Category Archives: Mains Answers

Explained: The Reclining Buddha and his various other depictions in art

In News:

  • On Wednesday, May 26 — Buddha Jayanti, Buddha Purnima, or Vesak — India’s largest statue of the Reclining Buddha was to have been installed at the Buddha International Welfare Mission temple in Bodh Gaya, Bihar.
  • The ceremony has been postponed due to Covid-19 restrictions.

About the Reclining Buddha:

  • A reclining Buddha is an image that represents Buddha lying down and is a major iconographic theme in Buddhist art.

  • Statues and images of the Reclining Buddha show him lying on his right side, his head resting on a cushion or on his right elbow.
  • It represents the Buddha during his last illness, about to enter Parinirvana, the stage of great salvation after death that can only be attained by enlightened souls.
    • The Buddha’s death came when he was 80 years old, in a state of meditation, in Kushinagar in eastern Uttar Pradesh.

  • It is meant to show that all beings have the potential to be awakened and be released from the cycle of death and rebirth.
  • The reclining Buddha was first depicted in Gandhara Art.

Other depictions/mudras of Buddha:

  • Mudras are a non-verbal mode of communication and self-expression, consisting of hand gestures and fingerpostures.
  • While there are a large number of esoteric mudras, over time Buddhist art has retained only five of them for the representations of the Buddha.
  • These five mudras are:
  1. Dharmachakra mudra:
    • Dharmachakra in Sanskrit means the ‘Wheel of Dharma‘.

    • This mudra symbolizes the occasion when Buddha preached to his companions the first sermon after his Enlightenment in the Deer Park at Sarnath.It thus denotes the setting into motion ofthe Wheel of the teaching of the Dharma.
    • In this mudra the thumb and index finger of both hands touch at their tips to form a circle.
    • This circle represents the Wheel of Dharma, or in metaphysical terms, the union of method and wisdom.
    • In this mudra, the hands are held in front of the heart, symbolizing that these teachings are straight from the Buddha’s heart.

  2. Bhumisparsha mudra:
    • Literally Bhumisparsha translates into ‘touching the earth’.
    • It is more commonly known as the ‘earth witness’ mudra.

    • This mudra, formed with all five fingers of the right hand extended to touch the ground, symbolizes the Buddha’s enlightenment under the Bodhi tree, when he summoned the earth goddess, Sthavara, to bear witness to his attainment of enlightenment.
    • The right hand, placed upon the right knee in earth-pressing mudra, and complemented by the left hand-which is held flat in the lap in the dhyana mudra of meditation, symbolizes the union of method and wisdom.

  3. Varada mudra:
    • This mudra symbolizes charity, compassion and boon-granting.
    • It is the mudra of the accomplishment of the wish to devote oneself to human salvation.

    • It is nearly always made with the left hand, and can be made with the arm hanging naturally at the side of the body, the palm of the open hand facing forward, and the fingers extended.
    • The five extended fingers symbolize the following five perfections:
      1. Generosity
      2. Morality
      3. Patience
      4. Effort
      5. Meditative concentration


  1. Dhyana mudra:
    • The Dhyana mudra may be made with one or both hands.

    • When made with a single hand the left one is placed in the lap, while the right may be engaged elsewhere. The left hand making the Dhyana mudra in such cases symbolizes the female left-hand principle of wisdom
    • When made with both hands, the hands are generally held at the level of the stomach or on the thighs.
    • The Dhyana mudra is the mudra of meditation, of concentration on the Good law, and of the attainment of spiritual perfection.
    • It indicates the perfect balance of thought, rest of the senses and tranquillity.
    • According to tradition, this mudra derives from the one assumed by Buddha when meditating under the pipal tree before his Enlightenment.

  2. Abhaya Mudra:
    • Abhaya in Sanskrit means fearless. Thus this mudra symbolizes protection, peace, and the dispelling of fear.
    • It is made with the right hand raised to shoulder height, the arm crooked, the palm of the hand facing outward, and the fingers upright and joined. The left hand hangs down at the side of the body.

    • In Thailand, and especially in Laos, this mudra is associated with the movement of the waking Buddha.
    • In Gandhara art, this mudra was sometimes used to indicate the action of preaching.

Q. In spite of having several achievements, the green revolution has several defects. Examine

Model Answer

The Green Revolution in India began in the mid-1960s marking a transition from traditional agriculture in India and the introduction of high-yielding varieties of seeds and the associated agricultural techniques.

The Main achievements of the Green Revolution are:

  • Increase in Agricultural Production and productivity: The production and productivity of wheat, rice, maize and bajra has substantially increased.
  • Less Dependence on Imports: After the green revolution, India was finally on its way to self-sufficiency. There was now enough production for the population and to build a stock in case of emergencies. In fact, India was able to start exporting its agricultural produce.
  • Employment: The green revolution has created jobs in the supporting industries like Irrigation, transportation, food processing, marketing for the workforce.
  • A Benefit to the Farmers: The Green Revolution has increased the income of farmers and landless labourers. It enabled them to shift to commercial farming from only sustenance farming.

Negative Impacts of the Green Revolution are:

  • Reduction in genetic diversity: Farmers have traditionally planted a wide variety of crops with unique genotypes. The planting of fewer crop varieties for producing high yields can reduce genetic diversity among crop species in a country. This has also led to the loss of distinct indigenous crops from cultivation and also caused extinction.
  • Greater vulnerability to pests: The resistance to one species of pest due to genetic modification might invite other species of pests to attack the crop as in the case of bollworm being replaced by other pest species in the case of Bt cotton.
  • Displacement of small farmers: The Green Revolution has displaced the agricultural labourers, leading to rural unemployment. The mechanical innovations like tractors have displaced agricultural labourers.
  • Land Degradation: The overuse of chemical fertilizers to get high yield causes physical and chemical degradation of the soil by altering the natural microflora and increasing the alkalinity and salinity of the soil
  • Ground water depletion: High-yielding crop varieties can also increase irrigation requirements thus placing stresses on India’s water budget. The excessive use of groundwater for irrigation has depleted the water table in many parts of the country.
  • Ecological and health Impacts: The excessive use of pesticides increases the presence of its residues in foods and environment. There are concerns over increased chemicals being used in growing high-yielding varieties of crops and the consequent health effects.
  • Income disparity among farmers: The high yields, were possible due to the seeds being highly responsive to certain inputs such as irrigation water and fertilizers. By requiring greater investments in agricultural production, the green revolution in India has placed small and marginal farmers at a distinct disadvantage.
  • Increased Social conflicts: It led to polarisation of the rural society. It has created three types of conflicts in the rural community, namely, between large and small farmers, between owner and tenant farmer, between employers and employees on the agricultural farms.

Conclusion:

There is a need of a more comprehensive policy environment that can protect farmers, human health and the environment from the negative impacts of the green revolution in India. A balance must also be found between traditional techniques and modern farming as also with natural growth.

Q. Forest Fires pose a threat not only to the forest wealth but also to the entire regime. In view of this statement discuss the various adverse impacts of Forest Fires.

Model Answer

Fires are a major cause of forest degradation and have wide ranging adverse ecological, economic and social impacts including:

Effects of forest fire:

  • Loss of valuable timber resources: Forest fires cause indispensable loss to timber and deteriorate its quality. Valuable timber species like teak, sal, chir, deodar, sheesam, rosewood etc. are adversely affected by fire. However, the adhesive impact of forest fire varies from species to species, depending upon its susceptibility.
  • Impact of forest fire on eco- system: Forest fires pose threat not only to the forest wealth but also to the entire regime to fauna and flora seriously disturbing the bio-diversity and the ecology and environment of a region.
  • Degradation of water catchments areas resulting into loss of water: After forest fire, the chemical and physical changes in upper layer of soil make it impervious and thus reduce water infiltration. The removal of litter also decreases water holding capacity of soil and most of the rainwater is washed away removing top fertile soil of the forest resulting into loss of soil fertility.
  • Loss of wildlife habitat and depletion of wildlife: Wildfire along with killing wild animals also destroys their habitat and thus makes their survival at stake.
  • Loss of natural vegetation and reduction of forest cover: As a result of fires, millions of hectares of the forest area turn to ashes and remains of no use. Among various degradation factors, forest fire is also one of the major factors for overall loss in forest cover. The wild fires also have adverse impact on forest tree growth.
  • Global Warming: Greenhouse gases released during the combustion of vegetations lead to an increased warming of the earth or human induced global climate change.
  • Microclimate change: The changed microclimate caused by removal of litter and duff, opening of the canopy by killing over storey shrubs and trees and darkening of the soil surface by residual soot and charcoal can increase insulation causing temperature increase. As a result the changed area becomes unhealthy for living of both wild habitats and local people.
  • Health problems leading to diseases: The fires in the forest are source of smoke that cause air pollution and rise in the temperature leading to various health issues.
  • Loss of livelihood: Forest fire also adversely affect livelihood resources, especially for tribals, who are directly dependent upon collection of non-timber forest products from forest areas for their livelihood.
  • Carbon sequestration potential: Trees act as carbon sinks when they absorb carbon dioxide from atmosphere and build up the same in the form of wood. However, burning of the vegetation release hundreds of years of stored carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and thus results into permanent destruction of important sink of carbon dioxide
  • Threat to Life and Property: Human life is at risk when fire crews fight fires either at the fire front or from conflict with animals, especially elephants. A forest fire that spreads outside the forest can consume buildings or infrastructure.
  • Reducing Tourism Values: Smoke due to fires affects the visibility and air quality which adversely affect tourism industry.

Taking into consideration the serious nature of the problem, there is urgent need to focus on key forest fire management elements like strategic fire centres, coordination among Ministries, funding, human resource development, fire research, fire management, and extension programmes.  

Q. “Artificial intelligence is going to change every industry, but we have to understand its limits”. In light of this, discuss the benefits and challenges associated with AI in Indian context.

Model Answer

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the ability of machines to learn and reason through analogy, analyze, interpret information, recognize speech, visual perception and take decisions. In other words, AI is application of human intelligence by the machines.

Benefits of AI

  • Contribution to Economy: The NITI Aayog estimates that AI could potentially give 15% boost to the gross value added (GVA) for the economy by 2035, adding $957 billion to India’s $6397 billion-dollar GVA projected for that year.
  • Access To Affordable Healthcare: The application of AI could increase access to and affordability of quality healthcare. India, with its acute shortage of specialist doctors in rural areas, could benefit greatly from such a tool.
  • Benefits In Agriculture: It can enhance farmer’s income, increase productivity and reduce wastage when used in agriculture. For instance, in agriculture, Microsoft, in collaboration with ICRISAT, has developed an AI-enabled sowing app that sends advisories to farmers on the best date to sow, soil-test based fertilizer application, manure application, seed treatment, optimal sowing depth, etc. In 2017, 3,000 farmers in Andhra and Karnataka used the app, resulting in a 10-30% increase in kharif yields across crops.
  • Benefit in Education: In areas of education, AI can improve access and quality of education. For ex- to tackle school dropout, the AP government has partnered with Microsoft to keep track of data relating to student’s demographic details, past and current academic performance, teacher skills to identify those likely to drop out.
  • Benefit In Infrastructure And Transportation Sector: The AI can also help in improving connectivity and safer modes of transportation when put to infrastructure and transportation sectors.
  • Manufacturing Sector: Robots are being used for manufacturing since a long time now, however, more advanced exponential technologies have emerged such as additive manufacturing (3D Printing), which with the help of AI can revolutionize the entire manufacturing supply chain ecosystem.
  • Legal Sector: Automation can lead to faster resolution of already pending cases by reducing the time taken while analyzing cases thus better use of time and more efficient processes.

Challenges In AI

The Aayog identified barriers that need to be surmounted to achieve success in the use of AI. These include lack of expertise, absence of enabling data ecosystem, high resource cost and low awareness, privacy and security issues, and absence of collaborative approach to adoption and application of AI.

  • Lack of AI Expertise: India hardly has any AI expertise today. As only around 4% of Indian AI professionals are trained in emerging technologies such as deep learning.
  • Lack Of Adequate Data: AI takes reams of historical data as input, identifies the relationships among data elements, and makes predictions. Unfortunately, India has sparse data in many sectors.
  • Lack Of Funding And Deadline: It is one of the major challenges faced by the AI sector in India.
  • Unemployment: Other major concerns is the possibility of human beings losing out on employment opportunities due to machines’ ability to perform the same tasks more efficiently. Automation has already rendered a huge number of people jobless all around the world. 
  • Challenge In Form Of Regulations: Another major concern is about difficulties in regulation of machines in the human society. For ex- how can the self-driven cars that crash be held accountable for their actions? 

Conclusion

To truly harness AI’s transformative potential, India must address its lack of expertise in AI research. With a billion-plus people populating the unique-ID system Aadhaar and the India Stack of digitally enabled offerings built on top of Aadhaar, the country has a platform for growth unlike any other in the world. It can in principle catalyze innovative applications, nurture an entrepreneurial ecosystem and generate a massive amount of data that can train algorithms and help develop more intelligence. The technology can address long-standing societal and human development problems of the kind that abound in India. 

Q. What is Budget Transparency? Scratching its genesis, discuss the benefits associated with budget transparency as well as the ways through which it can be promoted in functioning of a government?

Model Answer

Budgets are key documents since they lay out a government’s priorities in terms of policies and programs. Opening up budgets and democratizing the budget process gives citizens a say in policy formulation and resource allocation. Budget transparency refers to the extent and ease with which citizens can access information about and provide feedback on government revenues, allocations, and expenditures.

Increased transparency in budgeting made significant advances in the late 1980s and early 1990s. This was a period associated with unfavourable budget conditions in most countries – high annual deficits and increasing levels of debt. Governments needed to institute large fiscal consolidation programmes. These were often painful and getting the public’s understanding of the problems was necessary. The most effective manner for achieving that was simply to throw open the books to the public and explaining the problem to them in order for an understanding to emerge as to the best course of action to take. This time period also coincided with increased attention being paid to good governance in general which demanded openness about policy intentions, formulation and implementation – answer to all these was Budget Transparency.

Importance Of Budget Transparency

  • Less Corruption: First, budget transparency and oversight over how resources are allocated and spent are powerful disincentives for officials to misuse or misappropriate funds since their actions are more likely to be scrutinized. This leads to less corruption.
  • Efficient Use Of Resource: Budget transparency allows citizens to provide feedback on the quality and adequacy of services and infrastructure provided. This feedback, combined with reduced corruption, results in more efficient use of resources.
  • Enhanced Trust: In many cases, perceptions of high levels of corruption, poor services and infrastructure, and opaqueness of operations lie at the heart of citizens’ distrust of their governments. The gesture of opening up government books of account is likely to lead to more trust in government.
  • Higher Revenues: Budget transparency is also instrumental in generating higher revenues for governments since citizens are more likely to pay taxes and contribute donations to local schools and health centres if they trust that their money will be well spent. In developing countries, where revenues are often inadequate to pay for needed investments in sustainable poverty reduction and development programs, this is of utmost importance.

Ways Through Which Budget Transparency Can Be Promoted

  • Release Of Budget Data: The systematic and timely release of all relevant fiscal information is what we typically associate with budget transparency. It is an absolute pre-requisite. Disclose budget documents and simplified budget information through electronic and print media as well as online portals and cell phones.
  • Effective Role For The Legislature: It must be able to scrutinise the budget reports and independently review them. It must be able to debate and influence budget policy and be in a position to effectively hold the government to account. This is both in terms of the constitutional role of the legislature and the level of resources that the legislature has at its disposal.
  • Effective Role For Civil Society Through Media And NGOs: Citizens, directly or through these vehicles, must be in a position to influence budget policy and must be in a position to hold the government to account. In many ways, it is a similar role to that of the legislature albeit only indirectly.
  • Improving Budget Literacy of parliamentarians, government officials, elected representatives, journalists, and select civil society representatives and Increasing their capacity to analyze budgets.
  • Create budget literacy manuals for capacity-building programs.

Thus, budget transparency, while not a goal in itself, is a prerequisite for public participation and accountability. Such information must be disseminated in a timely manner so that citizens can effectively provide feedback that can influence policy formulation and resource reallocation. 

Q. If Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) wants to remain as relevant and look toward a new phase of Asia-Pacific economic integration, it must include India as its member. Comment.

Model Answer

  • APEC was established in 1989 as an intergovernmental platform for 21 Pacific Rim member economies to promote free-trade in the region.
  • The grouping is facing the heat of unilateralism and protectionism. Competition and divergence in the form of US-China tensions was on full display at the 2018 APEC summit
  • As a result, a debate pertaining to the question of the forum’s enlargement, with pointed reference to India, has started.

APEC Needs India

  • Economic strength of India – As the region’s third largest and one of the fastest growing major economy, India presents the most promising market in the wider Asia-Pacific. India’s burgeoning middle class is estimated to become 450 million in 2030. Also India aspires to become a $5 trillion economy.
  • Boost to the economic activities – APEC economies are experiencing sluggish growth. Hence, adding India to APEC would augment regional trade and investment.
  • Labour Supply – India’s labor force, which will be the largest in the world by 2030, will help offset the impact of aging populations and shrinking work forces in APEC economies.
  • Legitimate stakeholder in regional and global governance – India is second largest democracy in the world and an important player in Indo-pacific arena.
  • Complementarity – Outside the west Europe, most of the capital surplus nations are in Asia Pacific. On the other hand, India badly needs investment.
  • Emergence of Indo-Pacific Concept – India has emerged as a key player which is central to the Indo-Pacific concept.

Conclusion

  • Strength of the APEC grouping can be gauged from the fact that it represents more than a third of the world population, 47% of global trade and 60% of world GDP.
  • However, declining multilateralism, increasing protectionism and incidents like trade war are creating a pressure on this institution to reform.
  • Hence, it can be said that without India APEC would not only remain incomplete but also unable to reinvent itself. India, on the other hand, will have to ensure economic reforms and openness to qualify for APEC membership.

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Q. Comment upon the role of women in the Indian freedom struggle. How did the arrival of Gandhiji affect their participation in the political sphere?

