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Education in India, Career in India: Paramilitary Services

Looking for a Career Options in the Field of Paramilitary Services ? This section features Paramilitary Services as a career options, elaborated with reference to the job profile, personality traits required, the courses and training involved, premier institutions and future prospects.

The defence services of the country are responsible for the guarding our national boundaries from external aggression. However for internal security, as also for providing additional support to the defence forces in guarding the national frontiers, paramilitary services viz., CRPF, BSF, ITBP and CISF had been constituted many decades ago. Each of these units plays a well-defined role besides coming to the nation's rescue at times of national calamities.

Paramilitary organisations are protective services which have been constituted to maintain internal security and to support the Defence Services in guarding our national borders. These services are Central Government services which have a demarcated role of action. While the organisational structure, hierarchy and training may vary, the basic ethos of work, discipline and commitment are akin to those found in the Defence Services.

Personality Traits

Personal Factor includes selection to senior positions is based on time scale as well as service records in all paramilitary services. In–service training is also provided for professional growth.

  • CRPF -The promotions in CRPF are structured. Generally an Assistant Commandant may reach the rank of DIG or IG in a 20 year service. After training at the academy, Assistant Commandants complete their field training. They move to the rank of deputy commandant in five to six years. As Commandants they are in command of about 1000 men. Movement upwards to the position of DIG is dependent on selection, based on service records and vacancies. During these years, opportunity for special training is available eg. in mountaineering, communication, management etc. Many refresher courses keep the personnel updated in all aspects of work. Officers of CRPF are given opportunity to serve with National Security Guards and Special Protection Groups. This earns them special allowances.

  • B.S.F - Newly selected candidates begin their careers as AC (Assistant Commandant) and within 20 years the career graph ascends to the rank of DIG or IG. Officers of these organisations also get the opportunity to work for special groups like National Security Guards and Special Protection Group. They are deputed to these groups for three to four years, after which they are replaced by another batch of officers sent on deputation. They receive special allowances for their important duties like protecting VIPs during deputation. CRPF, BSF, ITBP act as feeders for these special groups doing important duties.


These services are open to entry after completing Class X, XII or Graduation and have openings for students from science and humanities. Women can also enter paramilitary services.

Paramilitary Services:

  1. B.S.F
  2. C.I.S.F
  3. C.R.P.F
  4. Home Guard Force
  5. I.T.B.P
  6. Police Force
  7. Territorial Army

Admission Procedure

  • Selection Test for graduate entry to all paramilitary services

  • Graduates take the written exam which is a selection test for recruiting cadets. The entrants also go through a physical efficiency test (PET). Those who qualify, face an interview board and take the medical test. Selected candidates undergo rigorous training before taking charge. Technical graduates too go through the PET and medical examination.

  • The written part has two papers - Paper I of 200 marks is a test of general awareness, basic intelligence and reasoning and numerical ability. Paper II of 100 marks is an assessment of ability to read and understand serious discursive prose and also the ability to express the ideas clearly and correctly. This comprises essay (in Hindi or English), precise writing and comprehension of a given passage, (in English only).

  • Physical efficiency test -This is a test to ensure physical fitness. It compromises of 100 meters (16 sec men, 18 sec girls), 800 meters races (3 min men, 4 min. girls), long jump, high jump for both men and women and shot-put for men only.

  • Interview - Beginning with questions pertaining to the bio data, the interviewers move on to hobbies, subjects of study, general awareness and general intelligence. The candidate's psyche, aptitude, mannerisms and etiquette along with the dedication to the cause of the nation are also assessed by the Board. Preference in selection is given to outstanding sports men & NCC cadets who have outstanding record.

  • Physical Standard - Height 165 cms. for men & 157 cms. for women, Chest 86 cms. with expansion weight 50 kg. for men & 46 kg. for women. Physical /mental health should be good. Knock knees, flat foot and squint in eyes are not permitted. Perfect colour vision/corrected vision J-I/J-II permitted/corrected distant vision 6/6 or 6/9 and 6/9 and 6/9 or 6/12 permitted.


Please click here for the list of the Paramilitary Service Institutes in India.

Placements And Prospects

Assistant Commandants/Company Commanders who are recruited directly are given rigorous training in the respective police academies. They are taught various skills like shooting, driving, controlling riots, mountaineering etc. After successful completion of the training these officers are put on 'general duty', which apart from normal field duties also involves administrative responsibilities. Managerial and administrative responsibilities increase with seniority and promotions

The organisations serving under this category discussed here are - the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), the Border Security Force (BSF), the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), State Police Forces and Homeguards.

Placements in Paramilitary Forces

  1. CRPF- Selection Boards of Central Police Organisation recruit personnel for the CRPF. While selection to non-gazetted posts of constables is made through a selection test open to non-graduates, the gazetted positions are open only to graduates. Graduates from any stream can apply if they fall in the 19 to 25 years age group. They begin their careers as Assistant Commandants/Company Commanders, Quartermasters and Deputy Superintendents. The prescribed qualification is a 1st Class/2nd Class Bachelor's degree with 50% marks. Special relaxation in marks is made for graduates who have the 'B' or 'C' certificates of N.C.C. For officer cadres, preference is given to 'C' certificate holders. Selection is made through a written examination, physical efficiency test (PET) and an interview. Senior positions of IGs, DIGs, Commandants are filled through promotions or by deputed personnel from the defence services or from the Police Services.

  2. BSF - Selection to non-gazetted posts (constables, sub-inspectors) is made by the Staff Selection Commission of BSF. Age requirement is 20-25 years, relaxable for government employees, for sub-inspectors, and 18-22 years for constables. Selection to gazetted posts (Assistant Commandants) are made by the Special Selection Board of Central Police Organisation. Graduates in the age group of 19-23 years are eligible for gazetted posts and special preference is given to NCC 'A', 'B' and 'C' certificate holders. 'C' certificate holders get almost additional 10 marks in their selection examinations.

  3. ITBP - Selection of constables, sub-inspectors and coy commander is through direct recruitment by the Selection Board. Eligibility is similar to the other services described earlier. Senior positions are filled through promotions and deputation. Constables can rise to the rank of Coy Commanders in a span of 16 years.

  4. CISF - Recruitment to the posts of sub-inspectors and assistant commander are open to graduates, while for junior positions, eligibility is a school leaving certificate. Preference is given to NCC certificate holders. A course in Industrial Safety Management for graduates conducted by Patna University is almost a direct route to the security staff of Industries. Graduates in Physics/ Chemistry/Maths/Engineering are eligible. Industries may sponsor students for this course. Prestigious industrial units like TISCO, TELCO, BOKARO, INDIAN OIL, HEC, SINDRI FERTILISERS have absorbed students from this course.

  5. Police -
    • Entry is open to the police service to both men and women. The police constabulary is a large force. Physically robust young boys/girls are recruited. For recruitment to the post of sub-inspectors and assistant sub-inspectors, a degree is essential. Both boys and girls are eligible.
    • Educational and age requirements are as follows:
    • Constables : School Certificate of Class X, Age: 18-21 years
    • Sub-inspector/Asstt. Sub-inspector : Graduation ; Age: 20-25 years.
    • For more information police training schools can be contacted.

  6. Homeguard - Homeguards are recruited or appointed from a government organisation. Volunteers offering to work as Homeguards are also enrolled. Training of recruited personnel is carried on at state level. Homeguard officials are graduates recruited through selection exams and physical fitness tests.

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