In the year 1923, the Indian Government established a Public Service Commission to examine the salary structure of the Indian Civil Service. The Commission was composed of four Englishmen and four Indian with Lord Lee of Fareham serving as its Chairman. The Commission also addressed the rate of Indianisation of the Indian Civil Service and the Indian Police. It determined a rate which in fifteen years would make the Indian Civil Service with a fifty per cent Indian membership and the same in twenty-five years for the Indian Police.
It was left largely to the discretion of provincial Governments to recruit and exercise control over their Services, as deemed proper. As a result of the discretionary powers left to provincial Government, the Government of Madras and Punjab proposed to set up their own Public Service Commissions.
The Madras Service Commission thus came into being under an Act of the Madras Legislature in 1929. Madras Presidency had the unique honour, of being the first province in India to establish their own Service Commission.
The Madras Service Commission started with three Members, including the Chairman. After re-organisation of States in 1957, several state level Commissions were constituted. The Madras Service Commission became Madras Public Service Commission with headquarters at Madras in the year 1957. During 1970, when the name of the State was changed into Tamil Nadu, the Madras Public Service Commission also accordingly got renamed as the Tamil Nadu Public Service Commission (TNPSC).