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Nikita Parmar

Updated on 14th June, 2023 , 13 min read

How to Become IPS Officer in India?

How to Become an IPS Officer in India Overview

The IPS was established in 1948, following India's independence. The newly formed police force succeeded the previous Indian Imperial Police. The Indian Police Service (IPS) is one of three crucial All India Services recognized by the Indian Constitution, the other two being the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) and the Indian Forest Service (IFS). The IPS preparation process begins with familiarity with the UPSC test and its syllabus. Following the completion of the IPS test, chosen IPS officers are trained at LBSNAA and SVPNPA.

The IPS (Indian Police Service) is one of the most prominent jobs in the country, and is part of the UPSC Civil Services Exam, which is held every year. Candidates who take the exam will be assigned to IPS based on their ability, determination, and ultimate merit list ranking. The UPSC Civil Services Exam is held every year and consists of three phases.

How to Become IPS Officer

How to Become IPS Officer Highlights

The Indian Police Service (IPS), along with more than 20 other services, will be picked through the UPSC's Civil Services Examination (CSE). All services have the same application and selection processes. The selection process begins in June with preliminary interviews and concludes in April each year.

The following table shows the details for IPS-



Exam Name

Civil Services Examination

Organizing Body

UPSC (Union Public Service Commission)




Pen & Paper-Based (online)

No. of Services


No. of Attempts

6 attempts

No. of Vacancies

800 (approx.)

Expected Registration Date

8 lakh (approx.)

Who is IPS Officer?

The Indian Police Service (IPS) is a division of the All India Service that gives officers higher-level jobs in the state police system and the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF). The IPS, which was created in 1948, is responsible for maintaining public peace and order. The Ministry of Home Affairs is in charge of authorization for the IPS. Every year, the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) administers the Civil Services Examination (CSE), which includes the IPS test. IPS officials are either selected through the Civil Service Examination or promoted from the state cadre.

The Indian Police Service (IPS) is one of three distinguished services mentioned in the Indian Constitution. This further pushes the next generation to learn how to become IPS officers after graduating from high school.  An Indian Police Service officer is responsible for a variety of law enforcement and public safety duties. He or she will be in charge of many police stations and, at some time, the entire district, or perhaps the post of Inspector General.

What is IPS Officer Full Form?

IPS stands for Indian Police Service, and it is one of three All India Services. The IPS Exam is administered as part of the civil services exam, and applicants are shortlisted depending on their final UPSC scores. As members of an All India Service, IPS officials can work for both the Central Government and their individual states.

Roles and Responsibilities of IPS Officer in India

The Ministry of Home Affairs is in charge of the IPS Officer. The following are the roles and responsibilities of an IPS Officer-

  1. Border roles and responsibilities include counter-terrorism and border enforcement.
  2. Crime limitations are used to protect civic peace and order.
  3. Maintains anti-smuggling and anti-narcotic trafficking measures, as well as VIP safety.
  4. It also manages calamities such as biodiversity and the enforcement of environmental regulations.
  5. You must serve as HoDs in policymaking in Ministries and Departments of the Central and State Governments, as well as in Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) both at the federal and state levels.
  6. ou are expected to work closely with other All India Services, the Indian Army, and the Armed Forces in general.

Read more about the Upcoming Government Exams in India.

How to Become an IPS Officer after 12th?

To become an IPS officer, you must first pass the annual UPSC test. There are three stages covered by this paper: Preliminary, Main, and Interview. However, you must first be eligible to fill out the form. The age requirement is 21 years, Indian citizenship, and graduation.

You can only become an IPS officer and join the elite service if you pass all three phases of the UPSC test. After the 12th grade, you can choose any stream that interests you. It might be in the arts, business, science, or any other field. However, if you are certain that you want to join the Indian Police Service, it is better to select topics from the UPSC curriculum.

These are the topics-

  1. History (up to 12th standard)
  2. Sciences (up to 10th)
  3. Political Science (up to 12th)
  4. Geography (up to 12th)
  5. Economics (up to 12th)
  • Optional Subjects

These are the key issues, and there are several others that you should be aware of. Environment Studies, Security, Cyber Security, Disaster Management, World History, Ancient History, International Relations, and so on are examples. As a result, many students choose humanities as a major and major in one of these topics. This will benefit you in the mains examinations when you will have to take written tests in the morning and evening for three to four days straight.

  • Paper Pattern

There are two sorts of MCQ-based question papers in the preliminary test. These are as follows-

Name of Papers


General Science

It consists of 100 MCQs worth 2 points each and covers a wide range of topics, including current events and academic areas.


