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How to Fill UPSC Mains DAF, Detailed Application Form

DAF corresponds to the Detailed Application Form for UPSC Civil Services Mains exam. The online form is applicable only for those who qualified CS prelims. Fees to be paid by General and OBC candidates is Rs.200/-. There is total fee exemption for female candidates and SC/ST candidates.

DAF has 8 parts and each part has to be filled completely.

Take time to think over your service priority as well as cadre preference for IAS and IPS as you will not get a chance to change the same in future. A summary sheet which contains the highlights of your profile will include your hobbies and interests. So be fully aware with yourself and what you have written in DAF, as many questions in UPSC interview will be based on what you have written in the Detailed Application Form (DAF) and Summary Sheet.

  • Candidates are required to submit Detailed Application Form through Online Mode only and also to upload the scanned copies of the requisite documents along with the Detailed Application Form.
  • There is no need of sending hard copy of Application /Documents to the Commission.

Brief about Services

1. IAS

Good work, Good Infrastructure and highly respectable. Issue is interference and work pressure. If you want a very peaceful life and tension free life then think about it.

2. IFS

Work as diplomats. Good services, especially for people who like to travel, pursue intellectual hobbies. You will have alternate terms in foreign country and India. Yes do give a consideration from family perspective and secondly from perspective that if you want paraphernalia you will not get it.

3. IPS

Mostly work is in law and order domain. Lot of power, infra and Paraphernalia. However IPS is a very tough job and not everyone is made for it. It needs lot of patience, sacrifice in personal life and has maximum interference. So choose accordingly.

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4. IRS IT and Customs

My personal advice would be to choose IT over customs ( stable cadre, timely promotions , decent infra and good places of postings) However work can appear to be boring due to a desk job restricted to taxation. Customs on the other hand is having more variety.



IRTS is IAS of railways. Lot of manpower under you. Good infra and facilities. However issue is very hectic life especially if you are in operations side as you have to manage timely running of trains. So don’t opt it if you want a peaceful and tension free life.


IAAS on the other hand is a totally different service. It audits almost everything in government. Remember it is not just auditing of accounts here but a larger purview. Also stable posting, normal working hours, postings in state capital and Delhi plus lot of foreign visits and yes timely promotions. Plus everyone fears an auditor. However you won’t enjoy executive powers and perks like IRTS. So decide what kind of life you want.

6. Accounting Services


Best among accounting services. Total financial power in railways. Good infrastructure, work life balance and good postings. Plus lot of opportunities for deputation due to finance.


This is also a good service. Lot of financial power in defence sector. Good infrastructure, work life balance and good postings. Plus lot of opportunities for deputation due to finance


This is more of an accounting service. It has the responsibility to consolidate accounts of all the Dept except few. Posting in Delhi. However housing, car can be an issue.


This service has lost lot of ground due to BSNL and MTNL separating from DoT. So major work is collecting spectrum allocation and licence fee. Infrastructure issues are also there.

7. Railway services

Railway services have good infrastructure and facilities. Housing, car and manpower is not an issue.



Not much work, dealing with unions and personnel management .


I would suggest to fill it among the bottom 5 services. Its like paramilitary force (Railway Protection Force)

8. IPoS

Good service. Administration of all post offices. Good infra and facilities. Plus post office’s are getting modernized so new work is coming up.

9. IDeS

This is a service where you work as CEO of cantonments/defence estates. There is huge infrastructure at your disposal, very good facilities. However growth is stagnant, work is not dynamic. Also you will not always be working in cantonments, HQ postings and other postings are there as well.

10. ICLS and ITS

Both are new age services with postings in Capital cities and Delhi. ICLS are regulators of corporate sector. They implement company law and are involved in Registration, M&A, and Liquidation etc. Service seems to have a promising future but as of now it is not much preferred. Reasons include Infrastructure problem, desk work and stagnation as the top level.

IT on the other hand deals with trade policy implementation. Officers working closely with traders and exporters. Also working in SEZ, policy work and some International exposure. So work is interesting and promising.

Issue with both the services is similar. These are comparatively new service & do not have a huge infrastructure compared to postal, defence and railways. So Car, housing, other facilities might be a little problem. Also at senior level stagnation issue.

11. IoFS

Not much of an idea but their scope is more or less related to management of ordinance factories. Infra won’t be much of an issue. But usually filled among bottom few services

12. Danics & Danips

These are like State civil services(UT civil service) with a difference that promotions are better compared to most of the states. Many people prefer them at the bottom due to Group B. However in terms of power, work, infra these are better than many group A central services.

13. Indian Information Service

This is like a PR Job. Most IIS officers work in various media units which are under Ministry of Information and Broadcasting such as DD News, All India Radio, Press Information Bureau etc. Even posted with various Ministries as spokespersons to handle the Ministry’s information and communication needs and help in policy formulation. So work wise this is a nice service, plus majorly you stay in Delhi. Infrastructure, car housing is again an issue.

