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Insights Daily Answer Writing Challenge – Day -4

QUESTIONS ASKED – DAY -4 (23/07/2013)

8) “With the disintegration of USSR and an end to the cold war, the international diplomacy took a new turn”. Critically examine.

9) The latest census shows us declining sex-ratio in some of the states states – Discuss the socio-cultural factors contributing to this disturbing trend.




Declining sex ratio. Socio-cultural factors.
In the census of 2011 we child sex ratio of 914 which is less than 2001′s.
Reasons are many, but main factors are socio-cultural as follows
1. Our society is patriarchial. Male member is the head of the family. He is more respected than other members of the family, so society always has inclination towards son.
2. Son contributes in the earning of family, and daughter given households work.
3. Son will take care of parents in the old age, so he is considered as investment for old age pension, as daughter has to leave her house after marriage.
4.Parent has to pay dowry for their daughters wedding, so girl considered as burden. Now days wedding’s has got more costlier as girls parents has to pay dowry as per boy’s status.
5. Its traditional belief system son will continue lineage of the family. Their name will continue even after parents death as girl’s name is changed after marriage.
So all these factors come into consideration while giving birth to a child, though people are more educated, more liberal in thinking now but deep rooted thing dominates their mind, and as more techniques are available so girl fetus is put to death before she is born.



With the fall of Soviet Union in 1991, came to an end Socialism. A Bipolar world led by USSR and USA characterized by high military expenditure, espionage, stock piling of nuclear weapons, proxy wars, was replaced by a unipolar world led by USA and capitalists.

End of cold war is also seen as the victory of capitalism over socialism. The Capitalist countries like USA and European countries popularized the ideas of economic Liberalization and Globalization.

The capitalist countries identified the lack of Good Governance as the reason for under development of many Asian and African countries that were victims to proxy wars and ethnic conflicts. As the ideas of globalization and liberalization were adopted, trade relations developed and now diplomatic relations were driven by economic relations unlike the earlier trend of military cooperation. With globalization and opening up of trade relations, people to people interactions increased. Spread of Internet led to discussions and knowledge sharing among people and organizations. As a result issues relevant to less developed countries like environment, governance, human development raised in international forums.

However critics view Globalization and Liberalization as Neo-imperialism. The market and resources the less developed countries are drained away and lead to development else where. The international forums, like the UNSC, are dominated by the capitalist countries. Therefore with coming of globalization, international diplomacy is now participatory and discussion oriented but the world is led by the capitalist interests.


The Census is not merely a statistical exercise. It brings into light state of various human development indicators like literacy rate, population growth, sex ratio, mortality rates, and helps policy makers in policy making.

The latest census exercise conducted in 2011 indicated a growth in over all sex ratio ( number of females per 1000 males ) in the country from 927 to 940. However a few states have shown a decline in sex ratio like state of Bihar, Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir. Even more disturbing is the steep decline in the Child sex ratio ( between the age group 0-6), at all India level Child sex ratio has fallen from 927 in 2001 to 914 in 2011. It is an indicator of the preference of male child in our society.

The states having low sex ratio like Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Bihar lie in the northern belt. These northern states are patriarchal societies giving importance to male child as heirs. Female child is seen as a burden and the region has in past witnessed practices like female infanticide. The northern belt is also the agricultural belt and they show preference of male child as a helping hand whereas female child has less economic value. Southern states have performed better than their northern counterparts in sex ratio.

At the same time it is worth noting that backward states like Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, and many north eastern states have fared better in sex ratio. These states have majority tribal population which do not have a culture preference of male child.



The phase of the world history after the second world war was characterized by what is known as “cold war” between the two super powers, the United States and the USSR. The struggle for hegemony between them brought many other countries like Cuba, Vietnam, and Yugoslavia into internal war or war-like situations. It was expected of any country of the world to join either of the groups led by the powers. If not, a country could be considered an enemy. Thus even countries which were part of the non-aligned movement also were not kept out of the effects of the cold war. The social, economic, and cultural aspects of the world were also affected due to cold war apart from political sphere.

With the disintegration of the USSR by 1990 as a result of economic problems and reaction to reforms introduced by Gorbachev, Perestroika and Glasnost, there happened a radical change in world power equations. Unites States. as the lone super power, came to occupy commanding heights in world politics and international institutions like United Nations, World Bank, IMF, WTO etc. became a playground for pursuing the interests of US and other NATO countries. NATO was able to interfere in Gulf War, Balkan crisis and other international issues very easily and enforce their decisions. The world economy became extremely dependent on the developed countries for markets, capital and aid. Thus there was major transformation in international diplomacy based on the new situation.


The 2011 census data revealed some disturbing aspects of Indian society. It was the declining sex ratio, particularly the child sex ratio at 914, that establishes the preference for male child among Indians even in 21st century. The sex ratio is very much skewed in some states in north-west India like Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan. It is to be understood that the social evils of female infanticide, female feticide and possibly honour killings contribute to this problem.

