[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 21 SEPTEMBER 2018

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[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 21 SEPTEMBER 2018

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LIST of TOPICS (Static)


General Studies – 1


Topic – Part of static series under the heading – “Islands”

1) Explain the origin of the two major islands of India and highlight their salient features?(250 words)

NCERT India Physical geography pg 18

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to bring out how the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep islands were formed and highlight their salient features such as the tribes there, the climate, their importance for India, the vegetation etc

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Highlight that Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep islands are the two major island chains of India.

Body

  • Explain the origin of Andaman and Nicobar Islands – volcanic in nature and recognised as the extensions of Himalayas.
  • Discuss the salient features of ANI such as
  • It gives strategic edge for India in terms of security, maritime trade and extended reach to Indian ocean
  • These islands are home to primitive tribes like Jarawas, Santhalis, Ongos etc
  • Volcanic soils and geographic location, subject these islands to both S-W monsoons and N-E monsoons and gives the one of the most pristine ecosystems of the world with rich diversified flora and fauna.
  • Equatorial climate with tropical evergreen forests.
  • group of 204 islands and lies as an elongated strip
  • Habitat for one of the pristine coral reefs in the world.
  • Highlight the origin of Lakshadweep islands – are of coral origin and explain the symbiotic relationship through which such islands are formed
  • Discuss the salient features of Lakshadweep islands
  • Originated as coral islands and agricultural productivity is low due to infertile soil
  • Existence of atolls, corals etc., made it as one of the tourist destination
  • Know for coconut, palm cultivation etc

General Studies – 2


Topic – Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health

2) With two out of five children in the country stunted, India needs to direct focus on this problem. Discuss how POSHAN attempts to tackle the problem malnutrition in India? (250 words)

Indian express

Why this question

The article directs focus towards the problem of malnutrition in the country and explains the initiatives taken by the current government in dealing with the challenge of malnutrition. The initiatives of the government designed to address the problem of malnutrition needs to be prepared in detail.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to answer the following points

  • Examine the problem of malnutrition in India
  • Explain how POSHAN attempts to deal with the problem of malnutrition
  • Discuss the opportunities and threats in POSHAN
  • Give your view on what should be the way forward

Directive word

Discuss – Here in your discussion , you need to bring out the details of POSHAN and how it would help deal with the problem of malnutrition.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Discuss the problem of malnutrition in the country with facts and figures. Explain that the government has indicated that it is willing to address this challenge on a mission mode.

Body

  • Explain that The Union Government has signed $200 million loan agreement with World Bank for National Nutrition Mission (POSHAN Abhiyaan) for 315 districts across India. The loan proceeds will be used for reducing stunting in children 0-6 years of age from 38.4% to 25% by 2022 under POSHAN Abhiyaan
  • Discuss the working of POSHAN
  • aims to ensure holistic development and adequate nutrition for pregnant women, mothers and children
  • targets to reduce level of under-nutrition and other related problems by ensuring convergence of various nutrition related schemes
  • targets stunting, under-nutrition, anaemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and low birth rate. It will monitor and review implementation of all such schemes and utilize existing structural arrangements of line ministries wherever available
  • Mention about the National council on India’s nutritional challenge which is meant to design a policy response to these issues
  • Highlight the reasons why problem of malnutrition persists in India – underweight mothers, prevalence of Anaemia, socio economic factors etc.
  • Discuss how POSHAN can help deal with this challenge

Conclusion – Emphasize on the need to address the malnutrition problem of India and highlight the importance of POSHAN for the same.


General Studies – 3


Topic– Indian economy : Issues

3) What are NRI bonds? Examine how they can help in arresting the slide of rupee against dollar?(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

The slide of rupee against dollar is leading to several economic issues, and intellectuals on one hand have talked how this is rupee correcting itself, and on the other hand have talked about how this slide needs to be attested soon. The article explains how NRI bonds can be used by RBI to stabilise rupee.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to bring out what NRI bonds are, the theory behind how bonds of such nature can help in stabilizing the value of rupee and in practicality how it would pan out. We should also suggest some alternatives or complimentary steps that can be taken to arrest the slide in value of rupee.

