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SECURE SYNOPSIS: 10 JULY 2019


SECURE SYNOPSIS: 10 JULY 2019


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.


Topic: Indian Culture will cover the salient aspects of Art forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

1) Mughal Court paintings provide not only an insight into the life and times of rulers of the period, but also reflect the contemporary social and political life of the people. Discuss how these paintings were not just paintings but an art of storytelling?(250 words)

Reference

Why this question:

The question is based on the significance of Mughal paintings even in today’s times.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must discuss in detail as to in what way the Mughal paintings manifested themselves as much more than just paintings and narrated the political and social conditions of people in the form of stories.

Directive:

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start with key features of Mughal paintings.

Body:

Body of the answer should discuss in detail the key features of Mughal paintings and explain in what way Story telling through paintings had been established as an art form in India.

Explain that the Mughal paintings mark a unique blend of Persian and Indian ideas. Mughal painting was essentially a court art, developed under the patronage of the ruling Mughal emperors. The subjects treated were generally secular, revolving around themes like battles, court scenes, receptions, legendary stories, hunting scenes, wildlife, portraits, and the likes.

Conclusion:

Conclude that Mughal paintings are great  story tellers and are very informative, that provide deep insights not only into the life and times of the Mughals but also in rich Indian heritage and culture.

Introduction:

The  origin  of  Indian  painting  goes  back  to  8000  years  and  an  account  of  its  development  is  inextricably meshed with the development  of Indian civilization. The Mughal School of miniature painting reached its zenith under Akbar and Jahangir.  The  Ain-i-Akbari shows  the  importance  the  art  had  attained  during  this  period.

Body:

Story telling through paintings is an established art form in India. We find many examples of Ramayana and Mahabharata depicted in the form of continuous paintings, for example in Pattachitra of Odisha. Similarly, Jataka stories of Buddha are also found in paintings of Ajanta Caves in Maharashtra. Though this art form already existed in India, but Mughals with their rich colours and more realistic paintings took this art to its pinnacle.

Mughal Paintings:

  • The credit for the development of Mughal painting goes to Akbar and Jahangir. The former possessed a library of 24000 Manuscripts, many of which were illustrated through paintings.
  • In the year 1567, Akbar ordered the preparation of a lavishly illustrated manuscript of the Persian translation of the “Hamzanama”, the celebrated Arab epic about a legendary Hamza.
  • Sayyid Ali and Abdus Samad were appointed to lead a group of roughly and hundred painters. The projects took 15 years to complete, and most of the Indian pointers who founded the Mughal School were trained during that period.
  • One of the leading painters at Akbar’s court was a potter’s son Daswanth.
  • Similarly, “Tutinama” was also an illustrated version of Persian tales in the form of 250 miniature paintings commissioned by Akbar.

Life and times of Mughal rulers:

  • Mughal painting marks a unique blend of Persian and Indian ideas. Mughal painting was essentially a court art, developed under the patronage of the ruling Mughal emperors and began to decline when the rulers lost interest.
  • The subjects treated were generally secular, revolving around themes like battles, court scenes, receptions, legendary stories, hunting scenes, wildlife, portraits, and the likes.
  • Imperial Mughal painting represents one of the most celebrated art forms of India. It arose with remarkable rapidity in the mid-sixteenth century as a blending of three distinct traditions:
    • Court painting of Safavid Iran.
    • Indigenous Indian devotional manuscript illumination.
    • Indo-Persian or Sultanate painting, which is it is a hybrid of provincial Persian and local Indian styles.
  • The result of this merging resulted in paintings of unprecedented vitality, brilliant coloration, and impossibly precise detail, is something dramatically more than the sum of its parts.

Contemporary social and political life of the people:

  • Mughal Court paintings provide an insight into the life and times of rulers of the period. These paintings also reflect the contemporary social and political condition of the people. Social customs and courtly traditions are vividly depicted in these paintings.
  • Mughal painting forms a dramatic episode in the history of India. Its aims and standpoint are secular and realistic: it is interested in passing events and most typically in the exact delineation of individual character in the portraiture of men and animals.
  • It is dramatic rather than static, aristocratic more than surreal and academic rather than vocational.
  • After Mughal, there came “company paintings” in India. But they were not as realistic and detailed as Mughal miniature paintings.