The ultimate cause for the skewed sex ratio is the low status of women in the society preserved from ancient times. Before marriage, a woman is considered as a burden to her parents as it is thought that she cannot earn enough for the family and also huge money required to marry off her. After marriage, a woman is subjected to abuse and domestic violence leading to suicides over matters of dowry. Such attitudes are entrenched in the above mentioned states.

Though education can help in eradicating this evil, it is a matter of deep concern that even among the urban elite, there is preference for the male child. Advances in diagnostic techniques help in sex selective abortions aided by unscrupulous medical practitioners. Only by the strict enforcement of the Pre Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act by the concerned agencies, sensitizing efforts of the civil society and pro-active role of the media can these evils be removed from our society.



Even though the word ‘cold war’ is virtually memorizing many times at present international arena, the actual theme got faded out with disintegration of USSR in early nineties. With this disintegration the USSR, so many independent nations are created with their own principles and own interests. However all this shifted the power to one side, i.e., towards USA and NATO countries.

Even though the USSR splits apart into many, still Russia is still world’s biggest country. But it was unable to manage the balance of power. The main reasons are economic and geographical. Economically the main energy security of USSR is lies in the western part, which is now in Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Baltic countries and surrounding countries. With splitting the vast quantities of Oil and Gas reserves and minerals lost to these countries.

Geographically Russia lies in temperate zone and northern part lies at tundra zone which are not favorable to agriculture. Russia mainly depends on other countries for many agricultural needs and as well as for energy needs. It only manages by military technology so far.

On the other way USA and NATO countries are very advanced in these sectors and continually expanding their economic territories by various agreements with different states. So Russia almost ends up its cold war actions and concentrating on its own security.


The latest census of 2011 shows the sex ratio as 940, which means there are 940 women for 1000 men. Even though it was slightly improved compared to census of 2011, still it is a big concern because the alarming low levels of certain states and decreasing ratio of child sex ratio at 914.

As the trend continuous for Kerala and Puducherri at top levels, the traditionally low sex ratio states of Haryana, J & K, Punjab, Union Territories of Delhi and Chandigarh continue their dismal form. The main reasons for low sex ratio are the mind set of people, liberal government attitude, no strict implementation of laws (like predetermination of sex during pregnancy) at ground level by Doctors.

In India the birth of female child still not welcomed by many people irrespective of their economic status. The main concern is even educated are not thinking in positively at many instances. One of the main reason for this may be the social evil of Dowry. People are considered the birth of female child as a burden for them till their marriage and feel un protective compared to male child. The increasing violence on females also may be one of the reason.

Government also has to act very strictly on the culprits who bypass the respective laws and have to penalize the hospitals who ever allows the sex determination tests.



In 1992,the disintegration of USSR, followed by the end of prolonged “cold war” between the then two superpowers,was a significant event in the world diplomacy.It changed the structure of entire world diplomatic equation, dramatically.

During cold war,the world was Bipolar in terms of diplomatic equations.USA was leading one front with it’s touted pro-liberal views,while USSR held the other one with socialist ideas.Both fronts were in cut-throat competition to influence major world affairs and international institution’s strategies.

Each country had to make a clear choice to enter in any of the two fronts.since world war 2 onwards the world was being young and various processes were taking place,like decolonization,industrialization,liberalization,etc.these situations opened a greater space for both superpowers to play greater roles out amid the cold war’s tensions.

Major emerging countries,like India,china,South Africa South Asians nations were also in greatest need of help of these superpowers.These countries also directed their foreign policies to absorb maximum assistance from US led or USSR led domains.they envisaged these situations ripe to shape their economy with the massive help,they got from either US or USSR,as per their foreign policy admitted.

but with the sudden collapse of the USSR,entire diplomatic equation took a new turn,most dramatically.the scenario was changed.the world was shifted from bipolar to uni polar with the mighty US, alone superpower in the world.initially,for a few years,some countries were clueless about their future diplomatic steps,eg;India.the situations were more or lees,a dilemma for entire world community.

Now,the countries,who earlier would had been with USSR,have to decide about their future collaboration.Some countries preferred to be with the Russian federation,a successive state of USSR,while some countries gradually changed their priorities and approached to US for further progress.

The US had become one and only one superpower with enormous powers to influence any activity in any corner of the world.The world diplomacy had been changed.The country’s priorities and foreign policies had been changed.



