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The Indian Civil Service (ICS) for part of the 19th century officially known as the Imperial Civil Service, was the elite higher civil service of the British Empire
British Empire
in British India
British India
during British rule in the period between 1858 and 1947. Its members ruled more than 300 million people[1] in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh
Bangladesh
and Burma
Burma
(then comprising British Raj). They were ultimately responsible for overseeing all government activity in the 250 districts that comprised British India. They were appointed under Section XXXII of the Government of India
India
Act 1858,[2][3] enacted by the Parliament of the United Kingdom.[4] The ICS was headed by the Secretary of State for India, a member of the British cabinet. At first almost all the top thousand members of the ICS, known as "Civilians", were British, and had been educated in the best British schools. By 1905, five per cent were from Bengal. In 1947 there were 322 Indians and 688 British members; most of the latter left at the time of partition and independence.[5] Until the 1930s the Indians in the service were very few and were not given high posts by the British.[6] Wainwright notes that by the mid-1880s, "the basis of racial discrimination in the sub-continent had solidified".[7] At the time of the birth of India
India
and Pakistan
Pakistan
in 1947, the outgoing Government of India's ICS was divided between India
India
and Pakistan.[a] Although these are now organised differently, the contemporary Civil Services of India, the Central Superior Services
Central Superior Services
of Pakistan, Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Civil Service and Myanmar Civil Service are all descended from the old Indian Civil Service. Historians often rate the ICS, together with the railway system, the legal system, and the Indian Army, as among the most important legacies of British rule in India.[8]

Contents

1 Civil service

1.1 Origins and history

1.1.1 Entry and setting

1.2 Uniform and Dressing 1.3 Nature and role

2 Salary and posts

2.1 Ranks/Posts of the Indian (Imperial) Civil Service[c][d]

3 Changes after 1912

3.1 Formation of Public Service Commissions

4 Independence of India 5 Support and criticism 6 See also 7 References 8 Further reading 9 External links

Civil service[edit] Origins and history[edit] Main articles: Civil Service in early India
India
and British Raj From 1858, after the demise of the East India
India
Company's rule in India, the British civil service took on its administrative responsibilities. The change in governance came about due to the Indian Rebellion of 1857, which came close to toppling British rule in the country.[9] Entry and setting[edit] Main articles: Aitchison Commission and Early Nationalists Up to 1853, the Directors of the British East India
India
Company made appointments of covenanted civil servants by nominations. This nomination system was abolished in 1855 by the Parliament in England and it was decided that the induction would be through competitive examinations of all British subjects, without distinction of race. Th examination for admission to the service was first held only in London
London
in the month of August of each year.[b] All candidate also had to pass a compulsory horse riding test.

“ An appointment to the civil service of the Company will not be a matter favour but a matter of right. He who obtains such an appointment will owe it solely to his own abilities and industry. It is undoubtedly desirable that the civil servants of the Company should have received the best, the most finished education that the native country affords (the Report insisted that the civil servants of the Company should have taken the first degree in arts at Oxford or Cambridge Universities). ”

— Macaulay Committee Report[10]

The competitive examination for entry to the civil service was combined for the Diplomatic, the Home, the Indian, and the Colonial Services. Candidates had to be aged between 21 and 24, which gave everyone three chances for entry. The total marks possible in the examination were 1,900.[citation needed] Successful candidates underwent one or two years probation in England, according to whether they had taken the London
London
or the Indian examination. This period[11] was spent at the University of Oxford
University of Oxford
(Indian Institute), the University of Cambridge, colleges in the University of London (including School of Oriental Studies) or Trinity College, Dublin,[11] where a candidate studied the law and institutions of India, including criminal law and the Law of Evidence, which together gave knowledge of the revenue system, as well as reading Indian history and learning the language of the Province to which they had been assigned.[11] The Early Nationalists,[12] also known as the Moderates,[13] worked for several implementation of various social reforms such as the appointment of a Public Service Commission and a resolution of the House of Commons (1893) allowing for simultaneous examination for the Indian Civil Service in London
London
and India. By 1920, there were five methods of entry into the higher civil service: firstly, the open competitive examinations in London; secondly, separate competitive examinations in India; thirdly, nomination in India
India
to satisfy provincial and communal representation; fourthly, promotion from the Provincial Civil Service and lastly, appointments from the bar (one-fourth of the posts in the ICS were to be filled from the bar).[14] Uniform and Dressing[edit]

Sir Henry Edward Stokes and Sir Gabriel Stokes
Gabriel Stokes
in the uniform of the Indian Civil Service.

Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria
had suggested that the civil servants in India
India
should have an official dress uniform, as did their counterparts in the Colonial Service. However, the Council of India
India
decided that prescribing a dress uniform would be an undue expense for their officials.[15] Although no uniform was prescribed for the Indian Civil Service until the early twentieth century. The only civilians allowed a dress uniform by regulations were those who had distinct duties of a political kind to perform, and who are thereby brought into frequent and direct personal intercourse with native princes.[15] This uniform included a blue coat with gold embroidery, a black velvet lining, collar and cuffs, blue cloth trousers with gold and lace two inches wide, a beaver cocked hat with black silk cockade and ostrich feathers, and a sword.[15] Nature and role[edit] Main article: Aitchison Commission The civil services were divided into two categories – covenanted and uncovenanted. The covenanted civil service consisted of only white British civil servants occupying the higher posts in the government. The uncovenanted civil service was solely introduced to facilitate the entry of Indians at the lower rung of the administration.[16][17] Salary and posts[edit] After the Indian Rebellion of 1857, the pay scales were drawn up.[1] Assistant Commissioners started out in their early twenties on around £300 a year.[1] The governorship of a British province was the highest post an ICS officer could aspire for.[18] The Governors at the top of the pyramid got £6,000 and allowances.[1] All ICS officers retired on the same pension £1,000.[1] In the first decades of the twentieth century, the imbalance in salaries and emoluments was so great that 8,000 British officers earned £13,930,554, while 130,000 Indians in government service were collectively paid a total of £3,284,163.[19] They served a minimum of twenty five and a maximum of thirty five years service.[1] ICS officers served as political officers in the Indian Political Department and also were given fifty percent judgeship in the state high court and rest were generally elevated from the high court bar.[18] The tenure of ICS officers serving as judges of the high court and Supreme Court was determined by the retirement age fixed for judges.[18] Ranks/Posts of the Indian (Imperial) Civil Service[c][d][edit]

Central Government

Secretary to Government of India Joint Secretary to Government of India Deputy Secretary Additional Deputy Secretary Under Secretary Assistant Secretary to Government of India

Courts

Judge of State High Court District Judge

State Government

Chief Secretary (British Empire) Secretary to State Government Divisional Commissioner Deputy Commissioner / District Collector

Changes after 1912[edit]

“ If a responsible government is to be established in India, there will be a far greater need than is even dreamt of at present for persons to take part in public affairs in the legislative assemblies and elsewhere and for this reason the more Indians we can employ in the public service the better. Moreover, it would lessen the burden of Imperial responsibilities if a body of capable Indian administrators could be produced.. ”

— Regarding the importance of Indianising Civil Services, Montagu–Chelmsford Reforms[20]

With the passing of the Government of India
India
Act 1919, the Imperial Services headed by the Secretary of State for India, were split into two – All India
India
Services and Central Services.[21] British control of the Indian Civil Service remained after the First World War, but faced growing difficulties. Fewer and fewer young men in Britain were interested in joining, and distrust of such posts among Indians resulted in a declining recruitment base in terms of quality and quantity. By 1945 Indians were numerically dominant in the ICS and at issue was loyalty divided between the Empire and independence.[22] The finances of India
India
under British rule depended largely on land taxes, and these became problematic in the 1930s. Epstein argues that after 1919 it became harder and harder to collect the land revenue. The suppression of civil disobedience by the British after 1934 temporarily increased the power of the revenue agents, but after 1937 they were forced by the new Congress-controlled provincial governments to hand back confiscated land. The outbreak of the Second World War strengthened them again, but in the face of the Quit India
India
movement the revenue collectors had to rely on military force, and by 1946–47 direct British control was rapidly disappearing in much of the countryside.[23] The All India
India
and class 1 Central Services were designated as Central Superior Services as early as 1924.[24] From 1924 to 1934, Administration in India
India
consisted of "ten"[24] All India
India
Services and five central departments, all under the control of Secretary of State for India, and 3 central departments under joint Provincial and Imperial Control. Formation of Public Service Commissions[edit] Arthur Lee, 1st Viscount Lee of Fareham
Arthur Lee, 1st Viscount Lee of Fareham
Commission's recommendation led to the foundation of the Federal Public Service Commission and Provincial Public Service Commission under the Government of India Act, 1935. Independence of India[edit] At the time of the partition of India
India
and departure of the British, in 1947, the Indian Civil Service was divided between the new Dominions of India
India
and Pakistan. The part which went to India
India
was named the Indian Administrative Service
Indian Administrative Service
(IAS), while the part that went to Pakistan
Pakistan
was named the "Civil Service of Pakistan" (CSP). At the time of Partition, there were 980 ICS officers. 468 were Europeans, 352 Hindus, 101 Muslims, two depressed classes/Scheduled Castes, five domiciled Europeans and Anglo-Indians, 25 Indian Christians, 13 Parsis, 10 Sikhs and four other communities.[18] Most European officers left India
India
at Partition, while many Hindus and Muslims went to India
India
and Pakistan
Pakistan
respectively. This sudden loss of officer cadre caused major challenges in administering the nascent states. Nirmal Kumar Mukarji, who retired as Cabinet Secretary in April 1980, had been the last Indian administrative officer who had originally joined as an ICS (in 1944), while the last ICS officer to retire in Pakistan
Pakistan
was Agha Shahi, also of 1944 batch, who retired as foreign advisor to president in 1982.[18] The last recruited batch of the ICS was in October 1944. Support and criticism[edit]