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 .

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Start with explaining the current situation about rupee and how RBI is looking at ways to deal with this situation.

Body

  • Explain that one of the step RBI is considering is issuing NRI bonds.
  • Explain what NRI bonds are – These are bonds issued by the Reserve Bank of India to non-resident Indians who are interested in investing their money in India. Since these bonds offer higher returns than other similar investments, they can be used as a tool to attract capital during times when other domestic assets fail to attract the interest of foreign investors. Many investors view them as a safe investment as these bonds are issued by the Indian central bank.
  • Discuss in theory how it would impact the demand of dollar vs rupee, direct investment in India and help in stabilizing the value of rupee
  • Highlight why the step is a smart move in this time – the limited or in some cases the adverse impact of some other steps like raising duties, interest rates etc. Explain the benefits of this move and past example when such bonds were used – NRI bonds can help raise $30-35 bn,  and are preferable over a RBI rate hike. NRI bond issuances—in 1998, 2000, 2013—have always stabilised the rupee.

Conclusion – Give your view on the effectiveness of NRI bonds and some other alternatives which can form the way forward.


Topic-Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

4) The debate on data localisation must not be reduced to a simple binary of whether data localisation is good or bad. Comment.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

There have been talks and some policy suggestions towards data localization not only in India but also in other big economies. The article provides an insight into the various dimensions of the issue and how data should be treated.

Directive word

Comment- here we have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to express our knowledge and understanding on the issue of data protection and data localization and form an opinion as to why it is wrong to view data protection measures by assuming that either data localization is good or bad.

Structure of the answer

Introduction- write a few introductory lines about the growing digitisation of the global economy and society, which creates huge amount of data. Also mention the growing concerns for data protection.

Body-

Discuss your points in favour or against the statement- The debate on data localisation must not be reduced to a simple binary of whether data localisation is good or bad.  E.g

  • Discuss the importance of data. E.g Data, and digital intelligence derived from it, are universally acknowledged as the key economic resources in the digital society. Who owns, controls and accesses data determines who gets what piece of the overall economic cake; A lot of privately held digital data are needed for policymaking and governance;digital societies and economies get ruled globally by the most powerful corporations and governments, which work in a mutually reinforcing manner. Data localisation attempts to bring back the rule of law to our digital and ‘datafied’ existence. etc.
  • Discuss the diversity of data and hence a varied approach towards data localization. E.g Data are of many kinds — there is news and information; personal, community and corporate data; data concerning common business activities, military, banking, health, education and agriculture; and so on. Some of these data are very sensitive, some are needed for effective regulation, some for governance and policymaking, and some for economic development, infrastructure and sharing. It is therefore a matter of what kind of data requires what kind of regulatory regime – localisation, global free flow, or various shades of grey in-between etc.

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


Topic– Linkages between development and spread of extremism.

5) With its loose language and ambiguous words, the UAPA creates a climate in which the focus shifts from individuals and crimes to groups and ideologies. Critically analyze.(250 words) 

The hindu

Reference

Why this question

UAPA has been severely criticized for its draconian provisions, which have been used recently to arrest several persons across the country for their alleged links with naxalism. It is therefore important to understand the act and its provisions.

Directive word

Critically 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 dig deep into the UAPA and bring out why it has an ambiguous language and how that shifts the focus from individuals and crimes to groups and ideology. Based on our discussion we have to form an integrated opinion on the issue.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about UAPA and article 19 of the Indian constitution – e.g when it was enacted and any amendments etc. Mention that the UAPA has been criticized for having a loose language and ambiguous words, which creates a climate in which the focus shifts from individuals and crimes to groups and ideologies.

