CDS Eligibility 2021 - Age Limit, Qualification & Physical Standards

CDS Eligibility 2021 – The eligibility criteria for CDS is prescribed by the Union Public Service Commission. Aspirants are required to meet the CDS eligibility before applying for the Combined Defense Services exam.

The article will talk about the CDS eligibility criteria in detail. Applicants can go through the eligibility criteria of the CDS exam before filling the registration form.

Aspirants of other Government exams can check the linked page for the latest information regarding upcoming exams.

CDS Eligibility

The UPSC mentions the CDS eligibility in detail in the official notification of the exam. Candidates can check the CDS Notification to dive deep for relevant details.

Aspirants must note the following points in relation to CDS eligibility -.

  1. The conducting body has the right to reject the candidature of the applicant at any stage of recruitment in case he/she is found to be not fulfilling the required criteria.
  2. Mere issue of Admission Certificate to the candidate will not imply that his candidature has been finally cleared by the Commission.
  3. If the candidate is appointed and found guilty later, in such a case he/she is liable to be removed from service.
  4. UPSC conducts verification of eligibility criteria with reference to original documents. Verification is done, once the candidate qualifies for the interview and Personality Test.
  5. A candidate in whose case a certificate of eligibility is necessary may be admitted to the examination but the offer of appointment may be given only after the necessary eligibility certificate has been issued to him by the Government of India.

Candidates willing to fill the CDS application form, first need to fulfil these four CDS eligibility conditions –

  1. CDS Age Limit, Gender and Marital Status
  2. CDS Nationality or Citizenship
  3. CDS Educational Qualification
  4. CDS Physical and Medical Qualification

Go through the detailed eligibility conditions mentioned below –

CDS Age Limit, Gender & Marital Status

CDS I Age limit

  1. For IMA – only unmarried males who are born not earlier than 2nd January, 1997 and not later than 1st January, 2002 are eligible.
  2. For Indian Naval Academy (INA) – Only unmarried male candidates born not earlier than 2nd January, 1997 and not later than 1st January, 2002 only are eligible.
  3. For Air Force Academy – 20 to 24 years as on 1st January, 2021 i.e. born not earlier than 2nd January, 1997 and not later than 1st January, 2001 (Upper age limit for candidates holding valid and current Commercial Pilot Licence issued by DGCA (India) is relaxable upto 26 yrs. i.e. born not earlier than 2nd January, 1995 and not later than 1st January, 2001) only are eligible.

Note* Candidates below 25 years of age must be unmarried. Marriage is not permitted during training. Married candidates above 25 years of age are eligible to apply but during training period they will neither be provided married accommodation nor can they live with family out of the premises.

  1. For Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Course for Men) – Only unmarried male candidates born not earlier than 2nd January, 1996 and not later than 1st January, 2002 only are eligible.
  2. For Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Women Non-Technical Course) – Unmarried women, issueless widows who have not remarried and issueless divorcees (in possession of divorce documents) who have not remarried are eligible. They should have been born not earlier than 2nd January, 1996 and not later than 1st January, 2002.

Note* Male divorcee/widower candidates cannot be treated as unmarried male for the purpose of their admission in IMA/INA/AFA/OTA, Chennai courses and accordingly they are not eligible for these courses.

To put it simply, only unmarried candidates are eligible to apply for the CDS exam. The highlights of CDS eligibility in terms of age limit is given below –

Eligibility – CDS Age Limit Age Limit (In years)
Indian Naval Academy (INA) 19 years to 22 years
Air Force Academy 19 years to 23 years
Indian Military Academy (IMA) 19 years to 24 years
Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Women Non-Technical Course) 19 years to 25 years
Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Course for Men) 19 years to 25 years

Candidates willing to appear for Combined Defense Services examination must go through the detailed CDS syllabus and exam pattern to kickstart their preparation.

Eligibility For CDS – Educational Qualifications

The Union Public Service Commission has set a minimum level of education qualification that a candidate must possess to be eligible for NDA examination.

The minimum qualification required to appear for CDS exam is Graduation/Bachelors from a Government recognised university. The detailed CDS education qualification required is highlighted below:

Education Qualification CDS Eligibility
Indian Military Academy (IMA) and Officers’ Training Academy (OTA) Bachelor’s Degree From a recognised university
Indian Naval Academy (INA) Bachelors in Engineering from a recognised University
Air Force Academy (AFA) Graduation (with Physics and Mathematics at Class 12) or Bachelor of Engineering

Important Note –

  1. Graduates with the first choice as Army/Navy/Air Force are to submit proof of Graduation/provisional certificates on the date of commencement of the SSB Interview at the SSB.
  2. Candidates in the final year of their graduation can also apply provided they do not have any backlog at the application. Also, they have to submit proof of passing the degree examination at the time of commencement of course.

Aspirants of CDS exam can check the related links given below-

CDS Eligibility – Nationality /Citizenship

To be eligible for CDS exam candidates have to meet the criteria for nationality and citizenship.

Aspirants willing to apply for CDS exam must be –

  1. A citizen of India, or
  2. A subject of Nepal, or
  3. A subject of Bhutan, or
  4. A Tibetan refugee permanently settled in India from and before January 1, 1962.
  5. A person of Indian origin migrated from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Burma, East African countries of Uganda, Kenya, the United Republic of Tanzania, Malawi, Zaire, Zambia, Ethiopia and Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India.

Provided that a candidate belonging to categories (2), (3), (4) and (5) presents a certificate of eligibility issued by the Government of India to the recruiting body.

However, the Certificate of eligibility will not be necessary in case of candidates who are Gorkha subjects of Nepal.

CDS Eligibility – Physical & Medical Standards

Candidates must be physically and mentally fit as per the guidelines of UPCS. A good number of qualified candidates get disqualified on the medical grounds. Therefore candidates are strongly advised to get themselves medically tested before applying for CDS Exam.

Common defects found in candidates are –

  • Wax (Ears)
  • Deviated Nasal Septum
  • Hydrocele / Phimosis
  • Condition of Overweight / Underweight
  • Under Sized Chest
  • Piles
  • Tonsillitis
  • Gynaecomastia
  • Varicocele

Note – Permanent body tattoos on any other part of the body are not acceptable and candidates will be barred from further selection. Tribes with tattoo marks on the face or body as per their existing custom and traditions will be permitted on a case to case basis.

Height & Weight Standards –

CDS Eligibility

Important points –

  • The minimum acceptable height for male candidates is 157.5 cms. (157 cms for Navy and 162.5 cms for Air Force).
  • For Women candidates minimum acceptable height is 152 cms.
  • For Gorkhas and individuals belonging to hills of North-Eastern region of India, Garhwali and Kumaon, the Minimum acceptable height will be 5 cms less.
  • In case of candidates from Lakshadweep, the minimum acceptable height can be reduced by 2 cms. However, the minimum height for all entries is 148 cm after all types of waivers/dispensations. Otherwise, the candidate shall be considered a dwarf.

The CDS eligibility in terms of physical and medical standards covering height and weight for different age groups, vision standards for Naval officers, waist-hip ratio, body mass index, etc. Hence, candidates are advised to go through the official notification for further clarification on Combined Defense Service Eligibility Criteria.

CDS Notification 2020 PDF- Download PDF Here

Aspirants appearing for CDS exams must go through the Competitive Exam Preparation Strategies to plan out a good study schedule and leave no stone unturned for exam preparation.

Aspirants preparing for other exams by UPSC can go through the given links for assistance-

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