NDA: A bright and respectable career option.

By Namrata Padhi

NDA or NATIONAL DEFENCE ACADEMY, of course, is considered to be a very respectable job. A career in NDA offers a very bright future for students who have completed their schooling or graduation and searching for Jobs after 12th in Defence. Salary of NDA can be as high as other jobs like Engineering, Medical, C.A or lectureship fields.

NDA needs people who are dedicated to the nation without bothering about self. Hence, for this, you need to be passionate enough towards the post. So, if you are passionate enough to join the defence academy wish to contribute to the Nation as a responsible human being of the Nation, then yes NDA is the right choice for you. NDA is the academy of INDIAN ARMED FORCES. NDA gives training to cadets who want to go for INDIAN ARMY, INDIAN NAVAL FORCE and INDIAN AIR FORCE before they join their respective service academies. For just to put it out It's unfortunate that there is No place in the National Defence Academy for the girl.

Eligibility Criteria To Join NDA:

Only male candidates (unmarried) are allowed to appear for the test. The Age of the Applicants should be in between 16.5 to 19 years of age.


A candidate must either be (i) a citizen of India, or ii) a subject of Bhutan, or (iii) a subject of Nepal, or (iv) a Tibetan refugee who came over to India before the 01st January 1962 with the intention of permanently settling in India, or (v) a person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka and East African Countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire and Ethiopia or Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India.

  • Provided that a candidate belonging to categories (ii), (iii), (iv) and (v) above shall be a person in whose favour a certificate of eligibility has been issued by the Govt. of India.
  • Certificate of eligibility will not, however, be necessary in the case of candidates who are Gorkha subjects of Nepal.

Educational Requirements

1. For Army Wing: A candidate who wants to join the Army Wing should have passed the 10+2 exam in any stream.

2. For Navy: A candidate should have passed 10+2 exam in science stream with Physics, Chemistry and Maths as their basic subjects.

3. For Air Force: A candidate should have passed 10+2 exam in science stream with Physics, Chemistry and Maths as their basic subjects.


Physical Requirement Height(Minimum): 

1. Army wings: 157.5 cms

2. Navy Wings: 157 cms

3. Air Force: 162.5 cms

4. Chest of the candidate should be well developed and should not be less than 81 cms.


Read, NDA (National Defence Academy): The Gateway to the Most Prestigious Jobs After 12th

Career with NDA : What's included in the Training At NDA:

Cadets who are selected for the posts are first well trained before they are ready to join the respective armed forces. Training period consists of three years. The Cadets are divided into different Battalions. The NDA course is for three years and is split into six semesters. In these three years of intensive training, cadets are prepared to be strong physically, mentally and also through activities like the drill, horse riding, swimming etc. This course in education covers all subjects like science, Technology, Arts and Military Subjects. When the course ends the candidate is awarded a bachelors degree from Jawaharlal Nehru University. Also, the stipend offered to the candidate after getting selected in the interviews for NDA is of Rs.15,600/- as pay in the pay band plus grade pay of Rs 5,400/- which becomes a total of 21,000/-


Army Cadets- The training is given for a period of 4 years. 3 years at NDA, Pune and 1 year at IMA (Indian Military Academy), Dehradun. 

Naval Cadets- The training is given for a period of 4 years. 3 years at NDA, Pune and 1 year at the Naval Academy, Kerala 

Air Force Cadets- The training is given for the period of 4 and ½ years.3 years at NDA, Pune and 1 and ½ years at air force Academy, Hyderabad.

Also Read : A career in Defence

Talking about Job Security:

All of us need a job, Jobs after NDA which has high security and gives us assurance for our bright future. Hence, the Defence Academy undoubtedly gives us a big assurance about job security. In NDA jobs, you will get many facilities which will allow enjoying the advantages of increments in salary, or with a fixed salary. Also, you get facilities for yourself as well as for your families.

