[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 10 SEPTEMBER 2018

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[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 10 SEPTEMBER 2018

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LIST of TOPICS (Static)

 


General Studies – 2


Topic– Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance- applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential.

1) Discuss the recent IT initiatives taken by Indian railways to improve train operations and provide better passenger experience. (250 words)

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Why this question

Indian railways has been at the forefront in adopting technology and has recently undertaken several IT initiatives to improve train operations and provide better passenger experience. It is important to know about and discuss those initiatives.

Directive word

Discuss- This is an all-encompassing directive which mandates us to write in detail about the key demand of the question. We also have to discuss about the related and important aspects of the question in order to bring out a complete picture of the issue in hand.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to write in detail about the IT initiatives taken by Indian railways recently, to improve train operations and provide better passenger experience.

Structure of the answer

Introduction- write a few lines about the growing adoption of IT technology in its operations and service delivery by the Indian railways e.g  e-ticketing.

Body-

Discuss in points/ paragraphs the recently undertaken initiatives by the Indian railways. E.g

Real Time Train Information System (RTIS) is being implemented, whereby GPS tracking devices would communicate using satellite communications; In an effort to computerise the transactions of the station master, a Computerised Train Signal Register is going live at 650 stations and this enables arrival/departure information to be transmitted to the Control Office Application (COA) and the National train Enquiry System (NTES) directly from the station master’s desk; Handheld Terminals (HHTs) are being provided to the Train Ticket Examiners (TTEs) to be able to check the reserved coaches, allot the vacant berths and transmit information on available berths to the subsequent stations; Modernisation of Ticketing Website (IRCTC) etc.

Conclusion–  sum up your discussion in a few lines and form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the above issue.

 


General Studies – 3


TopicConservation, environmental pollution and degradation

2) The problem of crop residue burning in India is intensified because of technological limitations or policy confusion. Evaluate. (250 words)

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Why this question

The article highlights the problem of crop residue burning, which is a significant factor for the worsening of AQI over Northern parts of the country. The article examines the various technological interventions and the associated issues, as well as the policy lacunae that leads to this problem being persistent over the years. This article will help us in preparing this issue in comprehensive detail.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to explain the issues involved in this annual saga where the burning of crop residue causes immense problems related to air quality. Next, we are expected to attribute the causes of this persistent issue to either technological issues or policy issues. In this part, we need to examine the present technological and policy challenges and explain why one is a bigger cause than the other. Finally, we need to provide a way forward.

Directive word

Evaluate – When you are asked to evaluate, you have to pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidences.  You have to appraise the worth of the statement in question. There is scope for forming a personal opinion here.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – explain the problem of crop residue burning and why is it such a huge environmental challenge.

Body

  • Discuss the technological solutions available to deal with this issue such as alternative use of paddy straw, power generation using paddy straw, ethanol production, production of bio CNG etc. Discuss the reasons why these solutions are not working out effectively.
  • Next, highlight the policy confusions which has led to the festering of this problem. Highlight issues such as national policy on biofuels does not cover support to bio-CNG produced from paddy straw in the form of minimum support price for straw , subsidy provided with a date of lapse which creates issues etc
  • Discuss how the issue can be resolved – effective coordination, need to take a relook at the national policy on biofuels, and budgetary allocation of `1,151 crore for machinery subsidy in light of the emergence of new and efficient technologies for bio-CNG, ethanol, and manure production, factor in the cost of using groundwater for crops that produce paddy for future policy decisions

Conclusion – Give your fair and balanced view on the cause of the persistent nature of this problem.


TopicIndian polity – issues

3) The Constitution Bench judgment in Navtej Singh Johar and Others v Union of India is a watershed moment in Indian constitutional jurisprudence for it enhances the scope of rights enjoyed under golden Trinity of rights enshrined in part 3. Examine. (250 words)

Indianexpress

 

Why this question

The article discusses the constitutional implications of the historic Section 377 judgment of Supreme Court. What was said in the court judgement along with its implications on the nature of rights enjoyed under the constitution is the focus of the article. Hence this article is important to prepare about the section 377 judgment as well as note down the important observations of the judgment to embellish your GS2 answers.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to discuss the reasons why the supreme court judgement making section 377 ultra vires to the constitution, is a watershed moment in Indian judiciary and how it expand the scope of rights enjoyed under Articles 14, 19 and 21. Thereafter, we need to discuss the impact of such expansion of rights and discuss what more needs to be done to ensure that the judgment is implemented in law and in spirit.

