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THE NATIONAL SERVICE ACT, 1972

Title : THE NATIONAL SERVICE ACT, 1972

Year : 1972



(1) Every qualified person shall, if he is liable, at the commencement of this Act, to be called up for national service make an application, within ninety days from such commencement,1to be registered under this Act.

(2) Every qualified person who becomes liable after the Commencement of this Act to be called up for national service, shall, within thirty days from the date on which he becomes so liable, make an application to be registered under this Act,

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1. The commencement date of the Act has not yet been received.

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(1) The Central Government shall, by general order, direct qualified persons who are required to be registered under this Act,-

(a) To furnish at such place and time, in such manner and to such authority or person as may be specified therein, such particulars about themselves as the order may require; and

(b) To make at such place, in such manner and to such authority or person as may be specified in the order, an application to be registered under this Act.

(2) The order made under sub-section (1) may make different provisions in relation to different classes of qualified subject to registration and may provide for exempting from any requirements of the order of any class of qualified persons with respect to whom the Central Government is satisfied that particulars sufficient for the purposes of this Act can be ascertained otherwise than by virtue of those requirements.

(3) If any qualified person fails to comply with any requirement of the order made under sub¬section (1), he shall be liable to be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both.

(4) The Central Government shall ensure-

(a) That upon an application duly made for registration under this Act, the name and address of the applicant together with the particulars of the matters with respect to which information was given by the applicant in pursuance of the order made under sub-section (1) are entered in a register kept for the purposes of this Act, to be known as the "National Service Register"; and

(b) that upon the applicant being registered, a certificate of registration is issued to the applicant in the prescribed form.

(5) The information contained in the National Service Register shall not be used for any purpose other than the purposes of this Act:

Provided that nothing in this sub-section shall preclude the Central Government from disclosing, for statistical purposes, any information contained in the National Service Register.

(6) The Central Government may cause registration to be made of, and a certificate of registration to be issued to any qualified person of a class exempted from any of the requirements of sub-section (1) as if that person had duly applied to be registered under this Act.

(7) (a) If any qualified person subject to registration under this Act communicates to the Central Government in the prescribed manner, that he has a preference for the Army, Air Force or Naval Service, that fact shall be recorded in the National Service Register.

(b) If a qualified person belonging to a class which is exempted from registration under this Act has a preference for the Army, Air Force or Naval Service, he shall intimate such preference to the Central Government in such manner as that Government may specify and, on receipt of such intimation, the Central Government shall cause such preference to be recorded in the National Service Register.

(8) (a) If any change occurs in the name or address of any qualified person while such person remains registered under this Act, or if any such person acquires any additional academic or professional qualification or distinction, he shall forthwith communicate the change ,of his name or address, or, as the case may be, the acquisition by him of additional academic or professional qualification or distinction to the Central Government in the prescribed manner and at the same time return to the Central Government, for correction, any certificate of registration held by him and if he fails to communicate the change of his name or address, or, as the case may be, the acquisition by him of the additional academic or professional qualification or distinction, he shall be liable to be punished with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees.

(b) Upon the receipt of a communication of the change of name or address of any qualified person registered under this Act or of acquisition by him of additional academic or professional qualification or distinction, the Central Government shall cause the necessary corrections to be made in the entries in the National Service Register and shall either cause the certificate to be corrected and returned to such person or cause a fresh certificate to be issued to him.

(9) The Central Government may, by rules made under this Act, provide for the issue, in specified circumstances, of fresh certificates of registration in place of certificates which have been lost, destroyed or defaced.



(1) The Central Government may from time to time cause to be served on any qualified person subject to registration under this Act, and, if he is engaged in any employment, also on his employer, a written notice in the prescribed form stating that such person is likely to be called upon, at any time within a period of twelve months next following, to render national service.

(2) Omission to serve any notice referred to in sub-section (1) on an employer or the service of such notice on a person who is not, at the time of service of such notice, the employer of the qualified person concerned, shall not invalidate the notice served under sub-section (1) on the qualified person and shall not affect the liability of the qualified person to be called up for national service.

(3) The Central Government may cause to be served, on any qualified person served with a notice referred to in sub-section (1), a written notice requiring that person to submit himself to an examination, by such authority, at such place and at such time, as may be specified in the notice, of his physical and mental fitness for being called up for national service.

(4) The Central Government may make regulations for the examination of the physical and mental fitness of persons subject to registration under this Act and such regulations may, in particular, enable the medical and other authority-

(a) In a case where he is unable to complete the examination on one occasion, to direct the person examined to submit himself for a further examination on a specified time and place;

(b) To direct the person examined to submit himself for examination by a specialist.

(5) The Central Government may by regulations determine the categories in which persons examined under this section are to be placed with reference to their physical and mental condition.

(6) If any qualified person fails to comply with the requirements of a notice served on him under sub-section (3) or any regulations, made or directions given under sub-section (4), he shall be liable to be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both.

