A Journey from Call Letter to Interview Room: IAS Interview

The UPSC civil services examination Personality Test, also known as the UPSC interview is the climax of the IAS examination. This is the final stage of the Civil services exam carrying 275 marks. It has great scoring potential and it is undoubtedly the last chance to increase your scores. Candidates should not neglect the interview and focus only on the written exams. The written exams no doubt take you to the interview, but it is your interview performance that will take you all the way.

The Personality Test is normally conducted in the Union Public Service Commission office housed at Dholpur House in Delhi. The interview is conducted by the various boards constituted by the UPSC.

After the declaration of the Civil Services Mains results, the successful candidates will receive the interview call letter from UPSC with the details of the interview date and time. Candidates are supposed to fill a form called the Attestation Form for Recruitment which is available on the UPSC official website. Candidates should submit the Attestation Form duly filled in along with six photocopies and duly signed passport size photographs pasted on each of them to the Department of Personnel & Training within 10 days of receipt of the call letter. Candidates should fill this form very carefully and any false information on the attestation form would lead to disqualification. Candidates are advised to communicate immediately to the Union Public Service Commission, in case they are detained, arrested, prosecuted, bond down, fined, convicted, debarred or acquitted subsequent to the completion and submission of Attestation Form.

Candidates should note that no change and postponement of the interview date will be allowed by the UPSC. In case candidates fail to present before the Personality Test Board on the scheduled date and time, the candidate will be treated as absent at the Personality Test. They will not be called again for Personality Test and no further correspondence will be made in this regard.

The Commission contributes towards candidate’s travel expenses and facilitates the settlement on the date of Personality Test if the candidate avails of it. For this, the candidate should bring the duly filled Travel Allowance bills in respect of the onward and return journeys. The payment of the Commission’s contribution is subject to the production of proof of the journey and verification of eligibility. The commission also provides suitable arrangements for physically handicapped candidates. Physically handicapped candidates should communicate to the UPSC about the details of assistance required if any, during the personality test. The successful candidates should carry the required certificates/documents for verification in the Commission office on the date of your Personality Test/Interview.

The certificates are:

  • Original Matriculation/Higher Secondary/equivalent certificate or Marks Sheet
  • Degree or equivalent certificate in original
  • Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe/Other Backward Classes certificate in original
  • Physically Handicapped Certificate
  • Physically Handicapped Certificate
  • The Questionnaire, regarding background information, duly filled in and signed by you
  • Two passport size photographs (4cm. X 5cm. approx.)
  • Print out of call letter

If the candidates fail to bring original documents in support of their age, educational qualification, caste or category and PH status, age relaxation, the candidate may not be allowed to appear for the test and will not be entitled to Travel and Dearness Allowance .The original certificates will be returned after verification. During the verification at any time before or after the Personality Test, if it is found that candidates do not fulfil any of the eligibility criteria; their candidature for the examination will be cancelled by the UPSC.

Candidates are not supposed to take mobile phones, pagers, cameras, recording devices, ipads, ipods, palmtops, or any other electronic devices and appliances, etc. These are not allowed inside the interview hall. Any violation of these instructions shall entail cancellation of candidature and disciplinary action including ban from future examinations.

Candidates should try to reach well ahead of time. There will be frisking at the gate of Dholpur house by CRPF personnel. At the reception, they will have to submit their electronic gadgets and mark in the entry book.

Once faced by the UPSC board, candidates should be themselves and answer the questions asked in a direct and honest manner. Respect the board’s age and experience. There would be questions whose answers elude you. Handle these aspects honestly and sincerely. Nobody is omniscient and the board would understand that. But it is the manner in which you handle these awkward moments that impress the board. Be confident and not arrogant. The interview is more like a discussion. Enjoy the process.

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