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SECURE SYNOPSIS: 24 NOVEMBER 2018


SECURE SYNOPSIS: 24 NOVEMBER 2018


NOTE: Please remember that following ‘answers’ are NOT ‘model answers’. They are NOT synopsis too if we go by definition of the term. What we are providing is content that both meets demand of the question and at the same time gives you extra points in the form of background information.


General Studies – 1


Topic – Women related issues

1) Explain the objectives and significance of she-box?(250 words)

pib

Why this question

The Ministry of Women and Child Development has linked SHe-Box, the online portal to report complaints of Sexual Harassment at Workplace, to all the Central Ministries, Departments and 653 districts across 33 States/Union Territories. Since women safety and sexual harassment at workplace have become important issues and a part of public conscience since metoo movement, details of this initiative should be prepared.

Key demand of the question

The question is quite straightforward in its demand. It expects us to explain what she-box is along with its objectives and significance.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Explain why this issue is in news – The Ministry of Women and Child Development has linked SHe-Box, the online portal to report complaints of Sexual Harassment at Workplace, to all the Central Ministries, Departments and 653 districts across 33 States/Union Territories.

Body

  • Explain what she-box is – online complaint management system for registering complaints related to sexual harassment at workplace. It was launched by the Ministry of Women and Child Development. The complaint management system has been developed to ensure the effective implementation of Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act (the SH Act), 2013.
  • Discuss its objective – faster disposal of complaints, putting in place a framework for effective disposal of sexual harassment cases at workplace.
  • Discuss its significance – portal is an initiative to provide a platform to women working or visiting any office of Central Government (Central Ministries, Departments, Public Sector Undertakings, Autonomous Bodies and Institutions etc.) to file complaints related to sexual harassment at workplace under the SH Act. Those who had already filed a written complaint with the concerned Internal Complaint Committee (ICC) constituted under the SH Act are also eligible to file their complaint through this portal. It is also an effort to provide speedier remedy to women facing sexual harassment at workplace as envisaged under the SH Act.

Conclusion – Emphasize that women safety is a very pertinent issue and give your view on how far this step would be helpful.

Background:-

  • Recently the Ministry of Women and Child Development(MWCD) has linked SHe-Box, the online portal to report complaints of Sexual Harassment at Workplace, to all the Central Ministries, Departments and 653 districts across 33 States/Union Territories.

She box :

  • It is a proactive step taken by the WCD Ministry in the wake of the worldwide campaign #MeToo, where women have related their experience of facing sexual harassment and abuse at workplace.
  • Objectives:-
    • This Sexual Harassment electronic Box (SHe-Box) is an effort to provide a single window access to every woman, irrespective of her work status, whether working in organised or unorganised, private or public sector, to facilitate the registration of complaint related to sexual harassment.
  • Any woman facing sexual harassment at workplace can register their complaint through this portal. Once a complaint is submitted to the ‘SHe-Box’, it will be directly sent to the concerned authority having jurisdiction to take action into the matter.
  • Those who have already filed a written complaint with the concerned Internal Complaint Committee (ICC) or Local Complaint Committee (LCC) constituted under the Sexual Harassment Act are also eligible to file their complaint through this portal.
  • It is to ensure the effective implementation of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act (the SH Act), 2013.
  • The portal also provides information on 112 institutions empaneled by MWCD to conduct training/workshops on the issue of sexual harassment at the workplace.
  • It also has the option for resource persons and institutions willing to contribute to training on this subject in various organisations to submit their applications.
    • SHe-Box will provide a platform to these empanelled institutes/organisations to share their capacity building activities with the Ministry which in turn will be able to monitor the activities of these institutes/organizations so empanelled from across the country.

Significance:-

  • Till November 2018, as many as 321 complaints have been registered with ‘SHe-Box’ out of which 120 are related to central ministries/departments, 58 are from state governments and 143 are from private companies. 
  • SHe-Box portal is an effort to provide speedy remedy to women facing sexual harassment at workplace. With the linking of the portal to central and state governments, once a complaint is submitted to the portal, it will be directly sent to the section of the employer concerned. Through this portal, WCD as well as the complainant, can monitor the progress of the inquiry. 
  • Raising awareness:
    • It brings about with it an awareness of the topic which is still quite a taboo in India, and will hopefully embolden women to raise their complaints, rather than remain silent. The platform aligns with the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) in the US.
    • SHe-Box will encourage more women to come forward to name perpetrators and seek justice.
  • Ensure fairness and action:
    • SHe-Box stands over and above the whims of an organisation, as the Internal Committee’s/Local Committee’s functioning “may” be at the mercy of the organisation. These Committees will be increasingly under pressure to ensure that they execute their responsibility adequately, as they could be monitored.
  • Independent and external assistance: 
    • SHe-Box also provides a forum outside the organization for female employees to complain to. With the complaints being monitored in SHe-Box, organizations will step up their efforts to ensure that they provide a safe workplace to female employees.
  • Data analysis and convenience:
    • SHe-Box will also help the Indian government track the number of incidents and understand the magnitude of the problem. Finally, a victim could always report to other authorities through a physical document or an email. A portal provides convenience.
    • In addition, the SHe-Box portal is fairly user-friendly.