A question from any regional, national, or worldwide event can be asked in current affairs.


That is why you may have heard some students advise you to start reading the newspaper as soon as possible because reading a newspaper is the greatest way to remain up to speed on national and worldwide news happenings.

Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT)

 However, the UPSC test does not focus on current events in general. It goes beyond the news and challenges you to analyze the issue and comprehend the complete narrative.

How to Become IPS Officer Current Affairs Question Example

Assume, for example, if there was a worldwide event discussing each country's ethnic identity. And one of the tribal community's natural talents or abilities was presented there from India. The UPSC might handle this issue in a variety of ways in the preliminary examination. They may inquire about the tribal community's history, makeup, geography, culture, and so on. They may question you on the ability or skill displayed at the event.

They may inquire about the event itself. Its origins, purpose, participation, prior year's locations, and so on. The identical question may appear in the mains test in the form of explaining India's engagement and what it implies for that community and Indian representation in the future.

  • Get the Point?

It is how you should approach everything, and that is how you should treat IPS after 12th. The path from 12th grade to sitting for the test to become an IPS officer may belong, but it is a learning experience that completely alters your mentality.

In the mains test, you will be required to complete four GS papers at 250 points each. Then there's a 250-point essay paper, a 300-point English paper, and a 300-point vernacular language paper (you can select any language).

How to Become IPS Officer?(Step-Wise Guide)

To become an IPS officer, a candidate must pass the Union Public Services Examination's Civil Services Examination. Every year, over 8 lakh applicants apply, but only a few thousand become IPS officials. Follow the steps below to learn how to become an IPS officer-

  1. Apply for the UPSC IPS Officer Exam.
  2. Preparation for the IPS- It is critical that you be adequately prepared for the IPS test.
  3. Take the UPSC Preliminary Exam.
  4. Take the UPSC Mains examination.
  5. Attend the Personal Interview.

UPSC publishes the final merit list based on the Mains test and interview after the interview.

  • Apply to UPSC

The first and most crucial step in becoming an IPS Officer is to apply for the Civil Services Examination by filling out the application form given by the Union Public Service Commission each year. Candidates would be notified about the IPS Exam through a variety of well-known media, including Rozgar Samachar, Employment News, and others.

How to Become an IPS Officer Preparation

The Civil Services Examination has three phases, which are as follows-

  1. The Preliminary Examinationis the first phase of the IPS officer test. The total amount of marks allotted for the prelims test is 400, which is divided into two exams. Both papers will be objective, with multiple-choice questions. It is the preliminary test for the final exam. You can take the mains test after passing the preliminary exam.
  2. The Mains Examinationis the second phase of the UPSC exam. This test may only be taken if you passed the preliminary examination. The test paper is descriptive in nature.
  3. Personal Interview-After passing the mains exam, candidates are allowed to participate in an interview or personality test round in which their general knowledge, topic knowledge, mental capacity, and critical thinking abilities are evaluated.

How to Become IPS Officer Interview Pattern

Candidates who pass the mains will be invited to the 275-point interview. Its goal is to determine the candidate's personality and temperament. The scores from the interview are added to the marks from the written test.

  1. A panel of six distinguished individuals from diverse areas, chaired by a Chairperson, grills the applicants on a range of themes.
  2. Because there is no predetermined framework for the interview, the questions can be of any sort - simple or difficult - and on any subject.
  3. In contrast, the replies should exhibit the aspirant's dedication, inventiveness, patience, attention, honesty, and mental presence.
  4. A good sense of humor can be useful.
  5. The interview might run anywhere between 45 minutes and an hour.

Eligibility Criteria for IPS Officer in India

The following are some parameters to become IPS Officer-



Physical Requirements

  • Women must be at least 150cm tall.
  • Men must be at least 165cm tall.
  • Women's and men's minimum chest girths are 84cm and 79cm, respectively.
  • Myopia should not be greater than minus 4.00D.
  • Hyperopia should not be more than plus 4.00D.

Educational requirements for the IPS Exam

A applicant must have a Bachelor's degree from a UGC-accredited university or an equivalent level.

IPS Exam Age Limit

Minimum age of 21 is required.

Should be no older than 32 years old on August 1st of the examination year.


  • Should be an Indian citizen.
  • Nepal should be the theme.
  • For permanent settlement in India, you must be a Tibetan refugee who arrived in India before January 1, 1962.
  • Migrants from the following countries seeking permanent residence in India: Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, and others.