(7) The Court by which a qualified person is convicted of an offence under this section may, without prejudice to any penalty which may be imposed on him, order him to submit himself to an examination of his physical and mental fitness, further examination or examination by a specialist, as the case may be, at such place and at such time as may be fixed by the Court and any such order may provide that such person shall be detained in custody until that time and shall be taken by a police officer to that place and at that time:

Provided that no person shall be detained in custody by virtue of any such order for more than twenty-four hours.

(8) A qualified person who, having been ordered by a court under sub-section (7) to submit himself to an examination of his physical and mental fitness and to be detained in custody, is taken by a police officer to the place and at the time at which he is to be examined, does not submit himself to an examination of his physical and mental fitness in accordance with the order, he may be arrested by that or any other police officer without a warrant.

9) A qualified person, who fails to submit himself to an examination of his physical and mental fitness in accordance with an order made under sub-section (7), shall be liable to be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, and also with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees.

(10) A notice served on any qualified person under this section shall cease to have effect if, before that date on which he is required to submit himself to an examination of his physical and mental fitness, he ceases to be subject to registration under this Act.

(11) The Central Government may pay to the medical or other authority, specialist, or any qualified person undergoing examination of his physical and mental fitness under this section such travelling and other allowances, including compensation for loss of remunerative time, in accordance with such scales as may be prescribed.



(1) Subject to such priorities as may be prescribed, the Central Government may cause to be served on any qualified person for the time being liable under this Act to be called up for national service, who has been found, after an examination of his physical and mental condition, fit for such service, a written notice in the prescribed form (in this Act referred to as the "enlistment notice") stating that he is called up for national service in such one of the Armed Forces of the Union or in such other service as may be specified in the enlistment notice and requiring him to present himself at such place and at such time and to such authority, as may be specified in the notice:

Provided that an enlistment notice under this section shall not require the person upon whom it is served to present himself on a day earlier than the fourteenth day after the date of service of the notice or such earlier day as may be determined at his request.

(2) An enlistment notice served on any qualified person shall cease to have effect if, before the day on which he is thereby required to present himself, he ceases to be liable to be called up for national service under this Act.

(3) The Central Government may pay to persons required to present themselves in pursuance of an enlistment notice served upon them travelling and other allowances in accordance with such scales as may be prescribed.

(4) If on the day specified in the enlistment notice as the day on which the person to whom the notice relates is required to present himself for national service-

(a) A postponement certificate relating to him is in force, or

(b) Any appeal or application by him for postponement of national service is pending, the enlistment notice served on him shall be of no effect.

(5) The enlistment notice shall be served in such manner as may be prescribed.



(1) Every qualified person who is called up for national service under this Act, or who is transferred from one form of national service to another, shall be paid such salary, wages, allowances, pension, disability and death compensations and other benefits as may be prescribed:

Provided
that such payments shall be on scales not less favourable than those admissible to persons of like qualifications, experience and length of service in similar positions under the Government.

Explanation
.-For the purposes of the foregoing proviso, the length of standing of a qualified person as an engineer or medical practitioner, as the case may be, shall be construed as the length of his service.

(2) Any qualified person who is called up for national service or transferred from one form of national service, or from one place of employment in the national service, to another, shall be paid travelling allowance for journey to his place of employment under this Act at such rate as may be prescribed.

(3) A qualified person who, on the date of the service of the enlistment notice on him, is engaged in any employment, or a qualified person who is transferred from one form of national service, or from one place of employment in the national service, to another shall be paid, for the period of his transit from the place of his former employment to the place of his employment under this Act, salary or wages (including allowances) at the rate fixed by the Central Government under sub-section (1).

(4) A qualified person who was in any employment on the date on which he was called up for national service under this Act, shall, on his discharge from such service, be paid salary or wages (including allowances) for the period of his transit from the place of his employment under this Act to the place of his former employment at the rate fixed by the Central Government under sub¬section (1).

(5) A qualified person who is called up for national service under this Act shall, on the termination of his national service, be paid travelling expenses at such rate as may be prescribed, for journey to the place of his former employment, or, if he was unemployed when he was first called up for national service under this Act, to the place of his residence.



During his term of national service a qualified person may be required to undergo training for such period as may be prescribed.



(1) Every qualified person enlisted under this Act shall be entitled to receive his discharge from national service on the expiration of the period for which be was enlisted and such person may, prior to the expiration of that period, be discharged from national service by such authority and subject to such conditions as may be prescribed.

(2) A person receiving discharge under this section shall be given a certificate in such form as may be prescribed certifying that he has been discharged from national service.

(3) A person who has received discharge under this section shall not be required to render national service after such discharge;-

Provided
that a person who has received discharge under this section before he has completed four years of national service, shall, unless he has ceased to be liable to be called up for national service under this Act, be liable to be called up for national service under this Act for such term as will, together with the period of national service rendered by him, be equivalent to four years.

Last updated on July, 2016

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