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IPS full Form

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IPS Full Form is the Indian Police Service (आईपीएस का फु ल फॉम भारतीय पिुलस सेवा है), is one of the all India Civil Services which run the administration of the country. The Ministry of Home Affairs controls the cadres of IPS. It was setup in 1948 from the erstwhile Indian Imperial Police.

The primary role of the IPS is to secure law and order, ensure safety and security of the citizens. They can be deputed to various other law enforcement agencies like Central Armed Police Forces which include Border Security Forces, Seema Suraksha Bal, Central Reserved Police Force, Central Industrial Security Force, Indo Tibetan Border Police. National Security Guard.

Selection to IPS is done through the Civil Services Exam (CSE) conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) for over 20 civil services. Among these IPS is a top choice of students due to its prestige, spirit of service, dedication and crucial role which allows an individual to make immense impact.

Salary of an IPS Officer

Roles of an IPS officer

IPS is a highly respected and prestigious service responsible for maintaining the internal security of India. The Iron Man of India Mr. Sardar Vallab Bhai Patel called it a fundamental pillars of the Indian democracy along with the Indian Administrative Service.

  1. Maintain peace and order - IPS officers have power to use force and police areas to prevent crime.
  2. Border services - Guarding the Indian border to maintain nation's security and territorial integrity.
  3. VIP security - IPS officers also see to security of key public functionaries like Ministers.
  4. Investigating Economic Offences & Cybercrimes - With the evolution of role they also nab economic and cyber offenders.
  5. Investigation: Detection, and also collection of data to promote safety and security.
  6. Prison System:IPS officers oversee prisons in the country.
  7. Leading and commanding the Research & Analysis Wing (RAW), Intelligence Bureau (IB), Central Bureau of Investigation(CBI), Crime Investigation Department in States(CID), and also Central Armed Police Forces(CAPF) in all the states and the UTs.
  8. IPS officers also serve as HoDs in policymaking in various Ministries and Departments under Centre and state.
  9. Coordination of Security Services - In close contact with Other All India Services, Armed Forces, Protection Services in the country for comprehensive security detail.

Required skills to become an IPS officer


  • Analytical Ability: Analyze situations quickly and make fair decisions.
  • Problem-Solving: Find solutions to complex issues and prevent violence/disorder.
  • Clear Thinking: Approach situations logically and objectively.
  • Legal Knowledge: Possess thorough understanding of law and regulations.


  • Strong Willpower & Determination: Persevere through challenges and achieve goals.
  • Hardworking & Diligent: Dedicated to continuous learning and improvement.
  • Empathy & Sensitivity: Understand and respond to people's needs and aspirations.
  • Effective Communication: Express ideas clearly and listen actively to others.


  • Physical Fitness: Maintain good health and stamina for demanding situations.
  • Mental Alertness: Stay focused and sharp under pressure.

Salary and Perks:

A Pay Commission is appointed by Central Government to regularly review. Salaries given to Central Government officers to keep their pay up to date with inflation. The latest, i.e. the 7th Pay Commission has suggested the following salaries for officers of the IPS Cadre:

IPS rank in state/ central police force Salary
1. Director general of police/ director general of IB or CBI 2,25,000 INR
2. Director general of police 2,05,400 INR
3. Inspector general of police 1,44,200 INR
4. Deputy inspector general of police 1,31,100 INR
5. Senior superintendent of police 78,800 INR
6. Additional superintendent of police 67,700 INR
7. Deputy superintendent of police 56, 100 INR

Perks:A IPS officer has a respectable salary on top of which they get perks which guarantee a comfortable life for them. They have the power to make a difference in the lives of millions of people. They also get huge respect in society.

