In a good news for lakhs of civil services aspirants, the government decided to give two additional attempts with consequential age relaxation to all categories of candidates of the prestigious exam conducted by Union Public Service Commission.
"The central government has approved two additional attempts to all categories of candidates with effect from Civil Services Examination 2014, with consequential age relaxation of maximum age for all categories of candidates, if required," the Ministry of Personnel said in an order.
The move comes close on the heels of an assurance by Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi to a delegation of civil service aspirants that steps will be taken to redress their grievances. As per existing rules, a candidate is permitted a maximum of four attempts. The maximum age limit for such candidates is 30 years.
There is no restriction on number of attempts by a candidates belonging to Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs). As many as seven attempts are permissible to an aspirant belonging to Other Backward Classes (OBCs), according to a notification issued for Civil Services Examinations, 2013.
Today's government order will especially benefit those aspirants who have exhausted their four attempts and running 30 years of age.
"Such aspirants will get two more attempts till 32 years of age," a senior official of Personnel Ministry said.
A candidate who has attained the age of 21 years but not A candidate who has attained the age of 21 years but not attained 30 years may apply for the civil services examination, as per eligibility mentioned in the 2013 exam's notification.
The upper age limit is relaxable up to a maximum of five years for candidates belonging to SCs or STs categories and up to a maximum of three years for candidates of OBC category among others.
The upper age limit is also relaxable upto a maximum of five years if a candidate had ordinarily been domiciled in Jammu & Kashmir during January 1, 1980 to December 31, 1989.
It can also be relaxed upto a maximum of three years in the case of defence services personnel disabled in operations during hostilities with any foreign country or in a disturbed area and released as a consequence thereof, the existing norms say.
There is also a relaxation in upper age upto a maximum of 10 years in the case of blind, deaf-mute and orthopaedically handicapped candidates besides other categories, they say.
The rules will soon be notified by the government for further clarity non age relaxations, he said. The age relaxation of up to 32 years will not be given to those candidates who have exhausted six attempts before 30 years of age, the official added.
The Civil Services Examination (Preliminary), 2014 is tentatively scheduled to be held on August 24, this year.
The Civil Service Examinations is conducted by the UPSC to select Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Police Service (IPS) and Indian Foreign Service (IFS) among others. The examinations is conducted in three stages-- preliminary, mains and interview.