There has been a storm in social media recently about the upper age limit being reduced for UPSC. The photo of a newspaper clipping with the headline “People above the age of 26 will not be eligible for becoming IAS-IPS Officers.” This has raged a lot of candidates who have been planning on taking the civil services exam in 2021. But how much truth does the statement hold? Is there an official notice published by the Union Public Service Commission concerning the age limit? Is the age limit reduced to 26 or it is just a rumor making rounds on social media?

In the following article find all your queries regarding the eligibility criteria for UPSC answered, and more importantly, find out about the latest news on the UPSC age limit.

UPSC Age Limit 2021

Before diving into the viral news about it, take a look at the actual eligibility criteria allotted by the Union Public Service Commission for the Civil Services Exams.


The candidates who qualify for any one of the following are considered to be eligible to take the UPSC Civil Services. Any candidate who wants to apply for the CSE must have proof of being either of the following:

  • A citizen of India;
  • A subject of Nepal or Bhutan;
  • A Tibetan refugee who came to India before January 1962, to permanently settle;
  • A person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, Ethiopia, or Vietnam who intends to permanently settle in India

Educational Qualifications

The candidates need to have at least one of the following qualifications:

  • A graduate degree from a central, state, or deemed university
  • A graduate degree received through correspondence or distance education
  • A degree from an open university
  • A qualification equivalent to a graduate degree, recognized by UGC

Also Read : UPSC Mains Syllabus in Hindi: How To Prepare for Hindi Mains Exam

Age Qualifications

The norms for age qualifications for UPSC CSE are as follows:

  • The minimum age limit for a candidate is 21 years of age
  • The general category candidates must not have attained the age of 32 in the year of the examination
  • For the OBC candidates, the maximum age limit is 35 years
  • For SC/ST candidates, the maximum age limit is 37 years
  • For Defence Services Personnel who were disabled in operations during hostilities, the maximum age limit is 35 years.
  • For PwD candidates, the maximum age limit is 42 years
  • For Residents of Jammu & Kashmir from January 1980 to December 1989, the upper age limit is 37 years
Age Qualifications for Ex-Servicemen

For candidates who have served as ex-servicemen including Commissioned Officers and ECOs and SSCOs who have rendered military service for at least 5 years as of August 1, on the year of the examination, and have been released, the following eligibility qualifications apply:

  • If they have been released and completed the last project assigned to them
  • On account of physical disability attributable to the Military Service
  • On invalidation
  • ECOs or SSCOs who have completed their initial period of assignment of 5 years of Military Service, a relaxation of 5 years will be provided

UPSC Age Limit Change News

There are no official changes announced for the change in the UPSC age limit for 2021. The newspaper clipping specifically focused on the General Category mentioning that the reduced age limit was not applicable for members of other categories. Similar news was spread about in 2016 for the UPSC age limit but as it turns out, both the news articles have been fake. According to the Twitter account of the Press India Bureau (PIB) of the Government of India, there have been no such official announcements in this regard.

Possible Reasons for the Rumours

This could have been spread based on Niti Ayog’s suggestion in 2018 where they suggested that the Age Limit for General Category be reduced from 32 to 27 years of age. They did not suggest any changes to the age limit for SC/STs or any other categories. This, in turn, could have been routed in the changes suggested in the exam pattern and age limit reduction to 26 by the B.S. Baswan Committee. However, the government never took any action committing to the suggestions.


It is thus safe to assume that the news clipping that went viral on social media was just another hoax and no such official changes regarding the age limit for UPSC have been agreed upon. For more such myth-busting information, keep watching this space.

Also Read: When will IAS 2021 be conducted? How to Prepare a Time Table for UPSC?

Content Protection by
Is UPSC Age Limit Reduced to 26? Here's the Latest News on UPSC Age Limit
Article Name
Is UPSC Age Limit Reduced to 26? Here's the Latest News on UPSC Age Limit
Has UPSC reduced the age limit for candidates? What is the truth of the viral news that is making the headlines these days? Click here to find out about the latest updates.
Publisher Name
UPSC Pathshala
Publisher Logo