Conclusion:        

Thus it can be concluded that Mughal paintings are great  story tellers and are very informative, providing  us with deep insights into not only the life and times of the Mughals but also in rich Indian heritage and culture.


Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation. Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life

 2) Do you think the recently proposed automated facial recognition system for improving outcomes in the area of Criminal identification and verification is opaque, vague and prone to misuse? Critically analyse. (250 words)

Indianexpress

 

Why this question: 

The article captures a detailed discussion on the recent move made by NCRB, which has proposed integrating facial recognition system with multiple existing databases. The most prominent is the NCRB-managed Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems (CCTNS). Facial recognition has been proposed in the CCTNS program since its origin.

Demand of the question:

Th answer must critically examine the pros and cons of such a move and suggest a way forward.

Directive word: 

Critically analyzeWhen asked to analyse, 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. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, one needs to look at the good and bad of the topic and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction

State the relevance first, explain what you understand by automated facial recognition system.

Body

Discuss the following aspects in the body of the answer – 

  • The question demands a detailed discussion on the concerns around using facial recognition. Explain that the Cyber experts across the world have cautioned against government abuse of facial recognition technology, as it can be used as tool of control and risks inaccurate results.
  • Explain the issue of privacy infringement and others in detail.
  • Form a fair and balanced opinion.

Conclusion 

Conclude with what can be done and suggest a balanced way ahead.

Introduction:

Automated facial recognition system (AFRS) is a mobile and web application hosted in NCRB’s data centre in Delhi but used by all police stations in the country. AFRS works by comparing the new image of an unidentified person often taken from CCTV footage with the existing database to find a match and identify the person.  The artificial intelligence technology used for pattern-finding and matching is called “neural networks”. Currently, facial recognition in India is done manually.

Body:

NCRB’s request call:

  • The NCRB, which manages crime data for police, would like to use automated facial recognition to identify criminals, missing people, and unidentified dead bodies, as well as for “crime prevention”.
  • Its Request for Proposal calls for gathering CCTV footage, as well as photos from newspapers, raids, and sketches.
  • The project is aimed at being compatible with other biometrics such as iris and fingerprints.
  • NCRB has proposed integrating this facial recognition system with multiple existing databases.
  • The most prominent is the NCRB-managed Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems (CCTNS).
  • Facial recognition has been proposed in the CCTNS program since its origin.
  • The new facial recognition system will be integrated with Integrated Criminal Justice System (ICJS), as well as state-specific systems, the Immigration, Visa and Foreigners Registration & Tracking (IVFRT), and the Khoya Paya portal on missing children.

Need for AFRS:

  • Automated Facial Recognition System can play a very vital role in improving outcomes in the area of Criminal identification and verification by facilitating easy recording, analysis, retrieval and sharing of Information between different organisations.
  • While fingerprints and iris scans provide far more accurate matching results, automatic facial recognition is an easier solution especially for identification amongst crowds.
  • The integration of fingerprint database, face recognition software and iris scans will massively boost the police department’s crime investigation capabilities.
  • It will also help civilian verification when needed. No one will be able to get away with a fake ID.
  • It will also help civilian verification when needed.
  • It also plans to offer citizen services, such as passport verification, crime reporting, online tracking of case progress, grievance reporting against police officers etc.

Concerns:

  • Cyber experts across the world have cautioned against government abuse of facial recognition technology, as it can be used as tool of control and risks inaccurate results.
  • Amid NCRB’s controversial step to install an automated facial recognition system, India should take note of the ongoing privacy debate in the US.
  • In the absence of data protection law, Indian citizens are more vulnerable to privacy abuses.
  • Use of surveillance cameras and facial recognition constrict the rights of particular class of people.
  • In the US, the FBI and Department of State operate one of the largest facial recognition systems.
  • International organisations have also condemned the Chinese government on its use of surveillance cameras and facial recognition to constrict the rights of Uighurs, a mostly Muslim minority.