 

How  SHe-Box can be made more effective

  • There are a few shortcomings that should be rectified to make the portal even more effective:
    • Confidentiality:
      • However well-intentioned such a system is, unless it ensures utmost confidentiality, female employees will hesitate to utilize it. Any indication on the portal to confirm confidentiality will be reassuring to a victim raising a complaint.
    • Provisioning for whistle-blowers: 
      • The portal only allows a victim to lodge a complaint. If a whistle-blower section was to be added, it could prove to be vital.
    • Handling unknown or multiple respondents: 
      • Currently, there is no provision to submit a complaint against an unknown respondent, i.e., someone whose identity may be unclear to the victim. Also, a provision to complain against multiple respondents needs to be included for the SHe-Box to be comprehensive.
    • Intimidating for the lower strata:
      • If the portal allows a written complaint to be scanned and uploaded, it would help.
    • Mandatory Aadhaar number: 
      • It would help if the Aadhar card number were to be made optional to alleviate the fears of the victim.
    • Clarity of process and scope: 
      • Certain aspects of SHe-Box and its process and coverage are still unclear. For example, when the WCD Ministry forwards the complaint received on the portal to the concerned organisation, who at the organisation receives it is a question.
      • Having a dedicated role or mentioning who is responsible for receiving and following up on the complaint is required.
      • Also, there needs to be improved scope for consultation and assistance, especially in the unorganised sector.

Conclusion:-

  • SHe-Box is a step in the right direction to challenge the status quo and to finally give the Indian working women the fair representation and support they deserve.

 


General Studies – 2


Topic– Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.

2) The recent act of dissolving of the J&K assembly controverts what has been laid down by the Supreme Court. Comment.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

The governor of J&K has recently dissolved the legislative assembly citing several grounds. However the grounds put forward are against the various judgements and directions of the SC.

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 of the current political scenario in J&K and form an opinion as to whether the governor has acted along or against the controverts laid down by the SC.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– Give a brief introduction of the recent decision of the J&K governor of dissolving the legislative assembly.

Body-

  1. Discuss the reasons cited by the government in favour of his decision. E.g  “extensive horse trading” and the possibility that a government formed by parties with “opposing political ideologies” would not be stable etc.
  2. Discuss why it goes against the controverts of the SC. E.g the Supreme Court has deprecated such a line of reasoning. In Rameshwar Prasad (2006), the then Bihar Governor Buta Singh’s recommendation for dissolving the Assembly the previous year was held to be illegal and mala fide. In both instances, the dissolution came just as parties opposed to the ruling dispensation at the Centre were close to staking a claim to form the government; Describing such an alliance as opportunistic is fine as far as it is political opinion; however, it cannot be the basis for constitutional action. As indicated in Rameshwar Prasad, a Governor cannot shut out post-poll alliances altogether as one of the ways in which a popular government may be formed. The court had also said unsubstantiated claims of horse-trading or corruption in efforts at government formation cannot be cited as reasons to dissolve the Assembly etc.

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

Background:-

  • Recently the act of dissolution of assembly of Jammu and Kashmir by the governor brought once again into the front fore about the role of governor.

Reasons cited by J & K governor :-

  • Extensive horse trading and the possibility that a government formed by parties with opposing political ideologies would not be stable.

Guidelines laid down by SC:-

  • In the SR Bommai (1994) case SC had observed that the power under Article 356 is extraordinary, must be used sparingly and should never be used for political gain for the party in power at the Centre.
  • In Rameshwar Prasad (2006), the then Bihar Governor’s recommendation for dissolving the Assembly the previous year was held to be illegal and mala fide. The dissolution came just as parties opposed to the ruling dispensation at the Centre were close to staking a claim to form the government.
  • A Governor cannot shut out post-poll alliances altogether as one of the ways in which a popular government may be formed. The court had also said unsubstantiated claims of horse-trading or corruption in efforts at government formation cannot be cited as reasons to dissolve the Assembly.
  • Further, it said it was the Governor’s duty to explore the possibility of forming a popular government, and that he could not dissolve the House solely to prevent a combination from staking its claim. 

How is the recent dissolution violation of SC order:-

  • Remarks that the PDP and the NC did not show proof of majority or parade MLAs show shocking disregard for the primacy accorded to a floor test.
  • According to experts J&K’s relationship with the Centre is rooted in constitutional safeguards as well as in the participation of its major parties in electoral politics and parliamentary democracy. The potential for political instability in the future should not be cited as a reason to scuttle emerging alliances.
  • Describing such an alliance as opportunistic is fine as far as it is political opinion however, it cannot be the basis for constitutional action.
    • As indicated in Rameshwar Prasad, a Governor cannot shut out post-poll alliances altogether as one of the ways in which a popular government may be formed.
  • Reason cited as opposition political ideology is flawed because:-
    • The governor has no power to examine the ideologies of the political parties prior to inviting them to form government.
    • No party that does not have faith in the Constitution of India can be registered by the Election Commission and therefore the option of doubting the credentials of registered political parties is not available to anyone.
    • Even in pre-Independence times, the Hindu Mahasabha and Muslim League had formed a coalition government in a few provinces. Thus, parties that fight against each other can legitimately form government and the only responsibility the governor has is to satisfy himself that the new formation has the numbers.
  • Experts cite that dissolution of the assembly to prevent the formation of a popular government shows a lack of belief in parliamentary democracy, which is the basic structure of the Constitution.