Model Answer

Indian freedom struggle was not only a political agitation for freedom but also an inclusive movement that included various sections of the society. The process of inclusion only intensified with the multidimensional role of women with renewed vigour after the arrival of Mahatma Gandhi.

Role of Women in Indian Freedom Struggle –

  • Earliest examples – Right from the revolt of 1857 there was the participation of women in the Indian freedom struggle. Leaders like Rani Laxmi Bai and Begum Hazrat Mahal played an active role to oppose British rule in their area.
  • Inspirational courage and valour –Likes of Bhikaji Cama who unfurled the Indian flag at Stuttgart and Communist leaders like Bina Das and ChattriSangh who tried an assassination attempt on Governor of Bengal were an inspiration for all Indians.
  • Reformist and constructivist role – As women’s education spread, there was a small yet active women’s movement working inside the national movement. Congress leaders like Sarojini Naidu and Annie Besant gave them the leadership. Participation of women deepened the meaning of freedom by demanding political rights for women, which were majorly neglected. Various women organizations like Madras Women Indian Association and All India Women’s Conference in 1927 raised voice for voting rights.

Influence of Mahatma Gandhi on Women’s Participation – Gandhiji worked upon at the levels of ideas, techniques as well as programmes.

  • The idea of sisterhood – He described women as the embodiment of sacrifice, humility and knowledge. (Young India 1921). He made the gender issue neutral by emphasizing role models like Sita and Draupadi (who were portrayed as role models of empowered women, albeit in the cloak of traditionalism). He thus emphasised on sisterhood ideal and made the political role of women more acceptable to male counterparts as well as themselves.
  • Erasing public vs private spheres – He provided prabhatpheris, picketing liquor shops, prohibition, flag satyagrahas as well as constructive works like charkha spinning, which facilitated the participation of women. He also took the freedom struggle to the daily activities and impressed upon the people to carry the spirit of nationalism in their routines – thus inspiring them. All these ensured that women could participate from wherever they were in whatever capacity they could.
  • Programmes and methods – Gandhiji emphasized upon values of non-violence and satyagraha. Adherence to non-violence led to an increase in participation of women, which was visible during the Civil Disobedience Movement (From 1930 to 1934). As even men who were reluctant to allow women to participate owing to violence now readily promoted their participation. Gandhiji made women realize their potential of strength and sacrifice, which made women most trusted satyagrahis. It was Sarojini Naidu who took up leadership role during salt satyagraha after the arrest of Gandhi. (Dharasana Satyagraha)

Gandhiji’s mass based struggle drew many women towards Indian freedom struggle changed in the nature of participation from supportive to equal participation. Thus participation of women made Indian Freedom Struggle a true mass-based struggle which not only led to political independence but a great stride towards the emancipation of women and other weaker sections of society. 

Globalization has proved to be double-edged sword for women workers by simultaneously creating opportunities as well as new set of challenges. Discuss. (15 marks)

Approach:  

  • Introduce with globalization
  • List the multifaceted opportunities craeted for working women as a result of globalization.
  • Mention the new challenges as well the women workers had to face.
  • Conclude with measures to overcome the challenges

Model Answer

Globalization is the process of the cultural, social and economic integration of a country with the rest of the world through trade, travel, cultural exchange, social media etc. Globalization has impacted various sections of society including women workers.

The various opportunities for women workers created through globalization are as follows:

  • Creation Of Jobs In Formal Sector: The investment by the MNCs in India has led to creation of job opportunities, including for women workers.
  • Internationalization Of The Issue Of Women Workers Rights: Globalization has also brought focus on the issue of workers’ rights, especially for women, through International Labour Organisation and World Trade Organisation. This has led to the creation and standardization of various rights.
  • Strengthening Of The Women Workers In The Informal Sector: Globalization has provided the opportunity of export, trade for the informal sectors of India benefitting the women workers in such sectors.
  • Others: Globalization has led to integration into not only world’s economy but also certain global values and rights as well as creation of opportunity for jobs and increased pay. This has raised the self confidence of women workers, made them economically independent and also enhanced the decision making power of the women workers.

However, globalization has also proved to be a major challenge for women workers in the following sense:

  • Gender Pay Gap:Various reports have highlighted that the globalization has either failed to fill the gender pay gap or has further accentuated this situation.
  • Loss of Jobs: The increased competition and innovation from all over the world has led to loss of jobs, including of women, in certain sectors that couldn’t compete.
  • Strain On Traditional Social Structure: Globalization, by creating jobs predominantly in urban areas led to mass movement of workers to urban areas, thus disturbing and straining traditional social as well as family structures. 
  • Migration: Feminisation of rural labour has led to migration of male members to urban areas.
  • Sexual Eaxploitation:Movement of women workers to far off areas and away from families has also led to increased vulnerability and increased sexual exploitation and even trafficking. 
  • Health hazard: The increased competition and work pressure on women workers often led to them being employed in poorly paid, part time and exploitative jobs. This has impacted physical and mental health of the women workers. 

Thus, while globalisation has led to great benefits, it is also necessary to mitigate the negative impact of it on women workers by skill development, innovation, developing policies to mitigate risks, so as to create an enduring environment for women worker’s holistic development.

Subjects : Social Issues

Q. Discuss the mechanism of volcano formation and eruption. Also mention the distribution of volcano around the world.

Model Answer

Structure of the answer:

  • Meaning of volcano
  • Mechanism and causes for its formation
  • Distribution of volcano (with the help of data)
  • Conclusion

Volcanos or vulcanism comprises of all phenomena connected with movement of heated material from interior/mantle towards the earth surface. The volcano may be “active volcano” like Mount Etna or “dormant volcano” like Mount Vesuvius or Extinct volcano that have no indication of future eruption.

Volcanos are mainly associated with the weaker zones of the earth and is a result of several interconnected processes, such as:

  • Gradual increase of temperature with depth e.2-3 degree centigrade with every 100 meters.
  • Reduction in pressure on magma due to splitting of the plates.
  • Origin of gases and vapours due to heating of water (when it reaches underground surfaces of earth).
  • Ascent of magma under forces of gases and vapours.
  • “Theory of Plate tectonics” further lays down that volcanism is closely associated with plate boundaries. For ex.- When plate boundaries move in opposite direction like mid oceanic ridges causes splitting of plates and pressure releases. Similarly, destructive/ convergent plate boundaries are associated with explosive volcano.

Distribution of volcanos around the world: Generally, 80% of the volcanoes are located on the converging plate boundaries and 15% are located on constructive plate boundaries. On this basis there are three major belts of volcano—

  • Circum-pacific belt: along the east and west coast of Pacific Ocean. This area is also called Pacific Ring of Fire because of many earthquake and volcanic eruptions. It starts from Mount Erebus of Antarctica-Andes-Rockies-Alaska-Japan to Indonesia. Ex- Mount Cotopaxi
  • Mid Continental belt: where volcano mainly arises from convergence of continental plates and are explosives. Ex- Mount Kilimanjaro
  • Mid Atlantic belt: where volcanic activities due to splitting of plates. Ex- Helena Mountains (Iceland)

Thus, on basis of above analysis it can be said that volcanic areas mainly arises from disturbance in earthly crust and have a profound impact on environment.

Q. India is a “indestructible union of destructible state”. Explain this statement in light of the reorganization of the state under Article 3 of the Constitution.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction (India being indestructible but State destructible)
  • Background
  • Reorganization of the state under Article 3
  • Final analysis

Model Answer

India has been called as “indestructible union” by Dr.B.R. Ambedkar as no Indian state can secede from the Indian union as in the case of confederation or loosely held federation. But on the other hand there is situation of destructible nature of the state as seen in context of Article 3. This has given opportunities to accommodate the aspirations of the people to form their own state and maintain unity and integrity of the country intact.

The Article 3 of the Constitution provides for:

  • The Center can change the “name, boundaries and territories” of the State.
  • For doing the same the consent of the state is not necessary. for exampleFormation of the state of Telangana.

Thus, Article 3 suggest the following points:

  • Indian states do not enjoy full sovereignty as in case of States in USA.
  • The USA, unlike India, follows the concept of “indestructible states” as the territorial integrity and continued existence of the state is guaranteed by the constitution.
  • Moreover, any changes brought in the states as per Article 3 is not deemed as an amendment in the Constitution so does not require the process of Article 368 to be followed (no special majority required to pass such a bill). 

Further, as pointed out by Subhash Kashyap it can be said that the center has absolute power in this regard. But existence of such power does not mean use of power without justification. The changed scenario has put several restrictions on the use of such power:

  • Rise of regional parties.
  • Financial non-viability of destructing a state due to additional administrative expenditure.
  • Growth of the concept of constructive, creative, converging, cooperative and competitive federalism (“C5”).

Hence in light of the above analysis it can be said that though legally India is an indestructible union of destructible states but practically this may not hold true under changed circumstances.

Subjects : Polity

Q. Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) has become a major savior for the banking sector. In this light discuss the impact of new Code on loan recovery and also suggest remedial measures for better implementation of the Code.

Structure of the answer:

  • Background
  • Introduction (about IBC)
  • Positive impact of IBC
  • Lacunas
  • Suggestion and way forward

Model Answer

Before the passing of IBC it took an average of 4.3 years to resolve insolvency and recovery rate was 25.9% as compared to developed countries where recovery rate was 72%.

The salient features are:

  • Consolidation of various laws on insolvency.
  • The resolution process has to be completed within 330 days, including litigations and other judicial process
  • Formation of Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) for regulating Insolvency professionals.
  • Specialized agencies for adjudication in form of NCLT for Companies and LLPs and Debt recovery tribunals for others.

Positive impact of IBC:

  • Improvement in average recovery from 26% to 46%.
  • The Code has created a deterrence effect as seen from the fact that around 3,500 cases involving default of 2 lakh cr. were withdrawn suggesting creditor recovered money from debtor by threat of IBC.
  • NPA worth 40,000 to 50,000 cr. have been converted into standard assets that has freed the resources for wealth creation.
  • IBC has promoted behavioral change among promoters.
  • The Code has reduced the burden on taxpayers as otherwise taxpayers would have to foot the burden of recapitalization of banks.

Yet there are certain challenges before the existing code:

  • The Section 29A of the Code has debarred certain entities thus brought down competition in bidding thereby resulting into reduced recovery.
  • Most of the cases before the NCLT has failed to adhere to strict timeline of 180 days resulting in losses for the creditors.
  • The conflict between the rival creditors (operational and financial creditor) has added to delay and confusion. For ex- Standard Charted bank as a operational creditor challenged the resolution plan as prepared in Essar steel case.
  • Threat of vilification by investigating agencies has created problems for the banks in taking a haircut.

Way forward: Considering the above issues there is a need for:

  • Quality resolution professionals, capacity building of NCLT in terms of creation of more benches and manpower.
  • Moreover, once a resolution plan has been approved no objection should be entertained.

The principal stakeholders in insolvencies such as NCLT, Resolution Professionals, Committee of Creditors need to expedite resolution process.

Subjects : Economy

Q. Since the Press was a powerful weapon in the development of Indian Nationalism, it was subjected to restrictions by the British Government. In this regard, discuss the major regulations enacted by the British rulers to curb the freedom of Press in India.

Model Answer

The press was fiercely involved in rallying the masses and newspapers acted as the life breath of nationalistic rebellion. Inevitably, the British government became increasingly apprehensive and several acts were passed to curb the freedom of press.

Major regulations enacted by the British rulers were: 

The Press Act of 1799: It imposed war time press restrictions.  Which included pre-censorship, it was followed by the Licensing Regulations of 1823 which made the starting of a press without license a penal offence. 

The Vernacular Press Act, 1878: It came to be known as the Gagging Act as it discriminated between the English and the Vernacular Press. It was enacted to curb the highly critical nature of the vernacular press. It provided the government with extensive rights to censor reports and editorials in the vernacular press. When a report was judged as seditious, the newspaper was warned, and if the warning was ignored, the press was liable to be seized and the printing machinery confiscated. 

The Newspaper Act:  In 1908, the Newspaper Act was enacted to curb extremist nationalistic tendencies and it empowered the government to confiscate press property which published objectionable material against the government.  

The Indian Press Act of 1931: In the aftermath of the Salt Satyagraha the Indian Press Act of 1931 was enacted, which gave wide ranging powers to suppress any publication that undermined the government’s authority during the civil disobedience movement.

Defence of India Rules: Under the Defence of India Rules during the Second World War pre-censorship was imposed and amendments were made in the Press Emergency Act, the penalty of imprisonment was extended to five years. Further, the Official Secrets Act was also amended to provide a maximum penalty of death or transportation for the publication of information likely to be of use to the enemy. 

Despite the multiple draconian laws, the Indian press remained impervious to the regulations and worked its way around to defend civil liberties and the freedom of press and emerged as the torch bearer of the national movement.

Q. Foreign direct investment (FDI) is a like double edged sword. In this light discuss the positive and negative impact of FDI in India. Also suggest suitable measures to improve FDI in India.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction (using data)
  • Positive impact of FDI
  • Negative impact of FDI
  • Measures to increase FDI in India

Model Answer

FDI is an investment made by a firm or an individual into business interest located in other countries. Unlike, portfolio investment the investor in FDI acquire foreign business asset, ownership or controlling interest in foreign company.

FDI equity inflow in India in 2018-19 stood at $44 billion. Further, according to UNCTAD’s World investment report, India is 10th largest recipient of FDI in world.

  • FDI has multiple benefits such as generate technology spill overs, helps human capital formation, contributes to international trade integration, create a more competitive business environment and enhances enterprise development.
  • FDI contribute to higher economic growth, which is the strongest tool to alleviate poverty in developing countries.
  • Moreover, foreign direct investment may help improve environmental and social conditions in the host country.
  • FDI brings in foreign technical expertise that is an important factor in improving the existing technical processes and advances in technology.
  • FDI has both backward and forward linkages as create demand for local goods and create jobs and increase employment in the target country.

However, some economists have also criticized FDI on various grounds due to its negative impact, such as:

  • FDI occasionally hamper domestic investment, as it focuses resources elsewhere.
  • FDI impacts exchange rates to the advantage of one country and the disadvantage of the other nation.
  • FDI creates culture of dependency on the foreign capital and may impact sovereignty of the nation.
  • The FDI has sometimes led to large outflow of capital in form of repatriation, dividend payment and royalties

Overall FDI has a positive impact on the economy therefore there is a need to adopt following steps:

  • Adopting favorable policy regime and robust business environment.
  • There is also a need for improving regulatory regime and promoting further FDI relaxation.

The best practice in form of establishing Investment Facilitation Cell like- Japan cell and Korea cell need to be further strengthened.

Q. What are the different types of ecological succession? In this light also discuss the significance of ecological succession?

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Types of ecological succession
  • Significance of ecological succession
  • Way forward

Model Answer

Ecological succession is the steady and gradual change in a species of a given area with respect to the changing environment. The ultimate aim of this process is to reach equilibrium in the ecosystem. The community that achieves this aim is called a climax community. Further, in an area, the sequence of communities that undergo changes is called sere.

In this background there are following types of Ecological Succession:

  • Primary Succession: It is the succession that starts in lifeless areas such as the regions devoid of soil.
  • Secondary succession: It occurs when the primary ecosystem gets destroyed. For Ex- a climax community gets destroyed by fire. It gets recolonized after the destruction (secondary ecological succession).
  • Cyclic Succession: This is only the change in the structure of an ecosystem on a cyclic basis.
  • Autotrophic Succession: It is characterised by early and continued dominance of autotrophic organisms like green plants.
  • Allogenic Succession: In this the replacement of the existing community is caused largely by external condition and not by the existing organisms.
  • Autogenic Succession: In this the community itself, as a result of its reactions with the environment, modifies its own environment and thus causing its own replacement by new communities.

Ecological succession is a very important form of grown and development of an ecosystem as a whole. Some of the points signifying the same are as follows:

  • The sole purpose of ecological succession is for an ecosystem to reach a state of balance.
  • It is the process by which communities of an ecosystem changes in a defined and its directional way over time.
  • Through this process, a relatively unliveable land is slowly converted into a thriving and vibrant ecosystem.
  • It allows new areas to be colonized and damaged ecosystems to be recolonized, so organisms can adapt to the changes in the environment and continue to survive.

Thus, the ecological succession is important for the survival of the existing species as well as emergence of new species.

Q. Regionalism in India is a result of various interconnected factors. In this light discuss the various types regionalism in India and also suggest suitable measures to curtail negative impact of regionalism.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction (regionalism)
  • Factors responsible for regionalism
  • Types of regionalism
  • Conclusion/ way forward

Model Answer

Regionalism is a strong attachment to one’s own region. Thus, it is an ideology that seek to advance cause of a region. The rise of regionalism in India is a result of various factors:

  • Historically, formation of various regional kingdoms and frequent regional wars led to rise of regional ideology.
  • Due to specific geography of a region there developed different food, clothing
  • The mother tongue (linguism) also created a profound attachment to one’s own language and hence regional identity developed.
  • Formation of regional parties to protect regional interest also led to rise of regionalism. For Ex- Shiv Sena.
  • Lop sided economic development led to inequality between different state and consequently leading to regionalism. For ex- problem of Naxalism.

In this background, the different types of regionalism are categorised as follows:

  • Parochialism: When people of a region consider regional interest superior and shun nationalist outlook. For ex- Violence by ULFA (Assam) against Bihari.
  • Regionalism: Reflected when people of a region raise voice for their autonomy, rights, fair share in development process and demand separate statehood or autonomy within state. For ex- Bodoland demand.
  • Secessionism: When a region tries to end its association from the nation to see itself as separate entity on the world map. For ex- Z. Phizo demand for Nagaland.
  • Inter-state rivalry: State and its people see other states as its competitors resulting into conflict over sharing of common resources, land boundary issues For ex- Cauvery water dispute between Tamil Nadu-Kerala.