How to Become IPS Officer Qualification Criteria

The following are the educational prerequisites for taking the UPSC Exam-

  1. Someone should have gotten their diploma.
  2. The graduation should be held at any of the universities authorized by the University Grants Commission (UGC).
  3. You are eligible to apply for the role if you are in your final year of high school.
  4. The student's stream will not be considered.
  5. You are eligible to apply for the CSE preliminary test if you have completed the final level of any professional course issued by authoritative organisations such as ICAI, ICSI, CMA, and so on.
  • IPS Age Restrictions

The candidate must be at least 21 years old by August 1 of the year they take the Civil Service Exam. The age restriction for Defence Service Personnel might be reduced.

The age restriction for an IPS officer is shown in the table below-


Age Limit

No. of Attempts


32 years



35 years



37 years

No Limit

  • Other age relaxations include the following-

  1. Candidates who are physically challenged can take nine tries in the General and OBC categories, and there is no restriction for those who are SC/ST.
  2. Residents of Jammu and Kashmir can obtain a five-year age concession.
  3. Commissioned officers and ECOs/SSCOs who have served in the military for at least 5 years are eligible for a 5-year age reduction.
  4. The physically impaired with blindness, deafness, orthopedics, or muteness get an age relaxation of up to ten years.
  • Nationality Restrictions

The candidate is qualified for the role if they fulfill any of the following requirements-

  1. All you need to apply for IPS is a graduation degree from any recognised university and to be an Indian citizen.
  2. If so, you have the opportunity to become an IPS officer as well.
  3. If you are an immigrant from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Burma, or East African nations such as Ethiopia, Uganda, Zambia, Zaire, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Kenya, or Vietnam.

How to Become an IPS Officer 2023 Important Dates

The UPSC published a notice for the Civil Services Examination on February 2, 2022. (CSE). Applicants may apply for the examination till February 24, 2022. The CSE preliminary test took place on June 5, 2022, while the main exam took place on September 16, 2022. The following tables show the important dates-



Civil Services Examination (CSE) Notification

February 01, 2023

IPS online application form

February 01, 2023

IPS Preliminary Admit Card

3rd week of May

IPS Exam Date

May 28, 2023

IPS Preliminiary Result

June 12, 2023

IPS Main Exam Date

September 15, 2023

IPS Main Exam Result

October 2023

IPS Personality Test/Interview

November 2023

IPS Final Result

December 2023

What should I Study to become an IPS Officer?

Many aspirants are unsure about what they should study to become an IPS officer. Check out the books listed below to effectively prepare for the IPS exam-






  1. India People and Economy (NCERT).
  2. Indian Economy by Ramesh Singh

History & Indian Culture

Modern History

A Brief History of Modern India by Rajiv Ahir

Ancient History

‘Ancient India' by RS Sharma (Old NCERT)

Medieval History

History of Medieval India by Satish Chandra (Old NCERT)

Indian Culture

  1. ‘Facets of Indian Culture' by Spectrum.
  2. Art and Culture by Nitin Singhania.

Science & Tech

Science & Tech

  1. NCERTs
  2. Daily Newspapers
  3. ISRO website


Physical Geography

  1. Certificate Physical and Human Geography.
  2. Maps Oxford School Atlas

Indian Geography

India: Physical Environment (NCERT)


World Geography

  1. Fundamentals of Human Geography (NCERT)
  2. Certificate Physical and Human Geography

Current Affairs

Daily, Monthly & Weekly Current Affairs


The Hindu




Indian Polity by Laxmikanth

Environment & Ecology

Environment & Ecology

  1. Recent Events on Climate change through Newspapers
  2. NIOS Study Materials

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What Subjects one need to Study to Be an IPS Officer?

You must pass the UPSC IPS test to become an IPS Officer. There are no set subjects or streams for becoming an IPS officer. The Civil Service Examination necessitates knowledge of history, geography, politics, science and technology, and a variety of other topics.

The following table shows the curriculum for UPSC Prelims Papers-

UPSC Prelims Paper 1

UPSC Prelims Paper 2

History - Ancient, Medieval, Modern, and Post-Independence History.

Communication and Interpersonal Skills

Indian Polity and governance.

Comprehension of Basic English

Indian and World Geography.

Decision-making and problem-solving abilities

Economic and Social Development.

Fundamental numeracy


Mental ability in general

General Science


The UPSC Mains Exam comprises 7 exams covering a variety of disciplines. Check out the information below-

No. of Papers


Paper 1

Essay (may be prepared in the candidate's preferred media).

