Union Public Service Commission (UPSC)

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is India's premier central recruiting agency responsible for appointments to and examinations for All India services and Group A & Group B of Central services. The Government of India (GoI) consults UPSC in matters relating to the appointment, transfer, promotion and disciplinary matters. The UPSC reports directly to the the President of India and can advise the Government through the Office of the President of India. 

History of Union Public Service Commission

During the times of the East India Company, Civil Servants were nominated by the Directors of the Company and trained at Haileybury College in London and then sent to India. In 1854, based on Lord Macaulay’s Report of the Select Committee of British Parliament, the concept of a merit based modern Civil Service was introduced. Initially, the examinations for Indian Civil Services (ICS) were conducted only in London. The age limit to appear for ICS was 18 to 23 years.

The syllabus was designed such that European Classics had a predominant share of marks which made it difficult for Indians to crack. However, fighting all such odds, the first Indian, Shri Satyendranath Tagore brother of Shri Rabindaranath Tagore succeeded in 1864. Three years later 4 other Indians succeeded. Though Indians demanded for simultaneous examinations in India, but the British Government did not want many Indians to enter the administrative service.  It was only after the First World War and the Montagu Chelmsford reforms that this was agreed upon. From 1922 onward the Indian Civil Service Examination began to be held in India also, first in Allahabad and later in Delhi with the setting up of the Federal Public Service Commission.

Established on 1 October 1926 as Public Service Commission, it was later reconstituted as Federal Public Service Commission by the Government of India Act, 1935; only to be renamed as today's Union Public Service Commission after the independence. The Federal Public Service Commission became the Union Public Service Commission after independence. It was given a constitutional status under of Constitution of India on 26 January 1950.

Functions of UPSC

The functions of UPSC are:
  • Conduct examinations for appointment to the services of the Union.
  • Direct recruitment by selection through interviews.
  • Appointment of officers on promotion / deputation / absorption.
  • Framing and amendment of Recruitment Rules for various services and posts under the Government.
  • Disciplinary cases relating to different Civil Services.
  • Advising the Government on any matter referred to the Commission by the President of India.

Divisions of UPSC

The various divisions of UPSC are:


Union Public Service Commission is a Constitutional Body with responsibilities of recruitment through competitive examinations and interviews for appointment of officers on promotion and transfer-on-deputation, advising the Government on all matters relating to methods of recruitment to various services, framing & amendment of Recruitment Rules. It also caters to disciplinary cases relating to various Civil Services, miscellaneous matters relating to grant of extra-ordinary pensions, reimbursement of legal expenses etc. It is also entrusted to advise the Government on any matter referred to the Commission by the President of India and on the request of the Governor of a State, to serve all or any of the needs of a State relating to recruitment, with the approval of the President.

All India Services

Recruitment to All India Services is done either by direct recruitment (through Competitive Examinations) or by promotion from the State Services. Presently only the IAS, the IPS and the IFS have been constituted as All India Services.


The UPSC carries out appointments to civil services and posts and makes promotions and transfers from one service to another and on the suitability of candidates for such appointments, promotions or transfers.


UPSC  conducts various examinations as notified by the Government of India in fair and impartial manner and prepare merit list of candidates. Further, commission recommends names of qualified candidates to government for appointment to various Group A and Group B posts and services.


The General Branch mainly deals with housekeeping works like making arrangements for Commission’s Meetings, arrangements and facilitation for conduct of Examinations by the UPSC, procurement of all stationery and other materials for conducting examinations, procurement and maintenance of consumables for the Commission, upkeep and maintenance of the buildings, day-to-day work of the Commission etc.


The Recruitment Branch is concerned with direct recruitment by selection to all Group `A’ and certain Group `B’ posts of the services of the Union (including some Union Territories) except those exempted from the purview of the Union Public Service Commission under the provisions of the UPSC (Exemption from Consultation) Regulations, 1958 as amended from time to time.

Recruitment Rules

Union Public Service Commission carries out a wide range of functions under Article 320 of the Constitution of India in framing and amending recruitment and service rules for various Civil Posts under the Govt of India/ Union Territory Administrations/ certain other Autonomous Organizations like NDMC, MCD, DJB, EPFO, ESIC etc. 

Services I

Handles disciplinary cases received from various Ministries/Departments and State Governments for advice of the Commission, as required under Article 320 (3)(c).

Services II

Handles all other cases that 'Services I' branch doesn't. It compiles the Annual Report and coordinates visits of foreign delegations, correspondence with foreign countries and hosting of international events concerning Public Service Commissions, including the SAARC Member States.

Competitive Examinations Conducted by UPSC

The following examinations are conducted by UPSC
UPSC Yearly Examination Calendar

Contact Details

Union Public Service Commission
Dholpur House,
Shahjahan Road, New Delhi - 110069
Website: www.upsc.gov.in

UPSC Museum

In November 2016, UPSC opened a museum in Dholpur House, Delhi for showcasing its archival material including original pamphlets, documents, reports and various other records. The first section displays various artifacts related to early administration in ancient and medieval India, and phases of growth of administration in modern India. It also provides information regarding Civil Services in China, USA, France, Japan and Bhutan. The second section displays artifacts related to UPSC itself and the various examinations it had conducted. The third section displays various reports of various committees appointed for suggesting improvements to quality of UPSC and Civil Services in India.

Timings: 10 am - 2 pm (Monday to Saturday)
Entry: Free
Photography: Allowed
Videography:  After prior permission

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