Way forward:

  • The role of National Integration Council must be revamped to resolve conflicting regional aspirations.
  • Reviving national games such as Hockey, which can become symbol of unity.
  • Cultural sensitisation must be taken up in colleges to avoid hatred based on regions. For ex- setting up food stalls from other states.
  • The focus must also be on development of underdeveloped, backward and naxal hit regions.

Such steps will help achieving the aim of Ek Bharat Shrestha Bharat.

Q. Discuss the various features of tropical cyclones. While mentioning the factors contributing in formation of tropical cyclone differentiate them from extra-tropical cyclones.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Features of tropical cyclone
  • Factors contributing in formation of cyclones
  • Difference between tropical and extra tropical cyclones
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

Cyclone is an intense vortex or a whirl in the atmosphere with very strong winds circulating around it in anti-clockwise direction in the Northern Hemisphere and in clockwise direction in the Southern Hemisphere.  For Ex- Cyclone Titli

Some of the special characteristics of tropical cyclones are as follows:

  • Cyclones have intense low pressure areas and pressure increases outwards.
  • They mainly originate mainly in zones between 5– 30 °C Norther & South of latitude.
  • These originate over oceans in tropical areas & move to coastal areas.
  • They have large destructive force caused by violent winds, heavy rainfall & storm surges.
  • Tropical cyclones follow a parabolic path and its axis is parallel to the isobars.

Some of the necessary condition for the formation of tropical cyclones are as follows:

  • Continuous supply of abundant warm and moist air.
  • Sea temperature in lower latitudes should be around 27°C.
  • The cyclones require presence of large Coriolis force to deflect winds blowing toward the low pressure centre.
  • There must also be pre-existence of weak tropical disturbances.
  • Further, there should be presence of anticyclonic circulation at the height of 9 to 15 km above the surface.

However, the tropical cyclones are different from temperate cyclones in following ways:

  • Tropical cyclone is confined between 5-30° N-S of the equator, whereas temperate cyclone originate between 30 to 60° N-S of the equator.
  • Coriolis force plays vital role in the origin of tropical cyclone, whereas for temperate cyclone frontogenesis is the driving force.
  • Temperate cyclone covers large area as compared to tropical cyclone.
  • Tropical cyclone generally originates over water surface but the temperate cyclone originates over mid-latitude land mass.
  • Temperate cyclone generally moves eastward, while tropical cyclone moves from east to west.
  • Cyclone’s eye is a typical feature in case of tropical cyclone, while temperate cyclone have no such concept.

Thus, as cyclones carries destructive force there is a need for timely dissemination of warning and increasing preparedness of disaster management authorities.

Q. Oceans are the major sources for multiple living and non-living resources that are useful for the growth of blue economy. In this light discuss the concept of Blue economy and its importance for India.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction (Blue economy)
  • Ocean as the source for various resources
  • Importance of blue economy
  • Final analysis

Model Answer

The concept of blue economy was given by Gunter Pauli. It is the sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods and jobs and ocean ecosystem health. Thus, it advocates the greening of ocean development for purposes of higher productivity and at same time conserving ocean’s health.

The oceans are the sources for various resources such as follows:

  • Oceans contain several varieties of fishes and sea weeds that have tremendous potential to be used for industrial and human activities.
  • Minerals derived from the oceans include Petroleum gas, shale gas, Magnesium, Sulphur, Poly-metallic nodules that are useful for industrial usage.
  • Maritime Transport constitute over 80% of international trade and commerce.
  • Ocean and coastal tourism are important source for job creation and economic growth.
  • Tides in ocean release a lot of renewable energy that can be used to operate a turbine and produce electricity. For ex.-
  • Further, oceans are an important carbon sink (blue carbon) and that can help mitigate climate change.

In light of above, the importance of blue economy for India is as follows:

  • Blue economy presents India with an opportunity to meet its national socio-economic objectives as well as strengthen connectivity with neighbors.
  • Blue Economy can help in livelihood generation, achieving energy security, building ecological resilience and improving living standards of coastal communities.
  • Blue economy can reinforce and strengthen efforts of Indian government to achieve the SDGs of hunger and poverty eradication by 2030.
  • Further, marine services sector could serve as the backbone of Indian economy and help it become 10 trillion-dollar economy by 2022.
  • Moreover, international practice of the countries such as Australia, China, Mauritius is also suggestive of the fact that of use of ocean/ blue economy for meeting their development objectives.

Thus, India and world as a whole should look to adopt the Gandhian approach of balancing economic benefits derived from blue economy for meeting the broader goals of growth, employment generation, equity and protection of environment.

Q. The amendment procedure under Indian Constitution is a curious mixture of rigidity and flexibility. In this light discuss the different procedure for amendment reflecting such blend.

Structure of the answer:   

  • Introduction (Article 368)
  • Different types of amendment process
  • Reflection of rigidity and flexibility
  • Way forward

Model Answer

The nature of the amending process envisaged by the makers of our Constitution has been explained by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru as reconciliation of a written Constitution with Parliamentary SovereigntyArticle 368 (Part XX) of the Constitution deals with the power of Parliament to amend the constitution and its procedures.

The Constitution provides a mix of flexible and rigid provision for amendment as noted bellow:

  • Amendment of certain provisions of the constitution requires amendment by a simple majority of each house present and voting. Such changes are not deemed to be amendments for purposes of Article 368. For ex.- formation of new states, citizenship provisions, changes in 5th or 6th Schedule
  • Whereas, special majority is required under Article 368(2). Here, Parliament can amend by 2/3 of the member’s present plus voting and majority of the numerical strength of the house. For ex- amending fundamental Rights.
  • Certain features relating to the federation requires ratification by half of the states besides requiring special majority. For ex.- election of President; representation of states in Parliament

Thus, as discussed above the amending process prescribed by the Constitution has certain distinctive features as compared to other Constitutions of the world i.e. having a dual attribute of rigidity and flexibility.

However, some critics have described the amendment procedure to be too flexible in view of the ease with which more than 100 amendments have been passed in last 60 years of the working of the Constitution. Therefore, the use of the amendment procedure should be as a measure of last resort. Moreover, while passing the amendment the Parliament must preserve the basic framework (basic structure) of the Constitution.

Q. World trade organisation (WTO) as a multilateral body is facing challenges on various counts. In this light discuss the relevance of WTO and also suggest suitable reform in its functioning.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction (about WTO)
  • Challenges faced by WTO
  • Relevance of WTO
  • Reform in functioning of WTO

Model Answer

WTO was set up under Marrakesh Treaty (1994) and as an organization aim to improve living standards, generate employment, and expand global trade.

However, in recent years WTO is facing challenges on various counts such as:

  • Consensus based rule making has become a root cause in stagnation in reforms.
  • Further, the very existence of WTO is under threat with rise of trade disputes/ trade war between China and USA.
  • WTO has also failed to change as per the global requirementFor Ex.- WTO lacks any agreement to deal with e-commerce.
  • WTO is facing process challenges/ loopholes such as the negotiation process prime facie seems democratic but Ministerial Conferences are opaque and overly technical.
  • The dispute resolution mechanism is costly and lengthy. It is majorly resorted to by developed countries and developing countries are victims to the mechanism.

But, the WTO remains relevant considering the following points in its favour:

  • It amicably settles disputes among its members through its Dispute Settlement Mechanism.
  • World trade body serves as a platform on new global trade agreementsLike- Doha Round.
  • It ensures that global trade follows rules-based multilateral trading system.
  • WTO by removing trade barriers stimulates global growth.
  • WTO ensure predictability and transparency in trade-related regulations through its binding provisions.
  • It also preserves member’s autonomy as members are free to enter into preferential trade agreements and free trade agreements.

In light of the above challenges following reforms are required in functioning of WTO:

  • Plurilateral negotiations should be promoted as they offer prospect of building coalition among like-minded members.
  • The appointment process to dispute settlement body should be made independent of political control.
  • The issue of abuse of national-security exemption to justify trade restrictions should be solved at the political level, rather than at WTO.
  • WTO should be conferred with penalizing powers to curb wilful non-compliance.

There is also a need for using other platforms for reform talks such as G20, which have the advantage of limited and effective global membership.

Q. The town planning in Harappan Civilisation shows the high level of sophistication. In this light discuss the significant features of Harappan town planning. Also mention the various theories in relation to decline of the Civilisation.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Significant features
  • High level of sophistication
  • Decline of Harappan civilisation

Model Answer

The Indus Valley Civilization (IVC), also known as Harappan Civilization flourished around 2,500 BC in the western part of South Asia. The Harappan culture was distinguished by its system of town planning.

Significant features of the Harappan town planning are as follows:

  • Division of city into the Citadel e. mound built on the high podium and the lower town containing brick houses inhabited by the common people.
  • The arrangement of the houses in the cities followed a grid system.
  • Advanced drainage and sanitation system of each house were connected with road drains that were covered by stone slabs.
  • The other significant features were well-arranged water supply systemstreet lightning system, designated places to throw waste material

The significant features also show high level of sophistication in town planning as: 

  • The use of burnt bricks in the Harappan cities was remarkable as buildings of Egypt mainly used dried bricks.
  • Harappans laid special emphasis on health and hyenine as seen from bathroom in every house and well laid drainage system.
  • The town planning also kept into mind the need for storehouses for having provision during emergency. For Ex.- Great granaries of Harappa.

However, the Harappan civilization began to decline around 1800-1500 BC and some of the reason/ theories proposed by historians are as follows:

  • The massive floods in the Indus may have been a potent cause for the extinction of the Harappan culture.
  • Repeated seismographic vibrations must have also led to erosion of decline of Harappan civilization as it lied in high seismic region.
  • Further, water scarcity must have led to the exodus of the Harappan people to other places.
  • Outbreak of the plague epidemic is also shown as a reason for the decline of Harappan civilization.
  • Prof D.D. Kosambi is of the opinion that the Aryan invasion is the reason for the decline of Harappan culture.

Thus, the multiple causes/ factors have been proposed to be responsible for the decline of Harappan culture.

Q. The British rule has been often been described as the reason for drain of Indian wealth to Britain. In this light discuss constituent of economic drain and consequences of the same.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction (drain of wealth)
  • Estimate of drain of wealth
  • Constituent of economic drain
  • Consequences
  • Final analysis

Model Answer

The constant flow of wealth from India to England for which India did not get an adequate economic, commercial or material return has been described as drain of wealth from India. Dadabhai Naoroji gave ‘drain of wealth theory’ in his book ‘Poverty and Un-British Rule in India’. Scholarly, estimate drain of wealth to be around 9% of India’s GDP in 18th century and 6% of GDP in 19th century.

The various constituents of drain of wealth are as follows:

  • Territorial Expansion enabled the Company to generate greater commercial revenues to access Indian goods for export purposes.
  • The drain also included the movement of private funds to EnglandFor ex.- earnings of Englishmen from plunders during wars, bribes obtained from the native states According to G.A. Princep, over Rs. 1 crore was sent away from India every year between 1813 and 1820 as private wealth.
  • Another form of movement of wealth away from India was the money paid to banks, insurance companies, shipping companies in England for the services they render in India.
  • The Company’s remittances to England (Home Charges) also formed a major part of the drain. This included, salaries/ pensions paid to the Company’s employees in England

The consequence of Drain of wealth were as follows:

  • It impoverished all the section of Indian society particularly the peasants, who bore the brunt of the taxes raised by the Britishers.
  • It drained India of its precious capital, which could have otherwise been invested in industrialization/ modernization of India.
  • The drain of Indian wealth was used for financing the Industrial Revolution in England and is also the reason why industrial revolution did not take place in India.
  • The economic criticism of British rule had helped in shattering the myth of benevolence of British administration in India.
  • It was instrumental in laying the foundations for the demand for Swaraj and ensuing freedom struggle.

Thus, British methods of exploitation though less painful but resembled the blood-sucking leeches.

Q. The British rule was marked by various Peasants movement. In this background discuss the impact of these movement on freedom struggle.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Various peasant movement in British era
  • Impact of peasant movement on freedom struggle
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

Peasant movement in India arose due to Britishers economic policies that resulted in the change of ownership of agrarian land, massive debt burden and impoverishment of peasantry.

Thus, the peasants rose in revolt against this injustice on many occasions. Some of these are as follows:

  • Indigo revolt of 1859-1860 was result of European planters persuading the peasants to plant indigo. Further, they provided loans at a very high interest. This led to not only debt burden but also severe exploitation.
  • Similarly, in Pabna movementSome landlords forcefully collected rents and land taxes that triggered the rebellion.
  • Deccan Riots (1875) peasants of Maharashtra revolted against increasing agrarian distress.
  • Further, in Champaran Satyagraha (1917), European planters resorted to all sorts of illegal and inhuman methods of indigo cultivation. That led Gandhiji took up their cause.
  • Other significant movements were Moplah Rebellion, Kheda Peasant Struggle, Bardoli Movement (Gujarat), Tebhaga Movement in Bengal

Considering the collective effort to fight the oppressive system, some of the noteworthy impact of the peasant movement were as follows:

  • The movement helped creating awareness among the Indians about exploitative nature of British rule.
  • It also helped developing a strong awareness among peasants about their legal rights.
  • These localised revolts also prepared the ground for various other uprisings such as Sikh Wars in Punjab, Revolt of 1857
  • These movement had given much strength to the peasants who participated in the movement. Moreover, the movement also contributed to the growth of nationalism.
  • The positive impact was also seen in form of various steps taken by the government following peasant movements. For ex- appointment of indigo, passing of Deccan Agriculturists Relief Act, 1879

In light of spectrum of above-mentioned arguments, it can be said that these movements created an atmosphere for post-independence agrarian reforms, for instance, abolition of Zamindari etc. and also added to the transformation of the agrarian structure.  Click to View More

Q. India is currently facing the issue of rising tsunami of e-waste. In this light discuss the challenges being posed by increasing e-waste and also suggest the suitable measures to tackle these challenges.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Rise of e-waste and issues relating to it
  • Challenges posed by it
  • Measures to handle such an issue
  • Final analysis

Model Answer

Electronic waste/ e-waste is a term used for electronic products that have become unwanted, obsolete and have reached the end of their useful life. India generates near about 2 million metric tonne of e-waste annually and it would reach 5.2 mmt per annum by 2020. The main sources of e-waste in India are the government, public and private sectors, which account for almost 70% of total e-waste generation.

The rising e-waste pose multitude challenges in various forms such as:

  • E-waste also impact human health as dismantling and shredding of it releases dust, toxins, dioxins
  • There is huge gap between present recycling and collection facilities. According to ASSOCHAM study only 5% of the e-waste is formally recycled.
  • Cross-border flow of waste equipment into India is another major issue. For ex- uncontrolled asbestos imports from Canada, used batteries from European nations
  • Further, as per ASSOCHAM report (2014), about 5 lakh child labourers are engaged in e-waste activities and that too without adequate protection and safeguards.
  • Unscientific method of recycling and lack of proper safety gear in handling e-waste leads to occupational health hazards.
  • Finally, e-waste rules are blatantly violated and the informal sector remains unregulated.

To resolve the above issues, there is a need to adopt multiprong approach in following form:

  • There is a need to strengthen the domestic legal framework to address the issue of unregulated imports of e-waste.
  • Further, steps must be taken to formalize the informal sector by using strategy of incentivization.
  • Governments must also encourage research for development of better environmentally sustainable e-waste recycling techniques.
  • There is also a need of an effective take-back program for e-waste handling and collection.

Thus, in light of the above there is a need for creating a mass awareness programme to encourage consumers to reuse/ recycle electronic products. For ex- ‘Take-back’ and ‘Planet ke Rakwale’ campaign by Nokia.  

Q. In recent years there has been number of farmer protest around India demanding increase in Minimum support price (MSP). In this light discuss the effectiveness of MSP and need for replacing it with Price deficiency payment system.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Deficiencies in the MSP system
  • Importance of price deficiency payment system
  • Final analysis

Model Answer

MSP is the base price set by the Government and whenever the market prices fall below the announced MSPs, procurement agencies step in to procure the crop at the support price. In India, the MSP are recommended by the Commission for Agricultural Cost and Prices (CACP) for 23 crops based on A2+FL formula i.e. actual cost paid plus imputed value of the family labour.

However, the use of MSP as a method of agricultural pricing is criticized on various grounds such as:

  • NITI Aayog evaluation report (2016) on MSP noted that 79% farmers are not satisfied with MSP regime due to reasons such as delay in payments, distance to the procurement centers, delayed announcement of MSP rates
  • Farmers have also claimed that the prices in wholesale markets are often lower than the MSP. In such a scenario, whatever MSP the government declares might not matter much.
  • Further, only 6% of farmers are able to sell their produce at MSP. Moreover, the MSP operation is limited only to few states.
  • Lastly, the procurement is limited to few crops such as rice and wheat leading to cropping pattern distortion.
    Various PDPS schemes of states:
    • Bhavantar Bhugtan Yojana (BBY) by MP: It applies to eight kharif crops such as soybean, til, maize, urad, tur
    • Rythu Bandhu scheme of Telangana: To relieve farmers from taking loans from moneylenders the scheme provides farmers Rs 4,000 per acre for the kharif and rabi seasons.

This system will address the issue of price crash after the bumper harvest.Therefore, the states such as Madhya Pradesh and Telangana have moved to price deficiency payment system (PDPS). Under it the government simply pays the difference between the MSP and the market-determined price. This system has many advantages such as follows:

  • It will also resolve the issues involved with MSP mechanism such as lack of awareness, procurement confined to selected crops that too from selected states, distortion of the agricultural market and cropping pattern.
  • It will also resolve the issue of needless accumulation of the food stock by FCI involving maintenance cost and storage losses.
  • Such a mechanism is also needed as other risk management instrument such as crop insurance and future trading have not made much headway.

In light of the above, it will be effective and efficient to shift to the new mechanism of PDPS.

Subjects : Economy

Q. Explain how the American War of Independence had transformed the Europe and other parts of the world?

Model Answer

The American Revolution of 1776 had transformed not only the America but also the Europe and other parts of the world. Its direct and indirect influences were felt worldwide in the time to come.