Conclusion:

In light of the fact that India does not have any legal framework to safeguard the personal data of its citizens, nor any sort of judicial oversight over public surveillance programmes, the current proposal for AFRS raises eyebrows.


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

3) The current nutrition level is the biggest development challenge, it has implications on both current and future generations in India. In the light of the above statement discuss the relevance of POSHAN Abhiyaan in achieving goals in this direction.(250 words)

livemint

Why this question:

 The article talks about Nutrition as a challenge and yet to be achieved goal in the country.

Key demand of the question:

The answer needs to analyse the nutrition aspect prevailing in the country and to what extent POSHAN Abhiyaan has been successful in achieving its goals.

Directive:

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Quote facts suggesting current conditions of nutrition in the country.

Body:

Take hints from the article and discuss the context first, explain though the nutrition policy is heading the right direction there are challenges that need attention.

Explain the features of the POSHAN Abhiyaan and in what way the mission has been trying to address the issues plaguing nutrition scenario. Discuss the shortcomings of the same if any.

Explain the pros and cons and suggest what needs to be done.

Conclusion:

Conclude that one mission alone can not resolve the entire issue and that multi – integrated approach is required to resolve the problem.

Introduction:

India is home to one of the largest populations of malnourished children in the world. The POSHAN (PM’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nourishment) Abhiyaan was launched in2018. The scheme aims to ensure holistic development and adequate nutrition for pregnant women, mothers and children. It is to ensure that malnutrition doesn’t affect children’s cognitive development or physical growth.

Body:

Salient features of POSHAN:

  • The Abhiyaan targets to reduce stunting, undernutrition, anaemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and reduce low birth weight by 2%, 2%, 3% and 2% per annum respectively.
  • The target of the mission is to bring down stunting among children in the age group 0-6 years from 38.4% to 25% by 2022.
  • POSHAN Abhiyaan aims to ensure service delivery and interventions by use of technology, behavioural change through convergence and lays-down specific targets to be achieved across different monitoring parameters.
  • Under the Abhiyaan, Swasth Bharat Preraks will be deployed one in each district for coordinating with district officials and enabling fast and efficient execution of the Abhiyaan across the country. Swasth Bharat Preraks would function as catalyst for fast tracking the implementation of the Abhiyaan.

Pros of POSHAN Abhiyan:

  • Complete approach towards malnutrition: The programme through use of technology, a targeted approach and convergence strives to reduce the level of stunting, under-nutrition, anaemia and low birth weight in children, also focus on adolescent girls, pregnant women and lactating mothers, thus holistically addressing malnutrition.
  • It targets to reduce level of under-nutrition and other related problems by ensuring convergence of various nutrition related schemes and provide performance based incentives to states and community nutrition and health workers, facilitating a focus on results.
  • It will monitor and review implementation of all such schemes and utilize existing structural arrangements of line ministries wherever available.
  • Its large component involves gradual scaling-up of the interventions supported by ongoing World Bank assisted Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Systems Strengthening and Nutrition Improvement Project (ISSNIP) to all districts in the country by 2022.
  • Union Government has signed $200 million loan agreement with World Bank for National Nutrition Mission (POSHAN Abhiyaan) for 315 districts across all states and union territories.
  • The World Bank loan will be used for improving coverage and quality of ICDS nutrition services to pregnant and lactating women and children under 3 years of age.
  • It will be also used for project in improving skills and capacities of ICDS staff and community nutrition workers, instituting mechanisms of community mobilization and behaviour change communication, strengthening systems of citizen engagement and grievance redress.
  • It will be also used for establishing mobile technology based tools for improved monitoring and management of services for better outreach to beneficiaries during critical 1,000 day window for nutrition impact.
  • POSHAN Convergence Matrix looks at deploying a multi-pronged approach to mobilise the masses towards creating a nutritionally aware society.
  • Community based events at anganwadi centres to engage the beneficiaries and their families towards nutritional awareness; sustained mass media, multimedia, outdoor campaigns; mobilisation of all frontline functionaries; SHGs and volunteers towards nutrition are the methods to be adopted. The aim is to generate a Jan Andolan towards Nutrition.
  • Thus the POSHAN Abhiyan is to bring all of us together, put accountability and responsibilities on all stakeholders to help the country accomplish its desired potential in terms of its demographic dividend.