After the completion of the training programs, NDA cadets are awarded the following degrees:

Army Cadets – B.Sc./ B.Sc. (Computer)/BA / B.Tech degree

Naval Cadets – B.Tech degree

Air Force Cadets – B.Tech degree

They all are assigned the rank of a Lieutenant.

Eventual Growth of Rank: 

Army- Lieutenant, Captain, Major, Lieutenant Colonel, Colonel, Brigadier, Major General, Lieutenant General, General and Field Marshal

Navy- Sub-lieutenant, lieutenant, lieutenant Commander, Commander, Captain, Commodore, Rear Admiral, Vice Admiral, Admiral and Admiral of the Fleet.

Air Force- Flying Officer, Flight Lieutenant, squadron leader, Wing Commander, Group Captain, Air Commodore, Air Vice Marshal, Air Marshal, Air Chief Marshal and Marshal of the Air Force.


Salary Package:

NDA gives very good salary package starting from the training itself. NDA doesn't only provides good salary it gives so much of other facilities that you will hardly require to spend anywhere like for travelling in railways or for your children's studies or medical facilities for yourself as well as your family members. Besides the salary of NDA, there are numerous other allowances provided from time to time.

Positions Salary
Stipend INR 56,100/- Per Month
Lieutenant INR 56,100/- to INR 1,77, 500/- Per Month
Captain INR 61,300/- to 01,93,900/- Per Month
Major INR 69,400/- to 02,07,200/- Per Month
Lieutenant Colonel INR 01,21,200/- to 02,12,400/- Per Month
Colonel INR 01,30,600/- to 02,15,900/- Per Month
Brigadier INR 01,39,600/- to 02,17,600/- Per Month
Major General INR 01,44,200/- to 02,18,200/- Per Month
Lt. General HAG Scale INR 01,82,200/- to 02,24,100/- Per Month
HAG+ Scale INR 02,05,400/- To  02,24,400/- Per Month
VCOAS/ Army Cdr/ Lt Gen (NFSG) INR 02,25,000/- Per Month Fixed
COAS INR 02,50,000/- Per Month Fixed

NDA Career Scopes : 

Facilities provided to your Family and assured future:

There will be numerous facilities available for the Cadets like free medical facilities, for your children free school facilities, loan facilities which include for home, car etc free air ticket etc. Also, you get the chance to enjoy the benefits related to sports where you will have access to swimming pools, tennis courts, golf club and squash courts etc.

Candidates will be liable for insurance of INR 15 Lacs/- after paying a one-time payment of INR 6400/- for 3 years.

The Insurance will provide a cover of INR 7.5 lacs to the candidates who are invalidated out from NDA by IMB as disabled candidates. Also, if they are not entitled to any pension and the disability is 100%.

In the case of 20% of the disability, the insurance coverage amount will be reduced to INR 1.5 Lacs.

Candidates are eligible for after service benefits like Pension, Gratuity, and Casualty pensionary award as per the rules applicable after their retirement.


NDA Career Opportunities for Foreign Tasks:

A career in NDA gives you have numerous opportunities to go to a foreign country and also provide a relaxed place for your work.  Also, if you are a master’s degree, officer’s get the opportunity of getting a degree from reputed Colleges of Defence.


Best books for NDA Preparation:

1. NCERT 10th and 12th Mathematics and science books

2. NDA and Naval Academy By RS Aggarwal  

3. General Knowledge & Current Affairs

4. NDA & NA Entrance Examination: Solved Papers


By now you must have got the knowledge about the bright future after getting into NDA here is how to join the National Defence Academy.

The candidates are recruited to respective forces-INDIAN ARMY, INDIAN NAVAL FORCE and INDIAN AIR FORCE through entrance test of NDA which is held twice a year. i.e. NDA-I and NDA-II. NDA exam is conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). Candidates who are shortlisted from the written exam are then asked to attend for various interviews and tests which includes various physical, psychological and group tasks. The candidates applying for the Air Force will have to appear for an extra test named aptitude battery test.


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