UPSC Exam Eligibility 2021 | IAS Age Limit, Qualification, Number of Attempts

We totally understand your excitement to become a part of India’s elite bureaucracy! However, the first thing you need to check before applying for the IAS exam is the UPSC Exam Eligibility criteria. Mentioned in the official notification released by the commission, UPSC Exam Eligibility 2021 is a set of different parameters including nationality, educational qualification, age, nationality, etc, that you must qualify in order to apply for this exam. We’ve discussed all of these in this article.

Important: The students who have given their last attempt in 2020 are also eligible to appear in UPSC Civil Services 2021 as an exception. The government has agreed to give the students a chance to reappear again this year.

UPSC Exam Eligibility Snapshot

Broadly, you need to qualify the below parameters to be eligible for the UPSC Civil Services Exam:

IAS Age Limit 21 to 32 years
Age relaxation As per category (mentioned below)
Educational qualification for UPSC Civil Services Graduation from any recognized university
Nationality Indian

UPSC Exam Eligiblity 2021 - Age Limit

UPSC has a fixed number of attempts and eligibility criteria with respect to age for the UPSC examination. Here’s the category-wise age limit and the number of attempts:

Category Upper Age Limit for UPSC Maximum Number of Attempts
General 32 6
Economically Weaker Section (EWS) 32 6
OBC 35 9
SC/ST 37 Unlimited (Up to age limit)
Defence Services Personnel 35 9
Persons with Benchmark Disability 35 9

It is important to note that an attempt is counted when you appear for the Prelims examination. Hence, if you’ve filled the examination form and not appear for the exam, your attempt will not be counted.

UPSC Exam Eligibility 2021 - Educational Qualification

The eligibility conditions for the UPSC exam with respect to educational qualification is given below:

  • The candidate must hold a graduation degree from a government-recognized university.
  • Candidates who are in their final year or awaiting results are also eligible to appear for UPSC preliminary Examination.

UPSC Exam Eligibility Criteria - Nationality

For IAS and IPS:

  • Candidate must be a citizen of India

All other Services:

Candidate must be either:-

  • A citizen of India, or
    A subject of Nepal, or
    A subject of Bhutan, or
    A Tibetan refugee who came to India before 1st January 1962 with the intention of permanently settling in India, or
    A person of Indian origin (PIO) who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Ethiopia, Zaire and Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India.
  • The candidates belonging to categories (2), (3), (4) and (5) should furnish a certificate of eligibility issued by the Government of India. Such candidates may take the exam before getting the said certificate of eligibility, but he/she would get the offer of appointment only after the certificate has been issued by the Government of India.
  • Note: A person belonging to categories (2), (3) and (4) are not eligible for appointment to the Indian Foreign Service (IFS).

    So, here is a brief overview of the UPSC Exam Eligibility Criteria. If you’ve any queries regarding the same, you can get in touch with our expert counselors. Career Launcher brings you comprehensive courses to prepare for UPSC CSE Prelims and UPSC CSE Mains from the convenience of your home. Enroll in our course and get an edge over your peers with our expert guidance. Get in touch with our course counselors to get more information regarding our courses.

FAQs regarding UPSC Exam Eligibility

The age limit for unreserved candidates is 32 years. However, there are certain age relaxations for category students which are mentioned in the table above.

A general candidate can appear a maximum of 6 times.

There is no such relaxation for EWS category students. Hence, the maximum number of attempts for the EWS category is 6 times.

An OBC category student gets 9 attempts for UPSC CSE.

There is no such criterion. You only need to have a graduation degree from a recognized university.

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