No, there is no subject called ‘Islamic studies’ in the UPSC exam

Written by Md Mahfooz Alam

A message is viral on social media with the claim that becoming an IAS officer is possible by opting to choose ‘Islamic studies’ as the subject in the UPSC exams. And it is being questioned in the claim if becoming an IAS is possible by opting for Islamic studies, then the study of Vedas, Ramayana, Geeta, Upanishad should also be included in the UPSC exam.

Facto News verified that there is no subject by the name ‘Islamic studies’ either as mandatory or as an optional subject in the UPSC exam.

A Facebook user, Vicky Singh, posted a photo of children wrapped in saffron cloth and made the viral claim.  The caption along with the post reads: “अगर “इस्लामिक स्टडी से IAS” बना जा सकता है। तो स्टडी ऑफ वेद ,रामायण, गीता, उपनिषद को भी UPSC की परीक्षा में शामिल किया जाए। केवल सनातन धर्म से ही इतनी नफरत क्यो..?? ””””’ माना कि मैं हिंदुओ को जगा नही सकता पर पानी में एक पत्थर मार कर हलचल तो पैदा कर सकता हूं ,,,,,

(Translation: If “Islamic Studies can make IAS”. So study of Vedas, Ramayana, Geeta, Upanishad should also be included in UPSC exam. Why so much hatred for only Sanatan Dharma..??”””’ “Suppose I can’t wake up Hindus, but I can create a stir by hitting a stone in water,,,,,)

(Photo Courtesy: Facebook/Screenshot)

The claim is being made by many users on Facebook.

(Photo Courtesy: Facebook/Screenshot)

The claim is viral on Twitter also. A user Hemendra Galia made the same claim.

(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/Screenshot)

An archived version of the same claim made by several users can be accessed here, here, here, here, and here.

FactO Check:

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is conducted in three stages. The first two stages are written followed by the interview for the candidates qualifying in the first two stages. We checked the syllabus of the exam on the website of UPSC of all three stages and found “Islamic studies” is not included as a compulsory or optional subject in any of these stages.

The first stage is called the preliminary examination. The examination comprises two compulsory papers of 200 marks each. The questions asked in the first stage in both papers are of objective nature.

Syllabus of Preliminary Examination

(Photo Courtesy: UPSC/Screenshot)

The second stage is the Main Examination and is of subjective nature. It has seven papers, including an option to choose an optional subject. We found ‘Islamic studies’ is not included in the syllabus even as an optional subject.

Syllabus of Main Examination

(Photo Courtesy: UPSC/Screenshot)

Optional Subjects

(Photo Courtesy: UPSC/Screenshot)

The final stage is the interview, which is taken to evaluate the overall personality of the candidate. And there is no specified instruction of questions being asked from the ‘Islam studies’ in this section also.

(Photo Courtesy: UPSC/Screenshot)


The claim of qualifying the coveted UPSC examination for civil services by opting for ‘Islamic studies’ as the subject is misleading and completely untrue.

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About the author

Md Mahfooz Alam

Mahfooz is a multimedia journalist and regularly writes fact-check stories for Facto News. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication. He has worked as an intern fact-checker for The Quint. He specializes in research and fact-checking and aspires to do investigative reporting.

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