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[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 27 JUNE 2018

[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 27 JUNE 2018

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LIST of TOPICS (Static)

REVISION TIMETABLE FOR PRELIMS – 2018 

Revision Tests


General Studies – 1


 

Topic – Part of static series under the heading “Right to Religion and nature of Secularism in India”

1) Do the rights provided under Article 25-28 truly make India a secular state. Evaluate. (250 words)

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to first examine what the meaning of secular state in Indian context is. Thereafter, we need to evaluate the provisions of Section 25-28 and whether they all fall under the same definition of secularism.

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 – Discuss the provisions of Art 25-28 and what it seeks to achieve.

Body

  • Discuss what secularism in Indian context means and how it differs from its conception in the West. Talk about the distinction between Sarva dharma sambhava (principled distance) and dharma nirpekhshta. Discuss Gandhi’s views on the nature of Indian society and the form of secularism (Sarva dharma sambhava) suitable for India
  • Examine the provisions of Article 25-28 and discuss how far do they fall in line with the overall conception of secularism in India. Discuss the contradictions that the right to religion give rise to such as Article 25(2)(b), 27.
  • Also mention that another feature of the constitutionally mandated secularism is the securing of individual as well as collective religious rights. Thus the constitution has mandated the state not only to equally treat all religions equally but also to establish equality among all religions. This has been done by securing minority groups their cultural and educational rights, A 29 and A 30.

Conclusion – Present your view on how far the fundamental right to religion make India a secular state.

 


General Studies – 2


Topic:Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.

2)The challenge for the 15th finance Commission is to strike a balance between those who need and those who perform. Comment in light of the concerns of Northeastern states of India.(250 words)

The hindu

 

Why this question

The 15th finance commission has raised several issues and a hot debate around them. The issue becomes important for UPSC mains and all the related aspects should be  studied in detail. The issue is related to GS-2 syllabus under the following heading –

Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.

Key demand of the question

The question wants us to bring out the challenge faced by the commission in striking a balance between the states who need more funds and those who perform well on various indicators. We have to highlight the issue of the NE states and bring out their concerns related to the challenge faced by the commission.

Directive word

Comment- We have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue- challenge for the commission and how NE fits into that challenge. We have to form an opinion on the issue and support that opinion with facts/ arguments/ examples.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Mention the constitutional provisions related to finance commission and mention that the devolution formula is central to the approach of resource transfers as mandated by the finance commission.

Body

  • Mention that The 14th FC accorded 27.5% weight to the population (of which 17.5% was of the 1971 population), 15% to area, 7.5% to forest cover and 50% to income distance. Mention the changes proposed by the terms of 15th finance commission. E.g change in population base etc.
  • Discuss the special concerns of NE states of India. E.g Maintenance of assets, such as rural roads under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, require huge expenditure, especially in hilly States; using per capita GSDP as an indicator of fiscal capacity uniformly for all States without taking into care the lower average tax to GSDP ratio for NE states; revision of the base year to 2011-12 by the Central Statistics Office from 2004-05 also created complications like increasing GSDP without any actual related growth; high disaster burden of NE states etc.

Conclusion– suggest a way forward on how the 15th finance commission should proceed and what factors should be taken into consideration etc.

 


TopicWelfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the
performance of these schemes

3) Despite the increase in per capita income levels over time, the problem of malnutrition persists in India. Examine the schemes of the government to tackle malnutrition and the way forward? (250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

The article paints a dire picture of the number of children in India in the throes of malnutrition. This problem off late has received a lot of attention with several reports flagging the issue. Thus this topic is important for mains.

Key demand of the question

The first part of the question expects us to flag the issue of malnutrition and why it deserves immediate attention. Thereafter we need to analyze the performance of the governmental schemes aimed at targeting malnutrition and whether all of them address the root causes of the issue. We also have to give suggestions to address this challenge in a better way.

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 – State the findings of UN’s State of Food Security and Nutrition and NFHS and highlight the plight of malnourished children.

Body

  • Discuss why malnutrition persists despite development in the relatively well off states like Maharashtra.
  • Highlight some of the key government programmes which target malnutrition such as Nutri Farms scheme, ICDS, Sabla, NFSA etc. Analyze the ways in which they seek to address the issue and whether the root cause of the problem is being taken care of.
  • Discuss the way forward

Conclusion – Emphasize the need for tackling malnutrition and your view on how we should go about it.


Topic – Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate.

4) Critically analyze the role international finance agencies play in ushering in an era of sustainable development?(250 words)

Indian express

Why this question

The article talks about the impact that multilateral finance agencies have on the development paradigm and the crucial role they play in ensuring that development becomes sustainable and more suited to local needs. A critical analysis of their role is necessary because several developmental projects in India are funded by these agencies.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to first explain how international finance agencies impact the paradigm of development and how their role has become more important in present times. Thereafter we need to bring out the positive and negative impacts of their role and the ways in which reform in their functioning is required.

