December 2018
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Here's why you should aspire for a career in defense
A career in defense forces promises one of the most prestigious and respected positions in the country. Youngsters who aspire to choose a career of excitement, adventure, and challenges cannot find any place better place than defense to meet all their professional expectations.

The Indian Armed Forces are the military forces of India which consists of four professional uniformed services: The Indian army, Indian Air Force, Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard. The Ministry of Defense is responsible for the management of armed forces in India. CDS is conducted by Union Public Service Commission twice a year for recruitment to office cadre of the Army, Navy, and Air force.

A career in armed forces could be very exciting. Many candidates aspire to join them because they are passionate about serving their country, while others join for an adventurous life and the perks that come along. Whatever the reason be, fact is that a lot of candidates apply for CDS each year. In 2016, around 3 million candidates across India appeared for CDS written exam.
Apart from great pay, perks and pension, you get benefits that are missing in a private job once you get selected in armed forces.


Excitement: A career in defense forces means n number of challenges and adventures. It also includes getting posted on the most beautiful of places and travelling the whole country.
Job satisfaction: The integral part of joining the defense forces includes learning to be responsible, feeling connected to the country and taking pride in protecting it, which in turn provides job satisfaction.

Job Security– There are specified rules and regulations maintained in the interests of defense personnel while in service and after retirement in form of pensions, medical and facilities.
However, with great power, comes great responsibility. Though there is job security, one should not take it for granted. If an officer indulges in illegal activities, he can be persecuted by the defense court.

Financial stability– Being in defense forces ensures financial stability and provides many perks for the same. Almost all expenses are covered- from accommodation, to travel.
Opportunity to go abroad– The Indian Army gives its officers an opportunity to go abroad and interact with armies from all over the world. An officer is also provided with opportunities to interact with UN forces which helps in developing wider perspective.

Career Opportunities- There is a plethora of benefits you receive when you serve your country, let alone the “Discipline” and “Adventure” factor. Once you crack UPSC CDS, a lot of career opportunities wait for you on the other side.

As a defense officer, you get to serve and represent your country in the proudest and most respectable way possible. You earn a substantial pay scale, a handful of perks and get to serve the country at the highest level. You are covered for almost everything, like all types of allowances, education for children, medical, rationing, etc. There is a full retirement (pension) plan to cover you for the rest of your life.

Mostly, working in armed forces develops in you an attitude that gives courage to come out of the most difficult situation with a smile. You can also find a great job after you retire because of your background in defense forces.

After successful completion of Combined Defense Services training, the candidate pass out in the rank of a designated officer and is entitled to the pay and allowance of the rank. Apart from these, officers get casual and annual leaves in abundance. There is no doubt that the life of an army, navy and naval officer is filled with challenges, but these perks and benefits definitely make it a little smoother.

Medical Facilities

Today, the technology has developed tremendously and with that, the medical expenses have increased many folds too. Our family members require medical attention every now and then.
All armed forces have best medical establishments to take care of the medical requirements of its personnel. Officers enjoy these medical facilities free of any cost. The families of commissioned officers enjoy these medical benefits as well. Officers and their families get free medical services after retirement too.

Canteen Facility for Officers

Day by day, prices of all grocery and FMCG items are increasing drastically. However, the canteens in all Army, Air Force and Navy offer grocery items, beauty products, electrical items, clothing, etc to the officers at discounted price. With this canteen facility, quality of the items is also assured. Officers of Indian armed forces gets canteen facilities irrespective of short service commissioning or permanent commissioning.

Free Ration

Army, Air Force and Navy officers get free ration on daily basis. To facilitate officers and their families, Indian government provides free ration to the officers who stay with their families. Tea, rice, dal, eggs, seasonal vegetables, salt, seasonal fruits, etc is delivered at their homes. Thus, commissioned officers do not need to purchase any ration while serving in the armed forces

Mess Facility for Unmarried Commissioned Officers

All defense units have Officers’ Mess to provide food for bachelor and spinster officers. Unmarried officers can have their breakfast, lunch and dinner in the mess for free.
Only nominal mess maintenance charges are collected by the mess from the dining officers. An officer can go to the mess and order his favorite food. These mess also provide food to the officers staying with their families, if required, for nominal prices. Many officers prefer to dine in the Officers’ Mess to avoid cooking or saving time.

Sports Facilities

There are abundant facilities for sports and gaming available in the vicinity of residence of the serving officers and their families. From basket ball courts to golf courts, all sports and gaming facilities are provided free of cost. The government understands the role of sports in keeping a person fresh and active and takes necessary measures to ensure the availability of the same.

