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Reservations in Civil Service Exam

Category Reservation Remarks
General(EWS) 10% EWS = Economically Weaker Sections
SC 15% OBC,SC & ST total = 49.5%
ST 7.5%
OBC 27% Creamy layer excluded

Around 10% from SC, ST & OBC students also qualify within the General category. They are not counted for the purpose of reservations.

Records from earlier exams show that an average of 9.15 percent OBC, SC, and ST candidates are secure enough to qualify in the General Category. This means 58.65 seats go to SC, ST, and OBC candidates. After adding the 10 percent EWS quota this number will go up to 68.65 percent leaving just 31.35 percent for general merit.

Data revealed by the UPSC show that number of OBC/SC/ST qualifying in the General category is going down. While it was 10.21 and 11.52 percent in 2008 and 2009 it has gone down to 9.09 and 6.34 percent in 2016 and 2017.

Many OBC candidates get as many marks as their general category counterparts but very few ST qualify without reservation. For example, in 2017, 67 OBC candidates qualified without quota but just one ST candidate could do it. 9 SC candidates also qualified without reservation.

Year-wise Number of vacancies-civil services exam- OBC, SC & ST, General category

Year Total Vacancies OBC qualified as General SC qualified as General ST qualified as General OBC/SC/ST qualified as General % of Total OBC/SC/ST qualified as General
2008 881 74 11 5 90 10.21
2009 989 88 18 8 114 11.52
2010 1043 94 23 4 121 11.60
2011 1001 72 12 7 91 9.09
2012 1091 75 11 6 92 8.43
2013 1228 88 13 4 105 8.55
2014 1364 105 19 3 127 9.31
2015 1164 74 8 4 86 7.38
2016 1209 87 20 3 110 9.09
2017 1056 57 9 1 67 6.34

Reservations for Physically Handicapped

The UPSC gives relaxations and reservations to aspirants who are differently-abled in the form of age limit relaxations, reservation of certain posts, and special provisions for exam centers. However, differently-abled people cannot apply to all of the services in the Civil Services. To see which UPSC posts have what eligibility please see details in that particular service.

Out of a total of around 712 vacancies announced for 2021, 22 vacancies are reserved for the Persons with Benchmark Disability Category. Only candidates who have a disability of 40% or above are eligible. The date of issue of the disability certificate should be before the last date of applying for the UPSC prelims exam.

Physically Handicapped Subcategory Number of Vacancies
locomotor disability including cerebral palsy, leprosy cured, dwarfism, acid attack victims, and muscular dystrophy 6
Blind and Low Vision 5
deaf and hard of hearing 6
Multiple Disabilities 5
Total 22

Reservation for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS)

On 5th Feb 2020, the government of India announced 10% reservation under the Economically Weaker Section (EWS) category for those persons who are not covered under the existing scheme of reservations for the Scheduled Castes, the Scheduled Tribes, and the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes.  No relaxation in age, number of attempts, fees, etc. is available to such.

The Constitution (One Hundred and Third Amendment) Act 2019 passed by the Parliament of India enables the State (i.e both the Central and State Governments) to provide reservation to the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) of the society. Whether or not to provide reservation under the EWS for appointment in State Government jobs and for admission to State Government educational institutions is to be decided by the concerned State Government.

Eligibility for reservation under EWS?

Following are the eligibility conditions for candidates to claim EWS reservations.

  • A ‘general’ candidate not covered under reservation for SC, ST, or OBC.
  • The family’s gross annual income should be below Rs. 8 lakhs for the previous financial year.
  • The family that includes parents and siblings or spouses below 18 years of age, should not own agricultural land of size 5 acres or above.
  • The family should also not own a residential flat of area 1000 square feet or above.
  • Nor should the family own a residential plot
    • In notified municipalities – of area 100 square yards or more
    • In other than in notified municipalities of area 200 square yards or more.

You can get the EWS certificate from your local government authority (Tehsil). The certificate is called an ‘Income and Assets Certificate’, and this is the proof that is required to avail of the EWS reservation.

Difference between EWS and Creamy Layer

The OBC reservations are meant for backward classes and have 27./. reservation and exclude the creamy layer who are rich. In contrast, the EWS is the inclusion of those that are not rich into the general category by giving them a 10% reservation within the general class. Another difference between EWS and OBC reservations is that in determining the family income for reservations, in the case of OBC candidates, the income of the spouse is not included. In contrast, it is included in the case of EWS reservations.