Civil Servant vs Public Servant
Two concepts of public servants and civil servants are very confusing in any study of public administration as both are very similar to each other. Not understanding the two concepts clearly is the reason why some students make the mistake of treating them as interchangeable, which is wrong as despite similarities, there are vital differences that need to be highlighted.
One thing common to both a civil servant and a public servant is the fact that they are both officials in government departments, and though they are termed servants, they are actually bred and brought up to feel superior to common people. Both have an umbrella of security in the sense that their jobs are guaranteed, even if they are average or poor performers, and this sense of security makes them arrogant in their behavior towards common people.
Technically speaking, a civil servant is as much a public servant as a bank officer, though the major difference pertains to the level of control each has in his hands. A civil servant is always a part of the administration, and is thus, a rung above other public servants. Even, a nurse working in a government hospital qualifies to be a public servant, though she cannot be compared to a district magistrate (DM) who belongs to the category of civil servants. There are huge differences in not just pay scales and salaries; there are different sets of rules and regulations in hiring and promotion for both civil servants as well as public servants.
Civil servants are selected through Union Public Service Commission at the union level, whereas every state has its own Public Service Commission to select civil servants and press into service at state level. Those selected through UPSC can get postings in public departments all over India, and this gets decided at the start with the cadre they get.
What is the difference between Civil Servant and Public Servant?
• Civil servants are a type of public servants.
• Both are labeled as servants, though they are administrators and officers performing various duties.
• There is a great difference in rules and regulations governing their hiring and promotion.
• Civil servants are a rung above other public servants.