Directive word

Examine – When you are asked to examine, you have to probe deeper into the topic,  get into details, and find out the causes or implications if any .BIn the case of above question, you have to probe the reasons why this can be considered as a watershed moment in Indian judiciary and how it expands the scope of fundamental rights.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Highlight the SC’s verdict in aforementioned case.

Body

  • Give a brief insight into the stand taken by court in case of individual vs collective rights, how the stand of SC itself over article 377 has evolved over time. Highlight that since the Maneka Gandhi verdict in 1980, SC has constantly expanded the scope of rights and its verdict in Sec 377 case is indeed a watershed moment, for it has extended the cloak of constitutional protection to LGBT citizens, it has relevance to all minorities and indeed to all individuals. The judgment articulates a vision of constitutional supremacy that will guide Indian democracy well into the future. It protects LGBT citizens under the right to equality, along with privacy and dignity.
  • Highlight how the verdict has enhanced the rights enjoyed under articles 14, 19 and 21. Mention that the judgment puts the individual, at the heart of the constitutional scheme. In the Chief Justice’s words, “Destruction of individual identity would tantamount to crushing of intrinsic dignity that cumulatively encapsulates the values of privacy, choice, and freedom of speech and other expressions.” Highlight that the court has emphatically held that fundamental rights do not hinge on the number of people who claim them. Also, mention that Johar also builds on the Supreme Court’s right to choice jurisprudence. Starting with Common Cause v Union of India, the court held that choice was constitutionally protected under Article 21 of the Constitution.
  • Discuss the impact of the verdict on LGBT community

Conclusion – Give your view on the verdict and briefly highlight what the logical next step should be.

 


Topic– Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

4) Critically examine the need for removal of restriction on direct sugar use as feedstock for ethanol production.(250 words)

Epw

Why this question

Sugar is an important agricultural produce for millions of Indian farmers. However recently Indian sugarcane producers as well as sugar mill have been facing several issues including decreasing sugar prices. In this respect it is important to examine what would be the impact of removing restrictions on direct use of sugar as a feedstock for ethanol production.

Directive word

Critically examine- Here we have to probe deeper into the topic,  get into details, and find out the causes or implications if any. Based on our discussion we have to form a concluding opinion on the issue.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to delve deep into the issue and bring out why there is a need to remove the restrictions placed on direct use of sugar as a feedstock for ethanol production. It also wants us to bring out the effects of such a policy decision.

Structure of the answer

Introduction- write a few introductory lines about Indian sugar industry- rank in production, imports, exports etc.

Body-

  • Discuss why there is a need to remove such restrictions. E.g discuss the falling sugar prices and anticipation of a further fall in price levels; increasing production of sugar which will further impact prices; limited blending ratio and a lot of scope to increase the blending rates; less scope for export in the face of global competition etc.
  • Discuss the impact it would have on all stakeholders. E.g removing restrictions will enhance ethanol production; make prices remunerative for millers who in turn can pass on the fair price to the sugarcane producers; additional land required to meet ethanol blending programme by 2020 will not be needed etc.

Conclusion– based on your discussion form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the above issue.


Topic – Part of static series under the heading – “ocean currents”

5) Explain the factors that give rise to ocean current and discuss the impact of ocean currents on climate?(250 words)

GC Leong Physical geography ch 12

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to list the various factors impacting ocean current and discuss in detail how they impact ocean current. Next, we need to highlight the impact of ocean currents on climate.

Directive word

Discuss – Here, your discussion should focus on bringing out the impact of ocean current on climate.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Briefly explain what ocean current are.

Body

  • List the various factors that cause ocean current and explain how. The factors that need to be explained are Planetary winds, Temperatures, Salinity, The earth’s rotation and Obstruction from land
  • Discuss the impact of ocean current on climate such as on local climate and on rains and desert formation. Explain the impact such as Gulf Stream which is driven to the western coast of Europe as the North Atlantic Drift keeps the coasts of North Sea warm which is unusual for such high latitudes and Cold currents are one of the reasons why deserts are located the western margins of continents in the sub-tropical belts.

