Time Scale promotion in Indian Defence Forces

Defence Forces

The Defence forces of India are military forces of India that are responsible for safeguarding peace and security of the nation. The Indian Air force, Indian Navy and Indian Army are three elite uniformed forces. Paramilitary organizations and Indian Coast guard assist the defence forces of India. 

Ministry of defence controls the Indian Defence forces. The Indian defence forces hold the world’s second largest military force with over 1.4 million active infantry. The Global firepower report of 2020 listed it as the world’s fourth most powerful force. The noble forces of India have successfully deterred antagonism of different wars such as the Indo-Pakistan war of 1947, 1965 and 1971, the Sino-Indian War, the Chola incident 1967 etc.

There are lakhs of youngsters who have a burning craze for joining the defence forces and serving their motherland. They can easily enter these elite forces by qualifying defence exams like NDA, SSB, AFCAT, CDS etc. Preparation for these education exams requires clear focus and strategic planning. Interested candidates can join coaching centres for sterling guidance.

If anyone needs proper mentoring while studying for the NDA exam, they can link with a brilliant NDA coaching institute in Chandigarh.  Qualifying any defence exam can help candidates secure lucrative jobs in the defence forces.

The time scale promotion in Indian Defence forces :

Job in the Indian defence forces will also offer promotion to high ranks after certain intervals of time. Getting promotion to higher levels make defence officials earn respectable positions in society. 

  • Promotions in the Army

For the first three ranks in the defence forces, promotion is granted on the basis of timescale: after getting selected as lieutenant at the commission, promotion to designation of a captain is offered after 3 years of service(excluding ante-date seniority) then promoted to the post of a major after 4 years of service.

After 13 years of service, the defence official is promoted to the high rank of lieutenant colonel. After this, promotions are granted on the basis of vacant positions. This is how defence personnel are promoted in the air force and the naval force of India. 

 Promotional Structure and staunch rules has made promotions in Indian Army way steeper. Hence, because of this fact, the concept of time scale promotions came into existence.  

  • Time scale promotions in Defence Forces

 Example of army’s colonel rank can make clear understanding of ranks in air force as well as navy.

 Pyramidal structure and tough selection procedure has made it difficult for officers to get promotion. So, lieutenant colonels have to clear promotional exams to get promotion to the higher ranks.

 Qualifying promotional exams and completing a certain period of time in service can grant promotions to lieutenant colonels. Failing to qualify for the promotional exam will require them to finish their time period of service i.e. 26 years. There are umpteen number of juveniles who yearn to serve in the defence force of India. All they need to do is prepare well for the CDS exam. If anyone needs perfect training while preparing for the exam, they can approach a renowned CDS coaching institute in Chandigarh.

  • Reducing the duration from 26 to 23 years

As per the article published in the Hindustan times, the armed forces have reduced service duration required for time scale promotion of Lt. colonel to 23 years of service. This decision encouraged the officers to remain stick to their jobs.  At present, Lt. Colonels who are not able to clear a promotion exam will get promotion after serving for 26 years. 

According to the article, the proud honor of wearing red collar tags three years early will dispirit officers to quit the armed forces after rendering minimum services of 20 years. 

  • Equality of a select officer and TS officer in Defence Forces

After a number of judgements passed in 2015 on promotion for service officers, The armed forces tribunal made a rule that the Indian Navy cannot retire its “time-scale” officer at the age of 54 when “selection-grade” captains provide services till the age of 56.

 “An employee promoted as captain(Time-scale) will perform all the duties of a captain and be offered the same salary and allowance” – The Supreme Court of India. Therefore, the Colonel (Time-scale) will have the same duties and rules as the Colonel(Select).  

Are you aiming to become an officer in the air force of India? If yes, start hard-core preparation of the AFCAT exam. In case you feel the need of astounding mentoring while preparing for the exam then join a magnificent AFCAT coaching institute in Chandigarh.


Aforementioned points states the time scale promotion in the Indian Defence forces. Aspiring candidates can have a clear idea regarding how they’ll flourish their career in the defence forces of India. Fat salary, Luxurious amenities and promotions encourage the Defence personnel. Moreover, they earn respect by rendering selfless service with gallantry efforts for protecting the peace of their homeland.