The impact of the American Revolution was as follows:

Ideological impact:

  1. The ideas of liberty, equality, fraternity were popularized all over the world as a result of the American Revolution. These ideas of Enlightenment were absorbed by the common masses everywhere.
  2. The American Revolution provided for the first modern democracy in the world. As a result, democratic ideas gained popularity everywhere and democratic transformation was witnessed in the time to come.
  3. The concept of natural rights of men were also popularized by the American Revolution. The Bills of Rights of 1789 guaranteed a number of Fundamental Rights to American citizens. Through this bill, the idea of natural rights of men put forward by John Locke was given Constitutional guarantee. This act inspired similar guarantees in other parts of the world. The declaration of rights adopted by France in August 1791 was a reflection of the same.
  4. American Revolution paved the way for the first modern written Constitution in the world. The American Constitution was adopted and enacted by the American Congress in September 1787.

Inspired other Revolutions:

  1. The American Revolution played an important role in the outbreak of the revolution in France. Many French soldiers had fought in the support of the liberty and equality of the Americans during the American War of Independence. After the war, on returning to France, they found it difficult to tolerate the denial of those very rights to them in their own mother country.
  2. The flame of Revolution reached Ireland in 1798. A number of nationalist revolutions (led by Simon Bolivar etc) were witnessed in Latin America during the first half of 19th century. Spanish Revolution and the European Revolutions of the 19th century were the continuation of the tradition of revolution triggered by the American Revolution. That is why American Revolution of 1776 is known as the mother of all revolutions.

Effect on India:

  1. The bitter experiences of the American War of Independence made Britain smarter in India. A number of regulations were enacted by Britain particularly after 1783 to strengthen the foundation of its Indian empire.
  2. Having burnt his finger in America, Cornwallis did not take any risk in India. He followed a pro-active approach to wipe out the challenges standing in front of the British East India Company. The Third Anglo-Mysore war fought during 1790-92 was a reflection of the same.

As a result of the success of the American Revolution, America emerged as the most progressive of liberal nations. The liberal and progressive ideas gave an exalted status to the Americans. This process of American ascendancy reached its peak in 1991 when the United States of America remained the only superpower.

Q. Recent international trend has been averse to the use of nuclear energy. In this light, discuss the reason inhibiting use of nuclear use energy. Also bring out the positive externalities arising from use of nuclear energy.

Structure of the answer:  

  • Introduction
  • Reason for averseness to the use of nuclear energy
  • Positive things in relation to use of nuclear energy
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam described nuclear power as a gateway to a prosperous future.  However, World Nuclear Association has reported that nuclear electricity generation in 2017 was at its lowest level since 1999. Even, Germany has decided to close all its nuclear plant by 2022.

The reason for risk aversion to the nuclear energy are as follows: 

  • The cost of construction of nuclear plants is too expensive. Thus, making the production of energy unviable.
  • Nuclear reactors are an unsafe proposition as seen from Chernobyl and Fukushima The cost of clean of Fukushima was estimated to be around $200 billion.
  • Further, there are inherent issues relating to the disposal of the nuclear waste.
  • The nuclear energy is also facing uphill task considering the reduced cost of production of renewable energy like solar and wind energy.
  • The issue has further been compounded by the confusion over the provisions of Civil liability for Nuclear damage Act, 2010.
  • Lastly, the issue of non membership of NSG, problem of land acquisition, regulatory hurdles are also major irritant in the widespread adoption of nuclear energy.

However, there are important benefits in relation to nuclear energy, such as:

  • Nuclear energy has the potential to resolve the issue of India’s continuous energy poverty. About 9 crore household have no access to electricity.
  • The nuclear energy can also help India in meeting the INDC target under Paris Climate treaty.
  • Besides, nuclear power can also reduce the impact of loss of foreign exchange, volatile fossil fuel prices and consequent impact on economic growth.
  • Further, many technologies of strategic importance have been mastered by India in its quest for use of nuclear energy.
  • Lastly, India has largest reserve of Thorium in the world thereby resolving the issue of import dependence of nuclear fuel.

Thus, in light of the above analysis it can be concluded that nuclear energy has a promising benefits for India and world. However, the inherent issues relating to it must be addressed holistically. 

Q. What do you understand by Emotional Intelligence(EI)? Highlight its significance, discuss the ways to develop EI among civil servants.

Approach:

  • Explain the concept of Emotional Intelligence(EI) and discuss its components
  • Highlight the significance and importance of EI for civil servants.
  • Discuss the ways to develop EI among civil servants.

Model Answer

Emotional Intelligence (EI) refers to the capability of a person to recognize, understand and manage own emotions, as well as to understand, manage and influence emotions of others. It is not always virtuous and can be used as a tool for positive and negative ends.

It is said to have five main elements which help in the following ways:

  • Self-awareness: A self-aware person is in better position to understand the emotions of others.
  • Self-regulation: It makes a person think before speaking/doing. It has many positive aspects including that of self assessment and holding himself accountable for his actions.
  • Motivation: It helps in achieving goals. A motivated person leads by example and is in a better position to influence others.
  • Empathy: It helps in understanding a situation by putting oneself in the position of others. Those who can empathize with others earn respect.
  • Social skills: It helps in communicating your point of view and builds rapport with others. It makes the relationship more comfortable.

Emotional intelligence is valuable in a multicultural society as it brings the following advantages:

  • Interpersonal skills, team work, negotiation, networking and other critical social skills
  • People-oriented characteristics with a high sensitivity to diversity
  • Attuned to cultural sensitivities and behavioural norms such as Integrity, honesty and trustworthiness
  • Credibility and reliability rating in terms of commitments and pledges
  • Personal learning skills, especially the ability to learn from, and help others learn from, experience.

The most effective civil servants tend to exhibit a high degree of emotional intelligence. EI can help the civil servants in following ways:

  • Managing family and work life: A civil servant with balanced family and work life can contribute more to the system due to a relaxed state of mind owing to EI.
  • Mutually satisfying relationships: An emotionally intelligent civil servant can reconcile the differences among co-workers or different factions of people and can resolve problems in a more constructive and effective manner.
  • Better work-culture: An emotionally intelligent civil servant brings more energy to the system, thus influencing the working attitude of each employee.
  • Better decision making: Being aware of one’s wants and fears can help the civil servant in being neutral and impartial during conflict of interests.
  • Repose trust in the system: Listening attentively to the problems of people, empathizing with their situation and bringing positive change in the work attitude of bureaucracy, EI can help in making the system more trustworthy in the eyes of citizens.

Development of EI among civil servants:

  • Training through practice and feedback, civil servants can learn from their mistakes using real life examples and reflection opportunities.
  • Support: Coaching, encouragement and peer support can assist with lasting change and positive development of EI competencies
  • Experiential learning: Emotional and behavioral changes require life activities which are primarily outside of the traditional classroom and is commonly referred to as experiential learning.
  • Learning transfer it refers to how people use what they learn in training for performance improvement. Learning transfer seeks to reinforce and apply the information learned on the job immediately.

Emotional intelligence is the single best predictor of performance in the workplace and the strongest driver of leadership and personal excellence. 

Q. In the context of the world history, discuss the achievements of the Bolshevik Revolution of Russia.

Model Answer

The Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 were the two phases of a single revolution where due to the prevailing widespread discontent, Lenin overthrew Kerensky’s government with the help of his revolutionary Red Guard on the night of 6th and 7th November 1917 and declared Russia as a communist nation.

Other significant achievements of the Bolshevik revolution are as follows:

  • Overthrow of power: The overthrow of autocracy, the destruction of the aristocracy and the power of the church were the first achievements of the Bolshevik Revolution.
  • First Communist state: The Bolshevik revolution resulted in the establishment of the first communist state in the world. It transformed communism form and idea to reality.
  • Inspired workers and peasants: The success of Bolshevik Revolution inspired workers and peasants throughout the world. Leftist ideas gained popularity everywhere. Socialist-communist party emerged in Europe as well as in other countries.
  • Emergence of an alternative model: The success of communism in Russia presented an alternative to the capitalist model of political, social and economic life. As a result of which an intense competition in the world to capture the heart and mind of the people took place.
  • Impact on international relations: The emergence of communism in Russia terrified the western capitalist world. Western democracy was forced to pursue a softer policy towards Germany and Italy because the revival of Germany and Italy was considered necessary to counter the spread of communism.
  • Prepared background for the Cold War: The Bolshevik Revolution prepared the background for the Cold War between the capitalist and the communist bloc from 1946-1991.
  • Inspired other countries: The Bolshevik Revolution inspired similar communist movements in many parts of the world. The Chinese communist revolution, and the revolution in Cuba were inspired by the Bolshevik Revolution.

The growing popularity of socialism and subsequent achievements made by the Soviet Union after the Bolshevik revolution helped to recognize that for democracy to be real political rights without social and economic rights were not enough. The idea of the state playing an active role in regulating the economy and planning the economy to improve the condition of the people was accepted. The popularity of socialism also helped to mitigate discrimination based on race, colour and sex.  

Q. Government has promised to double farmer’s income by 2022, in this light discuss the measures taken by government to implement the same. Also suggest suitable strategies to timely and sustainable achievement of this target.

Structure of the answer:   

  • Introduction
  • Measures taken by government
  • Suggestion
  • Way forward

Model Answer

The government has set a target of doubling farmers’ income by 2022 to overcome the distressed situation of agriculture. The situation was evident after large scale farmer’s protest in various parts of India.

The reorientation of strategy was needed due to following reasons:

  • Earlier strategy focused primarily on raising agricultural output ignoring need for income augmentation.
  • Farmer’s income remained low as compared to those working in the non-­ farm sector.
  • The need was further felt considering the large scale farmers suicides after introduction of duty free agri trade.

Government has adopted following strategy to help farmer’s cause:

  • To raise output and reduce cost of cultivation schemes such as Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana, Prampragat Krishi Vikas Yojana have been started.
  • For protection against crop loss, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana has been implemented nationwide. .
  • Further, to address price volatility of perishable commodities Operation Green has been started.
  • To reform agricultural marketing and processing sector, PM Kisan Sampada Yojana, E-NAM portal has been started.
  • Lastly, to have sustainable development of agriculture and promote farmers income National Mission on Sustainable Agriculture has been started.

Suggestions to effectively achieve the target of doubling farmer’s income:

  • The focus must be on increasing the use of quality seed, fertiliser and power supply to agriculture.
  • The focus must also be on allied sector, wherein aim must be to improve herd quality, increasing artificial insemination
  • Further, as per experts about one third income of farmer’s can be augmented through better price realization, efficient post-harvest management, competitive value chains
  • Similarly, Farmers producer organization or Farmers Producer Company can also play big role. .

Final analysis:

  • There is also a need for mobilising States to own and achieve the goal of doubling farmers’ income.

Further, the reformative steps in agriculture must not be baby steps or incremental changes rather structural reforms are needed.

Q. Reform movements in religion were largely responsible for social reform movements in India. In this context, discuss the contribution of various socio-cultural reformers in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Approach:

  • Briefly discuss about the social reform movements in India.
  • Discuss the contribution of various socio-cultural reformers in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Model Answer

Indian Society in the 19th century was caught in a vicious web created by religious superstitions and dogmas. All religions in general and Hinduism in particular had become a compound of magic, animism, and superstitions.

The growing knowledge of India’s past glory provided to the Indian people a sense of pride in their civilization. It also helped the reformers in their work of religious and social reform for their struggle against all type of inhuman practices, superstitions etc. They attacked bigotry, superstition and the hold of the priestly class. They worked for emancipation of women in which sati, infanticide, child marriage and widow re-marriage were taken up, casteism and untouchability, education for bringing about enlightenment in society. All these problems has roots in religious beliefs and superstitions.

The contribution of various socio-cultural reformers in the 19th and 20th centuries.

  • Raja Ram Mohan Roy and Brahmo Samaj :Ram Mohan Roy, the father of Indian Renaissance was versatile genius, who opposed the idolatry, denounced Sati, polygamy and abuses of the caste system, favoured remarriage of Hindu widows. He started the ‘AtmiyaSabha’ in 1815 and carried a consistent struggle against the religious and social malpractices. Other prominent reformers of Brahmo Samaj included Debendranath Tagore and Keshub Chandra Sen. They were was instrumental in popularizing the movement, and branches of the samaj were opened outside Bengal.
  • Young Bengal Movement and Henry Vivian Derozio :During the late 1820s and early 1830s, there emerged a radical, intellectual trend among the youth in Bengal, which came to be known as the ‘Young Bengal Movement’. Drawing inspiration from the great French Revolution, Derozio inspired his pupils to think freely and rationally, question all authority, love liberty, equality, and freedom, and oppose decadent customs and traditions.
  • Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar:-Vidyasagar started a movement in support of widow remarriage which resulted in legislation of widow remarriage. He was also a crusade against child marriage and polygamy. He did much for the cause of Women’s education. As secretary of Bethune School (established in 1849), he was one of the pioneers of higher education for the women in India.
  • DayanandSaraswati and Arya Samaj :Swami Dayanand gave the mantra, “Go back to Vedas” as he believed that priestly class and Puranas had perverted Hindu religion. He wrote a book “SatyarthPrakash” which contains his philosophical and religious ideas. He started the Shuddhi Movement to bring back those Hindus who had converted to Islam and Christianity.
  • Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and the Aligarh Movement : Syed’s progressive social ideas were propagated through his magazine Tahdhib-ul-Akhlaq (Improvement of Manners and Morals). Social reforms among Muslims relating to purdah, polygamy, widow remarriage, women’s education, slavery, divorce, etc.
  • M G Ranade and PrarthanaSamaj :Justice MahadevGovindRanade was a distinguished Indian scholar, social reformer and author. The four point social agenda of PrathanaSamaj were
    • Disapproval of caste system
    • Women education
    • Widow remarriage
    • Raising the age of marriage for both males and females

  • Satyashodhak Samaj and Jyotiba Phule :Jyotiba Phule belonged to the Mali (gardener) community and organized a powerful movement against upper caste domination and brahminical supremacy. Phule founded the Satyashodhak Samaj (Truth Seekers’ Society) in 1873. The main aims of the movement were Social service and spread of education among women and lower caste people.
  • Ramakrishna Paramhansa and Swami Vivekananda: Ramakrishna Paramhansa was a mystic who sought religious salvation in the traditional ways of renunciation, meditation and devotion. He was saintly person who recognized the fundamental oneness of all religions and emphasized that there were many roads to God and salvation and the service of man is the service of God.
  • Balshastri Jambhekar :He is known as Father of Marathi journalism. He was one of the pioneers in Bombay who attacked orthodoxy and tried to reform popular Hinduism.
  • KandukuriVeeresalingam: He was a social reformer who first brought about a renaissance in Telugu people and Telugu literature. He encouraged education for women.
  • Sri Narayan Guru Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Movement: This movement was an example of a regional movement born out of conflict between the depressed classes and upper non-Brahmin castes.
  • Vaikom Satyagraha: It was led by K P Kesava, was launched in Kerela demanding throwing open of Hindu Temples and roads to untouchables.

The writings and speeches of reformers of the 19th century played an important role in the socio-cultural reform which brought about intellectual revolution in India.  These social and religious reform movements arose among all communities of the Indian people which played a socially transformative role.  

Q. India has moved forward by providing fundamental rights of basic education through Right to Education (RTE) Act 2009. Analyse the challenges faced at primary level of Education in India. Also discuss the major reforms suggested at primary level in the recent draft education policy 2019.

Approach:

  • Briefly write about Right to Education (RTE) Act 2009 and its current status.
  • Discuss the challenges faced at primary level of Education in India.
  • Discuss the major reforms suggested at primary level in the recent draft education policy 2019.

Model Answer

With 86th amendment, education was made fundamental rights of the citizen under Article 21(a). Right to education act 2009 was brought in to give effect to Article 21(a). The country has moved forward in bringing every children to the school. But there still remains challenge of huge dropouts and poor learning outcomes.

Various challenges that primary level of education in the country faces are:

  • Poor teaching quality: Teachers are not given proper training. They are engaged in administrative works like implementing Midday meal schemes. 
  • Poor school infrastructure: Schools lack basic facilities like toilets and drinking water. Lack of toilet facility results in huge dropouts among girls.
  • Poor recruitment process of teachers: Since education is a state subject. Some state recruits teachers on contracts without Bachelor of education qualifications.
  • Detention policy: Students are being detained above class 5 level. Detention deters children from completing the primary level of education. Hence, increasing dropouts.
  • Poor pedagogy practices: Child friendly pedagogy is lacking in Indian schools. Curriculum and exam system promotes culture of rote learning and deters creative thinking.
  • Poor regulatory framework: Regulatory framework differs from state to state. Few states like Bihar lacks proper regulatory framework to monitor the functioning of primary schools.

These challenges have hindered India in achieving its objective of providing free and compulsory education with good learning outcomes. The country is still far from achieving the target of 6% of GDP expenditure as suggested under different national education policy.

The recent draft on national education policy 2019 has suggested following reforms keeping in mind the above challenges:

  1. To discontinue detention policy: The draft focuses on adopting continuous and comprehensive assessment (CCA), no detention policy (NDP) together. CCA and NDP if adopted together can reforms the examination system of the country. It will also promote creative learning and end rote learning system.
  2. School infrastructure: The policy suggested that small size of schools makes it operationally complex to deploy teachers. Hence the policy recommends that multiple public schools should be brought together to form a school complex. The school complexes will also include anganwadis, vocational education facilities, and an adult education centre. Each school complex will be a semi-autonomous unit providing integrated education across all stages from early childhood to secondary education.
  3. Teacher management:  Draft Policy recommends that teachers should be deployed with a particular school complex for at least five to seven years.  Further, teachers will not be allowed to participate in any non-teaching activities (such as cooking mid-day meals or participating in vaccination campaigns) during school hours that could affect their teaching capacities.
  4. Teacher training: the policy recommended to replace the existing B.Ed. programme by a four year integrated B.Ed. that combines high quality content, pedagogy and practical training.