  • Accommodation: IPS officers get luxurious houses as accommodation free of cost according to their seniority and ranks. They get other support for upkeep of the house as well like househelp, cook, gardener, etc.
  • Transport: To be able to do their job well, IPC officers are given vehicles and designated drivers.
  • Security: IPS officers hold difficult and powerful positions, this endangers their life. Hence protection is provided to them and their families.
  • Bills: The bills are generally free or highly subsidized and it includes water, electricity, phone and gas connections
  • Trips: Travel for work is paid by the government. Even Leave Travel Allowance is given.
  • Study Leaves: After being in service for 7 years an IPS officer can apply for study leave on the condition that they sign a bond for continuing service after that.
  • Job Security: Article 311 of the Indian Constitution provides security of tenure and a difficult process for removal from job only after an extensive investigation.
  • Retirement Benefits
    • National Pension Scheme: During service an IPS officer and the government make contributions to the NPS which can be utilized post retirement. These are tax free deposits and benefits.
    • Post Retirement Positions: After retirement, IPS officers can easily be appointed to commissions and other government/ social service positions.

These are the main benefits however other perks dependent from place to place.

Dress Code of IPS Officers: While on Duty, IPS officers are required to wear Khaki uniforms as per specifications in the India Police Service (Uniform) Rules, 1954.

Cadres & Postings of IPS Officers: The cadre allocation policy was changed in 2017 and following was provided: -

  • 5 Zones: All states and union territories are divided into 5 zones
    • Zone I: AGMUT (Arunachal Pradesh-Goa-Mizoram and Union Territories), Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Rajasthan and Haryana.
    • Zone II: Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and Odisha.
    • Zone III: Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.
    • Zone IV: West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam-Meghalaya, Manipur, Tripura and Nagaland.
    • Zone V: Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.
  • Allocation Process: The IPS officer has to indicate descending order of preference in choosing a service.


Training of IPS officers is done over 2 years in 4 phases.

  1. Foundation course: At LBSNAA, Mussoorie for 3 months along with all other officers like IAS, IFS. This is a consolidated programme.
  2. Phase 1 training: At Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Acadeomy, Hyderabad for 11 months. This is specialized training for IPS officers.
  3. District Practical Training: At deputation in respective State they are allocated to for a period of 6 months.

Phase 2 training: At Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy, Hyderabad.

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Eligibility and Attempt:

In order to be eligible for the IPS exam, a candidate must have obtained a graduate degree from any recognized university in India and must have attained a minimum age of 21 years. Maximum age limits vary as per different categories mentioned in the below table. It is a must for the candidate to attain the age of 21 years as of 1st August of the year of notification. UPSC has a fixed number of attempts for the candidates depending upon the category and age limits.

Category Upper Age Limit for UPSC Maximum Number of Attempts
General 32 6
Economically Weaker Section (EWS) 32 6
OBC 35 9
SC/ST 37 Unlimited
Defence Services Personnel 35 9
Persons with Benchmark Disability 35 9

What Counts as an Attempt? An attempt is counted when you appear for one of the Preliminary stage papers. Merely filing the form is not considered an attempt.

Can you attempt once you are already in Service? If a candidate is already in service as IPS, they can write the exam again but can only choose the IAS service as an option, not the IPS.

Educational Qualification:

  1. Candidate must hold a degree from Government recognised University or hold equivalent qualification. There is no minimum percentage which a student must have secured, all are entitled to apply.
  2. Candidates who are in their final year of graduation are also eligible to write the UPSC Preliminary exam. All such candidates must produce their final year graduation pass certificate during application for the Mains examination. This applies to students in final year of their MBBS/ Medical degree who have not completed their internship.

Nationality Qualification:

  1. For IAS and IPS Services: Candidate must be a citizen of India.
  2. For All other Services other than IAS & IPS: Candidate must be a citizen of India /a subject of Nepal /a subject of Bhutan / a Tibetan refugee who came to India before January 1, 1962 / a person of Indian Origin(PIO) who is permanently settled in India.

Physical qualifications for the post of an IPS officer.

Category Eligibility for male Eligibility for female
Height 165cm for unreserved candidates,
160 cm for OBC, SC & ST
150cm for unreserved candidates, 145cm for other categories
Chest Minimum 84cm, Expansion 5cm Minimum 79cm,
Expansion 5cm
Eyesight 6/6 or 6/9 distant vision for good eye 6/12 or 6/9 for worst eye.

