Military Engineer Services
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Military Engineering Services
There is an estimate which says India produces 1.75 million engineers every year and the number continues to increase. Not all of them get placed in giant MNC’s and most of them do not prefer private jobs at all. Many among these want to get a government job and only a few of them know where to find it. IES, Railways are very competitive but there are other options too- that in Military Engineer Service, and it is one of the strongest pillars that the Indian Army, Navy and all the Armed Forces depend upon.
What is MES?
The Military Engineer Services are one of the largest Government services which provide the back end engineering services to the Armed Forces. It is a huge construction and maintenance agency belonging to the Government of India, which is spread all over Indian through various units and sub-units. It is responsible for creating the strategic and the operational infrastructure other than major roads, as also the administrative habitat for all three Services and the associated organizations of the Ministry of Defence. It has Pan India footprint to provide engineering support to various formations of Army, Air Force, Navy and DRDO. MES is a military organization but has both Army and Civilian component of officers and other subordinate staff. The organization does a tremendous work of construction and maintenance throughout the country for the varied requirements of the Armed Forces.
The Military Engineering Services is structured to design works which are executed through contracts under the supervision of officers and staff consisting of both civilians and combatants from the Corps of Engineers. Out of total strength, about 86% personnel working in MES are from Civilian personnel and the remaining are from Corps of Engineers of Army.
It has an integral multi-disciplinary team of architects, civil, electrical and mechanical engineers, structural designers, quantity surveyors and contract specialists for planning, designing and supervision of works. The civilian cadres consists of four main cadre i.e. Engineering, Surveyor, Architect and BSO and an Administrative cadre.
How to get into MES?
Engineering Services Examination by UPSC:
Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) conducts Engineering Services Examination as a combined competitive examination for recruitment to the services or posts of Electrical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering.
The exam is conducted for selection engineers for Government of India’s engineering organizations, such as Indian Railway Service of Engineers (IRSE), Central Engineering Service (CES), Military Engineering Services (MES).
•Date of Notification: 28 September, 2016
•Last Date to Apply: 21 October, 2016
•Date of Preliminary Exam: 8 January, 2017
•Date of Main Exam: 14 May, 2017
Eligibility and Examination pattern
You need to be between 21 years to 30 years as on 1st January of the exam year. Age relaxations exist as per the government rules. You must be a graduate in Engineering from a recognized university. Final year students can also appear.
The new pattern that would be implemented from 2017 onwards is divided into 3 stages. Stage – I (Preliminary) is Objective type and comprises 2 papers General Studies & Engineering Aptitude and Engineering each of 200 and 300 marks respectively and duration 2 and 3 hours each. The stage I comprises 500 marks. Stage II (Mains) is Subjective type consists of 2 papers on engineering concepts of 300 marks each. Only those candidates qualifying at Stage I are permitted to appear for Stage-II examination. Similarly, only those Candidates qualifying at Stage-I + Stage-II are permitted to appear for Stage-III examination. Stage 3 consists on a Personality Test of 200 marks
Only those candidates qualifying at this Stage (i.e. Stage I + Stage II +Stage III) are included in the Final Merit List. Thus the marks secured by you in Stage-I (Objective type papers) of the Engineering Services Examination should be added to the marks secured in Stage-II (Conventional type papers) of the Examination and Stage-III (Personality Test) and accordingly, such marks secured by the candidates in Stage-I are counted for merit.
This is the final stage; candidates who qualify the written exam are called for the interview that carries 200 marks. Officially called “Personality Test”, the objective is to assess your suitability of for a career in public service by a Board of competent and unbiased observers. In broad terms this is really an assessment of not only your intellectual qualities but also social traits and interest in current affairs. Some of the qualities to be judged are mental alertness, critical powers of assimilation, clear and logical exposition, balance of judgement, variety and depth of interest, ability for social cohesion and leadership, intellectual and moral integrity.
The interview is a natural, directed and purposive conversation which is intended to reveal your mental abilities and General Awareness. You are expected to have taken an intelligent interest not only in their special subjects of academic study but also in the events which are happening around you both locally and globally. Once selected, you would undergo training at the academies of your respective cadres that makes you acquainted with the area of work, the cadre is engaged in.
Indian Army University Entry Scheme, UES:
There is another route of University Entry Scheme for young Indian unmarried Male Engineering Degree students (Final Year Students and Pre-Final Year (PFY) BE/ B.Tech (PFY) of various Engineering branch/stream.
Candidates studying in the Pre-Final year (in academic session 2016-17) of the Engineering Course in recognized Universities/ Institution/Colleges in the subjects will be eligible to apply for 27th University Entry Scheme (Jul 2018).
