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CDS Eligibility 2021 - Check Age, Educational Qualification & Nationality

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CDS eligibility criteria 2021 provide details regarding educational qualification, nationality, age limit and physical standards. Read details regarding the eligibility criteria below. 

Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) prescribes CDS eligibility criteria. The eligibility criteria of CDS highlights the parameters such as nationality, educational qualification, physical standards and age. Candidates applying for CDS exam need to fulfill these parameters inorder to be accepted for the recruitment exam. This article has explained in details, CDS 2021 eligibility criteria. Candidates should check the eligibility criteria before filling CDS application form 2021. The eligibility of candidates will be verified at the time of document verification, in case, anyone is found ineligible will be rejected from the recruitment process.

To be eligible for CDS exam, candidates must be

(i)  A citizen of India, or

(ii) A subject of Bhutan, or

(iii) A subject of Nepal, or

(iv) A Tibetan refugee who came over to India before January 1, 1962, with the intention of permanently settling in India, or

(v) A person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka and East African Countries (Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire and Ethiopia or Vietnam) with the intention of permanently settling in India.

Provided candidates belonging to categories (ii), (iii), (iv) and (v) should be a person in whose favour a certificate of eligibility has been issued by the Indian government.

Certificate of eligibility is also necessary for Gorkha candidates of Nepal.

The educational qualification prescribed by UPSC for admission to various defence academies is given below.

AcademiesEducational qualification
Indian Military Academy (IMA) and Officers’ Training Academy (OTA)Graduation from a recognised university
Indian Naval Academy (INA)An engineering degree from a recognised university/institute
Air Force Academy (AFA)Graduation (with Physics and Mathematics at Class 12) or Bachelor of Engineering
  • Graduates with the first choice as Army/Navy/Air Force are required to submit provisional certificates of graduation on the date of commencement of SSB Interview at SSB centres.
  • Those who are in their final year of graduation can also apply

Only unmarried candidates are eligible for CDS exam. The age limit for the exam is given below:

AcademyAge Limit (In years)Marital Status
Indian Military Academy (IMA)19-24Unmarried
Indian Naval Academy (INA)19-22Unmarried
Air Force Academy19-23Candidate below 25 years of age must be unmarried 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 a family out of the premises
Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Women Non-Technical Course)19-25Married 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 a family out of the premises
Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Course for Men)19-25Unmarried

CDS Eligibility Criteria 2021 as per Physical Standards

Candidates applying for CDS recruitment should be physically fit, as per the physical standard guidelines. Several candidates get rejected on medical grounds. Candidates are advised to get themselves medically examined before submitting their applications. Check below the physical standards for CDS exam.

The minimum acceptable height for male candidates is 157.5 cm (157 cm for Navy and 162.5 cm for Air Force). For women candidates, the minimum height is 152 cms. For Gorkhas and candidates belonging to North-Eastern regions, Garhwali and Kumaon, the minimum height will be 5 cm less. In case of candidates from Lakshadweep, the minimum acceptable height can be reduced by 2 cm.

Height in Centimetres (Without shoes)18 years (Weight in Kgs.)20 years (Weight in Kgs.)22 years (Weight in Kgs.)24 years(Weight in Kgs.)
15244*464748
1554648@4950
15747495051
16048505152
16250525354
16552535556
16853555758
17055575859
17357596061
17559616262
17861626364
18063646566
18365676768
18567697071
18870717274
19072737476
19374767778
19577787981
Height in Centimetres (Without shoes)20 years ( Weight in Kgs.)25 years (Weight in Kgs.)30 years ( Weight in Kgs.)
148394143
150404243.5
1534243.545
155434446
158454648
160464749
163474951
165495153
168505254
Height in mm18-22 (Age Range)23-27 (Age Range)28-32 (Age Range)33-37 (Age Range)38-4243-47 (Age Range)>48 (Age Range)
15204647505454545554
15304747515555545654
15404748515655555755
15504849525656565756
15604849535757565856
15704950545858575857
15804950545858585958
15905051555959596058
16005152565960596059
16105152566060606160
16205253576161616260
16305254586162616261
16405354596263626362
16505355596363636462
16605456606364646463
16705456616465646564
16805557616565656565
16905557626566666665
17005658636667676766
17105659646668676767
17205759646768666867
17305860656869696968
17405861666870696969
17505961666971707069
17605962677071717170
17706062687072727171
17806063697173727271
17906164697273737372
18006164707274747373
18106265717375757473
18206266727476757474
18306366727476767575
18406467737577777675
18506468747578777676
18706569757779797877
18806669767780807878
18906670777881807979
19006771777981818079
19106771787982828080
19206872798083828181
19306873798183838182
SD66.37.16.66.96.85.87.26

Visual Parameters

Vision standards for Naval candidates

Uncorrected without glasses6/12, 6/12
Uncorrected without glasses6/12, 6/12
Corrected with glasses6/6, 6/6
Limits of Myopia-1.5D
Limits of Hypermetropia+1.5D
Binocular VisionIII
Limits of Colour PerceptionI
VisionUncorrected VA 6/60 & 6/60 BCVA 6/6 & 6/6
VisionUncorrected VA 6/60 & 6/60 BCVA 6/6 & 6/6 Myopia -3.50 D Sph including astigmatism, Hypermetropia +3.50 D Sph including Astigmatism
Colour perceptionCP-II
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