The above recommendation can bring significant positive changes in learning outcomes of the children. There is need to effectively implement the target of 6 percent of GDP expenditure and to effectively implement the recommendation of draft policy.Click to View More

Q. The Government of India, through the Department of Science and Technology (DST), has released a draft of the new Scientific Social Responsibility (SSR) Policy. Discuss the objective of introducing SSR Policy and the benefits associated with it.

Model Answer

India is going to be possibly the first country in the world to implement a SSR Policy on the lines of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Under the proposed policy, individual scientists or knowledge workers will be required to devote at least 10 person-days of SSR per year for exchanging scientific knowledge to society.

Objectives

The main objective of SSR policy is to harness the voluntary potential that is latent in the country’s scientific community to strengthen science and society linkages so as to make S&T ecosystem vibrant. This specifically implies:

  • Science-society connect: Facilitating inclusive and sustainable development by transferring the benefits of scientific work to meet existing and emerging societal needs.
  • Science-science connect: Creating an enabling environment for the sharing of ideas and resources within the knowledge ecosystem.
  • Society-science connect: Collaborating with communities to identify problems and develop scientific and technological solutions.
  • Cultural change: Inculcating social responsibility among the individuals and institutions practicing science; creating awareness about SSR within society; and infusing scientific temperament into day-to-day social existence and interaction.

Benefits

  • It will expand the domain of science and its benefits to the community and encourage students into science through handholding and nurturing their interest.
  • It will provide training for skill development and upgrade scientific knowledge.
  • It will help MSMEs, Startups and informal sector enterprises in increasing their overall productivity.
  • Facilitate scientific intervention in rural innovation and empower women, disadvantaged and weaker sections of the society through the same.
  • Facilitate actions towards addressing Technology Vision 2035 Prerogatives and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the country such as water, ecology, health and livelihood.

The government has recognised the need to provide incentives for outreach activities with necessary budgetary support. It has been proposed to give credit to knowledge workers/scientists for individual SSR activities in their annual performance appraisal and evaluation. Thus, with the focus of government, it will encourage science and technology (S&T) institutions and individual scientists in the country to proactively engage in science outreach activities to connect science with the society. 

Q. “Upper House of the Indian Parliament has lost its relevance in contemporary times”. Comment.

Model Answer

India adopted federal form of governance where the states are represented through the Upper House. Except Money Bills, Upper House plays an important role in the law making process in the country. It also plays the role of counsel to states; however, some experts are of the view that this House should be abolished as it is not serving any utilitarian purpose in contemporary times.

Their arguments are:

  1. In the era of coalition politics, Lok Sabha looks a lot like the Rajya Sabha that was perceived at the time of Independence. The fear of states not having enough representation in Parliament is not true anymore. With our polity becoming increasingly fragmented, regions and states are well represented in the Lower House by various parties that have no national interests but narrow regional agendas. The federal structure of India is sound and regional interests are adequately represented in the Lower House, thus rendering the Upper House redundant.
  2. Voting pattern in Rajya Sabha is not on the basis of interests of the states but on the contrary it happens to be on the party line; It has become a platform for parties to further their political agenda than to debate and improve legislation. Important legislations that are passed in the Lok Sabha are scuttled in Rajya Sabha for political reasons.
  3. Rajya Sabha lacks the numbers vis-a-vis Lok Sabha and in a Joint sitting will of the Lower House prevails.
  4. In the case of Money Bill, it is the Lower House which has supremacy over Rajya Sabha and final approval whether a bill is Money Bill or not is a prerogative of the speaker. Upper House has no say in it.
  5. Second chamber is essentially undemocratic as it can override the opinion of a directly elected House. GST bill despite having support of Lower House is incessantly delayed by Upper House.

However above points in no way strengthen the argument for its dissolution. Although some lacunas are there in its functioning but imminent need for reforming and restructuring the Institution and not its abolition.

Some points which prove the worth of this house are:

  1. Upper House provides for detailed scrutiny of bills which may have been rushed through in haste due to political compulsions by the elected members and also acts as a check on such actions.
  2. Second chamber introduces an element of sobriety and second thought. As a revising Chamber also, the Rajya Sabha has revised a number of Bills passed by Lok Sabha. Among some of the important Bills revised are the Income Tax (Amendment) Bill, 1961 and the National Honor Bill, 1971 wherein some substantial amendments suggested by the Rajya Sabha were accepted by the Lok Sabha.
  3. This House brings forth the views of the states and serves as a platform to deliberate concerns of the states. This House is necessary to move in the direction of cooperative federalism.

As Dr. B. R. Ambedkar said “Men are mortal. So are ideas. An idea needs propagation as much as a plant needs watering. Otherwise both will wither and die”. There is need to bring changes in the functioning of House. 

Q. Civil Servant occupy important position in the government in terms of dealing with large amount of public funds and their decisions have wide repercussions. Thus there is a need for creating ethical competent Civil Servants. In this light, suggest ways to promote ethical competence among Civil Servants.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Justifying the statement
  • Steps to improve ethical competence among civil servant
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

With great power comes great responsibility. Civil servants have to ensure proper utilisation, appropriation and allocation of funds. The decisions undertaken by the Civil Servant impact large number of individuals and society as a whole. Moreover, it also has an impact on surrounding environment if values of trusteeship and stewardship are ignored. For ex.- decision to give permission to polluting industry by largely ignoring Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) report.

Thus, considering large impact of their action, it is necessary to lay a strong foundation of ethical values amongst Civil Servants. Some of the suggested ways to improve ethical competence are as follows:

  • Civil Servant needs to take pride in integrity/ procedural integrity. This will help in valuing taxpayer’s hard earned money and ensure proper utilisation of funds.
  • There is need to create a sense of responsibility amongst Civil Servant, wherein they understand that power is not a privilege and need to keep away from usurpation of power.
  • There is also a need to promote values learned from the lives of great leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa
  • Civil Servant also needs to follow the principle of sustainable development and trusteeship so as to help India achieve ‘common future’ or ‘sustainable future’ targets.
  • The techniques of attitude and behavioural change like cognitive appeal, emotional appeal needs to be adopted.
  • Further, serving Civil Servant need to advised to practice code of ethics and code of conduct.

Thus, adopting the above methods in letter and spirit will ensure creating a strong foundation of ethically competent Civil Servant, which is a condition precedent for achieving $5 trillion economy status. 

Q. Describe briefly the features of bronze sculpture art that reached its zenith during the Chola era.

Approach:

  • Introduce the Chola bronze art – why it is considered as the high stage of development
  • Divide the answer into subparts – patronage, religious purpose, technology, and iconography
  • Also mention various examples to substantiate the points
  • Within the subparts, try to trace the chronological development.

Model Answer

The Chola period is well known for the aesthetic and technical finesse of its metal sculpture. Although the tradition started in ancient past, it reached a high stage of development in South India during the Chola period when some of the most beautiful and exquisite statues were produced. The distinguished patron during the tenth century was the widowed Chola queen, Sembiyan Maha Devi.

 The Purpose:

The images were clothed and ornamented and formed part of temple rituals and ceremonials. Many of the southern images were carried about in processions. Many Shiva temples of South India have a separate natana-sabha, where the image of Nataraja is placed. This can be seen in the temple at Chidambaram.

 The Technique:

Indian sculptors had mastered the bronze medium and the casting process quite early. The ‘lost-wax’ process for casting was learnt during the Harappan Culture. This technique and art of bronze images was skillfully practised in the urban centres of South India like Kumbakonam.

 The early Pallava bronze representations of Nataraja are metal translations of wooden images. Later, in the Chola period, craftspeople recognized the greater tensile strength of metal in comparison with wood. Unlike the northern images that were made out of an alloy of eight metals (gold, silver, tin, lead, iron, mercury, zinc, and copper) while the southern ones are made of an alloy of five metals (copper, silver, gold, tin, and lead) and were solid, not hollow.

 Themes and Iconography:

The sculptors largely confined to the iconographic conventions established by long tradition and yet exercised their imagination and worked with greater freedom during the eleventh and the twelfth centuries. As a result, the bronzes images of this era show classic grace, grandeur and taste. It also absorbed some folk iconographic elements into the mainstream religious or court art (eg images of Andal)

The well-known dancing figure of Shiva as Nataraja was evolved and fully developed during the Chola period and since then many variations of this complex bronze image have been modelled. It is primarily depicted as performing angry tandava or blissful tandava. There are differences in the expression, ornamentation, the number of arms, and in the attendant figures. A wide range of Shiva iconography was evolved in the Thanjavur region of Tamil Nadu (eg. Kalyanasundara, Panigraha, Ardhinarishwar, Bhikshatana etc). Other themes include Krishna and the Alvar and Nayanmar saints. There are a few Buddhist images as well.

Later on, during the post-Chola era, there was increasing ornamentation and elaboration of bronze art that continued the iconographic features of the Chola period but became more and more baroque.

Q. The large-scale occurrence of floods is a result of multitude of factors. In this background discuss the causes of floods and steps to minimise the vulnerability to floods.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Causes of floods
  • Steps to mitigate vulnerability
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

Flood is a state of higher water level along a river channel or on coast leading to inundation of land that is not normally submerge. In India, 40 million hectares out of a geographical area of 3290 lakh hectares is prone to floods. Moreover, every year, 1600 lives are lost and the damage caused to crops, houses and public utilities is Rs. 1800 crores due to floods.

The main causes for floods are as follows:

The rivers bring heavy sediment load from catchments. These, coupled with inadequate carrying capacity of rivers are responsible for causing floods.

  • Some of the general causes are drainage congestion, erosion of river-banks, silting in deltaic areas
  • Moreover, about 75% of the annual rainfall in India is concentrated in 3-4 months of the monsoon season. As a result, there is very heavy discharge from rivers during the period causing widespread floods.
  • Further, cyclones, cloud bursts, storm surge cause flash floods and lead to huge loss of life and property.
  • Lastly, in urban areas the urban flooding is caused by increasing incidence of heavy rainfall in a short period of time, indiscriminate encroachment of waterways, inadequate capacity of drains and lack of maintenance of the drainage infrastructure. For ex.- Chennai floods.

Steps to mitigate flood vulnerability are as follows:

  • There is a need for identification and marking of flood prone areas and preparation of close contour and flood vulnerability maps.
  • Further, this must be followed by implementation of the schemes for expansion and modernisation of the flood forecasting and warning network, execution of flood protection and drainage improvement schemes
  • The focus must also be on development of hard management techniques like dams, embankments or artificial levees
  • Further, flood walls/ River defences/ Coastal defences can be built around settlements to protect them from floods.
  • Lastly, the focus must also be on afforestation, proper land use management

Thus, the causes of the floods being natural and man made requires, thus to control and mitigate the same requires interdisciplinary approach. 

Q. What was the immediate trigger of the World War-I? What were the reasons for the breakout of the war? Comment

Model Answer

World War-I has its roots in the assassination of a prince. On 28 June 1914, Archduke Francis Ferdinand, the heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary was assassinated by a Serbian terrorist at Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia. Austria saw the hands of Serbia behind this and served Serbia an ultimatum. Serbia refused to accept one of the demands of ultimatum. Hence, on 28 July 1914, Austria declared war on Serbia.  Then, Germany declared war on Russia and France. Britain declared war on Germany. Japan declared war on Germany with a view to capture its colonies in the Far East. Turkey and Bulgaria joined on the side of Germany. Italy initially remained neutral and later joined the war against Germany in 1915.

There are various reasons for the breakout of the war:

  1. Imperialist Rivalries: The scramble for colonies led to emergence of conflict between imperialist powers. By the last decade of 19th century almost all areas were under imperialist control and further conquest could only happen by dispossessing some other country. Rivalries resulted in attempts to re-divide the world creating conditions of war.
  2. Progress of the latecomer Germany: Germany made massive progress after its unification in 1870. It became leading producer of iron, steel and coal and left behind France and Britain. It entered shipping trade as well and possessed Imperator, the largest ship in the world. Since Germany was a late comer it could not grab as much colony as it desired.
  3. Clash of interests: Both Italy and Austria had their ambitions in the Ottoman Empire. Japan fought with Russia for extending its territorial possessions in the Far East. There was an intense naval rivalry between Germany and Britain as Britain defended its large territory. Germans accused Britain, Russia and France of trying to ‘encircle’ it.
  4. Serbian Nationalism: Serbia had the ambition of uniting all Slavs many of whom lived in Austria – Hungarian empire, which consisted of people from different nationalities (Slovaks, Czechs, Italian, etc.). Therefore, even Austria wanted to destroy Serbia.
  5. Alliance Formation: Opposing groups were formed and vast sums of money were spent to increase size of army and navy and develop deadly weapons. Europe became a vast armed camp. Propaganda for war and projecting own country as superior to other started.
  6. a) Triple Alliance (1882) – Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy.
  7. b) Triple Entente or Understanding (1907) – France, Britain and Russia. Loose group based on mutual understanding.

The First World War was the most frightful war the world had seen so far in terms of devastation it caused, the number of people who fought it, the famines and the social problems it created. Instead of destroying imperialism, it helped the victorious powers in enlarging their possessions.  

Q. The Citizen’s Charter is an ideal instrument of organisational transparency and accountability. Identify the importance and components of Citizen’s Charter. Tracing out its limitations, suggest measures for its greater effectiveness.

Approach:

  • Start introduction mentioning the challenges in public service delivery.
  • Define Citizen’s Charter stating its importance and it components.
  • Discuss the limitation in implementation of Citizen’s Charter.
  • Discuss the measures to ensure its effective implementation.

Model Answer

The public service delivery of India faced a problem of bureaucratic corruption and delays. The government functioned in a very opaque and unaccountable manner. There existed a problem of information asymmetry between the government department and the consumers. There was an absence of grievance redress mechanism with in government framework.

Keeping this in concern, Citizen’s Charters were introduced in India in the 1990s. Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG) defines Citizen’s Charter as a document which represents a systematic effort to focus on the commitment of the Organisation towards its Citizens in respect of Standard of Services, Information, Choice and Consultation, Accessibility and Grievance Redress.

Citizen’s Charter aims at:

  • Making administration transparent and accountable
  • Bringing time bound delivery of services
  • Promoting awareness among the consumers about the quality of service to be delivered.
  • Promoting citizens friendly administration
  • To improve the experiences of customers by improving service delivery.
  • To address the grievances of citizens through Grievance Redress Mechanism.

Citizen’s charter possess following components to achieve its aim. Its six components are:

  • Vision and Mission Statements
  • Details of business transacted by the Organisation.
  • Details of Clients
  • Details of services provided to each client group.
  • Details of grievance redress mechanisms and how to access them
  • Expectations from clients

The Institutionalisation of concept of Citizen’s charter is there in every government department in India since 1997.  However, its implementation is still in embryonic stage. Earlier, Introduction and implementation of the concept of Citizens’ Charter in the Government of India was much more complicated due to the old bureaucratic set up/procedures and the rigid attitudes of the workforce. 

 Various Limitations/ Hurdles encountered in these initiatives are:

  • Citizen’s charter was viewed as an exercise to be performed by getting direction from top. It lacks participation and consultation process. Hence, it just becomes one of the routine activities of the organisation and had no focus.
  • The concerned staff are not sufficiently trained and sensitised. The commitments of the Charter cannot be expected to be delivered by a workforce that is unaware of the spirit and content of the Charter.
  • Sometimes, transfers and reshuffles of concerned officers at the critical stages of formulation/implementation of a Citizens’ Charter in an organisation severely destabilised the strategic processes which were put in place and hampered the progress of the initiative.
  • Awareness campaign to teach the client about Charter is not conducted properly.
  • There are cases where standard or norms of the services mentioned in the Charter are either too negligent or too tight and are impractical.
  •  The notion behind the Citizens’ Charter is not accurately understood. Information brochures, publicity materials, pamphlets produced earlier by the organisations are mistaken for Citizens’ Charters.

Various effective measures that can be taken to deal with the above hurdles are:

  • The department should guard against the tendency to promise more than they can deliver. A realistic assessment of quality and standard of service delivery is needed.
  • Proper training and sensitisation programme among staff are needed. Implementing the Charters without the staff owning them will defeat the purpose of the Charter.
  • Consultation exercise is a must to ensure bottom up approach in its implementation.
  • Easy grievance redress system and time bound deliver act is needed.
  • Independent audit of results is important after a period of implementation of the Charter.

To summarise, A Citizens’ Charter denotes the promise of an organisation towards standard, quality and time frame of service delivery, grievance redressal mechanism, clearness and accountability.  

Q. To resolve the issue of unemployment, there is a need for multi-prong approach. In this light discuss the steps needed to resolve this long-standing issue and also mention the measures taken by the government in this regard.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Steps needed for unemployment
  • Steps taken by the government
  • Way forward

Model Answer

Unemployment is a situation where person is capable of working both physically and mentally at the existing wage rate, but does not get a job to work. As per the recent statistics unemployment rate in India rose to 7.2% in 2019.  Unemployment represent itself in various forms such as: disguised, seasonal, cyclical, frictional unemployment etc. 

To tackle the issue of unemployment following steps must be adopted:

  • There is a need for rapid industrialization so as to shift the labour forces from agriculture to manufacturing sector.
  • The curriculum at education centers should be changed to focus on learning and skill development.
  • Self-employment must be encouraged with the help of liability free loansgovernment assistance etc.
  • Incubation centers need to be promoted to cultivate original business ideas that will be financially viable.
  • Government as well as business houses should seek to invite more foreign collaboration and capital investment so as to increase avenue for employment.
  • The labour intensive manufacturing sectors such as food processing, leather and footwear need to be promoted to create employment.

Further, to increase the avenue for employment, the government has taken various steps such as:

  • Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) to provide social security by guaranteeing a minimum of 100 days paid work.
  • Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) with objective of enabling a large number of Indian youth to take up industry-relevant skill training.
  • Start Up India Scheme aims at developing an ecosystem that promotes and nurtures entrepreneurship.
  • Stand Up India Scheme/ MUDRA scheme to facilitate bank loans between Rs 10 lakh and Rs. 1 crore to at least one SC or ST borrower and at least one women borrower per bank branch for setting up a greenfield enterprise.

