Get the most updated and recent current affair content on


  • Be N By IAS, Delhi
  • 23, Feb 2021
Image Not Found

GS-2: Polity, Governance


The Centre has informed the Supreme Court that it will give an extra chance to those candidates who missed their last attempt for the UPSC Civil Services exam in 2020 due to COVID 19 pandemic. WHAT WAS THE ISSUE?

  • Plea by UPSC Aspirant: The Supreme Court was hearing a plea by Rachna Singh, a civil services aspirant, seeking an extra attempt in the UPSC exams for those candidates who had their last attempt in the preliminary exam held in October 2020 and missed it due to COVID-19 pandemic.
  • When was the exam? The Civil Services preliminary exam was held on October 4. The exam was initially scheduled in May 2019 but had to postponed due to COVID-19 pandemic.


  • Court notice to Centre & UPSC: In September 2020, the top court had directed the Central Government and the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC)
    • To consider granting an extra chance to candidates who otherwise have their last attempt in 2020
    • With a corresponding extension of the upper age-limit.
  • Response of DOPT: The Department of Personnel and Training on October 26 had informed the court that the issue regarding grant of extra attempt to last chance candidates was under the consideration of the authorities.
  • Centre not in Favour: However, on January 22, the Centre said it was not in favour of giving another chance to those aspirants citing that it would create
    • A "cascading" effect,
    • Detrimental to the overall functioning and
    • Detrimental to level playing field necessary for a public examination system.
  • Finally, Centre Agreed: The Central Government on 05th Feb 2021 agreed to give an extra chance to UPSC CSE Prelims candidates who had their last attempt for the Civil Services exam in 2020 but could not appear for the exam owing to the novel coronavirus pandemic.


  1. Relaxation, only to the extent of providing one extra attempt for Civil Service Examination (CSE), specifically limited to CSE-2021, may be granted to only those candidates who appeared for CSE-2020 as their last permissible attempt and are otherwise not age-barred from appearing in CSE-2021.
  2. No relaxation shall be granted for CSE-2021 to those candidates
    • Who have not exhausted their permissible number of attempts or
    • Who are otherwise age-barred from appearing in CSE-2021.
  3. This relaxation for the candidates shall be a one-time relaxation only and shall apply only for appearing in CSE-2021 and shall not be treated as a precedent.
  4. The relaxation provided at Point 1, shall not create any vested right whatsoever or any other purported right on the ground of parity or otherwise.


  • CSE 2020:
    • Prelims Exam: As per the data shared by the Centre a total of 4,86,952 candidates had appeared for the exam on October 4.
    • Mains Exam: Meanwhile, the main exam of Civil Services 2020 is over. The exam was held from 8 to 17 January. More than 10,000 candidates were shortlisted for the main exam on the basis of the marks obtained in the prelims exam.
  •  CSE 2021:
    • The notification of Civil Services exam 2021 is scheduled to be released on 10 February.

Source: Livemint, NDTV