Challenges towards POSHAN Abhiyan:

  • Challenges with data:
    • Lack of credible data on a year-year basis. For example, there has been a 10-year gap between NFHS 3 and NFHS 4.
    • Further, there is confusion and inability to cope with measurement procedures among poorly trained Anganwadi workers and thus data on malnutrition may not be accurate.
    • Lack of adequate access to food: Due to ineffective functioning (corruption and leakages) of the public distribution system (PDS), access to food is a major problem. Loss of food grains in warehouses (due to rotting and theft) further aggravates the problem.
  • Issues with ICDS:
    • Major issues with ICDS are the supply of quality food and its uniform distribution.
    • Also, Anganwadi workers are unable to play an effective role in attending to the problem of malnutrition because of low wages and inadequate training.
  • Cereal-based Diet:
    • A major reason for micronutrient deficiency in India is because of a cereal-based diet. However, even the National Food Security Act does not address the issue of nutritional deficiency adequately.
    • Further, food fortification has also been inadequate.
  • Social-economic and Cultural challenges:
    • Major challenges in implementing nutritional programmes are socio-cultural factors such as caste. For example, Hausla Poshan Yojana, a plan to provide nutritious food to pregnant women and malnourished children in Uttar Pradesh failed to even start because some women beneficiaries allegedly refused to consume the food prepared by Anganwadi workers belonging to the SC community.
    • Illiteracy among women and gender biases is also a challenge
  • Lack of nutritional and health awareness:
    • Lack of awareness, ignorance of healthy diets, unhealthy feeding and caring practices, poor breastfeeding practice are major challenges in reducing malnutrition
  • Sanitation and hygiene:
    • Lack of sanitation is also an important challenge in reducing malnutrition. Poor sanitary conditions caused by open-defecation and other issues lead to the incidence of diarrhoeal diseases which make children susceptible to stunting
  • Financial Constraints:
    • Budgetary allocations of many schemes have decreased over time. Further, the money allocated has remained unspent in many states.

Way forward:

  • To address the problem of child under-nutrition, and disease there should be early life-cycle interventions targeting the first 1,000 days of a child’s life.
  • ICDS, Mid day Meal and PDS should be re-worked upon for greater effectiveness. Public-Private partnership in this domain should be encouraged. This would ensure that leakages, space and other constraints of lack of hygiene, delay in supply of food etc do not hinder delivering nutritious food.
  • It is important to extend the food fortification of staples. Public-private partnerships can help leverage the appropriate technology for scaling up food fortification interventions. Further, the focus should be on incorporating nutritious food and diversify the diet.
  • It is important to target multiple contributing factors, for example, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). The focus should not only be on building toilets but bringing about a behavioural change among people
  • Agricultural policy should be aligned with nutrition policy with incentives provided for encouraging the production of nutrient-rich and local crops for self-consumption.
  • It is important to have sufficient information and reliable, updated data for effective interventions. It is thus necessary to collect and maintain real-time data on various nutrition indicators.

Conclusion:

Boosting nutrition levels across the country is one of the biggest low hanging fruit in the Indian public policy sphere. If we can conquer space, we can conquer malnutrition.


Topic: Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

4) What do you mean by liberalization? How does it affect the international business environment?What led to Liberalisation of Indian economy? Discuss.(250 words)

Indian Economy by Dutt and sundaram

Why this question:

The question is direct from GS paper III, it seeks to examine the effects of liberalization on international business environment and the causative factors responsible for liberalisation of Indian economy.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must discuss in detail what is liberalization, effects of it on international business environment, and the factors responsible for liberalisation of the Indian economy.

Directive:

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Describe what is liberalization. 

Body:

The answer should discuss the following points: 

Explain what you understand by liberalization? 

What are the major goals of economic liberalization?

What is the importance of Liberalization?

Then discuss that the economic liberalization in India refers to the changes and reforms, initiated in 1991, of the country’s economic policies, with the goal of making the economy more market- and service-oriented, and expanding the role of private and foreign investment.

