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Important books for UPSC Mains exam recommended by toppers 2020

Civil Services Prelims is the first hurdle to the candidates in their IAS journey, preliminary exam marks are not counted for final merit. After announcing the preliminary results there is no time to start preparation for mains.
So you have to prepare for both mains cum prelims. 
Mains examination is the second phase in civil service examination pattern. This phase is descriptive in nature. In this phase you have to write 2 language papers (qualifying in nature), 1 General Essay, 4 General Studies Papers, 2 Optional Papers. For detailed syllabus of each paper, please go through the UPSC Official website.
Here we are mentioning the most important books for UPSC Civil Service Examination General studies Paper 1.

Best Recommended Books for UPSC IAS Mains General Studies Paper 1 by Toppers

Topics in General Studies-I: History and Geography of the World and Society, Indian Heritage and Culture.
Indian heritage & Culture
Art & Culture by Nitin Singhania (Buy on Amazon) – This is the most recommended book. It covers the most topics in Prelims as well as mains. 
Ancient Indian History
Ancient History by RS Sharma (Buy on Amazon)  – This is a huge book for the ancient Indian History section. But you need to focus on social, cultural and religious outlook from each and every topic.
Modern Indian History
India since Independence by Bipin Chandra (Buy on Amazon) 
World History by Arjun Dev (Buy on Amazon) 
Old NCERTs are the best option from 6th – 12th


Best Recommended Books for UPSC IAS Mains General Studies Paper 2 by Toppers

Topics in General Studies Paper 2 covers the Polity, Governance, Social Justice and International relations, Constitution.
To score good marks in this paper, you need to gain thorough understanding of political concepts. In Constitution section the best and most recommended books are Introduction to the Constitution of India by D.D. Basu and Indian Constitution at Work (NCERT) are the best books.
 Introduction to the Constitution of India by D.D. Basu – (Buy on Amazon) 
Indian Polity:’Indian Polity by Laxmikanth’- (Buy on Amazon) 
Governance in India by Laxmikanth – (Buy on Amazon) 
 Above mentioned books will cover most of the polity topics. You can also read NCERTs.
Administrative Reforms Commission Report: This is the most helpful resource for Organizational structure of Indian Government, Reports on local governance, capacity building and more topics will cover ( ARC Report )
India Year Book – This is a huge book, so you don’t need to read from first page to last page. You can focus on some important topics like welfare schemes, Health and Education related information. Buy On Amazon
Yojana – This is also very useful for Essay paper as well as other papers. Some editions will give the information like E-Governance, Women Empowerment and many topics
For International Relations the best source is the Ministry of External Affairs Annual report. 

Best Recommended Books for UPSC IAS Mains General Studies Paper 3 by Toppers

Topics in General Studies-III: Science & Technology, Economic Development, Environment, Biodiversity, Security and Disaster Management
Indian Economy NCERT Books 11th & 12th 
Indian Economy for Civil Services by Ramesh Singh (Buy on Amazon)
Economic Survey: Focus on Highlights
Ministry of Environment is the best source for Environment and biodiversity section.
For Biodiversity and climate change another source is UNFCCC Website
Science & Technology: Read News Paper & Major Online portal on Science & Technology. 
Best Recommended Books for UPSC IAS Mains General Studies Paper 4 by Toppers
Topics in General Studies- IV: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude
NCERT 12 class Book Psychology covers Attitude, thinking and perception.
Ethics & Integrity – Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude for Civil Services Examination by G. Subba Rao  (Buy on Amazon)
Indira Gandhi National Open University ( IGNOU ) Ethics study material also helpful.
For Moral & Ethics – Justice: What’s the right thing to do? – By Michael Sandel (Buy on Amazon)
ARC Report on Ethics
Maintain exclusive notes for each subject and revise 2 – 3 times before one month of the mains exams is the best method to clear the main examination. 
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How to Become an IAS Officer After Graduation?

how to become an ias officer after graduation - how to prepare for civil services examination

If you want to become an IAS Officer after graduation, you must top the Civil Services Exam conducted by the Union Public Service Commission of India. IAS (Indian Administration Service) is the most prestigious service in India. IAS falls into the All India Services along with IPS (Indian Police Service) and IFS (Indian Forest Service). Before the Independence of India, these services calls as Indian Civil Services. Satyendranath Tagore was the First Indian ICS Officer. 

What does an IAS Officer do?

IAS Officer’s basic work is to assist the government in formulating the policies and effectively implementing giving the response to government. They will start their career as a Sub Divisional Magistrate at district level and they can go up to cabinet secretary at central level. 
If you want to become an IAS Officer after completion of graduation, you must know the basic information about IAS Examination.

Who Condust the IAS Exam?

The Union Public Service Commission will conduct the Civil Services Examination to recruit IAS, IPS, IFS and other central Government Positions. 

What are the eligibility and requirements to appear for Civil Services Examination?

To appear for civil service examination every candidate must have the below mentioned eligibility requirements:
For All India Services (IAS, IPS, IFS)
– Must be a citizen of India
– Age Limit between 21 – 32 Years (For reservations and relaxations, please check the official notification)
– At least have an undergraduate from a recognized University
– Fee Rs.100/- (Female, SC/SC/Persons with disability exempt from fee. Please see the official notification)

How to apply for Civil Services Examination?

All the candidates are required to apply online only.

Online Application 

Civil Services examination pattern

There are three phases of Civil Services Examination: Preliminary Examination, Main Examination and Personal Interview.

Civil Services Preliminary Examination Pattern and Syllabus
Civil Services Preliminary examination comprises 2 compulsory papers with 200 marks each.
– General Studies Paper 1
(General Studies: Current Topics, History, Geography, Politics, etc)
– General Studies Paper 2 
 (Comprehension and Analytical Ability)
Both the papers are objective type multiple choice questions with 2 hours duration.
 General Studies paper 2 will be the qualifying paper with a fixed 33 per cent marks
Civil Services Main Examination Pattern and Syllabus

Civil Services Mains is the written examination consists of the following papers:
Suggested Books for Mains recommended by UPSC Civil Service Exam Toppers
Paper A: Consists of 300 Marks
One of the Indian Language selected by the candidate
(You can choose Languages included in the 8th Schedule to the Indian Constitution)
Paper B:
English consists 300 Marks

Paper A & Paper B are only for qualifying in nature
Papers for Merit: Detailed Syllabus for Mains
Paper – 1:
The General Essay paper consists 250 Marks
Paper – 2:
General Studies Paper – 1
Topics in General Studies Paper 1 includes Indian Heritage & Culture, History & Geography of the World and Society. Detailed Syllabus you can see in UPSC Official Notification
General Studies Paper 1 consists 250 Marks
Paper – 3
General Studies Paper – 2
Topics in General Studies Paper 1 includes Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice & International relations. For Detailed Syllabus please check UPSC Official Notification
General Studies Paper 2 consists 250 Marks
Paper – 4
General Studies -3
Topics in General Studies Paper 1 includes Science & Technology, Economic Development, biodiversity, Environment, Security & Disaster Management. Detailed Syllabus you can see in UPSC Official Notification
General Studies Paper 3 consists 250 Marks

Paper – 5
General Studies – 4
Topics in General Studies Paper 1 includes Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude.
General Studies Paper 4 consists of 250 Marks
Paper – 6
Optional Subject – Paper 1 consists of 250 Marks
Paper – 7
Optional Subject – Paper 2 consists of 250 Marks

For Optional Subjects for Civil Services Mains – please check UPSC Official Notification