“ If you take that steel frame out of the fabric, it would collapse. There is one institution we will not cripple, there is one institution we will not deprive of its functions or of its privileges; and that is the institution which built up the British Raj
British Raj
– the British Civil Service of India. ”

—  David Lloyd George, then Prime Minister of United Kingdom
Prime Minister of United Kingdom
on the Imperial Civil Service[25]

Dewey has commented that "in their heyday they [Indian Civil Service officers] mostly run by Englishmen with a few notable sons of Hindus and even a fewer Muslims were the most powerful officials in the Empire, if not the world. A tiny cadre, a little over a thousand strong, ruled more than 300 million Indians. Each Civilian had an average 300,000 subjects, and each Civilian penetrated every corner of his subjects' lives, because the Indian Civil Service directed all the activities of the Anglo-Indian state."[26] The ICS had responsibility for maintaining law and order, and often were at loggerheads with the freedom fighters during the Independence movement. Jawaharlal Nehru
Jawaharlal Nehru
often ridiculed the ICS for its support of British policies. He noted that someone had once defined the Indian Civil Service, "with which we are unfortunately still afflicted in this country, as neither Indian, nor civil, nor a service".[27] As Prime Minister, Nehru retained the organisation and its top people, albeit with a change of title to the "Indian Administrative Service". It continued its main roles. Nehru appointed long-time ICS officials Chintaman Deshmukh
Chintaman Deshmukh
as his Finance Minister, and K. P. S. Menon as his Foreign Minister. Sardar Patel
Sardar Patel
appreciated their role in keeping India
India
united after Partition, and noted in Parliament that without them, the country would have collapsed. See also[edit]

List of Indian members of the Indian Civil Service Civil Services of India

References[edit]