Topic- India and its neighborhood- relations.

3) While INS Arihant makes India’s nuclear deterrence more robust, it also changes deterrence stability in the southern Asian region. Analyze.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

India recently launched its first nuclear powered submarine, INS Arihant. In this context it is important to analyze the enlarged defence powers gained by deploying INS Arihant and also bring out how the induction changes the stability in the southern Asian region.

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 bring out the benefits of deploying INS Arihant and any defence lags still left. It also wants us to discuss how the induction of the INS Arihant would alter the security scenario in the south Asian region.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few lines about the recent induction of India’s first nuclear Submarine. E.g INS Arihant, India’s first nuclear ballistic missile submarine that completed its sea patrol earlier this month, will contribute significantly to making India’s deterrence capability more robust.

Body-

  1. Discuss how and to what extent INS Arihant will strengthen India’s defence capabilities. E.g Submarine-based nuclear capability is the most survivable leg of a nuclear triad, and its benefit must be seen especially in the light of the growing naval capabilities of India’s potential adversaries; However its range of 750 km is insufficient to reach key targets in, say, China or Pakistan unless it gets close to their waters, which would then make the Indian SSBN a target; Maintaining a huge nuclear force and its ancillary systems, in particular the naval leg, would eventually prove to be extremely expensive. One way to address the costs would be to reduce the reliance on the air and land legs of the nuclear triad etc.
  2. Discuss how it will affect the power dynamics and future clash of interests in the south Asian region. E.g  it is bound to make the maritime competition in the Indian Ocean region sharper; Pakistan’s reaction to India’s response to China would be to speed up its submarine-building spree, with assistance from Beijing. Add to this mix China’s mega infrastructure project, the Belt and Road Initiative, with its ambitious maritime objectives; and the revival of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, or Quad, with India, U.S., Japan, and Australia; This sharpening of the maritime competition further engenders several regional ‘security dilemmas’ wherein what a state does to secure itself could end up making it more insecure etc

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

Background:-

  • India’s first indigenously designed and built nuclear-powered submarine, the INS Arihant, which is equipped with nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles had just completed a nearly month-long nuclear deterrence patrol. This is a landmark development to India.
  • India’s nuclear deterrence 20 years after the country went nuclear is now secure as it rests on a triad of land, air and undersea vectors.

How INS Arihant makes India’s nuclear deterrence more robust :-

  • Submarine-based nuclear capability is the most survivable leg of a nuclear triad, and its benefit must be seen especially in the light of the growing naval capabilities of India’s potential adversaries.
  • Difficult to detect:-
    • It provides the ultimate credibility to nuclear deterrence as both land and air-launched nuclear weapons are much more susceptible to destruction than those launched from undersea platforms which are difficult to detect.
  • It sends out an unambiguous message to those inimically disposed towards India that they cannot trifle with it and efforts at nuclear blackmail will not work.
  • The nuclear deterrence patrol signifies India having come off age as a mature nuclear-armed state.
    • The Arihant’s successful nuclear deterrence patrol signifies India’s attainment of complete mastery over all the highly complex systems and procedures entailed in operating the sea leg of the triad. These are much more intricate and exacting than those for land and air vectors. Unlike the latter, they entail not only nuclear-propelled platforms but also ab initio custody of fully mated nuclear weapons.
  • The Arihant is believed to be the first in a series of six submarines. These will form the core of India’s sea-based nuclear deterrent and constitute a potent and formidable weapons system which will ensure national security. With the serial production of Arihant-type submarines, there will be an even higher element of indigenisation.
  • With the Arihant’s nuclear deterrence patrol, India has added immeasurably to the credibility of its nuclear deterrence. This will obviously add to national security and will be a factor for peace.
  • Analysts said the 6,000-tonne vessel with a range of about 750km sends a powerful signal to Pakistan and China that India’s underwater nuclear deterrence is credible potent and functional.
  • Arihant propels India into a club so far dominated by the US, France, Britain, China and Russia, demonstrating India’s technological capability to design, build and operate nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines or SSBNs.
  • It helps India in gaining respect from South Asian countries and beyond where Chinese economic might is impediment to India’s influence. India is the only country having a sea-based nuclear deterrent, which is not a Permanent Member of the UN Security Council.

