Civil Services Examination: What and Why

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) will be notifying the Civil Services 2011 Examination during January 2011. Like the previous years the notification is expected for more than 650 vacancies. Recruitment to 22 or 23 services is sought to be conducted through this examination. Apart from the most coveted services like the Indian Administrative Service, the Indian Police Service, the Indian Foreign Service, these services include the Indian Revenue Service, the Indian Customs and Central Excise Service, the Indian Audit and Accounts Service, the Indian Railway Traffic Service, etc.

Following are the number of vacancies in Civil Services over a period of time:

1. 2002 – 417
2. 2003 – 286
3. 2004- 413
4. 2005 – 325
5. 2006- 474
6. 2007- 455
7. 2008 – 671

Why should one think of the civil services as a career? Primarily for the job security, ( makes a lot of sense during the present economic slow down ) the status and the overall societal respect commanded by a civil servant. Most of us identify the civil services only with the status and security. However, every aspirant should know the job profile and the pros and cons of the services. A brief profile of the services is given below:

A brief profile of some of the higher civil services is given below:

1. Indian Administrative Service: The only service that gets an exposure at all the three levels i.e., the District, the State and the Centre.

2. Indian Foreign Service: Diplomatic Status, the Satisfaction of representing the country, scope for lots of adventure and exposure.

3. The Indian Police Service: Exposure to varied activities in training like operating latest weapons, horse riding etc. which are not available in any other sector. Swift initial promotions where one becomes the Superintendent of Police in-charge of district within a span of five years of entry.

4. The Indian Revenue (Income Tax ) Service: Postings only in major towns and cities. Opportunities for deputation. Host of opportunities post retirement.

5. The Indian Revenue (Customs and Central Excise) service: Postings only in major towns and cities, exposure to the Corporate World etc. Service tax provides a new area of unexplored opportunity.

6. The Railway Traffic / Accounts Service: A chance to travel all over India and excellent support services in the form of housing, medical services, subsidized travel etc.

7. The Indian Postal Service: Freedom in aspects of management. Possibility of experience in armed forces (on deputation).

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