Medical Examination: A Medical Examination is done for candidates and those who fail can appeal and appeal for another Medical Examination. If they are unable to clear, then they are not allotted IPS service but given their next choice/ preference.

Exam Pattern:

Civil Services Exam is conducted by the UPSC every year to select suitable candidates for IPS. It is conducted in three stages i.e., Prelims, Mains and Interview.


The Preliminary Exam is a qualifying exam with two objective-type papers: General Studies Paper I and General Studies Paper II (Aptitude Test). The question paper is set in both Hindi and English. While GS Paper I will decide whether you make it to the next round, you should pay attention to clearing the cut-off of 33% for the CSAT paper as well.

Prelims Exam Pattern General Studies I General Studies II or CSAT
Paper Type MCQ MCQ
Maximum marks 200 200
Cut Off marks Counted for Merit. Cut-off varies every year. 33% qualifying criteria (66 marks)
Negative Marking Yes, 0.66 marks deducted for wrong answer. Yes, 0.83 marks deducted for wrong answer.
Total Questions 100 80
Duration of exam 2 hours 2 hours
Langauge of Paper English & Hindi English & Hindi

These two objective-type papers have multiple choice questions with 4 options each. The General Studies Paper I is scored out of 200 and your performance in this paper will decide whether you are eligible to take the Mains Exam. The Merit list is prepared on the basis of this Preliminary Examination. The top around 10,000 students clear the exam from around 5,00,000 students who appear for the exam, on an average.

The General Studies Paper II (Civil Services Aptitude Test) is a qualifying exam where 33% marks are required. In recent years this exam has become tougher and hence it cannot be ignored during your preparation. A lot of students have cleared the GS1 paper’s cut off but have not been able to write the mains examination as they did not clear the CSAT paper.

Syllabus for the Prelims Exam is:

Paper Subject Description
GS Paper I Current Events National and international importance events
History India and Indian National Movement
Geography Indian and World's Physical, Social and Economic Geography
Indian Polity & Governance Topics like Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
Economic & Social Development Topics like Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
Environment & Ecology General issues on environmental ecology, bio-diversity and Climate Change - that do not require subject specialization.
General Science Fundamental concepts of Physics, Technology, Biology etc.
Civil Services Aptitude Test Comprehension, General Mental Ability, Logical Reasoning & Analytical abilities
Interpersonal Skills, Decision Making & Problem-Solving including communication skills.
Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. — Class X level)


Those select few who clear the Prelims Exam, write the tough Mains Exam which is a descriptive-type exam with nine papers totaling 1750 marks. This paper assesses your understanding, articulation abilities and conceptual clarity through 9, 3-hour long, papers out of which 7 papers determine the merit list.

Paper Topic Marks Time Alloted Number of Questions
Paper-I Essay 250 3 hours 2 questions
Paper-II GS1: Art & Culture, History, Geography & Society 250 3 hours 20 questions
Paper-III GS2: Governance, Polity, Social Justice & International Relations 250 3 hours 20 questions
Paper-IV GS3: Science & Technology, Economy, Disaster Management, Ecology and Internal Security 250 3 hours 20 questions
Paper-V GSIV: Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude 250 3 hours 13 Theory Questions
6 Case Studies
Paper-VI Optional Subject - Paper I 250 3 hours 19 questions
Paper-VII Optional Subject - Paper II 250 3 hours 19 questions
Paper A Compulsory Paper Indian Language from Schedule 8 300
(secure 25%)
3 hours 6 questions
Paper B Compulsory English Language Paper 300
(secure 25%)
3 hours 5 questions

IAS/ UPSC Mains Exam is a descriptive-type paper. Six of these papers are three hours long with approximately 20 questions each, while the essay paper has two questions. The word limit is somewhere between 150 to 250 words for the General Studies and Optional Papers. For both essays, the word limit is approximately 1000-1200 words.

