Reservation in UPSC: List, Percentage, Is there reservation in UPSC?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

Reservation in UPSC: The Union Public Service Commission, UPSC administers national-level examinations for more than 20 services under India’s State and Central Governments. The All India Central Services Group’s staff are recruited by the UPSC, which is governed by the Indian Constitution. These UPSC reservations are available in the form of age, attempt limit, eligibility, and other relaxations.

The organization has also declared UPSC reservation for the Economically Weaker Section (EWS). This raises an important question: Is there a reservation in UPSC, and if so, How does this system work? In this article, we will learn more about the UPSC reservation requirements and related information.

Is there a Reservation in UPSC?

In terms of the number of attempts, the age relaxation, the overall number of seats, the UPSC eligibility, and the relaxation in the cut-off, reservations are granted for the IAS, IPS, and other civil services. Students who fall within the EWS categories, Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Other Backward Classes, and Persons with Disabilities, receive the UPSC relaxation in the cutoff.

The UPSC reservation quota is given in the table below.

Category UPSC Reservation Percentage
SC 15%
ST 7.5%
OBC 27%
EWS (Economically Weaker Section) 10%
Persons with Benchmark Disabilities 4%

UPSC Reservation Based on Age

UPSC reservations are allotted based on the age of the applicant or student. A mark sheet from a secondary school or a mark sheet from any Indian university is accepted as proof of age. Candidates applying for various UPSC exam must provide these proofs. The minimum age requirement for these tests is 21, but the maximum age limit may be relaxed depending on the various categories a student falls under. The following are the details of the IAS relaxations for the age limit:

  • SC/ ST category – 5 years
  • OBC category – 3 years
  • Defense personnel – 3 years
  • Orthopedically handicapped, blind, deaf, and mute – 3 years

Eligibility for Availing IAS Reservation

According to the official notification, the following factors must be taken into account in order to qualify for reservation in UPSC:

  • Only if the candidate’s caste is listed among the reserved communities published by the Central Government would they be entitled to receive the benefits of community reservation.
  • Candidates from Other Backward Classes (OBC) must present a non-creamy layer certificate in order to be eligible for the benefits.
  • If a candidate meets the requirements established by the Central Government and has the necessary Income & Asset Certificate based on income for the relevant financial year, they will be eligible to receive the benefit of the UPSC reservation for economically weaker sections.
  • SC/ST/OBC/EWS/PwBD/Ex-servicemen wishing to apply for any category or benefit must have all the necessary documentation and certificates to support their claim.

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How to Apply for UPSC Reservation?

The category field on the application form must be filled out by students. You will receive UPSC reservation advantages according to the category you choose. The original certificates will be verified at the time of the IAS interview. The guidelines to claim the reservation in UPSC are given below.

  • Only if a candidate’s caste is listed on the central government’s list of reserved communities would they be eligible for UPSC reservation benefits.
  • If an applicant develops a physical disability while being considered, the candidate will be required to present a legal document to the Commission, who will then make a decision.
  • A student in the General category cannot have their category changed to a reserved category, and requests to do so will never be granted.
  • Students who fall under the category of physically challenged students must also abide by the same guideline.

UPSC Reservation for SC/ST/OBC

The IAS reservations vary based on the category of the candidates. The UPSC reservation for SC/ ST/ OBC categories is provided in the table below.

Particulars Categories
SC Reservation in UPSC ST OBC
Age Limit 5 years Upper Age Relaxation

Minimum – 21 years

Maximum – 37 years (Should not have attained 37 years of age as of 1 August of the exam year)

5 years Upper Age Relaxation

Minimum – 21 years

Maximum – 37 years (Should not have attained 37 years of age as of 1 August of the exam year)

3 years Upper Age Relaxation

Minimum – 21 years

Maximum – 35 years

(Should not have attained 35 years of age as of 1 August of the exam year)

Number of Attempts Unlimited Unlimited 09
Application Fees Exempted Exempted ₹100/-
Cutoff: Mains 680 682 698
Cutoff: Prelims 74.84 68.71 89.12

Reservation in UPSC For EWS

The Indian government declared a 10% EWS (Economically Weaker Section) reservation in UPSC for people who are not covered by the existing Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, and Socially and Educationally Backward Classes reservations plan on February 5, 2020. There is no exception available for such in terms of age, the number of tries, costs, etc.

The Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) of society are eligible for UPSC reservation under the Constitution (One Hundred and Third Amendment) Act 2019, which was approved by the Indian Parliament. The concerned State will determine whether or not to offer EWS reservation for employment to State Government jobs and for admission to State Government educational institutions.

Age Limit No Relaxation/ Same as General Category

Minimum – 21

Maximum – 32

Number of Attempts 06
Application fees ₹100/-
Cutoff: Mains 687
Cutoff: Prelims 77.55

Eligibility for UPSC Reservation under EWS

The eligibility conditions for UPSC reservation under EWS are given below:

  • A general category candidate who is not eligible for SC, ST, or OBC reservations.
  • The family’s gross annual income for the previous financial year should have been less than Rs. 8 lakhs.
  • Families with parents, siblings, or spouses who are younger than 18 should not own agricultural property with a size of 5 acres or more.
  • Additionally, the family should not own a residential apartment that is 1000 square feet or larger.
  • The family is also not permitted to own a home plot in notified municipalities with an area of 100 square yards or more or less than 200 square yards.

PwD Reservation in UPSC

The requirements outlined in the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act (RPwD Act), 2016 govern for UPSC reservation against positions designated for people with benchmark disabilities. Click here to learn more about the PWD reservation criteria in UPSC.

The UPSC offers accommodations and reservations to applicants with disabilities. Approximately 712 positions must be filled through the test in 2021, 22 of which are designated for people in the benchmark disability category. The distribution of reservations in UPSC for open positions is as follows.

Categories Number of vacancies
Blindness/Low vision 5
Deaf/Hard of hearing 6
Locomotor disabilities, including cerebral palsy, dwarfism, leprosy cured, muscular dystrophy, and acid attack victims 6
Multiple disabilities from amongst persons under clauses 5
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