Thus, to tackle unemployment a strategy of multi prong approach need to be adopted so as to tap demographic dividend.  

Q. Discuss the difference between Himalayas and Peninsular drainage system. Also put forth importance of the river system in India.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Difference between Himalayan and Peninsular river system
  • Importance of river system in India
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

Rivers are considered as the lifelines of a country as they provide the most valuable thing for the survival i.e. water. The rivers in India can be broadly categorized into two different categories based on their origin: the Himalayan Rivers and the Peninsular Rivers.

The difference between the two is tabulated below:

Himalayan RiversPeninsular Rivers
1.      These rivers originate from the Himalayan mountain ranges.1.      These rivers originate from the peninsular plateaus.
2.      They are longer and larger than the peninsular rivers.2.      They are comparatively smaller than the Himalayan Rivers.
3.      They have larger basins and catchment areas.3.      They have smaller basins and catchment areas.
4.      The bedrocks of these rivers are soft, sedimentary and easily erodible.4.      The bedrocks of these rivers is hard and not easily erodible.
5.      They are perennial in nature.5.      They are seasonal and non-perennial.
6.      They are fed by the meltwater from glaciers/ rains.6.      They are fed only by rains.
7.      They form V-shaped valleys.7.      They form U-shaped valleys.
8.      They form meanders.8.      They may not form meanders.
9.      They form big deltas.9.      They form small rivers and estuaries.
10.   They are antecedent rivers.10.   They are consequent rivers.

In light of the aforesaid, it is also important to discuss the importance of the rivers as such:

  • Rivers are the biggest source of fresh water for drinking.
  • Rivers provide fertile soil, which is important for increasing agricultural productivity.
  • Rivers are not only important for human beings but also for animals and trees. Various aquatic animals and plants breed in rivers, which is important to maintain the balance in the food chain.
  • These are also a source of energy as help generating electricity. For ex.- Bhakra Nangal Dam.
  • Rivers also help in improving the economy by providing cheap means of transportation.

Thus, considering the importance of river system and impending climate change, it is important that steps are taken to protect rivers.

Q. The reason for malnutrition/ hunger are multidimensional. In this light, discuss the factors contributing to malnutrition and also suggest suitable measures to improve malnutrition in India.

Structure of the answer:   

  • Introduction
  • Causes of malnutrition in India
  • Measures to overcome
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

Malnutrition is a physical state that includes undernutrition (wasting, stunting, underweight), inadequate vitamins or minerals, overweight, obesity, and resulting diet-related non-communicable diseases. As per Reports 31.4% of children are malnourished.

The factors contributing to malnutrition are as follows:

  • Despite increase in food grain production access to rice, wheat and other cereals has not increased at the same rate, resulting in malnutrition.
  • Further, the relative increase in consumption of unhealthy food such as fast food, processed food, and sugary beverages has also contributed to the problem.
  • The PDS that was viewed as a critical nutritional supplement is facing the issue of poor targeting e. having 40% leakages.
  • The lack of availability of safe drinking water also hinders proper digestion and assimilation of food.
  • Poor sanitation and environmental conditions further lead to spread of diseases that stunt children’s growth.
  • Lastly, there is lack of adequate awareness about nutritional needs of infants and young children.

To above causes need to be tackled on multiple fronts by adopting following steps:

  • There is a need for systematic data collection at the district level for formulation of policy and programme.
  • An institutional mechanism in form of a Food and nutrition commission should be established, headed by the Prime Minister.
  • The fortified foods need to be incorporated into a mid-day meal, public distribution shops and anganwadi centres.
  • The humongous task also need collaboration with civil society to educate women about family planning and child nourishment.
  • The above steps need to be adopted in association with increasing awareness about exclusive breastfeeding, use of antenatal care, consumption of Iron Folic Acid

Finally, the use of technology needs to be promoted to improve the flow of information and to encourage greater policy coherence.

Q. The Britishers formed Indian National Congress (INC) to act as a safety valve. However, the Indians used the forum as a lightning conductor much to the whammy of Britishers. In this light the purpose behind formation of INC and the intention of Indians in respect of the same.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction
  • Safety valve theory/ Britisher’s intention on formation of INC
  • Use of INC by Indians for propagating nationalist interest
  • Conclusion

Model Answer

There is wide spread belief that reason behind the formation of INC was safety valve theory i.e. Britishers wanted to pacify the raising discontent among Indian masses through INC. The discontent among Indians was due to issues like passing of Vernacular Press act, Illbert bill controversy (1883), general discrimination etc.

In this background the INC was formed by retired British Civil Servant A.O. Hume and some of the reasons put forth for formation of INC are as follows:

  • C Banerjee says that INC was to gauge the extent of discontent among the Indians masses so as to take pre-emptive steps against large scale flare up.
  • Further, the Britishers did not want another face off with the Indians like Revolt of 1857. So, they gave the Indians a tool with which they can vent their frustration.
  • The Britishers also wanted to remain informed of the pulse of the masses.
  • Moreover, the Britishers knowingly allowed formation of INC so that Indian Intelligentsia would be busy inside INC rather than politically instigating mass.

However, the above justification appears to be a half truth after considering the following propositions:

  • Formation of INC was not a sudden incident as since 1860s many regional associations were active in India. For ex.- Poona Sarvajanik Sabha, Bombay Presidency Association
  • Leaders like Dadabhai Naoroji, Pherojshah Mehta wanted an all India political body to give a proper shape to the movement and to mobilize the whole country against oppressive rule of British.
  • Further, Indians formed this platform with help of Britishers to prevent any suppression as happened in 1857. Thus, wanted to use Hume as a lightning conductor for the same.

Thus, once INC was formed, the reason for its formation did not matter much as INC evolved over a period of time and helped India to get much needed freedom.

Q. Discuss the difference between the code of ethics and the code of conduct.

Approach:

  • Briefly discuss about the code of ethics and the code of conduct.
  • Differentiate between the given terms.
  • Substantiate your answer with relevant examples.

Model Answer

Code of ethics and code of conduct specify the ethical standards that a group (e.g., staff or a professional group) should follow in order to continue as a member of the group. They are generally formally stated and members are required to accept them as part of their membership of the group while accepting employment/membership.  It is generally adopted by organizations to assist members in developing an understanding of right and wrong. Thus, the Code is built on three levels namely:

  • Values and ethical standards 
  • Principles based on these values and ethics (Code of Ethics) 
  • Code of Behaviour which is based on professional ethics (Code of Conduct)

Difference between the code of ethics and the code of conduct:

Code of ethics: 

  • Code of Ethics refers to a set of guidelines to bring about acceptable behaviours in members of a particular group, association or profession. 
  • It is essential to build professional standards by ensuring ethical practices are followed. It boosts confidence in the organization in the public eye. 
  • The Code stands for fundamental values and principles of public service. It sets out general principles that guide behaviour. 
  • The codes focus on broader issues and are often framed as a belief statement regarding the organization’s mission, its values and expectations for its members. 
  • These codes are idealistic, non-punishable, general and implicit. Eg. Helping the needy, respecting co-workers, avoiding conflict of interest etc.

Code of conduct: 

  • It refers to a framework for public officials for carrying out their duties. 
  • It serves as a tool for public officials in making right decisions especially in cases when they are tempted or confused in keeping the public interest. 
  • These are designed to prevent certain types of behaviours like conflict of interest, self-dealing, bribery and inappropriate actions. It is essential to protect the employees and the reputation of the organization.
  • It sets out specific rules designed to outline specific practices and behaviours that are to be encouraged or prohibited under an organization. 
  • The codes lay out guidelines and procedures to be used to determine whether violations of the code have occurred and delineate consequences for such violations. 
  • These are in form of Dos and Don’ts for all employees of the organization and are usually supplemented with a Code of Ethics. 
  • These codes are specific, and explicit and often amount to punishment upon violation. Eg. Model Code of Conduct by Election Commission, not divulging internal company matters to the media, following the orders of seniors etc.
  • The Code can have a legislative or administrative basis and are in line with constitutional conventions. It is thus regularly updated. 

Thus, although both the Codes are different from each other, yet they are important for a public servant. The Codes make sure that the public official should uphold public interest over any personal motive or interest. 

Q. What do you mean by climate forcing? Explain the factors that causes the Earth’s climate to change.

Approach:

  • Explain the meaning of climate forcing  and related phenomenon with relevant examples.
  • Discuss various natural and anthropogenic causes of climate change.
  • Conclude the answer, as per the context.

Model Answer

Any external factor that originates from outside the climate system and can become a cause of climate change is called Climate Forcing. These factors are specifically known as forcings because they drive the climate to change. There are natural forcings and man-made forcings. For examples:

  • Surface reflectivity (Albedo).
  • Human-caused, or anthropogenic climate  forcing include emissions of heat-trapping gases (also known as greenhouse gases) and changes in land use that make land reflect more or less sunlight energy. 
  • Atmospheric aerosols due to human activity or volcanic eruption etc. that put light-reflecting particles into the upper atmosphere.

The peculiar feature of all climate forcing is that they influence the balance of the energy entering and leaving the Earth system i.e, the amount of energy we receive from the sun, and the amount of energy we radiate back into space.  Climate change refers to the change of climate that alters the composition of the global atmosphere. It is usually measured in major shifts in temperature, rainfall, snow, and wind patterns lasting decades or more.

The causes of climate change can be classified into two types; natural and anthropogenic.

Natural causes:

  • Solar Irradiance: The change in energy output of the sun brings changes in climate. Solar output varies according to the 11 year solar cycle.
  • Volcanic Eruptions: When volcanoes erupt, thousands of tons of sulfur dioxide is released into the atmosphere which cause cooling and warming of the earth respectively.
  • Plate tectonics: Tectonic plates rearrange the topography of the earth which  brings changes in the circulation of oceans and subsequently changes the patterns of the global climate.  
  • Variations in the Earth’s Orbit: Variations in the orbit of the planet bring changes in seasonal and geographical distribution of the light from the sun that affects the global climate.

Anthropogenic causes:

  • Emission of Greenhouse Gases: Release of greenhouse gases like Carbon dioxide is one of the main reasons for climate change.  For example, human activities such as deforestation, burning of fossil fuels, surface mining, agriculture, emissions from industries etc. are also releasing other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
  • Land Use Change: Climate change is also assisted by changes in land use and land cover that are caused because of human activities such as agriculture.

Many of these factors are interrelated, and atmospheric, ocean and land interactions can involve complex feedback mechanisms can either enhance or dampen changes to the climate system.

Q. Discuss the relevance of the Legislative Councils in the States in the backdrop of recent demand of certain states to create the second house?

Approach:

  • Briefly write about the constitutional process of formation of Legislative Council.
  • Discuss both the arguments: favour and against the existence of Legislative council.
  • Write the final conclusion mentioning what should be the way forward.

Model Answer

Legislative councils of state are created under Article 169 of the Constitution. Parliament may by law create or abolish the second chamber in a state if the Legislative Assembly of that state passes a resolution to that effect by a special majority.

There is enormous debate on the relevance of Legislative councils in the States. In the recent times, Odisha government is planning to create legislative council or upper house.

Arguments in support of Legislative Councils in the States:

  • It provides a forum for academicians and intellectuals, who are arguably not suited for the rough and tumble of electoral politics.
  • It provides a mechanism for a soberer and more considered appraisal of legislation that a State may pass.
  • It acts as a check on hasty actions by the popularly elected House.

Arguments against Legislative Councils in the States:

  • Rather than fulfilling the lofty objective of getting intellectuals into the legislature, the forum is likely to be used to accommodate party functionaries who fail to get elected.
  • Today, legislatures draw their talent both from the grassroots level and the higher echelons of learning. There are enough numbers of doctors, teachers and other professionals in most political parties today.
  • If there was any real benefit in having a Legislative Council, all States in the country should, and arguably would have a second chamber. The fact that there are only seven such Councils suggests the lack of any real advantage.
  • It is also an unnecessary drain on the exchequer.

Looking into both the sides of the arguments, there is a need of a National Policy on having Upper House in State Legislatures. Odisha’s proposal may give the country at large an opportunity to evolve a national consensus on Legislative Councils.

There is a need for wide range of debates and public and intellectual opinion to have an Upper House in all state legislatures. Legislative councils should be strengthen so that it can play its effective role in formulating the policies and programmes for the development of states.

Q. The suburbanisation occurring at a relatively early stage of India’s urban development is creating new challenges for Indian cities. Enumerate the reasons and suggest remedies.

Approach:

  • Brief introduction about suburbanisation phenomenon in most urbanising countries.
  • Enumerating the reasons why it is occurring at a relatively early stage of India’s urban development.
  • Highlight the challenges it is creating for Indian cities and suggest ways forward.

Model Answer

A 2013 World Bank report, “Urbanization beyond Municipal Boundaries”, found that suburban areas (or Suburbs) are generating higher economic growth and employment than the city. Although “suburbanization” is a worldwide phenomenon, it usually occurs in middle to advanced stages of development. In India, it’s happening much more quickly in India than expected.

Reasons:

  • Inadequacy of cities to provide affordable and quality options has resulted in suburbanization. 
  • Suburbs are seen as safer and cheaper place to live and raise a family due to lower population density, lower crime, and a more stable population.
  • Increasing land prices and office rents have pushed companies to suburban areas.
  • With increased incomes, people have the ability to pay more to travel and commute longer distances to work and back home.
  • Indian cities impose quite draconian land use regulations, rent control system and building height restrictions on their cities lead to excessive suburbanization.
  • Suburban municipalities can offer tax breaks and regulatory incentives to attract
  • industrial land users to their area.
  • The development of robust and sophisticated infrastructure is possible only in the peripheries of the city where land is available in plenty and the cost of acquisition is low.
  • Growth of urban agglomerations poses many economic, ecological and institutional
  • challenges which are as follows:
  • Access to – and the quality of – water, sanitation, and electricity is much worse in the urban periphery than at the core.
  • Access to quality and affordable health and education services.
  • With commercialization of agricultural land and encroachment on forest , the areas ecosystem of the region is threatened.  
  • Unplanned urbanisation and uncontrolled encroachment of natural water storage and drainage systems has spelt disaster.
  • Proponents of containing suburbanization argue that it leads to urban decay and a concentration of lower income residents in the inner city.

Solution to the woes of our cities requires a holistic approach to urban reform.

  • Steps are required to address the lacunae in the current rural-urban categorization system.
  • Provide efficient services and reform governance structures to boost overall economic development.
  • India requires robust institutional mechanism to govern land use conversion and land valuation.
  • The efforts to leverage the potential of land markets as a financing tool needs to be complemented by an integrated urban planning process.
  • Indian cities also need to improve connectivity between metropolitan cores and peripheries to ensure ease of mobility for individuals and business.

Third and fifth five year plans advised urban planning to adopt regional approach and to create metropolitan planning regions to take care of the growing areas outside administrative city limits. We need to improve existing urban amenities while simultaneously addressing the problems of suburban sprawl. 

Q. Post- Independence, integration and unification of India demonstrated to be a long process plagued with challenges. In this context, examine the early challenges that India faced as a newly independent country.

Approach:

  • Write about the prevailing conditions after independence in the introduction.
  • Mention how it created challenges for India- both external and internal.
  • Conclude by mentioning India’s democratic credentials which helped India to survive as a nation.

Model Answer

15th August 1947 marked the end of colonial rule in India and the country found itself standing on the threshold of a new era wherein the task was to build a strong nation. While India found itself independent from the British, it was still to find independence from social, economic and political problems that hindered India’s growth story. The problems that India faced right after independence can be divided into three phases:

Phase 1 ( 1947- 1967): The problems that India faced after independence in this phase were as follows:

  • Communal Violence: Partition was marked with large scale communal violence.
  • The Refugee Problem: The partition of India gave way to the refugee problem. By mid-1948 about 5.5 million non-Muslims had moved into India and a very large number of Muslims had left India for Pakistan.
  • Origin of the Kashmir Problem: Kashmir was strategically important for both India and Pakistan, however, the famous movement lead by Sheik Abdullah wanted integration with India. The Maharaja, on the other hand, feared democracy in India and communalism in Pakistan, thus hoping to stay independent.
  • Foundation of the Indian Democracy: The first general elections in India which were held in 1952 was a landmark event in the history of the state which marked the establishment of the Indian democracy.
  • Linguistic Reorganization: Boundaries of the British Indian provinces had been drawn and redrawn in a haphazard manner without any thought to cultural and linguistic cohesion. Most provinces were multilingual and multicultural and after independence, many former princely states were absorbed into them. There was a demand for linguistically homogeneous provinces.
  • The Indus Water Dispute: The dispute started in 1960. The dispute arose because Indus and its tributaries flow through both India and Pakistan.
  • Mass poverty: At the time of Independence, the incidence of poverty in India was about 80% or about 250 million. Famines and hunger pushed India to take external help for its food security.
  • Illiteracy: When India gained Independence, its population numbered about 340 million. The literacy level then was just 12% or about 41 million.
  • Low economic capacity: Stagnant agriculture and poor industrial base. In 1947, agriculture accounted for 54% of India’s GDP. At the time of independence, 60% of India’s population depended on agriculture for a living.

Phase 2 ( 1967-1977): The problems that India faced after independence in this phase were as follows:

  • Linguistic reorganization: Boundaries of the British Indian provinces had been drawn and redrawn in a haphazard manner without any thought to cultural and linguistic cohesion. Continued demand for linguistically homogeneous provinces led to emergence of secessionist trends.
  • The Elections of 1967: In 1967 elections were held in February. The most important feature of the elections of 1967 was the coming together of the opposition parties.
  • Naxal Movement: The Naxalite Movement was a revolutionary movement that was started by the Naxalbari in Bengal which immediately expanded to other regions.
  • JP Movement: From 1973 there was a sharp recession, growing unemployment, rampant inflation and scarcity of basic food. The oil crisis of the mid 70’s had also contributed to the crisis and all of these developments together led to riots and large-scale unrest and strikes and erosion of support for the Congress from the poor and the middle class.
  • Emergency: National Emergency of 1975 as the government’s response to the JP Movement is considered as dark phases of Indian democracy. It curtailed the fundamental rights of the citizens and shook the foundations of Indian democratic credentials.
  • Hostile neighbours: India had to face consequent wars with Pakistan (1965, 1971) and China(1962) during the early phases of its independence. This not only hindered India’s growth and created regional instability.