14. AFHQ + Pondicherry civil service

Bottom services to be filled.

Now how to fill service preference list

See this is a totally personal choice depending on what you want from your life. What matters to you : balanced life ? Quality work ? Power & Infrastructure? Delhi Posting? Decide accordingly. Here are some hints based on common choice

1. Most preferred services (IAS – IFS –IPS – IRS IT –IRS Customs – IRTS /IAAS) .

2. Less preffered services ( AFHQ , Pondicherry civil services , RPF, IoFS, IPTAFS ,ICLS )


As per me





ICAS, IIS, ITS (one is accounts, other is media/PR and one relates to Trade. Usual preference is ICAS – IIS-ITS)

4. Adjust DANICS & DANIPS as per your convenience. Some people prefer them after Railway, Defence and Postal while majority put it at the end. Decide as per your own choice.

Delhi Posting : ICAS , IIS

Services where Infrastructure won’t be an issue (Apart from Most preferred services ): IRAS,IRPS,IPOS,IDES,IDAS . I think infra will not be an issue even in IOFS and RPF.

Civil Service Mains Application Form (DAF) Checklist:

The candidate should also scan their relevant original documents as listed below in 200 dpi gray scale and convert to a single PDF file upto 3 MB, before filling in the online DAF:-

  1. Scanned copy of Certificate of age.
  2. Scanned copy of Certificate(s) of educational qualifications (including a copy of recognition letter / equivalence certificate from AIU / UGC, if applicable).
  3. Scanned copy of Certificate in support of claim to belong to Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes/Other Backward Classes (where applicable) Annexure VI and VII may be filled online by OBC candidate.
  4. Scanned copy of Certificate in support of claim for age relaxation (where applicable).
  5. Scanned copy of certificate in support of claim to being Physically challenged (along with certificate of Disability in Dominant (writing) Extremity, wherever applicable).
  6. Scanned copy of Hailing from Certificate to show that the candidate hails from Arunachal Pradesh/ Manipur/ Meghalaya/ Mizoram/ Nagaland or Sikkim (where applicable).
  7. Scanned copy of undertaking for candidate who is in Government service that he /she has intimated in writing the Head of the Office / Department about his/her appearance in the examination.
  8. Scanned copies of documentary proof in support of service / status /landholding / income from different sources / property held by parents of OBC (non creamy layer) candidates.

Things to keep in mind while filling your DAF

  1. DAF is not like your resume, the more achievements the more you will score.Here DAF is only a way to know about you so that they can ask questions.
  2. Please do not try to fake or write for the sake of writing. If there is no achievement, then don’t create one, no hobby then don’t write fake one .
  3. Be specific. For you music might be a hobby (listening in free time), but they will expect you to know about music in detail. . You might like cooking but they will ask you anything related to cooking ( about preservatives, masalas, cooking recepies, types of cuisines etc).So better to avoid writing such open ended things. Write specific things which you know you can prepare.
  4. Writing something and not able to answer basic questions related to those things sends a very wrong impression. When you are filling DAF ensure you write less but meaningful things you are confident about.

Don’t forget these instructions!

  1. The documents must be scanned in 200 dpi gray scale.
  2. All documents must be scanned in PDF format only.
  3. Candidates are advised not to use cell phone for scanning.
  4. All the scanned documents should be placed in a single PDF file of not more than 3 MB size for uploading.
  5. The PDF file must not be password protected.
  6. You must ensure that uploaded PDF file is legible.

Note: Candidates must note that they should upload only the scanned copies of the Original documents and no document is required to be sent by Post or by Hand.

You will get an email acknowledgement from UPSC

After Applying You will get an email confirmation.

What will happen if the application is incomplete/late/wrong?

Incomplete Detailed Online application or DAF and the online OBC proforma which have not been submitted within the prescribed time limit or is incorrectly filled in or gives wrong code numbers in any of the columns is liable to be rejected.The candidates must ensure that they upload all the requisite documents before finally
submitting the DAF and the OBC proforma online.

Need assistance while filing DAF? Call UPSC

The candidate should contact the Commission, through email [email protected] or 011-23385271 in case of any assistance regarding filling up the Detailed Application Form.

E-admit Cards

The e-admit cards will be issued electronically on the Commission’s website.

The candidates should download the same and check it carefully to ensure that the particulars on the e-Admit Card are correct.

In case, there is any mistake in the e-Admit Card, it should be brought to the notice of the Commission with a request to issue the correct e-Admit Card. Candidates may note that they will not be allowed to take the examination on the strength of e- Admit Card issued in respect of another candidate.

To the exam hall

  • No candidate will be allowed to take the examination without the e-admit card.
  • A candidate appearing in the examination should also bring with him/ her to the examination hall extra copies of the photograph similar to the one in the DAF.

During UPSC Interview,

Originals of the above Certificates are required to be produced along with self-certified copies of all the documents at the time of Interview, which would be intimated in the Commission’s website in due course, failing which candidature is liable to be cancelled.


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