Army Head Quarters reserves the right to short list applications and fix cut off percentage engineering stream wise, for preliminary screening and SSB interview, based on aggregate percentage marks scored by the candidates in the first two years/ four semesters of the engineering degree course
The selection procedure is as follows:
a) Screening Test will be held in respective Command HQ. Preliminary selection of prospective candidates studying in the Pre-Final Year (Engineering) will be made by selection team detailed by Command HQ for holding preliminary interviews at University/ College
Candidates are required to report are screening test at respective Command HQ along with attested copy of Educational certificate listed in para 7 above and other certificate relating to sports and achievement in extracurricular activities like NCC, Social Work, Debates, Adventure Activity .
b) Short listing of Applications: Integrated HQ of MoD (Army) reserves the right to shortlist applications recommended by Comd. HQ in the preliminary screening interviews at University.
Candidates must be physically fit according to the prescribed physical standards. The guidelines for the same are available at www.joinindianarmy.nic.in
Candidates who qualify at the SSB and are found medically fit by a Medical Board will be placed in order of merit. The final selection will be made in the order up to the number of vacancies available at that time. Pre-Final year candidates will be called in the year of their completion of Degree, subject to their being medically fit at that time depending on availability of vacancies and their position in the merit. Selected Pre-final year students would be granted Short Service Commission on probation from the date of their joining the final year class.
After successful completion of degree course the candidates finally selected will be admitted for Pre-Commission training at Indian Military Academy (IMA), Dehradun.
Start date to apply online: 09th August 2016.
Last date to apply online: 08th September 2016.
The nature of work performed by you would largely depend on the engineering branch and the service or cadre you are recruited in. However, you can move to any cadre, organization, agency, department, ministry or PSU of the Government of India. You would be appointed in the posts analogous to your present one, either on deputation basis which is of a fixed tenure (at least 5 years and extensible) after which you may return to your parent cadre or on absorption basis where the official leaves the parent cadre and is “absorbed” permanently into the new cadre.
ESE is therefore considered as one of the toughest exam in India and amongst the toughest in the world due to less number of posts having a low strike ratio and its technical nature. Most toppers of this exam are graduates of institutes like the Indian Institutes of Technology and Indian Institute of Science. Therefore if you wish to bring about a confluence in your career by being a soldier and an engineer, MES is just the right option for you.
Payment to contractors
2019: shortage of funds
Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) may have hit the headlines for not being paid Rs 15,700 crore of its dues by the ministry of defence, but the problem is apparently not limited to the defence PSUs alone. Small and medium-level defence contractors have also claimed that the MoD has not been paying them their dues, resulting in more than 7,000 of them being severely hit.
The contractors say their pending bills are worth Rs 1,600 crore, and the outstanding amount could touch Rs 2,000 crore by March. The ministry owes contractors in the southern region more than Rs 450 crore. More than 24 hours after TOI sent queries to MoD, there was no response.
Officials from the Military Engineer Services(MES) have indicated that they are grappling with acute funds shortage and suggested that contracts for which “there is no money to pay” be “suspended”. Azizullah Khan, senior vice-president of MES Builders Association of India, New Delhi, the only association of defence contractors authorised by MoD, said: “Contractors have almost stopped or slowed down work, have lost their market value as they’re unable to pay suppliers.”
According to contractors, the armed forces — mainly the Indian Air Force and the Army — owed them Rs 1,600 crore as of March 2018, pending from the previous year. Of this, about Rs 1,000 crore was paid, leaving Rs 600 crore worth of bills uncleared.
“Then the payments just stopped. By September, unpaid bills were worth Rs 1,600 crore again. We then planned a nationwide strike, but the defence minister met us just before Diwali and promised payments both before and after the festival and requested us not to go on strike,” Khan said.
Soon after, Rs 250 crore was released by the MoD, leaving about Rs 1,400 crore in pending bills, including a few more that were added.
“Most of the Rs 250 crore went to big contractors like L&T, and a majority of contractors did not get their dues cleared. The minister’s promise of another installment being released has not materialised,” Khan added.
Tilak Narayanaswamy, secretary of the Bengaluru chapter of MES Builders Association, said: “The fact that MoD has not even been able to pay this much is alarming. Even Rs 2 crore or Rs 3 crore money means big trouble for contractors. In the 30-plus years that I’ve worked with the military, I’ve never experienced such a situation.”
A letter to all MES formations in the country from the engineer-in-chief of the service in October last, reads: “For running works where payments are held up due to funds crunch and the contractor is not in position to progress work, the work shall be put under suspension…” A copy of this letter is with TOI and contractors said every meeting with officials has elicited the same response. “There has been no development since then,” Khan said.