Sex ratio is one of the important parameter that reflects the status of women in society. Sex ratio decline in India is fact, but important thing is, that decline with socio-cultural, educational and economic development.
In India sex ratio is 933 in 2001 and it is 940 in 2011, which is one of the lowest in the world. In 1901 the states like Bihar, Kerala, Orissa, and Tamil Nadu had sex ratio 1061, 1004, 1037 and 1044 respectively while UT’s like Chhattisgarh, Goa, Jharkhand, Lakshadweep, Manipur, Meghalaya and Mizoram had Sex ratio 1046, 1091, 1032, 1063, 103, 1037, 1036 and 1113 respectively.

After independence i.e. from 1951 to 1961 the position of all the above states and UTs was good but from 1971 to 2001 the declining trend in sex ratio was shown except Kerala and Pondicherry. But in 2011 Census it is seen that in all states except Bihar, Gujarat and Jammu Kashmir the sex ratio is increased, it is also increased in UTs except Dadra & Haveli and Daman & Diu.
Reasons for decline includes preference of son, practice of dowry, Increasing ultrasound clinics and the ability to pay for abortions, education, poverty, male dominancy, lack of women empowerment, and social status of women. Collective work of government and society is needed for seeing healthy sex ratio in future census



In modern world history, the period from post second world war till the 1990s is marked by the polarisation of nations into two distinct blocks. Nations aligned themselves either in sync with the capitalist United States or the socialist USSR. This scenario underwent a change when the USSR disintegrated into pieces. The world after the USSR collapse was not at all bipolar. It has been largely unipolar so far and may become multi polar in the near future.

International diplomacy or a nation’s foreign policies are framed taking into consideration a lot of factors. During the cold war era, one important factor in determining its foreign policy was the economic, military, moral and ideological support it would derive by either inclining towards USA or the USSR. But this major factor determining a country’s foreign policy changed after the USSR collapse. Many nations liberalised and integrated themselves with the global trading network. So nation’s foreign policies were determined by its potential to prosper by establishing trade links, joint naval exercises to combat piracy.

Also the international scenario witnessed a lot of flexing of muscles by the two block during the cold war. The Cuban Missile crisis, the formation of NATO, CENTO, SEATO and the Commintern, nuclear tests, inter continental ballistic missile tests etc are examples. Post cold war scenario did not witness such such muscle flexing.

It can be said that post cold war, the USA alone dominated the world political scenario and nations were either pro-USA or anti-USA(like Cuba, Venezuela) during this time period.


Sex ratio is the no. of females per 1000 males in the country’s population. In India, sex ratio is measured during every census. It is a measure of Gender Equality. The recent census shows that India’s sex ratio has been improving since the previous decades. However few states like Bihar and Gujarat have seen decline in sex ratio in the 2001-2011 period.

This clearly indicates the preference of male children over female children in these states. The following could be the reasons for this dangerous trend:

1. Sex determination during pre-natal stage has become more popular in this communication-technology decades than during the 80s. Female foetuses are aborted before birth. The PCPNDT act amendments made few years back may bring in some positive change in the forthcoming decade.

2. General belief in the society that female children are a economic burden to the family as the entire expense of bringing her up, educating and marrying does not yield any return. This is a fundamentally flawed opinion and educations and experience will bring about a change in this attitude.

3. Considering women and her sanctity as a mark of family’s honour, fear of safely marrying her to a family of same caste, fear of her falling in love with someone else. All these factors not only affect the sex ratio, but also demean women and prevent economic prosperity, right to freedom and a honorable growth of women and society.

4. The myth that male children take care of the parents during old age and female children don’t/can’t.

5. Male children viewed as carriers of family’s tradition, honour, lineage.


Critically Analyze, Critically Examine are the common phrases we encounter in Mains questions. There is a fine difference between them.
Critically:, Critically means making a careful, unbiased, fair judgement about the good and bad qualities of something.
Examine : it is a careful study (inspection/observation) of something trying to know if there is anything wrong and find the cause of the problem.
Analyze: to examine methodically the structure or nature of something by separating it into parts and studying their relationship. When you are asked to analyze, you have to examine each part of the problem. It is a broader term than ‘Examine’.
Now, when you are asked to,
Critically examine:

you are asked to make a fair judgement by observing or inspecting both good and bad qualities, and find their causes.
Example: “In the context of the growing demands for the ban of endosulfan in the country,’critically examine‘ the issues involved.What, in your view, should be done in the matter?” (2012, Paper-I)
Here, you need to carefully judge whether ban on endosulfan is justified. Both good and bad of endosulfan use and its ban. After observing the problem, find the cause and offer solution.
Critically Analyze:
You need to judge based on the examination of all parts of the question/problem.
Example: “Analyze critically the ‘interlinkages’ between the Convention on Biodiversity and FAO treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.” (2012, GS-II)
As analysis involves separating something into parts and examining their relationship, the question directly demands the same. Observe the word ‘interlinkages’. So, first examine CBD and FAO treaties separately, then observe if both are in harmony with each other or there is any conflict between them (they are in harmony). Then conclude your answer with your fair judgement.