 

How INS Arihant changes deterrence stability in the Southern Asian region :-

  • There is no clarity on whether the first deterrence patrol of INS Arihant had nuclear-tipped missiles on board. 
    • Without nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles on board an SSBN (ship submersible ballistic nuclear) such as INS Arihant, it might not be any more useful than an ordinary nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN).
  • Even if INS Arihant had nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles on board, it is not clear what ranges they would cover.
    • Reports suggest that it had the 750 km range K-15 missiles on board, which is insufficient to reach China or Pakistan unless it gets close to their waters, which would then make the Indian SSBN a target. 
  • While the K-4 missile currently under development would give the country’s sea deterrent the necessary range vis-à-vis its adversaries, INS Arihant would not be able to carry them on board. The Navy would require bigger SSBNs (S-4 and S-5) to carry the K-4 ballistic missiles. 
  • Huge costs:-
    • Maintaining a huge nuclear force and its ancillary systems, in particular the naval leg, would eventually prove to be extremely expensive.
  • Naval leg of the nuclear triad also poses significant command and control challenges:-
    • Communicating with SSBNs without being intercepted by the adversaries tracking systems while the submarines navigate deep and far-flung waters is among the most difficult challenges in maintaining an SSBN fleet.
  • Impact on strategic and regional stability
  • It is bound to make the maritime competition in the Indian Ocean region sharper.
  • Pakistan’s reaction to India would be to speed up its submarine-building spree, with assistance from Beijing.
  • This sharpening of the maritime competition further engenders several regional ‘security dilemmas’ wherein what a state does to secure itself could end up making it more insecure. 
  • The absence of nuclear confidence-building measures (CBMs)among the three key players in the region would further complicate the relations
    • While India and Pakistan have only rudimentary nuclear CBMs between them, India and China have none at all.
    • In the maritime sphere, neither pairs have any CBMs.
    • In case of a bilateral naval standoff, the absence of dedicated conventional or nuclear platforms could potentially lead to misunderstandings and accidents.
  • India is located in a very challenging weapons of mass destruction (WMD) region, and the fact that both its nuclear capable neighbours (China and Pakistan) are in a deep and covert WMD cooperation framework compounds the challenge for India. Also the Pakistan has also used its nuclear capability to shield its terrorism investment and the strategic picture becomes even more muddy.

Way forward:-

  • One way to address the costs would be to reduce the reliance on the air and land legs of the nuclear triad.
  • Given that India does not have ‘first strike’ or ‘launch on warning’ policies, it can adopt a relatively relaxed nuclear readiness posture.
  • India could, in the long run, invest in a survivable fleet of nuclear submarines armed with nuclear-tipped missies of various ranges, and decide to reduce its investment in the land and air legs of its nuclear deterrent, thereby reducing costs.
  • It is important for India and Pakistan and also India and China to have an ‘incidents at sea’ agreement like the one between the U.S. and USSR in 1972, so as to avoid incidents at sea and avoid their escalation if they took place.

Topic- Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

4) Swachh Bharat has unleashed a social revolution in India. Examine the factors responsible for the success of the programme.(250 words)

Indian express

Directive word

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 dig deep into the achievements of SBM and bring out the reasons or factors that made various achievements under SBM possible.

Structure of the answer

Introduction- write a few introductory lines about the  SBM- e.g mention its objectives.

Body-

  1. Briefly highlight the achievements under the SBM. E.g. in 2014 as many as 550 million Indians defecate in the open and the cumulative sanitation coverage in rural India was just over 38 per cent.Today, rural India’s sanitation coverage is over 96 per cent. Over 450 million  people have stopped defecating in the open in a short period of four years; mention the no. of toilets constructed under SBM; mention the health benefits of improved sanitation etc
  2. Discuss in points the factors behind the success and achievements under SBM. E.g
  • Political push.
  • Public finance
  • Partnerships
  • Participation

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

Background:-

  • Swachh Bharat Mission is a campaign which was launched on 2 October 2014, and aims to eradicate open defecation by 2019, and is a national campaign, covering 4,041 statutory cities and towns. Its predecessors were the “Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan” and before that the “Total Sanitation Campaign”.
  • Recent Parliamentary Committee report clearly says this programme is unlikely to make India open-defecation free. The rationale of the 51st Standing Committee on Rural Development report is that even a village with 100 per cent household toilets cannot be declared open defecation-free till all the inhabitants start using them.