Explain its effect on international business environment.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward and reassert the significance of it.

Introduction:

Liberalization is defined as laws or rules being liberalized, or relaxed, by a government. Economic liberalization is generally described as the relaxing of government regulations in a country to allow for private sector companies to operate business transactions with fewer restrictions. It is usually promoted by advocates of free markets and free trade, whose ideology is also called economic liberalism. Economic liberalization also often involves reductions of taxes, social security, and unemployment benefits.

Body:

With reference to developing countries, this term denotes to opening of their economic borders to multinationals and foreign investment. Many economists explained that economic liberalization is “opening up” to the rest of the world with regards to trade, regulations, taxation and other areas that generally affect business in the country.

Conditions that led to liberalization of Indian Economy:

  • Rise in Prices:
    • Price rise continuously in India. The inflation rate increased from 6.7% to 16.7%. Due to inflation country’s economic position became worse. Main reason for inflation was rapid increase in money supply. It was due to deficit financing Deficit financing means borrowing from Reserve Bank of India by Government to meet its deficit.
  • Rise in Fiscal Deficit:
    • Due to increase in non- development expenditure fiscal deficit of the Govt. had been increasing. To cover the fiscal deficit, the Govt. has to raise loans and pay interest on it. Due to rise in fiscal deficit there was rise in public debt and interest. In 1991 interest liability became 36.4% of total govt. expenditure. The Govt. caught in debt trap. So Govt. has to resort to economic reforms.
  • Increase in Adverse Balance of Payments:
    • When foreign exchange falls short for payment otherwise total imports exceed total exports, problem of adverse balance of payments arise. Though incentives are given for export promotion yet the desired results cannot be achieved. It is due to the fact that our export goods could not compete in price and quality. Liability of loan and its interest payment goes as increasing. It made balance of payments adverse.
  • Iraq War:
    • In 1990-91, war in Iraq broke, and this led to rise in petrol prices. The flow of foreign currency from Gulf countries stopped and this further aggravated the problem.
  • Dismal Performance of Public Sector Undertakings:
    • PSU’s are enterprises wholly owned by Govt. have invested crores of Rs. in these enterprises. These are no performing well due to political interference and became big liability for Govt.
  • Fall in Foreign Exchange Reserves:
    • Indians foreign exchange reserve fell to low ebb in 1990-91 and it was insufficient to pay for an import bill for 2 weeks. In 1986-87 foreign exchange reserves were Rs. 8151 crores ad in 1989-90, it declined to Rs. 6252 crores. Then Govt. had to sell Gold to meet the import liability.

Impact of Liberalization on international business environment:

  • Investing in emerging market countries can sometimes be an impossible task if the country you’re investing in has several barriers to entry.
  • These barriers can include tax laws, foreign investment restrictions, legal issues and accounting regulations, all of which make it difficult or impossible to gain access to the country.
  • The economic liberalization process begins by relaxing these barriers and relinquishing some control over the direction of the economy to the private sector. This often involves some form of deregulation and privatization of companies.
  • Foreign companies got free access to Indian markets and made domestic products un-competitive. They obviously had better access to technology and larger economies of scale.
  • The primary goals of economic liberalization are the free flow of capital between nations and the efficient allocation of resources and competitive advantages. This is usually done by reducing protectionist policies such as tariffs, trade laws and other trade barriers.
  • One of the main effects of this increased flow of capital into the country is it makes it cheaper for companies to access capital from investors. A lower cost of capital allows companies to undertake profitable projects they may not have been able to with a higher cost of capital pre-liberalization, leading to higher growth rates.
  • Software, BPO, KPO, LPO industry boom in India has helped India to absorb a big chunk of demographic dividend, which otherwise would have wasted. Best part is that export of services result in export of high value.
  • In banking too India has been a gainer. Since reforms, there have been three rounds of License Grants for private banks. Private Banks such as ICICI, HDFC, Yes Bank and also foreign banks, raised standards of Indian Banking Industry. Now there is cut through competition in the banking industry, and public sector banks are more responsive to customers.
  • Stock Markets are platforms on which Corporate Securities can be traded real time. It provides mechanisms for constant price discovery, options for investors to exit from or enter into investment any time. These are back bone of free markets these days and there is robust trade going all over the world on stock exchanges.
  • Telecom sector was a government owned monopoly and consequently service was quite substandard. After reforms, private telecom sector reached pinnacle of success. And Indian telecom companies went global. However, corruption and rent seeking marred growth and outlook of this sector.

