IAS vs. KAS | Complete Details | Job Profile | Salary | Grade

The Karnataka public service commission or KPSC conducts the KAS exam each year to appoint various potential and qualified candidates to several posts. On the other hand, the IAS post is a sought-after job everyone dreams of. IAS full form is Indian Administrative Services, and it is a tough competition, but the life that it offers is a class apart. It is a job that offers a handsome salary and a lot of respect and honor

IAS or KAS Exam – Which is easier?

  • IAS is tougher than KAS being a national level examination
  • The educational qualifications for both exams are the same. The candidate needs to have a graduation degree from a recognized university
  • The IAS question paper has topics that focus on the entire country. The KAS topics are focused on the state.
  • The language paper is tougher in the KAS examination than the IAS examination. The language paper is just for qualifying in the civil exam, but it is compulsory in the KAS examination.
  • The difficulty factor increases in the IAS exam. You are tested on your knowledge as well as on your personality, and the difficulty level is not that high in the KAS examination.

The selection process of KAS and IAS exam

The selection process for both exams is the same. The first is the preliminary round, followed by the main examination and the interview.

IAS Exam

The preliminary exam is an objective examination of 400 marks. It has two papers, and the candidate has to score the cut-off to be eligible to appear for the mains.

The main examination has 9 papers, and two are qualifying, including the Indian language and the English language. Rest all are merit papers.

KAS exam

The KAS exam has a preliminary exam which is an objective-type question paper. The candidate has to attempt two papers. If the candidate meets the cut-off marks, they sit for stage 2, which is the mains, and have to attempt 7 papers, all of which are merit papers.

Job profile and vacancies

KAS Officer

The KPSC conducts the KAS prelims and main exam to fill various executive and managerial posts in the Karnataka state administration. Candidates also have to sit for the KPSC interview. The posts are classified in the group A and group B cadre. The number of vacancies for each post changes each year.

Here are the post names under each grade that one can opt for:

Group A

  • Deputy Superintendent of Police posted in the Interior Department.
  • Assistant commissioner of commercial taxes posted in the Economic Department.
  • Assistant Labour Commissioner posted in the Labour Department.

Group B

  • Tehsildar Grade II posted in Revenue Department
  • Commercial Tax Officer Economic Department
  • Assistant Superintendents Department of Prisons
  • Deputy Superintendent of Excise Economic Department
  • Assistant Director Department of Food
  • Assistant Director of the audit of Cooperative societies Department of Audit
  • Labour officer Labour department
  • Assistant Director Department of Tourism

IAS officer

The IAS officer field position starts as a sub-divisional magistrate. This is a probationary period. Post this; they move to an executive administrative role as a collector and district magistrate. This lasts for many years. After this, the officer is promoted as a divisional commissioner to manage the entire states’ administrative division. After reaching the high scale, the IAS officer could lead government departments or ministries.

In the state government, the IAS officer starts as an Under Secretary then moves to Deputy Secretary and Joint Secretary. Post this; they become the Special Secretary cum Director, Secretary cum Commissioner, Principal Secretary, and then the Chief Secretary.

In the central government, the IAS officer starts as an Assistant Secretary and then moves to Deputy Secretary, Director-Joint Secretary, Additional Secretary, Secretary and then is appointed as a Cabinet Secretary of India.


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KAS Officer Salary:

Group A

The Karnataka Administrative Service – KAS Group – A (Junior Scale) Assistant Commissioner- Rs. 30.400/- to Rs. 51, 300/-

The Karnataka Police Service – Dy. Superintendent of Police – Rs. 28,100/- to Rs. 50,100/-

The Karnataka General Service (Development Branch and Local Government Branch)- Executive officer/Assistant Secretary (RDPRD)- Rs. 28,100/- to Rs. 50,100/-

The Karnataka Treasury Service- Asst. Director/District Treasury Officer- Rs. 28,100/- to Rs. 50,100/-

The Karnataka General Service (Social Welfare Branch)- Dist. Social Welfare Officer- Rs. 28,100/- to Rs. 50,100/-