Directive word

Critically analyze – You need to conclude with  a fair judgement, after analyzing the nature of each component part and interrelationship between them. You need to conclude with  a fair judgement, after analyzing the nature of each component part and interrelationship between them.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Highlight the growing number of international finance agencies who seek to bridge the infrastructural deficit.

Body

  • Discuss how these international agencies impact the paradigm of development – with the rolling back of state a lot of finance for these projects come from them who follow certain standards of their own depending on what their conception of development is.
  • Examine the pros and cons of their role in making development more sustainable. Pros such as triple bottom line approach, investing in projects with social merit etc. Highlight cons such as paying lip service to sustainable development, highlight some cases where WB and IFC have been caught on the wrong foot etc

Conclusion – Present a fair and balanced view along with way forward.


General Studies – 3


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

5) The “Billion Tree Tsunami (BTT)” project holds many lessons which can be incorporated in other such environmental protection programmes. Discuss.(250 words)

The hindu

Reference

 

Why this question

Although there is not much to learn from our neighbour, its efforts in planting around a billion trees in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province (KPP) are laudable. There is a lot to learn from the programme. The issue is related to GS-3 syllabus under the following heading-

Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to highlight the key takeaways from the BTT project and discuss each of them briefly. We have to discuss their relevance in other such environmental conservation programmes back in India.

Directive word

Discuss- we have to deliberate on the structure and organization of the project and what are the lessons we can learn from them and incorporate in other such programmes.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Give a brief introduction of BTT, where it is implemented, since when etc. You can also mention the unconfirmed nature of the record but yet it is a remarkable incident as far as ground results are concerned.

Body-

Discuss in points the key takeaways from the programme and discuss each of them briefly.

E.g Deploying all the three strategies together- afforestation, reforestation and avoiding deforestation; PPP in nurseries, youth nurseries programme; community participation and resource sharing; creating stakes by generating jobs etc.

Conclusion- Based on your discussion, sum up a fair, concise and a balanced opinion on the issue.

 


Topic– Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation

6) To achieve the vision of doing away with the use of single use plastic by 2022, India needs to do much more than ban plastic in certain states. Examine.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

The article examines the plastic ban imposed by Maharashtra government to understand whether the said step is sufficient or we require a more planned and holistic approach. Since we have accorded such high priority to dealing with plastic waste, this question becomes important for mains.

Key demand of the question

The question demands us to analyze whether banning plastic is a sufficient step or even the first step in dealing with the problem of plastic waste or whether a more comprehensive and planned approach is required.

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 – Talk about the vision of elimination of single use plastic by 2022 and how states are taking lead by banning plastics.

Body

  • Highlight the problem of plastic waste in India in brief. Discuss why is it so in brief
  • Discuss how the impact of plastic ban has been and whether uniform adoption of such a step by all states would help us in achieving this vision
  • Bring out the other steps required in addition to or in replacement of blanket ban on plastics to eliminate plastic waste in the country

Conclusion – Mention your view and how we should go about the vision of eliminating single use plastic by 2022.

 


General Studies – 4


Topic: Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships. Human Values – lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family, society and educational institutions in inculcating values.

7) Do you think one should be ethical while being involved in some sport. Comment. Also, discuss the values you think are essential for being an ethical sportsman/sportswoman.(250 words)

Reference

Why this question

The issue is related to GS-4 syllabus under the following heading

Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships. Human Values – lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family, society and educational institutions in inculcating values.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to express our opinion on whether one should be an ethical sportsman or not along with the proper justification. We also have to dig deeper into the issue and identify the values required for an ethical conduct in sports.

Directive word

Comment- we have to form an opinion, based on proper arguments- should we be ethical in sports.

Discuss- we have to write in detail about the values we think are essential for being an ethical sportsman/sportswoman.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Briefly discuss the difference between sportsmanship and gamesmanship.

Body

  • Discuss why sportsmanship is better. E.g sports only involves momentary and short lived interests so winning at all costs is wrong; being ethical imparts the lessons to viewers, fans etc while as being unethical propagates selfishness and disregard for other values; it leads to a fair play and strengthens the relationship between the players and their representative countries etc.
  • Discuss the values essential for an ethical sports. E.g fairness, integrity, responsibility, and respect. Take the help of the article attached to the question and other relevant material to frame your answer.

Conclusion- Bring out a fair and a balanced conclusion on the overall issue of importance of ethics in sports and mention the plethora of ethical questions surrounding the sports-doping, sledging, match-fixing, faking injuries in the game, ball tampering; wrong and misleading advertisement by players etc which warrant such behaviour.

 



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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