Conclusion:

In the Indian case the term liberalisation is used to show the direction of the economic reforms-with decreasing influence of the state or the planned or the command economy and increasing influence of free market or the capitalistic economy. It is a move towards capitalism. India is attempting to strike its own balance of the ‘state-market mix’. It means even if the economic reforms have the direction towards market economy it can never be branded a blind-run to capitalism. Since the economy was more like the state economy in the former years, it has to go for a greater degree of mix of the market.


Topic:  Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

5) Do you think airlines in india can be run professionally under government control just as private airlines? Critically analyse.(250 words)

Livemint

Why this question:

The question seeks to examine the possibility of professional establishment of govt. airlines like that of the private ones amidst the recent debates surrounding the aviation industry.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must examine the possibility, associated issues and concerns.

Directive:

Critically analyzeWhen asked to analyse, 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. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, one needs to look at the good and bad of the topic and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin with brief introduction of the aviation sector scenario in India.

Body:

Discussion should include the following: 

First explain that in India in the early phase of commercial aviation, airlines were state-owned and profits were not the list of priorities behind the commercial operations. After the liberalization of air travel in the 1980s, there was intense competition. Low-cost carriers, introduced cut-throat rivalry, and government airlines started struggling. However, privatization is not a panacea for current problems of airlines. Some airlines despite being owned by the government are doing well.

List the issues plaguing the aviation sector, specifically the government ones and conclude what can be done.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

The suspension of operations at Jet Airways — at one time India’s largest private airline — announced recently, follows the troubles at Kingfisher, Air Deccan, and Sahara. The aviation sector is rife with hope and distress in a highly competitive market over the last 30 years. Despite the fact that the Indian civil aviation industry in currently considered the third largest domestic civil aviation market in the world, the industry is suffering from several problems India’s government is pushing towards the privatisation of its debt-laden carrier Air India, which is losing market share amid cut-throat domestic competition.

Body:

Yes, Government can professionally run airlines in India:

  • There is no empirical evidence that private sector can run a better airline. After being privatised British rail has gained a reputation for poor services and management.
  • There are many sectors and routes which the private airlines may not be interested in flying as they may not find them economical to operate.
  • Connectivity to northeast and other sectors which were not explored by private airlines were undertaken by air India but now this might be an issue.
  • In some situations, it is necessary to carry out emergency evacuations of Indian nationals from other countries due to natural hazards, political instability or wars.
  • The civil aviation market in India, like in many parts of the world, is oligopolistic, with a few firms controlling large market shares.
  • Forcing the exit or merger of an established state-run airline with the third largest market share by which has 31% of the planes in the sector and prime slots at airports worldwide will only aid in the undesirable concentration of market power with a few already large private airlines, and will prove anti-competitive.

No, privatization is better for airlines:

  • Indian state need not run commercial enterprises for the simple reason that it tends to compromise profit for achieving overall welfare of the people
  • In the case of Air India, the airline needs better management so as to not be a burden on the country’s finances.
  • The government will have to keep bailing out Air India with taxpayers’ money if it decides to hold on to it.
  • In the case of Air India, the cost is a lot higher as it is consistently making losses and is dependent on the government for survival. Further, the presence of state-owned enterprise distorts the market.
  • A firm with access to government finances and practically no fear of failing affects price discovery in the market and can hurt private sector operators in the business.
  • The government has fiscal constraints and needs to spend more in important areas such as health and education.
  • The privatisation of airlines will ensure that the industry will run in a rational way. The private player, will bring about a rational spending, funding and capital infusion in Air India.
  • According to Economic survey, disinvestment in public sector airlines will help boost Indian airlines’ international market share.
  • Problems faced by public sector airlines could be diluted:
    • For instance, since 2011-12, despite infusing Rs 24,000 crore of taxpayer money as equity support into Air India, the domestic share of the carrier has fallen from 19% to 13%.
    • The accumulated debts of the carrier have increased to around Rs 50,000 crore.
    • The national carrier is one among other airlines that were struggling and is still undergoing a 10-year rehabilitation package that started in 2012.
  • Brings in more professionalism and reduces political interference.
  • Competition might lead to lower fares.
  • Helps it to achieve targets under UDAN scheme.