Paper 2

1st General Studies (Indian Heritage & Culture, History & Geography of the World & Society).

Paper 3

2nd General Studies (Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice & International Relations).

Paper 4

3rd General Studies (Technology, Economic Development, Biodiversity, Security & Disaster Management).

Paper 5

4th General Studies (Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude).

Paper 6

Paper 1 is an optional subject.

Paper 7

Paper 2 is an optional subject.

What next after becoming an IPS Officer?

After passing the IPS test and becoming an IPS officer, you will get training at LBSNAA and SVPNPA.

  • IPS Officer Training

After passing all three phases of the Civil Services Examination, including prelims, mains, and interviews, are trained at the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration in Mussoorie. This is a three-month introductory course. Its purpose is to teach IPS Officer Trainees (OTs) about the country's economic, political, and cultural history, as well as discipline and social regulations. After that, the applicants attend the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy in Hyderabad for an 11-month IPS officer training course. During the Basic Training Course, here is where OTs are shaped into police officers. Law, physical fitness, internal security, criminology, and human rights are among the subjects taught here.

IPS Officer Job Prospects

The tasks of an IPS officer are not limited to the state or central levels, and they are part of Group A of civil services that ensure the maintenance of law and order across the nation. At the state level, IPS officers can rise from the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) to the position of Director-General of Police (DGP), the most coveted position for an IPS officer. At the state level, the IPS personnel will also serve as Superintendent of Police, Inspector General of Police, Assistant Director-General of Police, and so on.

Individuals can serve their country on a national level by joining civic, defense, or paramilitary organizations. Examples include the Central Bureau of Investigation, Border Security Force, Central Reserve Police Force, Intelligence Bureau, and Research and Analysis Wing. The IAS and IPS officers have a common aim and work together to achieve it.

IPS Salary- IPS Ranks

Since the sixth pay commission, IPS Officers Salary has grown. The bulk of new employees earns INR 70,000 per month. ASPs, SPs, and ACPs make around INR 1,09,203 each month. DIGs, IGs, and DGPs make around INR 2,12,650 per month. IPS officers in India begin with a monthly salary of Rs 56,100. (DA, HRA, and other benefits are not included.) This is in response to the proposal of the 7th Pay Commission.

The table below shows IPS wage levels according to rank-

IPS rank in the State Police/Central Police Force

Salary based on the 7th Pay Commission

Director-General of Police

Rs. 2.25 lakh

Additional Director General of Police

Rs. 2.05 lakh

Inspector-General of Police

Rs. 1.44 lakh

Deputy Inspector General of Police

Rs. 1.31 lakh

Senior Superintendent of Police

Rs. 79k

Additional Superintendent of Police

Rs. 67k

Deputy Superintendent of Police

Rs. 56k

India's Top IPS Officers

Here is a list of India's top IPS officers-

  1. Narendra Kumar
  2. Kiran Bedi
  3. Shivdeep Waman Lande
  4. Dr. Nazrul Islam
  5. Ajit Kumar Doval

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Frequently Asked Questions

Ans. There are two ways to become an IPS Officer. The first and foremost is through direct recruitment through the UPSC civil services test. Another method is to conduct promotional interviews and tests within the unit.

Ans. Any individual with a bachelor’s degree is eligible to apply. For the general category, the age restriction for IPS officers is 21-32 years. To become an IPS officer, the individual must meet the eligibility requirements.

Ans. General candidates up to the age of 32 have six tries. There are no age restrictions for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes up to the age of 37. There are nine tries for Other Backward Classes up to the age of 35. There are nine attempts for disabled general and OBC, while there are no limits for SC/ST. Candidates who prepare strategically might become IPS officers in the first year of the test cycle. It differs from one individual to the next.

Ans. To become an IPS officer after the 12th, you must first obtain a Bachelor’s degree from a reputable university or have an equivalent certification. Following that, you must register for the UPSC-organized CSE test. Following that, you must attend the preliminary, and primary, interview rounds to be selected for IPS Officer training.

Ans. It is not simple to become an IPS Officer. It takes a significant amount of effort and devotion. Only the most qualified candidates are chosen for this position. UPSC holds a test for individuals who want to become IPS officers to choose these qualified people.

Ans. No, not always. Yes, you must focus on one of the subjects for the main examinations, but it does not imply you may do less work with others. This exam determines how prepared you are to join the Indian government system and how much you know about it in its totality. In the UPSC test preparation community, there is a well-known phrase that "you don’t have to know everything about one thing, but you do have to know something about everything."

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