Housing Loans and Vehicle Loans for Commissioned Officers

There are various societies available in Army, Air Force and Navy to provide housing and vehicle loans at lowest interest rates. An officer of Indian armed forces need not worry about sky rocketed interest rates of house and vehicle loans. Officers get loans very easily with minimal documents and they do not need to worry about repaying them as the EMI amount is deducted directly from the salary.

Scope of Higher Education for Officers

There are numerous opportunities and benefits for officers who wish to enhance their educational qualification. Officers get a two-year paid leave to pursue higher education. In a few cases, fees incurred for higher studies is reimbursed to the officers.

One time educational allowance is also awarded after successful completion of studies. Technical officers of Indian Army, Navy and Air Force have special quota in prestigious technical and management institutes such as IIMs and IITs to pursue M.Tech and MBA programs.

Platform for World Class Training and Training for Future Endeavors

Officers’ Training Academy (OTA), Chennai is one of the best training academies of the world in imparting best military training. All the candidates selected for Short Service Commission courses of Indian Army are trained in OTA.

Gentlemen Cadets and Lady Cadets of Officers Training Academy are provided with world class facilities. Though the training period is tough, the cadets have ample opportunities to learn and excel in sports and various other activities including golf, horse riding, billiards, table tennis etc. A wardrobe with neat and clean room is given to all the trainees. All cadets get best mess and cafeterias.


Air Force Academy (AFA), the premier training centre of the Indian Air, is the cradle of training for pilots, ground duty and technical officers of IAF.

The training at this academy is designed to foster the spirit of camaraderie and promote healthy interaction among officers of every branch. The academy aims to cultivate honor and integrity in every cadet and strives to graduate Air Warriors worthy of the Indian Air Force.

The mission of AFA is to inspire and transform outstanding young men and women into courageous, dynamic, intellectual and cultured young Air Warriors; motivated to lead one of the leading aerospace forces of the world in service to the nation.

This is achieved by training in character building, discipline, military and academic subjects, physical exercise, drill, sports and adventure activities.

The curriculum and syllabi keep pace with current doctrines and technological developments, allowing the cadets at the same time to imbibe the basic principles / tenets of the military profession.


The Indian Naval officer is a leader. Quintessentially, this leadership concerns itself with management of men and material, conflict and violence. Such a leader, therefore, faces an increasingly complex environment in which he must process, evaluate, and communicate a plethora of information.

In today's technologically-dense environment, technological competence enables an officer to make decisions, based not only upon experience and judgment but also on scientific methods of analysis and information processing, for the planning and execution of naval operations.

The requirement to operate technologically-complex weapon-systems implies the need for personnel with superior technical capabilities, as also the perceived need for technical acumen amongst the officer cadre at large, training all officers in the basic disciplines of Mechanical and Electrical & Electronics engineering formed the raison d’être of the Indian Naval Academy (INA).

The training curriculum at the Academy is, at its most fundamental level, designed to equip cadets with a strong foundation of fundamental theoretical knowledge in respect of academic subjects and Navy-specific.

The cadets also undergo attachments with naval dockyards and sea attachments with afloat units etc., to augment understanding of the practical applications of the theory learnt at the INA.

Weapon Training

The small arms training for the cadets is an integral component of curriculum. The Academy houses Indian Navy's only 300 mtr Baffle range for small arms firing. Weapon training is imparted to cadets at Academy in different stages in a progressive manner.

Stage I is familiarization with the weapons and is progressed intensively until the cadets achieve blind fold stripping and assembling of the weapon in stipulated time.

Stage II is training on Small Arms Training Simulator (Drona MK -III) where the cadets are exposed to understanding and assimilation on aiming and firing the weapon in simulator prior to firing on the range.

Stage III is conduct of live firing at the baffle range. At INA, weapons used for firing are 5.56mm INSAS rifle, 9mm Carbine, 9mm pistol and 5,56 mm INSAS LMG.

From grueling route-marches to photography, painting, seminars, term-papers, tours and sports, the training is an action filled scenario nurturing their mental and physical potential.

The commencement of applying online for CDS starts in July of a given year and ends on August. Candidates are eligible to apply for the CDS Exam after completing their graduate degree course from any recognized university. Also, only the candidates who are medically and physically fit are eligible to qualify CDS.

“The safety, honor and welfare of your country come first, always and every time. The honor, welfare and comfort of the men you command come next. Your own ease, comfort and safety come last, always and every time”.-With these morals, the future officers are made to acquire the finer graces of life and living which invests in them personal dignity and a sense of appreciation for those finer pursuits which distinguish man and civilization.


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