Way forward:

  • Offer a single integrated network:
    • The domestic and international operations should be offered in one line, as there is significant value in the feed which they provide to each other. Air India is also part of a global system as a result of its membership of Star Alliance. Separation of domestic and international operations will result in reduced interest.
  • Provide comprehensive disclosures:
    • The data room should include detailed information on Air India’s finances and labour contracts as these are two of the most sensitive issues that will impact interest and valuations. A large proportion of the technical staff is due to retire within the next 5-10 years which is an issue that the new owners will need to prepare for.
  • India should encourage development of domestic hubs so that Indian airlines can take passengers directly, instead of foreign carriers first taking passengers to their home countries and then offering them onward connections.
  • To make private airlines operate in uneconomical routes, special incentives or subsidies can be granted to airlines operating on such routes.
  • The government can establish a specialised agency under the Defence or External Affairs Ministry for evacuating Indians from foreign countries.
  • On easing current restrictions on Indian airlines to fly overseas, the Survey has advocated a further liberalisation of the 0/20 rule.
  • Public sector airlines will have to cut layers of management, align staff by role, bring in lateral hires, overhaul customer facing functions, and implement a massive training exercise.

Topic:case study based on persuasion

6) Imagine you are a college going student and you are asked to assist with college-wide campaign to increase the use of helmets and seat-belts.

How in such a situation would you create a persuasive message for the college students? Discuss.(250 words)

 Ethics by Lexicon publications

Why this question:

The question is based on the theme of Persuasion.

Key demand of the question:

One has to bring out the significance of power of persuasion through innovative methods in the case study given above.

Directive:

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

In brief explain the context of the question.

Body:

Discuss the need for ensuring seat belts and helmets during driving vehicles and justify their significance.

Explain what role has the power of persuasion to play in such scenario.

How you as a student from the same college can profess the idea, persuade people to use seat belts and helmets.

Conclusion:

Conclude by reasserting significance of persuasion.

Introduction:

Road safety in India is a neglected topic and consequently a huge price is paid for it in form of loss of life and property. The above situation pertains to attitude change by using persuasion as a means. Persuasion is the process of changing or reinforcing attitudes, beliefs or behaviour of a person.

Body:

Persuasion is symbolic process in which communicators try to convince other people through transmission of a message to change their attitudes or behaviours. People respond to persuasive messages in two ways: thoughtfully and mindlessly. When people are in thoughtful mode, the persuasiveness of the message is determined by merits of the message. When people respond to messages mindlessly, their brains are locked on automatic. Persuasion is mainly dependent upon the attractiveness of the speakers and reaction of the listeners. Persuasion is exclusively related with communication, learning, awareness and thought.

Possible means of persuasion:

  • Print media: Use of posters, banners, pamphlets and college news magazines to educate the students about value of one’s own life and others.
  • Social media: With high penetration of mobile, social networking sites among the student fraternity, the former can be used as a potent tool to target and bring awareness about road safety.
  • Plays, songs etc. which show the dangers of not following traffic rules.
  • Motivational talks by teachers, traffic police officers, celebrities etc. which can drive the message of road safety among students.
  • Rewarding the students who have been at the forefront of following and spreading the message of road safety.
  • Tying up with local NGO’s and distribution of free helmets to those who cannot afford it.
  • Using experiences of those willing to share their incidents of life etc.

Conclusion:

Persuasion is an effective technique to influence a person’s principles, attitudes, intentions, motivations, or behaviours. Systematic persuasion is the process through which attitudes or beliefs are changed by appeals to logic and reason.


