Indian Administrative Service (IAS), the premier service of the Government of India was constituted in 1946. Prior to that Indian imperial Service (1893-1946) was in force. As on 1.1.2013, sanctioned strength of IAS was 6217, comprising of 4313 posts to the filled by direct recruits and 1904 posts to be filled by promotion /appointment of State Civil Services officers/ Non-State Civil Service officers. The civil services have been a hallmark of governance in India. The Constitution provides that without depriving the States of their right to form their own Civil Services, there shall be an All India service recruited on an All- India basis with common qualifications, with uniform scale of pay and the members of which alone could be appointed to these strategic posts throughout the Union.”
No wonder Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, one of the eminent leaders of the freedom struggle, referred to the. ICS as ‘the steel frame. Of the ‘country. The civil services, therefore, represent the essential spirit of our nation — unity in diversity.
At present there are three modes of recruitment to IAS viz
(i) Through Civil Services Examination conducted by UPSC every year;
(ii) Through promotion of State Civil Service officers to IAS
(iii) Through selection of non – State Civil Service officers.
Roughly 66 (1/3)% posts are meant for Direct Recruitment and 33 (1/3%) are
meant for promotion quota.
Both Direct Recruit as well as promotee IAS officers are imparted probationary training at Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA). After completion of successful probation, they are confirmed. Also, there is a Provision for mandatory Mid-career Training for IAS officers spread across the entire service span.
Functions of IAS officer
IAS officer is responsible for the maintenance of law and order, revenue administration and general administration in the area under him. His functions broadly include:
(i) Collection of revenue and function as Courts in revenue matters;
(ii) Maintenance of law and order;
(iii) Function as Executive Magistrate;
(iv) Function as Chief Development Officer (CDO)/District Development Commissioner;
(v) Supervision of implementation of policies of State Government and Central Government;
(vi) To travel to places to oversee the implementation of policies;
(vii) Supervision of expenditure of public funds as per norms of financial propriety;
(viii) In the process of policy formulation and decision making, IAS officers at various levels like Joint Secretary, Deputy Secretary etc. make their “contributions and the give final shape to policies;
(ix) To ‘handle the daily affairs ‘of the government, including framing and implementation of policy in ‘consultation with the minister-in-charge of the concerned Ministry.
Source : DoPT website