About SCRA

Special Class Railway Apprentices Examination (SCRA Examination)

UPSC conducts examination for selection of candidates for appointment as Special Class Railway Apprentices in Mechanical Department of Indian Railways.

Undoubtedly, Indian Railways is one of the important sections of the Indian Government, known for generating plethora of employment opportunities every year in its various departments. Every year, lakhs of students appear for RRB (Railway Recruitment Board) UPSC SCRA exam for getting railway jobs in India. SCRA exam will be directed for vacancies available in Railway, Special Class Railway Apprentices in Mechanical Department.

Candidates, who want jobs in Mechanical Engineering Department in Railway, will be selected on the base of SCRA exam score.

Since SCRA is a very big department of Indian Railway Recruitment Board thus employees under it are appointed through SCRA exam. The exam is held every year under the supervision of Union Public Service Commission. The exam serves as an entry pass for those students aspiring for admission to under graduate programme in Mechanical Engineering at the Indian Railways Institute of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering in Jamalpur. It’s is one of the oldest and reputed technical institutes.

After the completion of four years apprentice course, candidates are recruited at higher position in Indian Railway, perchance, Group A officers.

Eligibility for SCRA

Age Limit: 17-21 years.

Upper Age Relaxation:

  • SC/ST - 5 years
  • OBC - 3 years

Educational Qualification

  • Must have passed in the first or second division, the Higher Secondary (12th) Examination under state or central board of Education with Mathematics and atleast one of the subject Physics and Chemistry as subjects of the examination.


  • SCRAs are selected through the Union Public Service Commission Examination conducted every year. Notification for this examination is issued in major newspapers, employment news and on the website of Union Public Service Commission around the month of October. A written examination is conducted in January. Candidates are shortlisted based on this examination. They appear for interview/personality test and medical examination normally conducted in May. The final merit list of candidates recommended for selection is issued in June. The SCAs join sometime in July. Further details can be seen at the website of UPSC.


  • At present, Special Class Railway Apprentices follow the four-year (8-semester) Mechanical Engineering Degree Course of Birla Institute of Technology Mesra, Ranchi. At the successful completion of their course they are awarded the regular BE (Mech) Degree of BIT Mesra.

Boarding and Lodging

  • All SCRAs are lodged in Special Grade Hostel, popularly known as ‘Gymkhana’ during their four years training at Jamalpur. SCRAs manage all activities of Gymkhana themselves. Office-bearers are elected by the residents in General Body Meeting. The average expenditure of mess would be around Rs.4500/- to Rs. 6000/-, which is easily manageable within the stipend.

Travel facilities available to SCRAs

  • SCAs are entitled to two free return journey passes in a year which entitle them to travel in 2nd AC class on the trains of Indian Railways.
  • In addition they get four sets return journey of Privilege Ticket Orders that entitles them to travel in classes up to 2nd AC by paying one third of the basic fare.
  • While travelling on Training, they get additional duty passes for all such travel which entitles them to journeys by the 2nd AC Class on Indian Railways in all trains including Rajdhani Express.
  • When travelling in groups, SCAs travel in special training cars that are dedicated railway coaches with bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchenette.