Central Armed Police Forces

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A member of India's Border Security Force in ceremonial attire

The Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) refers to uniform nomenclature of seven security forces in India under the authority of Ministry of Home Affairs. They are the Assam Rifles (AR), Border Security Force (BSF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), National Security Guard (NSG), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), and Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB).[1]

Organisation and leadership[edit]

Each of the seven CAPFs (the AR, BSF, CRPF, ITBP, CISF, NSG and SSB) has its own cadre of officers, but they are headed by officers of the Indian Police Service. They have, for many years, demanded improved promotional prospects.[2]:p 455, para 17.19.19 However, the higher echelons in these organisations, including the head of the organization, designated as Director General, is reserved by the MHA for Indian Police Service (IPS) officers [2]:p 457, para 7.19.31 The DGs of those five CAPFs were upgraded by the Manmohan Singh led UPA Government following the 6 CPC the apex scale, a grade held by DGs of various state police.[3]:page 5[2]:p 167,para3.2.11 They were allocated a total of 52,443 crore (US$7.6 billion) for the fiscal year 2017-2018.[4]


Recruitment is conducted mainly in three modes.

Gazetted Officers[edit]

Officers in CAPFs are recruited through Central Armed Police Forces (Assistant Commandants) Examination conducted by UPSC. They are appointed as Assistant Commandants and are Gazetted Officers generally referred as DAGOs (Directly Appointed Gazetted Officers). DEGOs (Departmental Entry Gazetted Officers) are who have been promoted through departmental exams conducted internally for Subordinate Officers.

Subordinate Officers[edit]

Sub Inspectors are recruited through competitive examination conducted by Staff Selection Commission and they are referred as DASOs (Directly Appointed Subordinate Officers). DESOs (Departmental Entry Subordinate Officers) are who have been promoted through departmental exams conducted internally for Constables, Head Constables and Assistant Sub Inspectors.


Constables are recruited through competitive examination conducted by Staff Selection Commission.

Apart from above modes, CAPFs conduct recruitment for specialized posts such as Engineers, Doctors etc. among DAGOs and Wireless operators, Technicians, Nursing Staff etc. among subordinate officers and constables directly under their own authority.

Recruitment Department[edit]

The recruitment of the candidates in the CAPF is done by the Union Public Service Commission as well the staff selection commission and respective service HQs for the various posts according to the qualification of the candidates. For the higher levels posts, IPS officers are deputed.

Women in Central Armed Police Forces[edit]

Initially women were not recruited for the Central Armed Police Forces. In 1992 Asha Sinha created history by being the first Woman Commandant of any of the Central Armed Forces in India when she was selected as Commandant, Central Industrial Security Force, for Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited. Earlier the role of Women was allowed but limited to supervisory roles in the Central Armed Police Forces.[5] The Parliamentary Committees of India for women’s empowerment recommended grater roles for women in the CAPF. On these recommendations the Ministry of Home Affairs (India) declared reservation for women in constabulary in paramilitary forces, and later declared that they can also be inducted as officers in combat roles in all five Central Armed Police Forces.[6] The Union Home Minister announced that women's representation in the CRPF and CISF would be made 15 per cent while it would be 5 per cent in the BSF, ITBP and SSB.[7] On 5th January, 2016, it was decided that 33 per cent of posts at the constabulory level would be reserved for women in the CRPF and the CISF to begin with, and 14-15 per cent of posts at the constable level in the BSF, SSB and ITBP in a phased manner, Rijiju said. In 2016, an IPS Officer Archana Ramasundram of 1980 Batch rewrote history when became the first Woman to become the Director General of Police of a Paramilitary Force as DG, Sashastra Seema Bal.[8]

Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF)[edit]

The Central Reserve Police Force is the largest of the Central Armed Police Forces units with 313,678 personnel in 239 battalions.[9] The Central Reserve Police includes:

Border Security Force (BSF)[edit]

Women personnel of Indian Border Security Force

The primary role of the Border Security Force is to guard the border of the India with Pakistan and Bangladesh, it is deployed both on the IB and the LOC. The BSF also has active roles during times of war. It has 257,363 personnel in 186 battalions, and is headed by an Indian Police Service officer.

Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP)[edit]

The Indo-Tibetan Border Police is deployed for guarding duties on the border with China from Karakoram Pass in Ladakh to Diphu La in Arunachal Pradesh covering a total distance of 3488 km.[11] It has 89,432 personnel in 56 fighting, 2 DM and 4 specialized battalions.[12][9]

Central Industrial Security Force (CISF)[edit]

One of the largest industrial security forces in the world, the Central Industrial Security Force provides security to various Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) and other critical infrastructure installations, major airports across the country and provides security during elections and other internal security duties and VVIP protection.It has a total strength of about 144,418 personnel in 132 battalions.[9]including 9 reserve battalions.

Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB)[edit]

The objective of the Sashastra Seema Bal (English: Armed Border Force) is to guard the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Bhutan Borders. It has 76,337 personnel and 67 battalions, as well as some reserved battalions.[13][9][14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ https://mha.gov.in/about-us/central-armed-police-forces
  2. ^ a b c Sixth Central Pay Commission (March 2008). "Report of the Sixth Central Pay Commission" (PDF). Ministry of Finance, Government of India. Ministry of Finance. p. 9. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 September 2012. Retrieved 26 May 2015.
  3. ^ "6th CPC Notification" (PDF). mod.gov.in/. MoD, GoI. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
  4. ^ "Rs 78,000 crore budget for MHA; Rs 1,577 crore for Intelligence Bureau in Budget 2017". The Economic Times. Retrieved 12 February 2017.
  5. ^ >https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/defence/government-allows-women-to-be-combat-officers-in-all-central-armed-police-forces/articleshow/51380021.cms
  6. ^ https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/defence/government-allows-women-to-be-combat-officers-in-all-central-armed-police-forces/articleshow/51380021.cms
  7. ^ https://www.telegraphindia.com/india/women-quota-in-crpf-cisf-to-be-made-15-per-cent/cid/1681181
  8. ^ https://m.timesofindia.com/india/Archana-Ramasundram-becomes-first-woman-to-head-paramilitary-forces/articleshow/50811752.cms
  9. ^ a b c d "MHA Annual Report 2016-2017" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 August 2017.
  10. ^ "COBRA to sting Naxal virus: new force gets Centre nod". Financial Express. 29 August 2008. Retrieved 26 February 2014.
  11. ^ "Indo-Tibetan Border Police". Archive.india.gov.in. Retrieved 9 February 2014.
  12. ^ "Home | Indo Tibetan Border Police, Ministry of Home Affairs". itbpolice.nic.in. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  13. ^ "Guarding the Nation's Frontiers | eGov Magazine". Egov.eletsonline.com. 6 March 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  14. ^ "Force Profile- SSB Ministry Of Home Affairs, Govt. Of India". www.ssb.nic.in. Retrieved 12 August 2017.

External links[edit]