The success of the scheme has been in the following areas :-

  • A sense of responsibility has been evoked among the people through the Clean India Movement. With citizens now becoming active participants in cleanliness activities across the nation, the dream of a ‘Clean India’ once seen by Mahatma Gandhi has begun to get a shape.
  • Facts:-
    • In the short span of three years, about 50 million toilets have been constructed in rural India, increasing the coverage from 39% to 69% now; another 3.8 million have sprung up in cities and towns and another 1.4 million are presently under construction
    • So far, 248,000 villages have been revived from the disgrace of open defecation; 203 districts, over one-third of the total, have banished open defecation.
    • 24 States have become open-defecation free. The number of toilets built is 8.6 crore. Sanitation coverage has gone up from 39% from four years ago to over 93% today. 
    • 2017 Swachh Survekshan survey conducted by the Quality Council of India reports that 62% of rural households now have a toilet. This is an increase of over 20 percentage points since 2014.
      • More significantly, the survey concludes that more than 90% of the individuals who had access to toilets were using them
    • States:-
      • Five States have declared themselves Open Defecation Free (ODF) in rural areas: Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Uttarakhand and Haryana.
    • SBM is not a campaign to just clean India, but has a much deeper significance:-
      • If successful, this campaign can transform the lives of Indian women, bringing in its scope issues of women’s safety, their access to higher education and will even challenge the caste system.
    • It has addressed centuries-old practices on open defecation, and it has had major health and economic impact. A recent World Health Organisation (WHO) report has said that by the time Swachh Bharat ends in 2019, more than 3,00,000 lives would have been saved.
    • The government has been working on developing an army of foot soldiers called swachhagrahis, grass-root level motivators trained in community approaches and they go out to trigger behavioural change. They get their communities to accept responsibility and accountability. 
    • There is also focus on ‘ODF plus’, which is about solid and liquid waste management and swachhata in general.

Reasons for success are:-

  • Political Push:
    • The most important success factor for the SBM was the fact that sanitation was brought into the national consciousness by none other than the Prime Minister of India, and that too in his first major address to the nation.
    • This established sanitation and cleanliness as central to his vision for India.
    • This injected a sense of urgency in the entire administrative system at the Centre, state and district levels and made them prioritise a much-neglected problem
  • Public finance:
    • The finance ministry provided the funds for this ambitious programme with a tight timeline.
    • India has the world’s largest government rural sanitation budget, in excess of $20 billion.
    • The SBM also provides significant financial incentive to socially and economically weaker sections to construct and use toilets, at Rs 12,000 per eligible household.
  • Partnerships:
    • SBM has built several strategic partnerships to mainstream sanitation in all sectors. All ministries of the Government of India are working tirelessly to improve sanitation in their respective spheres of influence like schools, hospitals, anganwadis, highways, markets, and railways.
    • Various national and international developmental agencies and corporates have supported the mission. These strategic partnerships have helped the mission spread its learnings and best practices on behaviour-change rapidly, as well as improve implementation across the country.
  • People’s participation:
    • SBM has scaled up sanitation by involving all sections of society from filmstars to sportspersons to religious leaders to the common man .
    • Today, almost every village has swachhagrahis and millions of volunteers work for swachhata with no official titles.
    • SBM is a classic example of the power of the collective and the extraordinary results that can be achieved when people come together for a common cause.

The following measures will strengthen Swachh Bharat mission:-

  • Parliamentary Committee recommends the government to review its data time to time and delete the number of defunct toilets from the list to have a real picture of constructed and functional toilets in the country.
  • Concentrating on developing sewage system makes Swachh Bharat a success:-
    • Deeply entrenched cultural contexts must be taken into account for successful policy outcomes. India needs to change perceptions of ritual purity through education and awareness in rural areas. This can be done by investing in sewage systems.
  • Enabling local governments to construct sewage systems will solve the purity issue :-
    • A toilet that flushes away human waste into the sewage and waste management system solves the problem. If there is a functional sewage system, it is relatively low cost for households to build a toilet in every home that is connected to the sewage system. 
    • Developing proper sewage system in village would also have wider impact with water not stagnating any more, lesser vector borne diseases etc so the wider objective of sanitation will be achieved.
    • Modernising the sewer lines and septic tanks and investing money and energy on smart techniques of sanitation
    • Also it would not put stress on manual scavengingand this occupation can slowly fade away giving sense of dignity and equality to the most vulnerable sections.
  • Mohalla toilets:-
    • Villages have very small houses and much clustered places where there is no place to construct toilets. The ideal solution is to have mohalla toilets designated to each house where people will keep their toilet clean by seeing others. One advantage is that when the toilets are outside the home, there will be a peer pressure to keep it clean.
  • There should be a proper databaseabout what are the requirements in a particular area because we cannot force a toilet in a house where there is no place.
  • For India constructing toilets is like a social work and not a development work. Once it is seen as a development work with country’s image, then the thrust will come and the people will realise how important it is and we should not lag behind other countries.
  • In schools it is the responsibility of the teachers and they have to be oriented to ensure that the child knows about hygiene which also includes knowing how to use a toilet.
  • Behavioural change:-
    • Adopt System 2 drivers of change
      • Community led Total Sanitation (CLTS) programmes is one such approach. It promotes the mobilisation of local communities to talk openly about, appraise and analyse their defecation practices.
    • States experience:-
      • Maharashtra with its adoption of the ‘Good Morning Squads’, Indore with its ‘dibba gang’ and Delhi with its Gabbar posters, are all using System 2 drivers to trigger behavioural change. This can be emulated in other states as well.
    • Include System 1 drivers:-
      • Incentive programs for increased latrine use can also issue text message reminders, scheduled and framed to promote latrine usage at the same time and place each day.
      • Strategic timing of key interventions can also go a long way in disrupting behaviour. For example, promoting the use of toilets during the monsoon, when people find it difficult to defecate openly is a way to ensure a new behaviour is developed.

