NEW DELHI: The cut-offs for economically weaker section (EWS) candidates in the civil services examination 2019, the final results of which were announced by UPSC last week, were lower than those for other backward classes (OBC) candidates for all three stages of the exam and less than the cutoffs for SC and ST examinees at the mains stage.

As per cut-off marks for different stages of the examination announced by UPSC, those for prelims, mains and final round for general candidates were 98, 751 and 961 respectively while for EWS candidates, the marks were 90, 696 and 909.

For OBCs, the cut-offs were 95.3, 718 and 925 respectively; for SC candidates, they were 82, 706 and 898 and for ST candidates, they were 77.3, 699 and 893. This is the first year that EWS quota has been applied in the civil services exam. This, even as a plea challenging the quota is pending in the Supreme Court. The apex court had last week referred the matter to a fivejudge bench.

The cut-offs, on the face of it, indicate that those in the EWS category would have found it impossible to make it without the quota.

It may also raise questions over the extent of the lag between EWS or ‘backwards among forwards’ and other categories. UPSC, as part of the results declared last week, had recommended 829 candidates for appointment to IAS, IFS, IPS and other Group A and B central services. Of these, 304 are in the general category, 78 in EWS category, 251 in OBC category, 129 SCs and 67 STs. As many as 182 were included in the consolidated reserve list.

The commission has said that “cut-off marks are subject to changes, as may be necessitated by the orders that may be passed by courts in matters pending before them”.


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