Body-

  • Discuss how the act has an ambiguous language. E.g There is no definition of terrorism that has been provided. Terrorist Act has been defined under Section 15 and according to Section 2(k), the definition of a terrorist has to be construed according. This has a huge logical fallacy as this provides for a wide scope of interpretation which can be used and abused by the Government of the day; Under subsection 1 of section 3, chapter 2, if the central government is of the opinion that an activity is unlawful then it may, by notification in the Official Gazette, declare it so etc.
  • Discuss how the act shifts the focus from individuals and crime to groups and ideologies. E.g The wording of the UAPA, with references to “any combination of persons”, is vague and unhelpful. Second, the UAPA uses a number of broad terms that overlap with each other. Section 20 criminalises “membership” of a terrorist organisation; Section 38 uses the terms “associating” or “professing to be associated” with a terrorist organisation; and Section 39 criminalises “support” to a terrorist organisation, and includes “inviting” support as well as organising a “meeting” to support the terrorist organisation; the UAPA punishes both “unlawful activities” and “terrorist acts”, but the definitions tend to overlap etc.

Conclusion- based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue. e.g laws and statutes allowing wide discretion to state agencies and to judges should be interpreted narrowly, and judicial doctrines marking the line between criminal conduct and the permissible exercise of fundamental rights should be clear etc.


TopicDisaster and disaster management.

6) Critically examine the factors that led to the  recent devastating floods across different cities of India.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

Floods have become a more common phenomenon in the wake of the climate change and unorganised urban development has worsened the situation. In this light it is important to examine the factors behind the recent spate of floods across the country and form an opinion thereupon.

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.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to find out the causes behind the recent floods which paralyzed life in various cities in India. Then we have to form an opinion on the issue as to what should be the way-forward.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– mention about the recent spate of floods across the country- e.g the latest one in Kerala, in Chennai; Assam, Bihar etc. Mention that all these floods have several common factors behind them.

Body-

Discuss in points the factors responsible for these incidents of floods. E.g roads, railway lines and housing colonies being laid and built without regard for natural waterway; emergency releases from dams that were full. Despite forecasts of more rain, there were no controlled releases; Deforestation and loss of vegetation; lack of elaborate flood management plans like underground flood basins and spare riverbeds etc.

Conclusion– Discuss what should be done to prevent such situation or manage it in a better way. E.g improved hydromet systems and weather forecasts, robust modelling of catchment water flows with simulations of different climate-related scenarios, international norms for safety factors and building codes; flood management plans and infrastructure; awareness and education etc.

 


General Studies – 4


TopicPart of series on Ethics Case studies.

7) Epimetheus was particularly proficient at recognizing music, advertisements and human voices. Unlike previous apps using dynamic sound identification, Epimetheus was also adept at picking up subtle auditory signals and sorting through environmental noise in order to accurately identify natural phenomena, such as the changing tides. This functionality was meant to benefit scientific researchers who could employ Epimetheus as a tool to track ecological change in remote locations. It also proved popular among students and casual hobbyists who enjoyed the app’s educative and informative capabilities. In addition to identifying sounds with a high degree of accuracy, Epimetheus incorporated a machine learning algorithm that adapts to new inputs and provides users with useful information about the sounds being processed. For example, the app might identify personal information about those speaking, links to websites selling a product being advertised on television, encyclopedic entries about bird calls in the wild and other relevant resources.

One company, Cronus Corp., was especially impressed by these demos, and was eager to acquire Epimetheus and incorporate its sensing technology, databases and information provisions into its own products.

You are the Head Ethics Officer of Cronus Corp. What questions will you have regarding such a deal.

What do you think are the possible issues involved here. Discuss.(250 words)

Reference

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 as to what questions would you think are appropriate and sufficient to come at a decision about the desirability of the project.

Structure of the answer

Form the questions that you think are required to come at the decision about the project,in the form of points and discuss about each  question briefly. E.g

  1. The company should show what they have done as much as reasonably possible to “minimize” the risk of unanticipated harms. While developers cannot predict everything, they should be able to anticipate common discriminatory harms; What are examples of such harms? What might companies do to minimize these risks?
  2. how inclusive is the project in term of its accessibility to people.

 



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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