The Karnataka Commercial Tax Service- Asst. Commissioner Commercial Taxes- Rs. 28,100/- to Rs. 50,100/-

The Karnataka Labour Service- Asst. Labor Commissioner- Rs. 28,100/- to Rs. 50,100/-

Group B

The Karnataka Administrative Service- Tahsildar Grade B(Revenue Dept)- Rs. 22,800/- to Rs. 43,200/-

The Karnataka Commercial Tax Service- Commercial Tax Officer- Rs. 22,800/- to Rs. 43,200/-

The Karnataka Service for Jails Administration- Asst. Superintendent (Prison dept)- Rs. 21,600/- to Rs. 40,050/-

The Karnataka Excise Service- Dy. Superintendent of Excise- Rs. 21,600/- to Rs. 40,050/-

The Karnataka Treasury Service- Assistant Treasury Officer- Rs. 22,800/- to Rs. Rs. 43,200/-

The Karnataka Municipal Administrative Service- Chief Officer Grade – 1- Rs. 21,600/- to Rs. 40,500/-

The Karnataka Food and Civil Supplies Service- Assistant Director (Food, Civil Supplies, & Other)-. 22,800/- to Rs. 43,200/-

The Karnataka Marketing Service- Asst Director (Agri. Marketing Department)- Rs. 22,800/- to Rs. 43,200/-

The Karnataka Co-operative Service- Asst Registrar of Cooperatives Societies- Rs. 22,800/- to Rs. 43,200/-

The Karnataka Co-operative Audit Service- Assistant Director of Cooperative Audit Dept- Rs. 22,800/- to Rs. 43,200/-

The Karnataka Service for Labour Administration- Labour Officer Rs. 21,600/- to Rs. 40,050/-

The KAS exam is conducted by the Karnataka public service commission or the KPSC for recruitment and staff selection for the state civil service position in Karnataka. It is a gazetted probationary examination, and there are lakhs of candidates who apply for this prestigious examination each year.

IAS officer salary

Here is the IAS starting salary.

Asst. Commissioner – 56,100/-

Deputy Secretary/ Undersecretary-67,700/-

Joint Secretary/ Deputy Secretary- 78,800/-

Special Secretary cum Director/ Director-1,18,500/-

Divisional Commissioner/ Secretary Cum Commissioner/ Joint Secretary-1,44,200/-

Divisional Commissioner/ Principal Secretary/ Additional Secretary-1,82,200/-

Additional Chief Secretary-2,05,400/-

Chief Secretary-2,25,000/-

Cabinet Secretary of India-2,50,000/-


We have summarised the differences between the IAS and the KAS job profiles. KAS and IAS are both administrative service posts. The difference is that KAS is a state administrative post, and IAS is a central administrative post. The state’s public service commission conducts the KPSC exam, and UPSC conducts IAS. The pay structure is also higher for an IAS officer because of the extra roles and responsibilities they play at a national level. The KAS candidates need to work on the administrative upkeep only at the state level. Candidates from all over India can appear for the IAS exam, but only the candidates from Karnataka can appear for the KAS examination.


What is the similarity between the work of IAS and KAS?

IAS and the KAS are both administrative posts in government organizations. IAS officers, however, work on a national level, and the KAS officers work towards the administrative running of the Karnataka state only.

Is the KAS exam syllabus easier than IAS?

The difficulty level of the IAS and the KAS exam is indeed different. The KAS exam is one of the toughest state-level examinations in the country, and however, the IAS exams are even tougher. So if you have cracked the IAS examination, then in all probability, it will be easy for you to crack the KAS exam as well.

Can a KAS officer become an IAS officer?

The center has approved the promotion of the KAS officers to the Indian administrative services.

How much power does the KAS officer have?

The Karnataka administrative service or KAS is a civil service post in the Karnataka state government. It is conducted by the public service commission, which recruits candidates for this service. The officers are recruited in KPSC to take up several administrative posts.

What degree do you need to apply for the KAS and IAS posts?

The KAS and IAS aspirant should have a bachelor’s degree from any recognized university. They should be between 21 to 35 years which is the KAS age limit, and the IAS age limit is 21 to 32 years.