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UPSC - Union Public Service Commission

UPSC - Union Public Service Commission

UPSC is the abbreviation of Union Public Service Commission. UPSC is the standard organization that recruits government public servants. It is a central agency that recruits for the central Government.

UPSC guides the Government by reporting the matters of their concern to the President. The Dholpur House in New Delhi is the headquarter of the commission. At the present time, Pradeep Kumar Joshi is the chairman of the UPSC. He held this position in August 2020.

Establishment of the UPSC

The UPSC commission consisting of British and Indian members was set up in 1923. It was initiated by the British Government under the leadership of Lord Arthur Lee. The commission proposed in 1924 that 40% of entrants will be British, 40 % directly recruited Indians, and the rest promoted from provincial services. The prime motto of this commission was to set up a Public Service Commission in India. Consequently, the establishment of the first Public Service Commission took place in 1926. Afterward, a Federal Public Service Commission was set up with the concerns of Freedom movement leaders. Later after the independence, the Federal Public Service Commission came to be known as the Union Public Service Commission. UPSC since has been mandated for the Union and All India Services by the Constitution of India.

Constitutional Provisions

1. Article 315

Article 315 of the Constitution of India states that: for the appointment to different posts of government services, there shall be a Union Public Service Commission which will be permanent.

2. Article 318

According to Article 318 of the Constitution of India, the Union Public Service Commission must comprise a chairman and ten members for the functioning of the UPSC. The President of India is responsible for the appointment of these members as well as the chairman.

Functions of UPSC

Some of the common functions of the UPSC agency are following -

  1. UPSC is responsible for conducting All-India and Public Services examinations for the Indian states and union territory.
  2. It is also responsible for implementing the schemes for the combined recruitment that requires special qualifications at the state level.
  3. Whenever the Governor demands, UPSE serves the states with their interests with the consent of the President of India.

UPSC is the body that provides advice on the matters. Government is not bound to its decisions.

Following are some additional functions exercised by the Union Public Service Commission -

  1. The conduction and smooth processes of the examination and interviews for the services related to the Union.
  2. To advise on the matter that UPSC is concerned with or without the President has asked about.
  3. To exercise functions concerning the services of the Union.
  4. The UPSC is responsible for assisting two or more states in the joint recruitment by contributing to the framing and operating the schemes of recruitment for any service.
  5. The consultation of the UPSC is a must for the Government of India in any matter concerning the above matters. The President is free to make any rules and changes without consulting the UPSC.

Powers of the UPSC

Advisory power is the most important power which the UPSC holds. UPSC can advise the President and states on the following matters -

  1. Matters related to the civil services appointment in the Indian Government.
  2. Evaluation of the candidate for the purpose of appointment, promotion, and transfer of candidates to all civil posts.
  3. Matters concerning the discipline and punctuality of the All India Civil Services employees.
  4. Matters concerning All India Civil Services employees' requests and benefits, including those injured in operations.
  5. Matters concerning the payment and expenditure of employees of the All India Civil Services.
  6. Matters concerning the payment of the compensations to a government employee.

Independence of UPSC

Constitution safeguards the independent governing of the Union Public Service Commission. It does so through the following provisions -

  1. The President of India can remove the chairman of UPSC on only the grounds specified by the constitution. Hence, they have the security of tenure.
  2. The President cannot vary the conditions of the service of the chairman and the members after his appointment.
  3. The consolidated fund of India takes responsibility for the expenses of the chairman and members of UPSC. Hence, they are free from the vote of the Parliament.These expenses consist of salaries, allowances, and pensions.
  4. The chairman of UPSC cannot hold a position in the Government of India or any state after he/she has ceased the office.
  5. A member of UPSC can only hold the position of chairman but is not allowed to hold other positions in the Government of India or any state.
  6. A chairman or member cannot hold a second term to that office by reappointing.

Members of UPSC

The UPSC, an agency of so much value to our country, has a chairman and ten members. The President of India appoints the members and the chairman. There is a tenure for which the member holds the position, and it is six years or till 65 years of age.

