NDA is where cadets of the three services ( the Army, the Navy and the Air-Force ) train together before they go on to respective service academies for further pre-commissioning training.

The NDA is located at Khadakwasla near Pune, Maharashtra. After completing 3 years of Training at NDA cadets undergo almost a year training in


Therefore, it is also the first tri-service academy in the world.

How to join NDA

There are two steps of Joining NDA. First one is Passing NDA Written exams & the second one is clearing a subsequent interview

How difficult is the written exam

NDA is an objective type paper (Multiple choice questions) . NDA written exam consists of 2 Papers. Both the papers are on the same day with 1 ½ hour break in between.

10-12:30 MATHEMATICS 300 (120 questions carrying 2.5 marks each) Varies from 20%-30%
02-04:30 GAT (General ability test/ GK) 600 (150 questions carrying 4 marks each ) Varies from 20%-30%

Usually scoring 20%-30% is not a big deal but before you start wondering anything, you must understand now that it is one of the difficult exam to clear. The difficulty arises with the negative marking , that is with every question wrongly answered by you 1/3rd of the marks allotted to that question will be deducted as penalty. This significantly affects your total score.

After the exam, a cut off marks will be decided. If your total score after adding your marks in both the paper exceeds or is equal to the cut off; only then you will be considered as Passed and your roll number will appear in the list released by UPSC. You will not get to know the details of your paper after the result is declared. Once you have cleared your written exam, you will get a call for interview often called as SSB INTERVIEW (Service selection Board interview).

How often is the exam conducted

NDA exam is conducted twice in a year in the month of April and September. To appear in the exam one has to apply online 3-4 months prior to the exam date when the applications are out.


Applications are out on www.upsc.gov.in

Union public service commission conducts exam & manages the result on behalf of Defence.

Following are the steps to fill the form.

  • Go to www.upsc.gov.in
  • Click on apply online and select the exam
  • Further, set your preference for the academies as per your qualification and age.
  • keep your registration ID safe and head to Part 2 of the application for payment.
  • Select the mode of depositing the exam fees
  • After depositing the fees, select your centre of examination.
  • hen upload our photo and signature in mentioned file size and dimensions.
  • Lastly, submit the form.
  • You may keep a copy of the application form for future reference

What is the eligibility to appear

Age Your age should be between 16 ½ to 18 ½ at the time of filing the form.
Stream Appearing or passed 10+2 with Science/commerce/humanity (Arts) or Equivalent Diploma
Gender Only male unmarried candidates are allowed to appear in NDA.
Nationality A citizen of India, or a subject of Bhutan, or a subject of Nepal, or a Tibetan refugee or 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

What's next after clearing exam

After clearing your exam, you will receive a call letter for SSB interview. Once you are recommended by the SSB Board, you will undergo a total medical examination. At this stage if you are declared medically unfit you will be sent back. As soon as you are declared medically fit, your name will be accommodated in the Merit List.

Ranking in merit list is identified by the total marks secured by the candidate in written exam and interview. Finally let’s assume there are 100 candidates who made into the merit list and your rank in merit list is 68 further the vacancies required are just 70, In that case everyone ranking from 1 to 70 will get a Call letter to join the academy (course) for training.

Rest of the candidates will be considered merit out and have to undergo the same procedure again from scratch including written examination.

About training at NDA Khadakwasla

At NDA khadkwasla, you will undergo a 3 years training which will include both academics and physical training. You will be provided with degree certificate from JNU at the end of the term. Therefore, you will be a graduate at the time of finishing the training at NDA.

All your expenses will be borne by government. You will be provided with all basic necessities and leisure wherever required. Further special care is taken at the MESS (dining hall of NDA) where the best class of delicacy are served everyday.

Over these benefits you are also liable to receive stipend per month at your respective service academies. The stipend keeps accumulating till your Passing out parade (POP) and total sum can be encashed at the end.

Once you are commissioned as an officer, your starting salary will range anywhere around 80k keeping aside all other benefits and perks

Finally, if you intentionally leave the academy in between, you are liable to reimburse the cost of training.

Frequently Asked Questions