: Candidates with professional and technical credentials recognized by the government as equivalent to a professional and technical degree are also eligible for admission to the Civil Services Examination.

Note-IV: Candidates who have passed the final professional M.B.B.S. or any other equivalent professional examination leading to a medical degree or certificate but have not completed their internship by the time they apply for the Civil Services (Main) Examination will be provisionally admitted if they submit a copy of the certificate from the concerned university authority with their application. In such cases, applicants will be required to present their original degree or a certificate from the relevant competent authority of the University/Institution at the time of their interview, stating that they have completed all prerequisites (including internship completion) for the granting of the Degree.

4. Number of Attempts

Each applicant who appears in the examination and is otherwise eligible will be allowed six (6) tries at the CSE. However, applicants from the SC/ST/OBC and PwBD categories who are otherwise qualified will be granted a reduction in the number of tries. The number of tries available to such applicants as a result of the relaxation is as follows:

(i) Number of attempts for SC/ST category is Unlimited

(ii) For the OBC category the number of attempts are 09

(iii) For the PwBD category the number of attempts for GL/EWS/OBC are 09 and for SC/ST unlimited.

Note-I: The terms GL (General), EWS (Economically Weaker Sections), SC (Scheduled Castes), ST (Scheduled Tribes), OBC (Other Backward Classes), and PwBD (Persons with Benchmark Disability) are used to denote the categories of candidates attending the Examination.

Note-II: A Preliminary Examination attempt is assumed to be a Civil Services Examination attempt.

Note-III: If a candidate appears in any one paper of the Preliminary Examination, it is assumed that the individual attempted the Examination.

Note-IV: Regardless of any future disqualification/cancellation of candidature, the candidate’s attendance at the Examination shall count as an attempt.

Restrictions for the Examination

There are certain restrictions on applying for the Union Public Service Examination (UPSC). Here are the restrictions mentioned below:

  • The candidate who’s appointed as the Indian Administrative Service or Indian Foreign Service officer on the basis of their previous examination results and is serving their office of work are not allowed to apply for the civil service examination, 2022
  • If a candidate is appointed as an IAS or IFS officer after their civil service examination 2022, preliminary and he/she continues to serve the officer, then the candidates under such cases are not allowed to apply for the civil service examination, main 2022
  • If any candidate is appointed as an IFS or IAS officer by considering their Civil Service Examination 2022 results and continuing with their office of work, then such candidates are not allowed to apply for the CSE2022
  • Any candidate appointed as the Indian Police Service (IPS) officer by considering the results of their earlier exam and now continuing their office of work will not be eligible to apply to opt for the IPS post again even on the basis of their CSE 2022  results

Medical And Physical Standards

There are certain medical and physical standards that candidates need to fulfil before applying for this examination. The candidates must be physically fit for the Civil service examination (CSE) 2022 as per the guidelines issued under the Appendix-III of Rules examination under Gazette of India Extraordinary on 2nd Feb 2022.

Reservations Standards for Persons with Benchmark Disability

There are certain reservation standards set for persons with benchmark disabilities for this examination. Here are the standards are given below:

  • The candidates with benchmark disability can avail of reservations in CSE2022, as per the guidelines mentioned under The Right of Persons With Disability Act, 2016 (RPwD Act 2016)
  • The candidates with multiple disabilities are eligible for the reservation in CAE 2022, under category (e) of multiple disabilities under Section 34(1) of RPwD Act 2016. These candidates will not be allowed for the reservations under the categories (a), (b), (c), and (d) of section 34(1) of RPwD Act, 2016
  • The candidates under Persons with Benchmark Disability are required to fulfil some of the standards on the basis of functional and physical classification and requirements or abilities and disabilities required for the service or post prescribed under Cadre controlling Authority

Note-I: The Functional classification and physical requirements for each service under CSE 2022, are given by the Cadre Controlling Authorities according to the provisions made under sections 33 and 34 of the Right of Persons with Benchmark Disabilities Act 2016.

Note-II: The candidates under Persons with Benchmark Disability are eligible to pass the categories mentioned under category (a). Therefore candidates need to go through the categories under RPwD Act, 2016.

Note-III: The candidates who are Persons with Benchmark Disabilities are required to have the related certificates stating their disabilities before applying for the CSE 2022. Therefore the candidates need to have the prescribed medical certification which also includes the results of Persons with Benchmark Disabilities to meet the requirement.

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