Examinations conducted by UPSC

The UPSC is an agency of great status. It is responsible for conducting the following examinations -

  1. Central Armed Police Forces Examination
  2. Civil Services Examination
  3. Combined Geoscientist and Geologist Examination
  4. Combined Defence Services Examination
  5. Engineering Services Examination
  6. Combined Medical Services Examination
  7. Indian Economic Service
  8. Indian Forest Service Examination
  9. National Defence Academy Examination
  10. Naval Academy Examination
  11. Special Class Railway Apprentice

UPSC Examinations

Here is everything one needs to know about the examinations related to UPSC

Civil Services Examination

The Civil Services Examination is conducted to appoint candidates for the civil services of the Government of India. It is popularly known as the UPSC examination and includes the recruitment for Indian Administrative Service, Indian Foreign Service, and Indian Police Service. For any candidate to complete this examination, they have to take 32 hours of examination, and this includes the three stages. The first stage is the preliminary examination, after which the main examination takes place, which is followed by an interview round or personality test.

Process of UPSC Examination

  1. Preliminary Examination - It consists of two papers, General Studies Paper I and General Studies Paper-II. These papers are objective type and are well known by the name of Civil Service Aptitude Test or CSAT.
  2. Main Examination - It consists of nine subjective papers in which the candidate is expected to write in essay form. Of these papers, marks of only seven papers are considered, while in the other two, only the qualification is necessary.
  3. Personality Test - This round evaluates the candidate by interviewing and judges whether the candidate is a perfect fit or not.

Eligibility to appear for the UPSC Examination

1. Nationality of the Candidate

  • For the Indian Administrative Services, Indian Foreign Services, and Indian Police Services, the candidate must be of Indian nationality.
  • For Services other than mentioned in (1), the candidate must satisfy any of the following criteria -
    1. Indian Citizen
    2. Nepal Citizen or a subject of Bhutan
    3. Permanent Indian settled Tibetan refugee, who settled before January 1, 1962.
    4. Indian origin migrant, who has migrated to permanently settle in India from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Uganda, Zambia, Zaire, Myanmar, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Malawi, or Vietnam.

2. Required Educational Qualifications

The candidate must have any one of the educational backgrounds stated below -

  1. A Central, State or Deemed University degree
  2. A correspondence or distant education degree
  3. An open university degree
  4. Any qualification that is considered equivalent to the qualifications stated above,which the Government of India recognizes.

Apart from the qualifications mentioned above, candidates with the following qualifications are also eligible, but proof of their eligibility is to be issued from a competent authority and must be presented at the time of examination -

  1. A candidate who has appeared in examination passing states them educationally qualified to any of the qualifications mentioned above.
  2. A candidate who hasn't completed the internship but has passed the final examination of MBBS degree.
  3. Candidates who have passed ICAI, ICSI, and ICWAI final examinations.
  4. A private university degree
  5. A foreign university degree which is recognized by the Association of the Indian Universities.

3. Age Criteria

A general category candidate must be of minimum 21 years of age and must be less than the maximum of 32 years of age till August 1 of the year of examination. For other categories, the age criteria are according to the caste reservations.

  1. The upper limit of age for the OBC (Other Backward Castes) candidate is 35 years.
  2. The upper limit of age for the SC (Scheduled Castes) and ST (Scheduled Tribes) category candidate is 37 years.
  3. The limit of 40 years is given to the Defence Services Personnel disabled in operations.
  4. The criteria are different for ex-servicemen and commissioned officers who have served military services for five years as of August 1 on the year of examination. The criteria are applicable to the candidates who are released in the following cases -
    1. In the cases of assignment completion or those whose assignment will be completed in 1 year from the August 1 of the year of examination.
    2. In case of physical disability during a military operation
    3. On invalidation
    Maximum age relaxation of 5 years is provided to those who have completed five years of service and have extended the project. Otherwise, the age limit is 32 years.
  5. Age limit of 37 years is given to the PwD candidates.
  6. Age limit of 32 is provided to the Domiciles of Jammu from January 1, 1980, to December 31, 1989.
  7. The Economically Weaker Section (EWS) candidates are provided standard age limits.

Number of Attempts in the UPSC

The number of attempts for examination also differs according to the caste. General category candidates have six attempts at the exam. OBC category candidates have nine attempts at the examination, whereas ST / SC candidates can give unlimited attempts until 37 years of age.

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