Topic – Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

5) Discuss the key features of and Significance of Allied and Healthcare Professionals (A&HPs) Bill and the challenges faced by Allied and Healthcare Professionals?(250 words)

Livemint

Why this question

The Union Cabinet has approved the Allied and Healthcare Professions Bill, 2018 for regulation and standardisation of education and services by allied and healthcare professionals. Hence knowing it’s details is important for mains.

Key demand of the question

The question is quite straightforward in its demand. It expects us to bring out the key features of the bill, discuss why it has been brought and the challenge faced by allied and healthcare professionals. We have to draw a linkage between the challenges faced and how the bill proposes to alleviate those challenges.

Directive word

Discuss – Here your discussion should be centred around the key demand of the question.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Highlight why this question is in news.

Body – Discuss the key features of the bill. Thereafter, discuss the impact that the bill is likely to have.

  • Bring all existing allied and healthcare professionals on board during the first few of years from the date of establishment of the Council.
  • Opportunity to create qualified, highly skilled and competent jobs in healthcare by enabling professionalism of the allied  and healthcare workforce.
  • High quality, multidisciplinary care in line with the vision of AyushmanBharat, moving away from a ‘doctor led’ model to a ‘care accessible and team based’ model.
  • Opportunity to cater to the global demand (shortage) of healthcare workforce which is projected to be about 15 million by the year 2030, asper the WHO Global Workforce, 2030 report.

Thereafter, highlight the challenges faced by such professionals which would explain the need for the bill.

Conclusion – Highlight that though such professionals have existed for long, considerable gap in the allied and healthcare space is because of a lack of a comprehensive regulatory framework and absence of standards for education and training of A&HPs, which the bill will take care of.

Background:-

  • Allied and Healthcare Professionals (A&HPs) constitute an important element of the health human resource network. Public healthcare experts claim that skilled and efficient Allied and Healthcare Professionals (A&HPs) in any healthcare system can reduce the cost of care and dramatically improve the accessibility to quality driven healthcare services.
  • Recently the Union Cabinet approved the Allied and Healthcare Professions Bill, 2018 that aims to regulate and standardize the education and services by allied and healthcare professionals.

Key features of allied and health professionals bill:-

  • Healthcare councils:-
    • The Bill provides for setting up of an Allied and Healthcare Council of India and corresponding State Allied and Healthcare Councils which will play the role of a standard-setter and facilitator for professions of Allied and Healthcare such as physiotherapists, nutritionists and workers in laboratories etc.
  • The Bill provides for structure, constitution, composition and functions of the Central Council and State Councils. The councils will be framing policies and standards, Regulation of professional conduct, Creation and maintenance of live Registers, provisions for common entry and exit examinations, etc.
  • Members of councils:-
    • The Central Council will comprise 47 members, of which 14 members shall be ex-officio representing diverse and related roles and functions and remaining 33 shall be non-ex-officio members who mainly represent the 15professional categories.
    • The State Councils are also envisioned to mirror the Central Council, comprising 7 ex-officio and 21 non-ex officio members and Chairperson to be elected from amongst the non-ex officio members.
  • Professional Advisory Bodies under Central and State Councils will examine issues independently and provide recommendations relating to specific recognised categories.
  • The Bill will also have an overriding effect on any other existing law for any of the covered professions.
  • The State Council will undertake recognition of allied and healthcare institutions.
  • Offences and Penalties clause have been included in the Bill to check mal­practices.
  • The Bill also empowers the Central and State Governments to make rules.
  • Central Government also has the power to issue directions to the Council, to make regulations and to add or amend the schedule.
  • Targets:-
    • An Interim Council will be constituted within 6 months of passing of the Act holding charge for a period of two years until the establishment of the Central Council
    • The Council at the Centre and the States are to be established as body corporate with a provision to receive funds from various sources.
    • Councils will also be supported by Central and State Governments respectively through Grant-in-aid as needed. However, if the StateGovernment expresses inability, the Central Government may release some grant for initial years to the State Council.

Significance:-

  • Government has estimated that the Allied and Healthcare Professions Bill, 2018 will directly benefit around 8-9 Lakh existing Allied and Healthcare related professionals in the country and several other graduating professionals joining workforce annually and contributing to the health system
  • Employment opportunities:-
    • The legislation will provide employment opportunities to millions of youth in the country and will help standardize allied healthcare.
  • It provides opportunity to create qualified, highly skilled and competent jobs in healthcare by enabling  professionalism of the allied  and  healthcare workforce.
  • It provides  high quality, multi-disciplinary care in line with the vision of Ayushman Bharat, moving away from a ‘doctor led’ model to a ‘care accessible and team based’ model
  • The bill provides an opportunity to cater to the global demand (shortage) of healthcare workforce which is projected to be about 15 million by the year 2030, as per the WHO Global Workforce, 2030 report.

