All India Services: Ranks, Hierarchy, List of All India Services UPSC

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

The Indian Administrative Service, Indian Police Service, and Indian Forest Service are all part of the All India Services. The AIS is unique because the people chosen for these positions are hired by the Center (the Union Government in a federal polity). Still, their services are allotted under different State Cadres and are responsible for serving the State and the Centre. Officers appointed in these three all India services work in accordance with the rules prescribed by the Union government for salary, leaves, transfer, allowances, etc.

This All India Services article concentrates on the brief history of AIS as well as the full forms, lists, hierarchies, ranks, and controlling bodies for the IAS, IPS, and IFS. We will also go over the key details of the list of All India Services below, which will benefit UPSC preparation.

What are All India Services?

In All India Services, Indian nationals can be appointed grade A officers in the IAS, IPS, or IFoS branches. The Court of Directors of the East India Company oversaw its initial introduction in India by the British government. All India Services was known as Covenanted Civil Services in the British era. In 1947, the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) took the place of the ICS. Additionally, IPS took the place of IP. The Indian Forest Service (IFS) was established in 1963 and officially launched in 1966.

The main characteristic of All India Services is that members are chosen through the center, and their services are assigned to various state Cadres. Additionally, it stipulates that members are obligated to work for the state and center cadre. Recently, the central government announced a programme centered on distributing new cadres to achieve bureaucracy integration and guarantee All India Character services.

List of All India Services

There are three distinct service categories for All India Services. The Indian Administrative Service is the first division (IAS). The IPS is the second segmentation, and the IFS is the third segmentation. The MoP and PGP serve as the IAS’s governing bodies. On the other side, the MoHP is the controlling body for the Indian Police Service (IPS), while the MoE is in charge of the IFS. The table below contains the list of All India Services:

All India Services Exam Controlling body Exam Board
IFS CSE – For Prelims

IFS – For Mains


Father of All India Services

Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel is known as the father of All India Services as he transformed the Civil Services after independence. On April 21, which is celebrated as Civil services day, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel addressed the first batch of IAS in 1947. Two years before independence, i.e. in 1945, Sardar Patel, along with Congress ministers, worked on a resolution to create the Indian Administrative Services and Indian Police Service, which would succeed the existing Imperial Civil Services. He believed that an officer in the All India Services must work independently without political pressure.

All India Services: IAS, IPS, IFS Full Form

Along with the IPS and IFS, IAS is one of the three branches of All India Services. The following is the IAS, IPS, and IFS full form:

Indian Administrative Service (IAS)

During their probationary period, All India Services officials are allocated to their states. IAS Officers will receive training in managing government matters. Public servants are allocated to a specific office that deals with policy issues relating to that field because this is their primary duty. Under the direct supervision of the Administrative Officer and in cooperation with the Minister, this office frames, modifies, and interprets policy concerns. On the Officer’s recommendation, policies are also put into effect.

The Cabinet Secretary is the head of the government structure and is responsible for formulating policy, followed in that order by the Secretaries/Additional Secretaries, Joint Secretaries, Directors, Under Secretaries, and Junior Scale Officers. Civil officials fill these positions according to their level of seniority within the Civil Services as per the All India Services act. The Minister weighs the issue and makes a judgment after receiving input from several officers as part of the decision-making process.

Supervision and touring are involved in the implementation process. The distribution of significant monies to and by the field offices necessitates oversight, and the officials in question must be prepared to respond to questions from the Parliament.

IAS Ranks – Hierarchy

The ranks that an IAS official will occupy during his term in all India services are listed below:

  • Cabinet Secretary
  • Secretary/Additional Secretary
  • Joint Secretary
  • Director
  • Under Secretary
  • Junior Scale Officers
  • Senior Scale Officer
  • Super Time Scale
  • Above Super Time Scale

Indian Police Service (IPS)

As one of the All India Services, the Indian Police Service (IPS) is in charge of maintaining internal security, law and order, and public safety. The Indian Police Service (IPS) took the role of the Imperial Police (IP) after India gained independence (1948). The Indian Police Service is the organization to which all senior police personnel belongs, regardless of the agency for which they serve. It is not a law enforcement organization in and of itself.

An IPS officer is subjected to difficult circumstances and numerous potentially fatal situations. The Superintendent of Police oversees the entire District, the Deputy Commissioner or Commissioner of Police oversees the entire city, depending on where it is located, and the Director-General of Police of the Indian Police Service is in charge of general law and order throughout the entire State. A police commissioner who is an IPS officer has magisterial authority per All India Services norms.