Phase 3 ( 1977- 1984): The problems that India faced after independence in this phase were as follows:

  • Secessionist movements: Punjab’s Khalistan movement of the 1980s, Insurgency in the North-East, and the Naxal Movement in central-eastern India (1960s) were the biggest internal security challenges to India.
  • Punjab Crisis: During the 80’s the separatist movement in Punjab constituted the greatest threat to the unity and integrity of India.. From 1980, the Akali Dal under the leadership of Harcharan Singh Longowal decided to choose the path of confrontation. He installed in the Golden temple and began to preach his separatist message.
  • Operation Blue Star: In June 1984, Mrs Gandhi and her advisors decided to take some drastic action against the militants in the Golden temple. On 3rd June the Indian army led by General K S Brar surrounded the golden temple and on 5th June they were entered. Many temple employees and devotees died in the crossfire.

Indian democracy is a heterogeneous model with a vast socio-religious and cultural diversity. It was predicted by western political analysts that the Indian model of democracy would not last long. However, it was due to India’s strong commitment to its constitutional principles that led India to not only survive as a nation but also to emerge as the leader of the newly independent countries. 

August Week-4, Q&A and CA

1) What is the economics behind e-vehicle batteries?

https://upscexpress.com/2019/09/01/what-is-the-economics-behind-e-vehicle-batteries/

2) Who are the 19 lakh excluded from Assam NRC, and what next for them?

https://upscexpress.com/2019/09/01/who-are-the-19-lakh-excluded-from-assam-nrc-and-what-next-for-them/

3)Science for disaster management Editorial 31st Aug’19 TimesOfIndia

https://upscexpress.com/2019/09/01/science-for-disaster-management-editorial-31st-aug19-timesofindia/

4)hat advantages does 3D printing have over traditional methods of manufacturing? What are its potential applications?

https://upscexpress.com/2019/09/01/what-advantages-does-3d-printing-have-over-traditional-methods-of-manufacturing-what-are-its-potential-applications-15-marks/

5)What are the major problems of agricultural marketing in India?

https://upscexpress.com/2019/08/31/what-are-the-major-problems-of-agricultural-marketing-in-india-10-marks/

6)Deceleration in economy: Cyclical downswing, not a deep structural slowdown, says RBI

https://upscexpress.com/2019/08/31/deceleration-in-economy-cyclical-downswing-not-a-deep-structural-slowdown-says-rbi/

7)A road map to transforming India’s energy Editorial 30th Aug’19 HindustanTimes

https://upscexpress.com/2019/08/31/a-road-map-to-transforming-indias-energy-editorial-30th-aug19-hindustantimes/

8)Describe the origin and development of thunderstorms with examples. (15 marks)

https://upscexpress.com/2019/08/30/describe-the-origin-and-development-of-thunderstorms-with-examples-15-marks/

9)India’s water crisis: All stakeholders must come together Editorial 29th Aug’19 HindustanTimes

https://upscexpress.com/2019/08/29/indias-water-crisis-all-stakeholders-must-come-together-editorial-29th-aug19-hindustantimes/

10)Explain the economic critique offered by the early Nationalists to challenge British imperialism and its impact. (15 marks)

https://upscexpress.com/2019/08/29/explain-the-economic-critique-offered-by-the-early-nationalists-to-challenge-british-imperialism-and-its-impact-15-marks/

 Explained: The new debate on defence funding

Headline : Explained: The new debate on defence funding

Details :

In News

  • The Union Cabinet has amended the terms of reference (ToR) of the 15th Finance Commission (FC) to widen their scope.
  • Through the change, the government has requested the FC to look into the possibility of a separate mechanism for the funding of defence and internal security.

 

Finance Commission

  • The Finance Commission is a constitutional body that owes its existence to Article 280 of the Indian Constitution. It has a five-year term.
  • There have been fifteen commissions to date. The most recent (15th FC) was constituted in November 2017 and its recommendations will apply from 2020 to 2025. It is chaired by N. K.Singh, a former member of the Planning Commission.

 

Mandate

  • Its mandate is to determine the distribution of tax revenues between the Centre and the states, and amongst the states themselves.
  • Federal structure: In a federal structure such as India’s, powers and responsibilities are divided between the Centre and the states. While the Union collects a majority of the tax revenue, states have a greater responsibility for the delivery of public goods.
  • Thus, FCs aim to do two types of adjustments.
    • Vertical imbalance: Address the vertical imbalance between the taxation powers of the Centre and the expenditure priorities of the states.
    • Horizontal imbalance: Allay the horizontal imbalances between the states themselves with the objective of ensuring balanced regional development.
  • In the past, FCs have also dwelt on the distribution of central grants to states, as well as the flow of resources to the third tier of governance — the panchayats and the municipalities.

 

Members

  • The Chairman is selected from people with experience of public affairs.
  • The other four members should be
    • A judge of high court or one qualified to be appointed as one.
    • A person who has specialised knowledge of finance and accounts of the government
    • A person who has wide experience in financial matters and in administration.
    • A person who has special knowledge of Economics

 

  • Recommendations: The Commission submits its report to the President. He/She lays it before both the Houses of the Parliament, along with an explanatory memorandum as to the actions taken on its recommendations. The recommendations are only advisory in nature and not binding on the government.

 

Role of Terms of Reference

  • One of the reasons why FCs are reconstituted every five years is to ensure that they can take into account the changing dynamics of the political and fiscal landscape.
  • Even though the ToRs are essentially in the nature of guidelines to the FC, yet a change in ToRs over the years has reflected the changing needs of India’s overall development.

 

Current updation of ToR

  • The latest addition to the 15th FC’s ToR calls for the FC to examine the possibility of allocation of adequate, secure and non-lapsable funds for defence and internal security of India.
  • In other words, the Centre has requested the FC to examine whether a separate mechanism for funding of defence and internal security ought to be set up, and how such a mechanism could be operationalised.

 

Seventh Schedule

  • The Seventh Schedule of the Constitution lists the separate (Union List and State List) and joint (Concurrent List) responsibilities of the Centre and the states.
  • Defence is in the Union List.

 

Why is the Centre resorting to this move?

  • The Centre’s request to the FC for greater resources is rooted in its limited ability to ramp up expenditure on items in the Union list due to the limited fiscal space at its disposal.
  • The Centre’s expenditure on items in the State and Concurrent Lists has been increasing over the years.
  • Research has shown that the share of the Centre’s revenue expenditure on items in the State List has broadly grown over the years; it went up from 13.4 per cent in 2002-03 to 23.1 per cent in 2008-09, before declining to16.2 per cent in 2015-16.
  • Similarly, the Centre spent 16.4 per cent of its revenue expenditure on Concurrent List subjects in 2015-16, up from 11.8 per cent in 2002-03.
  • This increase in spending by the Centre on items in the State and the Concurrent Lists has led to a reduction in its spending on items in the Union List.

 

Are states being squeezed out of funding?

  • The added fiscal pressures of the Centre and the requirement of having to share tax revenues with states has left the Centre in a peculiar position.
  • To shore up its revenues, the Centre has, over the years, begun to rely more on cesses and surcharges.
  • In the recent Union Budget, too, it increased the special additional excise duty and road and infrastructure cess on petrol and diesel by one rupee each.
  • But the revenue from cesses and surcharges is not part of the divisible tax pool that is shared with the states. It is kept by the Centre. This leads to the states receiving a lower share of the Centre’s gross tax revenue collections.

 

Impact of the move

  • With capital spending on defence continuing to fall short of requirements, it is difficult to contest the basic premise that spending on defence needs to be bolstered.
  • However, sequestering funds for defence from the Centre’s gross tax revenues means a reduction in the overall tax pool that is shared with states.
  • This is likely to be protested by the states, several of whom are already arguing for an increase in their share in taxes collected to 50 per cent from the current 42 per cent.
Section : Economics

Why the attack in Gadchiroli is significant?

Headline : Why the attack in Gadchiroli is significant?

Details :

The News

  • The Maoist attack in Maharashtra’s Gadchiroli district led to the death of 15 Police personnel.

 

Background

  • This attack in Gadchiroli is another significant event in the long history of Maoist violencein Gadchiroli, where the naxal movement began in 1980.
  • This district has been the hot-bed of naxal activities in Maharashtra with the Maoist violence claiming 418 lives in the past three decades.
  • The Maharashtra government has been building a narrative of asserting control over the district after their huge success of the encounter carried out inGadchiroli in April 2018 thatleft 38 alleged Maoists dead.
  • Now, the attack in the same district must have some signals to give.

 

Summary of the news

  • The Maoist attack in Maharashtra’s Gadchiroli district led to the death of 15 Maharashtra Police C-60 personnel and the driver of their private vehicle.
  • The attack was carried on with IED blast.

 

Failures attributed to the attack

  • Failure of intelligence: The Maoists are present in the area and the police claims to have active intelligence networks but still they were unable to identify this threat, which amounts to failure of intelligence.
  • Violation of Standard Operating Procedures: IED blasts cause damage when they hit forces travelling together and that is why in Maoist areas, forces are encouraged to travel on foot or on motorcycles with a gap between two bikes but as these police personnel were travelling together in a private vehicle, is against the Standard Operating Procedures.

 

Why this attack is significant?

  • Selection of difficult terrain: Gadchiroli has dense forests and rivers and sparse population, this has always been a difficult terrain for security personnel to control the district and operate in.
  • Location of Gadchiroli: It is at the trijunction of Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, and Telanagana, which facilitates the Maoists to cross state borders at their will, making it difficult for the state police to catch them.
  • Safe Area: Gadchiroli offers both a corridor for passage as well as a mostly safe holding area for Maoists due to lack of coordination between the connected state’s police.
  • Efforts of the state: Maharashtra’s efforts to connect to local adivasis and build local intelligence, has just helped them reduce hold of Maoists but it has not helped them tocarry out aggressive attacks.
  • Registering presence: After the April 2018 encounter, the Maoists would have felt the need to register their presence.
  • Logistics and Strategy: The comeback of Maoists after a year signals that they have now got their logistics in place and carrying out a low-cost strike with IED blast could be their strategy.
Section : Defence & Security

CSE 2021: What’s Important to read ?

Must Read, Nothing Required.

0. Syllabus+ Past Papers
1. Polity- Laxmikant, 11th NCERT
2. Geography – 11th or 12th NCERT + World ATLAS
3. History- TN NCERT/ OLD NCERT/ THEMES + Spectrum
4. Art and Culture- 11th- Introduction to Arts
5. Environment – Shankar IAS
6. Economy – Sanjiv Verma + Reddy Sir Notes + Eco Survey (Crux)
7. Newspaper – The Hindu
8. Current Affairs- Focus
9. Yojana – Preface
10. Test Series- 2

GS1
1. Art and Culture – 1-2 questions – Same
History- Modern – Spectrum
2. World History – Notes
3. Society – Indian Society and Social Change Development NCERT + CA + Hindu
4. Geography- NCERT + Hindu + CA

GS2
1. Polity – Laxmikant+ Hindu+ CA
2. Governance – Topics+ Make 5-10 page Notes, Policy, What more can be done + CA+ Hindu
3. IR – CA+The Hindu

GS3
1. Economy – Sanjiv Verma, CA+TheHindu
2. SciTech –
3. Security – Basic Understandings+ CA+ Hindu
4. Disaster – Cyclones, Droughts+ CA+ TheHindu

GS4
1. Lexicon – 10 to 15 days
2. Basic understanding of concepts
RealLife Examples, Role in Administration,
3. More Answer Writing Practice

Essay-
GS+Ethics+CA+TheHindu Information
Acute Sense and Information…
Draft
Conclusion
Perspectives
Relate all GS concepts

TestSeries :-
– 12 TESTS
ESSAY
– 05 Tests – 10 Essays
– Feedback Important with Checked Answers
– Model Answers for Value Additions.
– Online Sources – DNS, Newspaper, IASBABA TLC

Power of intuition and elimination – comes with practice.
Spontaneity, Randomness, logical answers with constant practices.
Concepts and Applications.
Desire, Firm Decision, Discipline,

You can never Fail.
You will succeed if you persist.

Border management is a complex task due to difficult terrain and long and porous borders with some countries. Elucidate the challenges and strategies for effective management of India-Bangladesh border. (15 marks)

Border management is a complex task due to difficult terrain and long and porous borders with some countries. Elucidate the challenges and strategies for effective management of India-Bangladesh border. (15 marks)

Approach

  • Introduce with the India-Bangladesh border
  • Enumerate various issues along the border
  • List steps taken by Government to address them – make sure to highlight the recent CIBMS and BOLD-QIT
  • Conclude appropriately
Model Answer :

The India-Bangladesh border is India’s longest international border measuring 4,096.7 km passing through West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram. The entire border consists of varied geographical features like plains, hills, riverine stretches, and forests with hardly any natural obstacles.

Various issues associated with India-Bangladesh border:

  • Illegal migration of people from Bangladesh into India, especially in Assam, West Bengal and Tripura is a perennial problem. There are around two crore illegal migrants staying in India.
  • The porous nature of the border have also made it easy for Indian Insurgent Groups (IIGs) to cross over into Bangladesh, where they have set up safe houses and training camps.
  • Organized cross-border criminal activities including trafficking of arms, humans and narcotics, counterfeiting Indian currency etc. are also quite rampant.
  • Smuggling: The border also faces the unique problem of smuggling of cattle, readymade garments and food grains.

The Indian Government has taken following measures to address these issues:

  • Security Measures:
    • BSF: Border Security Force is responsible for effective domination and round the clock surveillance of International Border with Bangladesh.
    • CIBMS: The Ministry of Home Affairs is in the process of deploying a Comprehensive Integrated Border Management System (CIBMS) through integration of radars, sensors, cameras, communication networks and command and control solutions. As part of it, BOLD-QIT (Border Electronically Dominated QRT Interception Technique) has been operationalized at the reverine border at Dhubri, Assam between India and Bangladesh.
    • Others: Up-gradation of intelligence network, improved border infrastructure through fencing, floodlighting, patrol roads etc.
  • Diplomatic measures: A three-tier bilateral institutional mechanism was set up between India and Bangladesh in 1994 to resolve security and border management issues. In July, 2011, a Co-ordinated Border Management Plan (CBMP) was signed between the two countries for proper management of International border.
  • Developmental measures: Various developmental works in the border areas have been undertaken by the MHA under the Border Area Development Programme (BADP) as part of a comprehensive approach to the border management.

India is taking security, diplomatic and developmental measures to manage this difficult border. Further, effective border management requires the involvement and cooperation of the local people as well as sustainable cooperation mechanisms with Bangladesh.

Subjects : Security Issues

What  do you understand by the term ‘sustainable agriculture’? Suggest strategies to make agriculture in India sustainable. (10 marks)

What  do you understand by the term ‘sustainable agriculture’? Suggest strategies to make agriculture in India sustainable. (10 marks)

Approach:

  • Introduce explaining about sustainable agriculture
  • Suggest various strategies like appropriate production systems, ZBNF etc.
  • Conclude appropriately
Model Answer :

Sustainable agriculture is that form of agriculture which attempts to produce sufficient food to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs, say by exhausting soil fertility or irreversibly damaging the environment. It integrates three main goals – environmental health, economic profitability, and social equity.

Strategies that can be used to make agriculture sustainable:

  • Appropriate production systems: A shift in policy for agricultural production system to match the agro-ecological resources is critical for sustainability. For example, promotion of dry land agriculture rather than input-intensive farming in arid and semi-arid areas and promoting less water-intensive crops like pulses and millets. Similarly, crops like rice needing large amount of water can be shifted to other regions that are relatively more endowed with water.
  • Poly-cultures and Crop Rotation:  Moving farmers from mono-cultures to poly-cropping and the rotation of crops can lead to reductions in the need to apply fertilizers and pesticides. Such diverse systems are likely to be more productive, labour intensive and provide enhanced ecosystem services and, therefore, much more sustainable.
  • Emphasis on nurturing the soil: Greater emphasis on nurturing the soils rather than plants will provide higher benefits on sustaining yields, improving ecosystem health and sequestering carbon.
  • Promotion of Zero Budget Natural Farming: Initiatives such as Zero Budget Natural Farming, with low external input and production costs, could help restore ecosystem health and diversified livelihoods of smallholder farmers.
  • Reducing Food waste and promoting sustainable consumption patterns: To reduce food wastage, greater investments are needed in improving post-production infrastructure, including storage space in rural areas, and improved harvesting techniques and transportation.

With growing population, depleting resources and the increasing threat of climate change, it will be impossible to fulfill the needs of the future unless we transition to sustainable food and agricultural systems that would ensure world food security, provide economic and social opportunities, and protect the ecosystem services on which our future depends.

Subjects : Ecology and Environment

Steps to Tackle Maoism

Proactive policing

Security forces are no longer reactive.

Example of Gariaband region in Chhattisgarh:

  • When the Maoists decided to deepen their roots into Gariaband, the State government notified this division as a new district (in 2012). This gave a fillip to development work.
  • Many new police stations and security camps were set up to prevent any major Maoist attack.
  • The cadre strength of the Maoists has consequently reduced.

Example of Raigarh:

  • Police action in Raigarh district eventually forced the Maoists to abandon their plan of expansion.
  • The Ministry of Home Affairs, too, subsequently removed Raigarh from its Security Related Expenditure (SRE) scheme.

Example of central India:

  • When the Maoists decided to create a new zone in Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh, the target districts were immediately put on alert, so as not to allow them to gain ground.
  • Security forces were redeployed to ensure better territorial command.