Challenges faced by allied and healthcare professionals:-

  • Proper educational programmes for allied and health care professionals are lacking in India and also lack standardization.
  • Lack of regulatory framework:
    • Majority of the countries have a statutory licensing or regulatory body that is authorised to license and certify the qualifications and competence of such professionals. India lacks such initiative
  • Absence of standards for education and training of A&HPs.
  • Constraints in the bill:-
    • The bigger challenge lies in effectively implementing it. As every institution teaching these professionals will need to be accredited and those coming under regulation there could be scope for manipulation.
    • While the act may lay down strict regulations, there is no clarity about what happens when the supply of professionals is less than the demand ,How will stipulation on higher qualifications help if supply of talent is not matched
    • Regulators in the healthcare sector have been under scrutiny for long so intent of the bill might be neglected.

Way forward:-

  • State government and medical community must all be on board
  • Young people joining training courses to be such professionals must see the need for standards – laying down the curriculum, syllabus and laying down the period of training.

Topic – Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests

6) US China trade war had wider ramifications, particularly for ASEAN. Analyze and also examine how India is affected?(250 words)

Reference

Why this question

East Asia summit has recently concluded which brought to the fore tensions in ASEAN with regards to the ongoing trade war between USA and China and how this would eventually force them to take sides. This region is one of the most dynamic region with indo Pacific having wider strategic significance. Hence the impact of this ongoing rivalry and India’s dilemmas and constraints need to be understood.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to first mention in brief about the trade conflict and the direct geo economic impact it is having. Thereafter, we need to bring out the wider geopolitical and geostrategic ramifications, especially in ASEAN and Asia Pacific region. Next we need to discuss how this affects India. Finally we need to provide a way forward.

Directive word

Analyze – When asked to analyze, you  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.

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 – explain about the trade war and highlight it’s economic impact and the rise of protectionism.

Body

  • Highlight the wider ramifications of the trade war – trade tensions are a manifestation of the strategic competition between the two countries. US steps to limit technology transfers to China through legislation, such as the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernisation Act (FIRRMA), will set the tone for the relationship regardless of trade deals.
  • Explain the position that it puts the Asean countries into, and how it brings into focus the fault lines within Asean. Also explain that all these nations have economic stakes and interest in indo Pacific.
  • Highlight that India is also impacted due to its own interests as well as the role that Asean countries expect India to play.

Conclusion – explain how India should act in this situation

Background:-

  • Trade tensions are a manifestation of the strategic competition between the two countries China and US
  • US has started imposing tariffs on as much as 25 percent on $34 billion in Chinese imports.
  • China responded with retaliatory tariffs of 25% on US goods worth an equivalent $34 billion ,including soybean, automobiles, and marine products such as lobsters.
  • US steps to limit technology transfers to China through legislation, such as the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernisation Act (FIRRMA), will set the tone for the relationship regardless of trade deals.

US China trade war impact on India:-

  • Benefits:-
    • Diminished US-China trade engagement could have positive results for countries such as Brazil and India from a trade perspective, at least in the short run.
      • For instance in the case of soybean there could be a cascading impact in terms of openings for India to enter other markets
    • US-China trade war could accelerate the transition. US companies that rely heavily on imports from China would be forced to redesign their supply chains around tariffs.
      • Multinationals and their suppliers would look for alternative facilities outside China. This is bad news for China but might benefit India.
    • Even if tariff walls went up, India’s large market and relatively swift growth would force multinationals who wanted a piece of that growth to manufacture locally.
    • India would receive a large boost from China on the hunt for new supply chains.
  • Threats :-
    • In the long term, a full-fledged trade war is not good for India. It invariably leads to a higher inflationary and low growth scenario.
    • Increase in interest rates in the US has implications for emerging economies such as India, both for the equity and debt markets.
      • Higher interest rates do make the option of investors borrowing cheap money in the US and investing in Indian equities significantly less attractive.
    • The three external risk factors higher tariffs, rising interest rates, and elevated bond saleswill come at a time when the domestic banking system is grappling with a renewed stress of bad loans. 
    • India cannot grow on a sustained basis until it exports and free trade is in existence. With the trade war free trade might affect global economy and in turn India’s as well.
    • Trade war among major economies would affect multilateral trading system globalisation and disrupt global supply chains.
    • Reducing investment flows into India.