Topic– Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment

6) The development of the guidance on Adaptation Communications offers a ray of hope for the larger process. Analyze, in context of the concerns of the developing countries.(250 words)

Reference

Why this question

Climate change is a big threat for humanity and enhancing adaptive capacities is a critical component of our strategy to combat it. The Paris agreement provides for a regular adaptation communications (AC) from all the signatories. We need to understand the significance of these ACs and see whether there are any issues involved, which need to be discussed.

Directive word

Analyze-Here we  have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts, and present them as a whole in a summary.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to delve deep into issue and bring out the significance of ACs and how the recent development of the guidance on ACs offers a ray of hope vis a vis our fight against climate change. We have to discuss the issue in the context of the concerns of the developing countries.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the Paris agreement and ACs. e.g The Paris Agreement requires countries to report regularly on various aspects of their climate policy and important element of reporting is adaptation communication (AC), which requires that Parties “submit and update periodically” an AC, which would ideally include their adaptation priorities, implementation and support needs, plans and actions.

Body-

  • Mention that the cost of adaptation in developing countries is likely to be US$ 140-300 billion per year by 2030. So, these countries have a strong interest in making sure the cost factor is at the centre of climate deliberations, especially through regular reporting of their adaptation priorities; support is currently being provided, to a limited extent, by the Green Climate Fund, the Global Environment Facility and a few other financial institutions but the amount available does not match the true cost of adaptation etc.
  • Discuss how the development of guidance on ACs offers a ray of hope. E.g The Bangkok climate negotiations have  proposed a draft of this guidance on ACs. The document outlines the purpose of adaptation communications, the principles underpinning them, the modalities for communicating, submitting and updating them, and modalities to update/revise/review the guidance. Crucially, it also includes sections relating to (i) support for the preparation, updating and implementation of ACs and (ii) the linkages between ACs and other obligations in the Paris Agreement; one of the options that the document offers is to urge “developed country Parties to channel new and additional public climate funds to support adaptation activities in developing countries”. The same option places this exhortation for support in the context of “the importance of adaptation communications as a key step toward achieving the global goal on adaptation”. This is a constructive language that emphasises the need for support for adaptation communications as well as the purpose of the support etc.

Conclusion– sum up your discussion in a few lines and form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the above issue.


Topic– Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

7) In a rapidly transforming mobility paradigm, India has some inherent strengths and comparative advantages. Discuss. Also discuss the strategy envisaged by India towards its future mobility.(250 words)

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Why this question

Mobility is one of the fundamental key to development and India recently held a Global Mobility Summit in New Delhi. In this context it is necessary to discuss the issue vs a vis India and also the strategy envisaged in this direction

Directive word

Discuss- This is an all-encompassing directive which mandates us to write in detail about the key demand of the question. We also have to discuss about the related and important aspects of the question in order to bring out a complete picture of the issue in hand.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to write in detail about the strengths of India in the context of future mobility. It also wants us to write in detail about the strategy envisaged by India towards its future mobility.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few lines about mobility and its importance- e.g Mobility is a key driver of the economy. Better mobility reduces the burden of travel and transportation and can boost economic growth. It is a key element of ‘ease of living’ as well as for  preserving our planet etc.

Body-

  • Discuss the inherent advantages of India to implement future mobility solutions. E.g fewer vehicles per capita than other major economies. This gives us the window of opportunity to create an all-new, seamless mobility ecosystem; On the technology front, our strengths lie in information technology, big data, digital payments, and the internet-enabled shared economy; Aadhaar, and its India-stack ecosystem, has laid down a comprehensive public digital infrastructure. India can demonstrate how such digital infrastructure can be combined with new mobility business models; 175 GigaWatts of energy from renewables by 2022; a fast growing manufacturing base, especially in the automotive sector; a large, digitally literate, young population. This provides millions of educated minds, skilled hands and aspirational dreams for powering the future.  
  • Discuss the strategy envisaged. E.g Discuss the concept of 7 C’s –

Common, Connected, Convenient, Congestion-free, Charged, Clean and Cutting-edge.  Discuss what these terms represent in the strategy.

Conclusion- Based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.



NOTE: 

We are giving hints for each question. Please use your creativity and originality to come up with answers that are unique to you. But do so without deviating from core demand of each question. Ultimately you should use your reason and judgement to write your own answer. 

We suggest you to Compliment Secure with Insights Daily Current Affairs to comprehensively cover Mains GS Syllabus

 

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