ICFS- Indian Communication Finance Service : Free And Quick Guide

Indian Communication Finance Service (ICFS) is a central civil service under the Union of India. Earlier it was called as Indian Post & Telecommunication Accounts and Finance Service (IP&TAFS).


This is an all-India examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) for recruitment in the Department of Telecom and Department of Indian Post and Telecommunication.



Eligibility Criteria: ICFS



1. Nationality for ICFS 

  • The candidate must be a citizen of India to be eligible for this exam, also the candidate must be either of the following :
  • Candidates must be a citizen of India
  • Candidates must be a citizen of Nepal or a subject of Bhutan.
  • Candidates must be Tibetan refugees who came to India before January 1, 1962, for settling permanently in India.
  • Candidates must a person of Indian origin who has migrated from Burma, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Myanmar, Uganda, Malawi, Tanzania, Vietnam, Zaire with the motive to settle permanently in India.


2. Educational Qualification for ICFS

  • Candidates must hold any Bachelor’s degree from any of the recognized universities. There is no minimum percentage required for graduation.
  • Candidates who have appeared for the qualifying exam and are awaiting results are also eligible.
  • Candidates with professional and technical qualifications by recognized universities or their equivalent are also eligible to apply.
  • Candidates who have passed the final year MBBS or Medical Exam but yet not completed the internship can also apply for the exam.


3.Age Limit & Number of Attempts for ICFS

A candidate should be a minimum of 21 years and a maximum of 30 years to appear for the Civil Service Examination. The maximum age mentioned above is relaxable for the following candidates :

  1. Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe (SC/ST): 5 years
  2. Other Backward Classes(OBC) : 3 Years
  3. Defence Service Personnel: 5 years
  4. Ex-servicemen and ECOs/SSCOs who have served at least 5 years in Military Service as of 1st of August of the Notification Year: 5 years
  5. Blind, Deaf-mute and physically handicapped person: 10 Years.
Category Maximum Age Limit No of Attempts
General 30 Years 07
Other Backwards Castes (OBC) 33 Years 09
Economically Weaker Section(EWS) 30 Years 06
Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe (SC/ST) 35 Years Till the age limit
Physically disabled candidates 40 Years For General and OBS candidates = 9

For SC/ST Candidates = Till age limit


ICFS- IP&TAFS Officer- Roles & Responsibility 

They are involved in various roles and their responsibility is enormous. Some of them are highlighted below :

  • Assessment and collection of License fee and Spectrum usage charges paid by the Telecom Licensors.
  • Spectrum Auction of 2G, 3G, and 4G.
  • Pension Management of DoT, DoP, BSNL, and MTNL.
  • Human Resource Development and Capacity Building of IP&TAFS.
  • Internal Audit of Department of Posts and Department of Telecommunications.
  • Policymaking in Department of Posts and Department of Telecommunications.
  • Financial Management of Department of Posts and Department of Telecommunications.
  • Revenue assessment and collection
  • Budgeting and account management


ICFS -IP&TAFS Officer: Career Graph

The highest position, an IP&TAFS Officer can desire is the rank of Advisor. They go through the following training and the career path of an IP&TAFS Officer is highlighted below :

  • Compulsory foundational Training at Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBNAA), Mussoorie, Uttarakhand.
  • Professional Training course at National Institute of Finance Management
  • Department Training at National Institute of Communication Finance, New Delhi.


The indicative hierarchy  for ICFS  is given below (Top to Below)

Department of Telecommunication Department of Post
Advisor Deputy Director-General /General Manager
Senior Deputy Director-General Director
Deputy Director-General/ Joint Administrator Assistant Director-General
Director Assistant Chief Accounts Officer
Assistant Director-General
Assistant Chief Accounts Officer



UPSC conducts exam in three level as mentioned below.  The candidate has to clear all the 3 exams successfully to get the offer letter from Union Public Service Commission(UPSC)

1. ICFS Preliminary Test

Stage One ICFS -Preliminary Test (400 Marks) :

  • The Preliminary Exam consist of GS (General Studies) & CSAT( Civil Service Aptitude Test).
  • Both the papers are objective type (Multiple Choice Questions)
  • The question papers are set in Hindi and English language.
  • Blind candidate gets an additional 20 minutes of time for both papers.
  • Candidate appearing in the preliminary test must qualify for the cut-off score to get themselves eligible for the mains exam.
  • There is a negative marking associated with the question asked in the exam.


Paper Type Number of Questions Total Marks Negative Marking Duration
General Studies I Objective( MCQ) 100 200 Yes 2 Hours
General Studies II (CSAT) Objective( MCQ) 80 200 Yes 2 Hours


2. ICFS Main Exam

Stage Two ICFS -Main Examination (2025 Marks)

  • Candidates who qualify the preliminary test are called for the Main Exam.
  • Main exam consists of 9 papers.
  • Paper A & B are qualifying in nature (Highlighted below)
  • The candidate needs to obtain at least 25% in each of the Paper I to Paper VII to be given weightage to the Main Exam
  • Paper A is not compulsory for the candidate belonging to the State of Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim as well as the candidate from hearing impairment provided the fact that they have been exempted from such  2nd or 3rd language courses from their board or university.
  • The language paper consists of the languages included in the 8th schedule of the Constitution.
  • All the paper is bilingual – Hindi & English except for the language papers.


The written exam of ICFS consists of the following papers

Paper Subject Type Duration Total Marks
Paper A One of the Indian Language Descriptive 3 Hours 300
Paper B English Descriptive 3 Hours 300
Paper I Essay Descriptive 3 Hours 250
Paper II General Studies I Descriptive 3 Hours 250
Paper III General Studies II Descriptive 3 Hours 250
Paper IV General Studies III Descriptive 3 Hours 250
Paper V General Studies IV Descriptive 3 Hours 250
Paper VI Optional I Descriptive 3 Hours 250
Paper VII Optional II Descriptive 3 Hours 250
Sub Total Marks 1750
Interview Marks 275
Grand Total Marks 2025

The subject which is covered in the General Studies  ICFS in Main Exam is mentioned below

General Studies I General Studies II General Studies III General Studies IV
Indian Heritage and Culture Governance Technology Ethics
History and Geography of the World Constitution Economic Development Integrity
Society Polity Bio-Diversity Aptitude
Social Justice Environment
International Relations Security and Disaster Management


The list of the Optional Paper VI and VII of the Main Exam is enumerated below:

Agriculture Chemistry History Geography Mathematics
Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science Political Science and International Relations Mechanical Engineering Commerce and Accountancy Electrical Engineering
Anthropology Psychology Statistics Physics Economics
Botany Sociology Law Medical Science Geology
Zoology Philosophy Civil Engineering Public Administration Management
Literature can be opted from any of the following languages: Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Odia, Punjabi, Sanskrit,  Santhali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, and English.


3. ICFS Interview

Stage Three ICFS- Interview (275 Marks )

The candidate who qualifies for the mains exam are called for the interview process. This is the last and final stage of the recruitment cycle before the final results are declared. The maximum mark in the interview is 275 thus accruing the total marks in the merit list to be 2025. UPSC board takes the interview which consists of the competent panelists, who would judge the candidature on the following ground :

  • Mental Attentiveness
  • Critical power of assimilation
  • Clear and Logical Interpretation
  • Balance of Judgement
  • Ability of social solidarity and leadership
  • Intelligent curiosity


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