Topic:  Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration

7) “Don’t promise when you are happy, don’t answer when you are angry, and don’t decide when you are sad”. What is the essence of this statement for a working civil servant? Analyse.(250 words)

Ethics by Lexicon publications

Why this question:

The question is based on the theme of emotional intelligence.

Key demand of the question:

One is expected to discuss the importance of holding onto emotions in the context of the statement applied to the civil servants. 

Directive:

AnalyzeWhen asked to analyse, 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.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Explain first the meaning of the statement in question.

Body:

One has to explain in what way it is very essential for civil servants to hold on to their emotional strength and profess high emotional quotient. Students should use case studies or relevant examples and justify the significance of the same.

Conclusion:

Conclude that a balance of emotions is quintessential to ensure right decision making in every sphere of life.

Introduction:

The above statement shows the importance of emotions and the way to handle emotions. Emotional intelligence or EI is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, and those of the people around you. Emotional intelligence is the ability to perceive emotions, to access and generate emotions so as to assist thought, to understand emotions and emotional knowledge, and to reflectively regulate emotions so as to promote emotional and intellectual growth

Body:

Importance of EI for civil servants:

Self-awareness:

  • The ability to recognize and understand personal moods and emotions and drives, as well as their effect on others.
  • Hallmarks of self-awareness include self-confidence, realistic self-assessment, and a self-deprecating sense of humour.
  • Emotional awareness: This deals with knowledge of one’s emotions and their effects. People having this competency are more aware of their feelings and performance.
  • Accurate self-assessment: This involves being aware of one’s strengths and weaknesses. One is open to feedbacks, new viewpoints, etc

Self-management:

  • Ability to control or redirect disruptive impulses and moods, and the propensity to suspend judgment and to think before acting. Hallmarks include trustworthiness and integrity; comfort with ambiguity; and openness to change.
  • Adaptability: This involves flexible attitude towards change. People with this competency find it easy to handle changing routines, multiple roles and even shifting priorities

Social Awareness:

  • The ability to understand the emotional makeup of other people. A skill in treating people according to their emotional reactions.
  • Empathy does not necessarily imply compassion. Empathy can be ‘used’ for compassionate or cruel behaviour. Serial killers who marry and kill many partners in a row tend to have great emphatic skills.

Uses of Emotional intelligence for civil servants:

  • Appraising emotions arising from situations.
  • Using emotions for reason based decisions and policy making.
  • Identifying emotions in faces, voices, postures, and other content during public management activities.
  • Recruitment:
    • EQ measurement is invaluable in selecting and recruiting high performance workers.
  • Predicting performance:
    • Some companies are blending IQ testing with scientific measurement of EQ to predict job performance and direct workers to jobs where they are most likely to succeed.
  • Negotiation:
    • Whether you’re dealing with a trading partner, competitor, customer or colleague, being able to empathize and be creative in finding win-win solutions will consistently pay off
  • Performance management:
    • 360-degree feedback is a common tool for assessing EQ. Knowing how your self-perception compares with others’ views about your performance provides focus for career development and positive behavioural changes
  • Peer relationships:
    • Good networking skills are a staple of job effectiveness for the average worker. Networking has too often been associated with “using” other people, but a heightened EQ ensures a mutually beneficial approach to others.
  • Social responsibility:
    • When a leader cares about others, he is not a centre of attention and keeps everyone in the loop by making their intentions known.
  • Stress tolerance:
    • To stay focused, stress should be managed and it involves own reactions to stress or the reactions of others to the stress.
  • Impulse control:
    • Independent people evaluate the alternatives and initiate the work by taking appropriate action by executing the right options. People who manage their impulses avoid being distracted and losing control of the situation.
  • Optimism:
    • Optimistic people have a target that they’re aiming toward. These people are confident in their ability to carry out the required actions and meet the target by looking for successful solutions to problems.

Conclusion:

Governance in modern times is becoming increasing complex with affective components of behaviour having a major role to play. Intelligence quotient alone can’t solve majority of problems an administrator faces, use of emotional intelligence is a must for better public service delivery as well as redressal.