How US China trade war impacts ASEAN:-

  • Concerns:-
    • Made to choose leading to economic ramifications :-
      • Asian nations may be forced to make a difficult choice between their ties with China and their relationship with the US, if tensions continue to grow between the two.
      • Trade tensions between the US and China have introduced their own dynamic into the situation, because many ASEAN nations have deep ties with China. Singapore, for example, is the biggest investor in China.
    • The fallout will also have a direct impact on Asian economies such as Malaysia
    • A trade war could weaken investment, depress spending, unsettle financial markets and slow the global economy.
    • It could also result in other countries raising protectionist barriers.
    • Asian economies are intricately linked to China’s fortunes, through their highly connected supply chains. And what hurts China can also hurt countries further afield, like South Korea, Taiwan or Singapore etc.
    • Escalating trade tensions could hurt China’s industrial growth in the long term, and eventually affect the regional petrochemicals industry. 
  • Benefits:-
    • Officials in Cambodia, where about 630,000 workers are employed in the garment industry, say the country is benefiting from the trade war escalation. 
    • Good thing for certain markets in Asia, as companies look for alternative supply sources beyond the U.S.
    • Potential beneficiaries are Malaysia’s chemical industry and Vietnam’s consumer goods sector.
    • Chinese tariffs on U.S. primary products could help fruit exporters of Thailand and Myanmar cattle owners .
    • Both ASEAN and India will be drawn into the geopolitical tensions between US and China as well.

Way forward:-

  • ASEAN needs to continue to take steps that will make it an attractive investment destination.
    • One step towards this is the removal of non-tariff barriers.
    • Harmonising ASEAN’s approach toward services and labour mobility would cement the South-east Asian regional organisation, as well as taking political steps to hedge against long term uncertainties such as the Sino-US competition.

General Studies – 4


Topic–   Part of static series under the heading – “social influence and persuasion”

7) Social influence and persuasion have become imperative measures to ensure behavioural change through public policy. Evaluate.(250 words)

 

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to explain what public policy entails and how public policy takes use of social influence and persuasion to effect behavioral change. We need to give examples to explain our point.

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 what public policy entails – Public policy is a dynamic mechanism where the government addresses public problems and counters them by reforming existing policy.

Body – Discuss that for effective implementation of policy, citizen participation is required. Explain what social influence and persuasion is and how it helps in convincing people to work towards collective good. We can give examples of how policies for improving sanitation, nutrition etc take into account behavioral change. Explain that social influence and persuasion are used to appeal to a person’s attitude, behavior and cognition. You can also discuss Dr. Robert Cialdini’s six principles of persuasion which act as universal guide to human behavior which are: reciprocity, scarcity, authority, consistency, liking and consensus.

Conclusion – Emphasize on the important role played by social influence and persuasion to ensure behavioral change through public policy.

Answer:-

  • Public policy is a dynamic mechanism where the government addresses public problems and counters them by reforming existing policy. To effectively implement the public policy, active participation of citizenry is imperative. Social influence and persuasion are the most efficient tools to bring about change in the participation levels of people in policy implementation.
  • Social influence is the change in behavior that one person causes in another, intentionally or unintentionally. Persuasion is symbolic process in which communicators try to convince other people through transmission of a message to change their attitudes or behaviours. Thus, Persuasion is one form of social influence on attitude; in fact it represents the intersection of social thinking and social influence of everyday life.
  • Persuasion can occur through appeals to reason  or appeals to emotion. For example, school-based substance abuse prevention programs using the social influences model consistently produce better results than programs emphasizing only health information.
  • They are used to appeal to a person’s attitude, behavior and cognition. Advertisements are the robust examples of persuasion. The government has also utilized this tool for the success of the initiatives like
    • Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan- cleanliness drives
    • Ujjwala Yojana’s Give it up campaign.
    • Disclosing excess income campaign
    • Beti Bachao Beti Padhao by making parents understand it is necessary to protect and educate a girl child
  • Reputation and peer pressure contribute to the desired behavioural change required for effective implementation of public policy. For example, District Collector sending his/her child to the government school can have indirect effect on the functioning of the school and also the attitude of the parents.
  • Principles on which focus is needed to increase the social influence and persuasion :-
  • Robert Cialdini has earmarked the following cues of influence.
    • Reciprocity
      • Reciprocation is considered as a strong tool of persuasion which leads to a sense of obligation. The rule of reciprocity is highly effective and overpowering.
    • Commitment and Consistency
      • Both the values are considered highly important as they are a valuable short-cut through the complicated nature of modern existence. If a person makes any commitment, he or she will likely take up all steps to honour that.
      • Likewise, consistency is highly valued in society as it allows a person to make effective decisions and process information accordingly.
    • Social proof
      • The behaviour of people surrounding us has a great effect on our thoughts and actions. The ‘power of crowd’ is considered very important. This becomes utmost effective when there are uncertainties or similarities in a situation.
    • Liking
      • This is simple as people usually agree to people whom they like. There are two primary factors which contribute to overall liking. They are: physical attractiveness and similarities of attitudes.
      • This is followed in many advertisements where public figures who are liked and respected by the people are roped in to influence people about the programmes.
    • Authority
      • People always listen to those who are either knowledge or trustworthy. The words of an expert are always taken seriously by everyone concerned as compared to a beginner.
    • Scarcity
      • Scarcity is often underestimated by people as a method of persuasion. Anything which is of limited availability is given more importance by people. People want more of you when they cannot have.

Understanding these shortcuts and employing them in an ethical manner can significantly increase the chances that someone will be social influenced and persuaded by the public policy .