Getting a good government job is a dream of many students in the country. Many students are attracted to government services because it is a safe career option whereas many students are fascinated by its Karizma. When you look at high-rank government officers then they generally carry a different type of personal aura around themselves. And that’s what makes normal students get attracted to these high-rank government or civil services.
One such service is the post of an IAS officer. IAS is considered as the top civil service in the country. Because this service gives India its best bureaucrats and diplomats who run the country. Many people think that the role of an IAS officer is just limited to manage the civil and administrative order in the country. But actually, there are lots of things that people in these services often do behind the curtains.
And to understand what I am saying, just have a glance around you in the top government operations. From the top policymakers to highly intelligent bureaucrats, most of these people are either IAS officers or IPS officers (selected through the same exam). So yes, these IAS officers play a very important role in the functioning of the country on both the internal and international levels. And if you also aspire to become an IAS officer then you are at the right spot. Because in this article we are going to tell everything you need to know.
We will have to look at all the important points that you need to understand before starting your preparation for the exam.
History of IAS Exams in India
Every year many students give exams for the Indian Administrative Services (IAS). Each of them has only one dream in their mind and that dream is to somehow get selected. But there are very few of them who know about the history of these administrative exams in India. Because to understand the motive of these services you should have some knowledge about its past as well.
So when it comes to the history of these civil services exams then the time takes us back to the days of the British era. And the year was 1757 when the east India company established the Covenanted Civil Services (CCS) in India. It was a contract based job then because the CCS members used to sign a covenanted with the board of the East India Company.
But after the revolt of 1857, the selection process was converted into a merit-based process. Then the name of the Covenanted Civil Services (CCS) was replaced with Imperial Civil Services. Later this Imperial Civil Services came to know as the Indian Civil Services (ICS). The exams of ICS began to conduct in India from the year 1922.
Later Public Service Commission of India was set up in India in the year 1926 and finally, after Independence, this ICS was also replaced with IAS (Indian Administrative Services). Therefore we can say that these administrative services have a very long and deep history. From the very start of these services, its officials are used to for the administration purpose in various departments in India.
How To Become An IAS Officer?
I think now we should directly head towards the main topic of this article which how to become an IAS officer? So first of all, if you want to become an IAS officer then you have to clear an exam called the Civil Services Exam (CSE). This exam is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) every year in India. The no. of people who apply for these exams is in lakhs but only some thousands are selected.
It takes some serious dedication and preparation to clear the exam and the whole selection process is quite tough. Therefore the exam is also known as one of the toughest exams in the whole world. We have seen many people who regularly prepared for 3-4 years and even more to clear this exam and get their dream job.
The Civil Services Exam is an exam not only for the selection of IAS officers but also for other important civil services like IPS, IRS, and many others. There are a total of 25 civil services for which this CSE exam acts as a means of recruitment. Out of the students who apply for these exams, there is less than one percent of students who can manage to successfully clear it.
The CSE is like a whole process in which there are a total of three parts namely Preliminary (Civil Services Aptitude Test – CSAT), Main Exam, and finally the Interview. The candidate who successfully manages to clear all the steps become an IAS officer. And even if you miss out on a single step then you have to wait for the next year. That’s why it is considered to be one of the toughest exams.
There are certain eligibility criteria and the person who fits in that criteria can apply for the exam. First of all the candidate must be a citizen of India and foreign citizens can’t apply for this exam.
Other than that if you talk about the educational qualification requirement then it is very minimal. The candidates with an undergraduate degree in any stream can apply for the CSE exam for IAS. But remember one thing that the degree should be from a recognized university by the Association of Indian Universities. These universities can be central, state, or even a foreign university. People think that it would be good to try for IAS after pursuing a degree in Arts. But actually, we have seen many people who have pursued their technical degrees and then they go for this exam. So there is no restriction regarding the degree here.
Now let’s have a look at how many attempts you can make and what is the age limit. Yes, there are limited attempts that you can make under a specific age limit. The candidates belonging to the General category can make a total of 6 attempts and the age limit for them is 21-32 years. Although this age limit and no. attempts vary depending upon the category of the candidate. The OBC candidates have a total of 9 attempts and the upper age limit is relaxed up to 3 years for them. The age relaxation for the SC/ST candidates is 5 years and they can have unlimited attempts until they reach their allowed age.
Salary Offered to the Successful Candidates
Being one of the most prestigious job profiles in the country an IAS officer gets a decent salary. The candidates who successfully clear the whole selection process can get a salary of around Rs. 60,000/month in the initial years. This salary is according to the 7th pay commission. Apart from this salary, an IAS officer also get many allowances from the government.
As officers get promoted to higher posts then his/her salary also gets a hike. An IAS officer can get the highest salary of Rs. 2.5 lakh per month in his/her career. Although people who come from a corporate or a private sector background might think it is a low paying job. But actually, these types of job profiles are not for people who are just looking for money. These types of job profiles are for those people who really want to serve their country and for such people money doesn’t matter a lot.
Process for Selection
There is a whole process for the selection of the candidate. So we are going to tell you the whole process that how does it go.
1. Preliminary Examination:- So the first step in the process is the preliminary examination. This examination paper consists of some objective type questions that candidates have to answer. After qualifying the preliminary examination the candidates have to appear in the mains examination.
2. Main examination:- This is the next step in the selection process. The candidates who manage to appear in the CSE mains examination are now one step closer to their selection. This mains examination consists of subjective papers. There are different options available in the subjects and out of these options the candidates have to choose any two subjects to write their paper.
3. Interview:- The last and final step of the selection process is the interview round. The candidates who qualify for the mains examination appear for the interview round. In this round, it is totally up to the judges what they are expecting from you. The candidates have nothing much to do in this round but to be mentally prepared for any type of question.
Probability of your Success
So here comes the question that how tough or easy it is to clear the UPSC exam and become an IAS officer. So I would say that this exam is neither too easy nor extremely tough for those who are serious about it. Because most of the people who apply for the UPSC prelims exam doesn’t even appear for it.
Only half of the people appear to give the prelims exam and you can’t say that even those people are also serious. So if you are really committed then you are not going to compete against lakhs of people who apply for it but those few thousand who are really serious about it. Therefore you should set your own goals and target rather than thinking about the competition.
There is no doubt that becoming an IAS officer is not easy. You may find many people saying that you shouldn’t go for it. But remember one thing that there is nothing easy in these times. Everything takes hard work and dedication. And if you think you have that capability then you can do anything you want. You just have to build a circle of like-minded people around yourself. Always choose the right guide and just start doing what you want to do. If you put your efforts in the right direction then you will definitely get what you want.