IPS Ranks – Hierarchy

During their time in the All India Services, IPS officers have the following ranks in charge:

  • Assistant Superintendent of Police
  • Superintendent of Police or Deputy Commissioner of Police
  • Junior Administrative Grade
  • Selection Grade
  • Deputy Inspector General of Police or Additional Commissioner of Police
  • Inspector-General of Police
  • Additional Director General of Police
  • Finally, the Director-General of Police

Learn more about the IPS Officer ranks here.

Indian Forest Service (IFoS)

Along with the Indian Police Service and Indian Administrative Service, the Indian Forest Service is one of the three All India Services. One of the first nations to implement scientific forest management was India. The Imperial Forest Department was formed by the British Raj in 1864. German forest officer Dr. Dietrich Brandis was named Inspector General of Forests in 1866. In 1867, the Imperial Forest Service (IFS) was established.

Following Independence, the Indian Forest Service (IFoS) was established in 1966 under the All India Services Act 1951 to safeguard, conserve, and restore forest resources. Candidates selected for IFS are trained at the Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy. The cops receive training that prepares them to operate in the nation’s most challenging environments. To do its job effectively, the Indian Forest Service needs strong administrative skills and in-depth technical understanding.

The IFS Officers work for several international and national organizations involved in managing forests, wildlife, and the environment, in addition to holding senior positions in the Central Secretariat, State Secretariats, and other assignments under the Central Staffing Scheme as per the All India Services act.

IFS Ranks – Hierarchy

The Indian Forest Service (IFS) has the following ranks:

Sr. No. Post
1 Probationary Officer
2 Divisional Forest Officer (DFO)
3 Deputy Conservator of Forests (CF)
4 Chief Conservator of Forests (CCF)
5 Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Addl. PCCF)
6 Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF)
7 Director-General of Forests

All India Services: Power and Responsibilities

The All India Services Act, 1951, which gives the Government of India permission to develop standards and processes for the service conditions and the recruitment of individuals appointed to AIS, describes the authority, function, and responsibilities of these All India Services. The AIS is governed by the All India Service (Conduct) Rules, 1968, which outline the general civil servant code of conduct.

The duties of the officers change as they advance in the organizational hierarchy from junior public servant officers, who begin with probation, to senior civil servants. The level-wise responsibility of All India Services is as follows:

Level Responsibility
District Level The tasks concern both district-related issues and any development-related issues.
Divisional Level The position is connected to law and order.
State and Central Levels Defining a policy

All India Services: Cadre Allocation Policy

In August 2017, the central government unveiled a new UPSC cadre allocation strategy for All India Services, praising it as a measure to ensure national bureaucratic cohesion and the All India nature of the services. The Department of Personnel and Training was to divide the twenty-six existing cadres into five zones. Following the new guideline, candidates must first identify their cadre preferences from each chosen zone in descending order.

The candidate expresses their preference for the second cadre for each consecutive chosen zone. No alteration is allowed to the order in which the zones and cadres are preferred. The table below displays the five zones covered by the current cadre allocation policy for All India Services:

Zone Cadres
Zone 1 Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, and AGMUT.
Zone 2 Bihar, Odisha, Jharkhand, and Uttar Pradesh.
Zone 3 Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Chhattisgarh.
Zone 4 Meghalaya, Sikkim, West Bengal, Manipur, Nagaland, and Tripura.
Zone 5 Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana.

Significance of All India Services UPSC

India is a democratic nation, and elected people are given the power to manage the state’s political and administrative affairs for a specific time. However, while overseeing a nation as big and diverse as India, the government needs an administrative system that can function nationwide and guarantee the execution of policies and development programmes. The All India Services were established specifically to address this issue.

As a centralised, permanent institution, All India Services act as India’s central administrative system, assisting the current administration in formulating and enacting welfare policies, developing programmes, and ensuring the efficient operation of the legislative and executive branches at the local level. The All India Services have been granted significant duties and authority, and they have the power to alter the nation’s appearance.

Related Articles:
Political Science Books for UPSC UPSC Topper 2022
Essay Writing for UPSC How to prepare for UPSC Prelims?
CSAT Questions UPSC Preparation without Coaching
UPSC Medical Test First IAS Officer of India
How to become IRS Officer? IPS Ranks
Our Apps Playstore
SSC and Bank
Other Exams
GradeStack Learning Pvt. Ltd.Windsor IT Park, Tower - A, 2nd Floor, Sector 125, Noida, Uttar Pradesh 201303
Home Practice Test Series Premium