Apart from this, there are two language papers that are only qualifying in nature which include 'Paper A' for any Indian language from the Eight Schedule and 'Paper B' for English language. The maximum marks that can be secured at this stage are 1750.


Personality Test :The top performing candidates of the Mains Exam are invited for the Personality Test which is an interview-type assessment for 275 marks. A board of unbiased senior Civil Servants interviews the candidates to test their mental alertness, critical thinking, clear and logical exposition, balance of judgment, variety and depth of interest, ability for social cohesion and leadership, and intellectual and moral integrity. This interview lasts for about 20-30 minutes for each candidate.

How to Clear the IPS Exam

The UPSC/ IPS Civil Services Exam (CSE) is a long journey that requires around 1-2 years of dedication during the preparation and around another year of the exam process which begins in May/ June and lasts till February/ March of the next year. You need to do the following to secure your selection

  • Know the exam pattern, eligibility and syllabus For this you must read the notification minutely.
  • Know PYQs: By solving previous year's question papers of 5-10 years, you can develop a better understanding of the UPSC exam pattern and the types of questions that are asked. You can also identify the important topics that are frequently tested in the exam. This will help you focus your preparation on the most important areas.
  • Decide When to Attempt CSE The Prelims Exam is conducted in May/ June every year. Accordingly, one can estimate when to give their attempt keeping in mind the eligibility requirement (maximum age of the candidate) and the time they have to prepare.
  • Prepare A Strategy: Based on the needs, educational background and abilities of a student, they need to prepare their plan. Inspiration can be taken from how previous toppers from your field/ or of your temperament have prepared. These topper's preparation strategies are available on our 'Topper's Journey' tab. The plan will also depend on the time available for preparation. Some candidates are working professionals, some are college students, and some others take a drop year to focus completely on preparation. Choice of self-study or going for coaching/ test series should also be made at this stage. There are many affordable and accessible Study Courses available at Chahal IAS Academy to meet the needs of all kinds of candidates.
  • Choose an Optional:This is a big decision to take as you will invest around 2-4 months in optional preparation and you can find more details about this in our article 'How to choose an optional subject for IAS-UPSC Exam?'
  • Finalise your Sources:Basic books like NCERTS form the backbone of the preparation. Our article on 'Comprehensive Reference Materials for UPSC- CSE Exam' will give you a ready book list, curated by experts, to get started immediately.
  • Covering current affairs smartlyis important to crack the Prelims Exam. Reading a newspaper and other current affairs material regularly is very important. 'How to Start Current Affairs Preparation for IAS/IPS/UPSC Civil Services Exam' will equip you to tackle this challenge
  • Make a Time Table & Notes:Timelines and schedules are necessary to keep yourself on track in this very long journey. A daily study plan will help you manage your time effectively and avoid feeling overwhelmed. This plan should incorporate regular revisions and also focus on mock tests to help you identify your strengths and weaknesses. Additionally, regular answer-writing practice is essential for improving your skills.

Challenges of the IPS Service:

All roles have their pros and cons. The IPS services has numerous benefits as listed above however it also comes with its pros and cons which one should keep in mind while opting for the service:-

  • Overburdened: High vacancy rates and large population lead to excessive workload.
  • Long Working Hours: Limited time for personal life and potential burnout.
  • Outdated Equipment: Lack of modern technology and tools impacts efficiency. Due to funding issues and bureaucratic delays this situation persist.
  • High Stress: Constant exposure to challenging situations can affect mental health. You are routinely looking at crime scenes, dead bodies and interacting with the criminal side of society.
  • Physical Fitness Requirements: The service is physically challenging and requires that you exercise regularly.

FAQS on IPS full form

1. What is the full form of IPS?

The full form of IPS is Indian Police Services.

2. What are the ways in which one can become an IPS officer?

  1. By clearing the UPSC - Civil Services Exam or
  2. Through promotion from State Police Services.

3. What is the initial salary of an IPS officer?

The entry level salary of an IPS officer is around 56,100 rupees. However it increases with Pay Commissions as inflation is taken into account through payment of Dearness Allowance.