^ a b c d e f Dewey, Clive. Anglo-Indian Attitudes: Mind of the Indian Civil Service. A&C Black, 1993. ISBN 978-0-8264-3254-4.  ^ "The Indian Civil Service". Retrieved 18 September 2014.  ^ "Administering India: The Indian Civil Service". Retrieved 18 September 2014.  ^ Blunt, (1937) ^ Surjit Mansingh, The A to Z of India
India
(2010), pp 288–90 ^ Michael J. Nojeim (2004). Gandhi and King: The Power of Nonviolent Resistance. Greenwood. p. 50.  ^ A. Martin Wainwright (2008). 'The better class' of Indians: social rank, imperial identity, and South Asians in Britain, 1858–1914. Manchester U.P.  ^ Ramesh Kumar Arora and Rajni Goyal, Indian public administration: institutions and issues (1995) p. 42; Ranbir Vohra, The making of India: a historical survey (2001) p 185 ^ Naithani, Sadhana (2006). In quest of Indian folktales: Pandit Ram Gharib Chaube and William Crooke. Indiana University Press. p. 6. ISBN 978-0-253-34544-8.  ^ Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (8 June 2011). "History of civil services in India
India
and Reforms" (PDF). New Delhi: Government of India. Retrieved 15 September 2011.  ^ a b c "The Colonial Service Training Courses : Professionalizing the Colonial Service". Retrieved 25 February 2016.  ^ Ralhan, Om Prakash, ed. (1995). Encyclopedia of Political Parties – India
India
Pakistan
Pakistan
Bangladesh
Bangladesh
– National – Regional – Local. 23. Moderate phrase in India. New Dehli: Anmol Publications. pp. 29–36. The phase from 1885 to 1905 is known as the period of the Early Nationalists.  ^ Porter, Robin J. (2001). "Imperial India, 1858–1914". Oxford History of the British Empire: The Nineteenth Century. pp. 345, 434.  ^ Ramesh Kumar Arora and Rajni Goyal, Indian public administration: Institutions and Issues (1995) p 43 ^ a b c Cohn, Bernard S. (1996). Colonialism and Its Forms of Knowledge: The British in India. Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0-691-00043-5.  ^ Meghna Sabharwal, Evan M. Berman "Public Administration in South Asia: India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan
Pakistan
(Public Administration and Public Policy," (2013) ^ "Civil Service". The British Library. 8 June 2011. Retrieved 14 August 2015.  ^ a b c d e "Archive: The men who ran the Raj". Hindustan Times. Archived from the original on 4 September 2016. Retrieved 4 September 2016.  ^ "The Un-Indian Civil Service". OPEN. Retrieved 18 May 2017.  ^ P. N., Chopra (2003). A Comprehensive History of India, Volume 3. Sterling Publishers Pvt. Ltd. ISBN 978-81-207-2506-5.  ^ Goel, S.L. Public Personnel Administration : Theory and Practice. Deep and Deep Publications, 2008. ISBN 978-81-7629-395-2.  ^ David C. Potter, "Manpower Shortage and the End of Colonialism: The Case of Indian Civil Service," Modern Asian Studies, (Jan 1973) 7#1 pp 47–73 ^ Simon Epstein, 'District Officers in Decline: The Erosion of British Authority in the Bombay Countryside, 1919 to 1947' in Modern Asian Studies, (May 1982) 16#3, pp 493–518 ^ a b Maheshwari, Shriram. Problems and Issues in Administrative Federalism. Allied Publishers. ISBN 978-81-7023-342-8.  ^ Bali, H.N (2013). One Who Forged India’s Steel Frame. Boloji.  ^ Dewey, Clive (1993). Anglo-Indian attitudes: the mind of the Indian Civil Service. Continuum International Publishing Group. p. 3. ISBN 978-1-85285-097-5.  ^ Jawaharlal Nehru, Glimpses of world history: being further letters to his daughter (Lindsay Drummond Ltd., 1949), p. 94

Notes

^ ICS members in Pakistan
Pakistan
was originally administering equally both West Pakistan
Pakistan
and East Pakistan. However Pakistan
Pakistan
was split into two. West Pakistan
Pakistan
is now renamed to Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Pakistan
and East Pakistan
Pakistan
is now renamed to People's Republic of Bangladesh. ^ As per published records and book named "The India
India
List and India Office List 1905" as published by India
India
Office and India
India
Office Records. ^ As per published records and book named "The India
India
List and India Office List 1905" as published by India
India
Office and India
India
Office Records. ^ As per Warrant or Precedence of 1905.

Further reading[edit]

Blunt, Edward. The I.C.S.: the Indian civil service (1937) Burra, Arudra. "The Indian Civil Service and the nationalist movement: neutrality, politics and continuity," Commonwealth & Comparative Politics, Nov 2010, 48#4 pp 404–432 Dewey, Clive. Anglo-Indian attitudes: the mind of the Indian Civil Service (1993) Ewing, Ann. "Administering India: The Indian Civil Service," History Today, June 1982, 32#6 pp 43–48, covers 1858–1947 Gilmour, David. The Ruling Caste: Imperial Lives in the Victorian Raj (2007) excerpt and text search Gould, William. "The Dual State: The Unruly 'Subordinate', Caste, Community and Civil Service Recruitment in North India, 1930–1955," Journal of Historical Sociology, Mar-June 2007, Vol. 20 Issue 1/2, pp 13–43 Krishna, Anirudh. "Continuity and change: the Indian administrative service 30 years ago and today," Commonwealth & Comparative Politics, Nov 2010, 48#4 pp 433–444 MacMillan, Margaret. Women of the Raj: The Mothers, Wives, and Daughters of the British Empire
British Empire
in India
India
(2007) Masani, Zareer. Indian Tales of the Raj (1990), interviews with retired ICS officers about pre-1947 days Potter, David C. India's Political Administrators,1919–1983 (1987) 289pp; the standard scholarly history Potter, David C. "The Last of the Indian Civil Service," South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies (Apr 1979), Vol. 2 Issue 1/2, pp 19–29 Potter, David C. "Manpower Shortage and the End of Colonialism: The Case of Indian Civil Service," Modern Asian Studies, (Jan 1973) 7#1 pp 47–73 in JSTOR Sharma, Malti. Indianization of the civil services in British India, 1858–1935 (2001) Thakur, R.N. The All India
India
services: a study of their origin & growth (1969)

External links[edit]

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