The Indian Posts & Telecommunications Accounts & Finance-a group A service of Civil Services- was formed in the year 1973 under the Ministry of Communications with the cadre controlling authority of Member (Finance) Telecom Commission with a cadre size of 1718. The IP&TAFS Recruitment Rules 2001 regulate recruitment into the service, for which officers are recruited through the combined civil services examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on annual basis as per the requirements. After the selection in the said services and before their regular posting in the department their training begins with the Foundation Course at the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration at Mussoorie followed by training in Financial management at the National Institute of Financial Management, Faridabad, for 48 weeks along with officers of the other organised accounts and finance services.
The final lap of training is at the advanced level telecom training centre at Ghaziabad, with an emphasis on postal and telecom functioning and rules. Their training schedule also includes a rigorous and comprehensive course in advanced accountancy.
After their training the officers are able to handle posts in the Departments of Telecom and Posts, the TRAI and a number of PSUs under the Communications Ministry like TCH, ITT and VSNL to name a few of them. All the finance posts in the largest PSUs in the country-BSNL and MTNL- are also manned by the officers of this service. The other responsibilities held by these officers are budgetary control, finance advice the management of projects and internal audit. In a sector characterized by unparallel growth and rapidly changing technology, they had to give a very good account of themselves to stay abreast and manage the sector.
The service conditions, promotions, disciplinary proceedings and cadre management of the service are supervised and regulated by the Department of Telecom in consultation with the UPSC and the Department of Personnel and Training, Government of India. The senior most person of this service is the Deputy Director General who heads this organisation.