Better Inter-State coordination:

  • As the Chhattisgarh police have experience in tackling Maoists in Bastar, they are now coordinating with the bordering States to strengthen intelligence and ground presence.
  • Such coordinated proactive policing will dampen the Maoists’ plans.

2. Holistic Approach:

  • The Maoist problem is not merely a law and order issue.
  • A permanent solution lies in eliminating the root cause of the problem that led to the alienation of tribals in this area.
  • Improved connectivity and communication: The focus now is to build roads and install communication towers to increase administrative and political access of the tribals, and improve the reach of government schemes.
  • Enhanced income: The government has enhanced the support price of minor forest produce like imli (tamarind).
  • Financial inclusion: More bank branches have been opened to ensure financial inclusion.
  • Entertainment: All India Radio stations in the three southern districts of Bastar will now broadcast regional programmes to increase entertainment options.
  • Improved trade: And a new rail service in Bastar is set to throw open a new market for wooden artefacts and bell metal.

Engaging youth through education and employment:

Weaning away children from Maoists and towards education:

  • Maoists are providing combat training to children in Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh.
  • Despite the Maoists not wanting their children to study and get government jobs, remarkable work has been done in the field of school education and skill development.
  • An educational hub and a livelihood centre in Dantewada district sprang up. Earlier, the hostel of the Ramakrishna Mission in Narainpur was the only place where children could get quality education.

Livelihood training:

  • Seeing its success, the government has now opened up livelihood centres, known as Livelihood Colleges, in all the districts.
  • If the youth are constructively engaged by the government, the recruitment of youth by the Maoists will slowly stop.

Role of civil society

  • The government’s rehabilitation policies have helped the surrendered cadres turn their lives around.
  • Indian democracy is strong enough to absorb even its adversaries if they abjure violence.
  • Loopholes in implementing government schemes must not be used as a tool to strengthen the hands of the Maoists.
  • Civil society must join hands with the government in realising the villagers’ right to development.

Conclusion:

  • The two-pronged policy of direct action by the security forces combined with development is showing results.
  • The government has already made a dent in most of the affected districts and is determined to check the expansion of Maoists.
  • The paradigm of proactive policing and holistic development should ensure more such significant results in the future.

What are the various forms in which gender based violence manifests. Discuss the causes that lead to it. Do you agree that it remains biggest impediment to the advancement of women in India?

Approach:
● Introduce with what gender violence is
● Talk about various forms of violence – preferably under different categories
● Talk about the causes – can break it into various categories.
● Discuss aspects of women development that get affected by gender violence
● Conclude by summarizing and giving brief suggestions to end gender violence.

Answer:
Gender based violence is primarily used to refer to acts of violence committed against women.
A result of unequal distribution of power in society between women and men, it gets
manifested throughout the entire lifecycle of the women- right from the womb of the mother till death.

Takes place in many forms:
Gender based violence takes place in many forms, including physical violence – through assault, domestic violence, honour killings; sexual violence – groping, workplace harassment, sexual assault; verbal violence – through use of abusive and filthy language; social violence – like humiliating a woman or her family in public; emotional violence– by depriving women of love , care , concern; financial violence – by depriving basic financial means.

Various causes of gender based violence includes:
Socio-Cultural factors:
● The patriarchal notions of ownership over women’s bodies, sexuality, labor,
reproductive rights, mobility and level of autonomy encourage violence against women.
● Dogmatic religious beliefs with deep-rooted ideas of male superiority are also used to
legitimize control over women.
Economic factors:
● Poverty, lack of education and livelihood opportunities, and inadequate access to basic
services like shelter, food, water can increase exposure to gender violence, including
forced prostitution or survival sex.
Legal-Administrative factors:
● Inadequate legal framework, State’s inability to enforce laws, unequal access to justice,
gender bias in legal institutions and mechanisms, slow justice system result in culture of
impunity for violence and abuse .
Individual factors:
● Threat/fear of stigma, isolation and social exclusion and exposure to further violence at
the hands of the perpetrator, the community or the authorities, including arrest,
detention, ill-treatment and punishment force women to suffer silently.
Yes, gender violence is one of the biggest hurdles in women’s advancement due to following factors:
● It seriously affects all aspects of women’s health- physical, sexual and reproductive,
mental and behavioural health, thus prevents them from realizing their full potential.
● Violence and threat of violence affects women’s ability to participate actively, and as
equals, in many forms of social and political relationships.
● Workplace harassment and domestic violence has an impact on women’s participation
in workforce and their economic empowerment.
● Sexual harassment limits the educational opportunities and achievements of girls.
Thus, half of our human capital will not be able to realize its true potential till gender violence is curbed in all its forms. The underlying causes must be addressed though adequate legal framework and its strict enforcement, building institutional capability, along with gender sensitization campaigns to change attitudes towards women.

Effects of Globalization on Indian Culture and Society

Effects of Globalization on Indian Culture

Globalisation has affected what we eat and the way we prepare food (Mcdonaldization), what we wear , purchase etc( Walmartization).

There is trend toward homogenization of culture with similar food habits, dressing pattern, music, news , TV programs, movies etc. However, there is also increasing tendency toward Glocalization of Culture.

Glocalization refers to mixing of Global with Local. Eg Foreign TV channels like Star, Sony , Cartoon Network use Indian languages.

Other Effects:-

1. Development of Hybrid Culture– Due to increase exposure to different cultures, there emerge a 3rd culture or hybrid culture. It accept the change and preserve the tradition in social and cultural life.

2. Language– Globalization give rise to increased use of English with people becoming more bilingual and multilingual than before. On the other hand, over emphasis on English leads to decline and even extinction of various language. Eg BO

3. Religion– Globalization leads to changes in the religion and practices. Now, secular aspect of religion like honesty, non violence, brotherhood are promoted. There is also increasing commodification of various religious practices with rise of sects and cults.

4. Festivals– There is general trend toward decline in ritual aspect of culture and growth of secular festivals. Eg Father’s day.

Effects of Globalization on Indian Society

1. Marriage– With Globalization, there is increasing trend toward civil marriage over ritual marriage, love marriage over arranged marriage. Inter caste and inter religious marriages are also increasing.

2. Family– Globalization has increased the pace of transformation of families from Joint families to either Nuclear families or Extended families. Due to declining Joint family system, Elderly population suffers from isolation, powerlessness and depression.

3. Education– Globalization catalyses the rate of literacy. It also increases investment in education and global education system. However there is more and more commercialization of education.

Everything about Missiles

What is a missile?

  • A missile is essentially a sophisticated bomb which after being released is governed by the laws of ballistics.
  • The laws of ballistics means only the force of gravity acts upon it.
  • It can be made more accurate and faster by attaching a propulsion system to the bomb and then it is called a rocket.
  • If guided and controlled, a rocket can be made deadlier and that is what a missile is.
  • The missiles can carry tons of nuclear warheads at speeds way higher than fighter planes.

Classification

Missiles are classified variously based on the launching system. Thus, missiles can be:

  • Surface-to-Surface Missile
  • Surface-to-Air Missile
  • Surface (Coast)-to-Sea Missile
  • Air-to-Air Missile
  • Air-to-Surface Missile
  • Sea-to-Sea Missile
  • Sea-to-Surface (Coast) Missile

Based on the working principle, missiles can be:

  • Ballistics
  • Cruise

Classified by range and proposed use, missiles can be:

  • Short RMedium RaIntermediate RangeMissile
  • Intercontinental Ballistic Missile

How is a ballistic missile different from a cruise one?

  • A ballistic missile is used to hit a predetermined target —launched such that it burns most of its fuel to attain the desired velocity in the first phase (also called the boost phase).
  • Such a missile can only be guided during the powered phase of flight.
  • 31 countries have operational ballistic missile systems.
  • India’s Agni and Prithvi are ballistic missile.
  • A cruise missile is a small pilotless craft that carries an explosive warhead.
  • It has wings and an engine, but is built more economically.
  • It is steered by inertial navigation system (INS), that’s also used by airplanes.
  • A cruise missile can be made so accurate that it can be aimed at any specific place like a door or a window.
  • Its flight can be guided for a longer period.
  • BrahMos is a cruise missile system.

Intercontinental Ballistic Missile

  • Ballistic missiles are categorised according to their range, which is the maximum distance along the surface of the earth from the point of launch to the point of impact of its payload.
  • Until recently, Russia, US, China, the UK, France and Israel were the only countries with operational ICBM technology.
  • With Hwasong-15, North Korea’s joined this club.
  • With over 5,000-km range, India’s Agni-V also qualifies for this club.

Which countries have the longest range of operational ballistic missiles?

Russia, US and China have many missile systems that qualify for the ICBM range.

Everything about Aerial Refueling

Air to air refuelling

  • It is also known as Aerial refuelling, air refuelling, in-flight refuelling and tanking.
  • It is the process of transferring aviation fuel from one military aircraft to another during flight.
  • During air-to-air refuelling, both aircraft must maintain accurate flying parameters.

The two main refuelling systems are:

  1. Probe-and-drogue: It requires exceptional flying skills as the receiving aircraft has to accurately insert the receptacle probe into the basket-shaped drogue trailing the tanker aircraft. This method is practiced by IAF’s pilots.
  2. Flying boom: It is complex as it requires a dedicated boom operator system. But in this system, fuel is transferred at the faster speed.

Advantages of in flight refuelling

  • It gives the receiving aircraft the capacity to fly for longer duration.
  • It has given a tremendous boost to the IAF’s operational capability.

Embraer transport aircraft

  • It is a twin engine regional jet produced by Embraer, a Brazilian aerospace company.
  • IAF has mounted indigenous Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) system ‘Netra’ on it.

Netra

  • It is an Airborne Early Warning and Control system.
  • It is developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation.
  • It has been inducted in IAF in February this year.
  • Its three systems are being built and will be based at Bhatinda, facing the western border.
  • It gives a 240-degree coverage of airspace.

Airborne Early Warning and Control

  • It is also called eye-in-the-sky.
  • It is an airborne radar picket system designed to detect aircraft, ships and vehicles at long ranges and perform command and control of the battle space in an air engagement by directing fighter and attack aircraft strikes.
  • It is capable of long-range surveillance and a force multiplier.

Question on Growth of Naxalism

“Being the centers of concentration of the industrial proletariat, urban areas play an important part within the political strategy of the new Democratic Revolution”. Examine this statement in the light of rising Maoist activity in the urban areas and why is it essential to keep a close watch on Maoist activities in towns and cities?

Approach:
 Introduce the first statement of the question
 Evidences of Maoist activities in urban centres
 Causes for the rise in Maoist activities

Answer:

The urban movement has a defined role in the political strategy and military strategy of the CPI (Maoist). They believe that in the absence of a strong revolutionary urban movement, the growth of the people’s war will face limitations and difficulties in its advancement. Working class leadership is the indispensable condition for the Maoist design in India. Working class has to send its advanced detachments to rural areas. The rebels stress on forming secret party units in the bastis and slums of the urban areas. Their main focus is that of mass political mobilization by inculcating the leadership qualities in the urban working class: the real class, according to Karl Marx, which possesses the consciousness of revolution.
Evidences:

 The basic task of the Communist Party of India (Maoists) in the urban domain is to deal with the problem of coordination between open and secret work. Another chief component is to retain contacts between city organization and leadership in the rural areas – the heartland of the insurgency.
 Propaganda through student-worker organizations would be the mainstay of their strategy
 According to latest estimates, 104 districts in 13 states are affected by the Maoist movement.
 With 2017 marking the 50th anniversary of the Naxalite movement, security forces
stationed in the so-called Red Corridor have sounded the alarm that recent attacks on security forces could signal the start of a resurgence of anti-state activity by the armed insurgents. On March 11, 12 personnel of the CRPF were killed by Maoists in Sukma of Chhattisgarh.
Causes:
 India’s central and eastern parts, home to about 84 million adivasi, or indigenous people,is rich in mineral resources. Renewed mining activity pose a threat to their livelihoods. Most of them are subsistence farmers or landless, mainly living in extreme poverty.
 The Naxalite movement heavily draws intellectual support from urban intelligentsia.
 Maoists from Andhra Pradesh helped organize tribals in Chhattisgarh over the issue of land rights and displacement during the 1980s. The state has emerged as the stronghold of the Maoists in recent decades since 2000 when mining was initiated.
 The movement keeps on reappearing like a phoenix because the basic socio-economic factors, which are responsible for it, remain unaddressed. Poverty continues to be a problem and, according to the expert group headed by C Rangarajan, 29.5% of the population lived below the poverty line in 2011-12. Wealth is increasing, but its distribution is unequal.
 Unemployment is another area of concern. Land reforms have been forgotten. Tribals are an alienated lot, largely due to their displacement as a result of developmental activities in the forest areas.
 Home Ministry has identified several org. in Delhi & National Capital Region as Maoist front organizations.
 These organizations and political parties try to gain inroads by talking about issues
like “bijli, paani, sadak aur rojgaar “, issues that are relevant to the common person. At the same time, the masterminds work on their bigger strategy of disruption and taking over control of government.

Way forward:
 The state police to take the terrorists/extremists head-on, to win the battle against terrorism/extremism.
 Government departments to establish themselves in areas when the Maoists have been driven away, so that it does not surface again.
 Step up human intelligence network and continue to nab the urban outfits of the Maoists as they had been doing for some time recently.
 Unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, equipped with cameras, data and video links are the latest weapons can be deployed against Naxals in India.
 Government service delivery should be improved in these tribal areas. Both state and government must ensure that things such as statutory minimum wages, access to land and water sources initiatives are implemented.
 By opening dialogue, the government can give opportunity for the rebels 2join the
mainstream by showing them that solutions can be created together with the government, by being part of the political system in a legitimate way

 

How is atomic bomb different from hydrogen bomb?

How is atomic bomb different from hydrogen bomb?

  • A hydrogen bomb, also called a thermonuclear bomb or an H-bomb.
  • It is far more powerful than the relatively simple atomic weapons.
  • It uses a second stage of reactions to magnify the force of an atomic explosion.
  • The second stage is fusion.
  • Fusion is mashing hydrogen atoms together in the same process that fuels the sun.
  • When these relatively light atoms join together, they unleash neutrons in a wave of destructive energy.
  • A hydrogen weapon uses an initial nuclear fission explosion to create a tremendous pulse that compresses and fuses small amounts of deuterium and tritium, kinds of hydrogen, near the heart of the bomb.
  • The swarms of neutrons set free can ramp up the explosive chain reaction of a uranium layer wrapped around it, creating a blast far more devastating than uranium fission alone.

Nations having hydrogen bomb:

  • The United States tested a hydrogen bomb at Bikini Atoll in 1954 that was over 1,000 times more powerful than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.
  • Britain, China, France and Russia have also created hydrogen bombs.
  • Other nations may also either have it or are working on it, despite a worldwide effort to contain such proliferation.

Internal Security of India

Internal security is the security of country within its borders.

  • Maintenance of peace and law and order.
  • Upholding sovereignty of country within its borders.
  • Responsibility of Police and state government and Ministry of Home affairs.

External Security is security against aggression by a foreign country.

  • Responsibility of armed forces and Ministry of Defense .

Four Kinds of threats to any state as per Kautilya: –

  •  Internal
  • External
  • Internally aided external
  • Externally aided internal

Due to fast globalization, modern communications, distinction between security threat is not possible. Now all types of security threats has to be seen through mix prism of above 4 types.

Attributes of Internal Security:-

  • Secure territorial integrity and internal sovereignty
  • Maintain domestic peace and law and order
  • Rule of law and equality before law
  • Absence of fear
  • Peaceful coexistence and communal harmony  

Understanding of Attribute of Internal Security :-

 

1. Territorial integrity is the principle under international law that nation-states should not attempt to promote secessionist movements or to promote border changes in other nation-states.

2. Sovereignty meaning holding supreme, independent authority over a region or state.

     Internal Sovereignty refers to the internal affairs of the state and the location of supreme power within it.

3. law and order :- a situation characterized by respect for and obedience to the rules of a society.

4. Communal Harmony refers to the harmony, acceptance and love among the people of various communities belonging to different castes, races and religion.

5. Communal Harmony is the most important pre-condition for feeling of Unity and National Integration in India

6. Equality Before law:-

  • Its Fundamental right.
  • It ensure the guarantees to every person the right to equality before law & equal protection of the laws .it is not only right of Indian citizens but also right of citizens .
  • Article 14 says “The state shall of India.” article 14 define no one is above the law.

Major challenges to Internal  security

  • International and domestic terrorism
  • J&K militancy and terrorism
  • Insurgency in Northeast
  • LWE – Left wing Extremism
  • Communalism
  • Caste and ethnic tension
  • Regionalism and Inter-state disputes
  • Cyber Crime and Cyber Security
  • Border Management
  • Coastal Security

Understanding of Definitions:-

 

Communalism

  • Attempts to construct religious or ethnic identity
  • Incite strife between people identified as different communities
  • To stimulate communal violence between those groups.
  • It derives from history, differences in beliefs, and tensions between the communities.

Regionalism

  • Theory or practice of regional rather than central systems of administration or economic, cultural, or political affiliation.
  • A linguistic feature peculiar to a particular region and not part of the standard language of a country. 

Cyber security

  • Cyber security is the body of technologies, processes and practices designed to protect networks, computers, programs and data from attack, damage or unauthorized access.

Factors Responsible for Internal Security 

  1. Pre- Independence Issues :-
    1. Unfriendly neighbors and porous borders
    2. Poverty
    3. Unemployment
  1. Administrative failures :-
    1. Inequality and Inequitable growth
    2. Governance deficit 
  1. Partisan Politics :-
    1. Communal Divide
    2. Caste awareness and Caste tensions
  1. Governance Deficit :-
    1. Politics of language ethnicity sects and son of soil
    2. Poor Justice system
    3. Porous borders 
  1. Declared policy of Pakistan’s ISI ‘ to bleed India through a thousand Cuts.

Way Forward:-

  • Central and State government Co-ordination
  • Robust Intelligence
  • Robust Cyber Security Architecture – Theater of modern Warfare
  • Good Governance
  • Better Border Management