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SECURE SYNOPSIS: 25 JULY 2019


SECURE SYNOPSIS: 25 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: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.

1) Discuss the rural healthcare situation currently being witnessed in India. How have better healthcare services affecting rural lives? Examine. (250 words)

Livemint

Why this question:

The article throws light upon the conditions of healthcare sector specifically in the rural regions of the country.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must analyse the current rural healthcare situation and in what way they have progressed and have affected the rural lives positively.

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 a few lines bring out some facts/figures suggesting the progress made so far.

Body:

The answer should trace the impact the government’s initiatives in this regard are having in villages.

Explain the rural healthcare situation on ground.

How are better healthcare services affecting rural lives? Explain this aspect in detail, take hints from the article and detail upon the positives.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward and commend the government initiatives that are a step in the right direction.

Introduction:

Post Independence there has been a significant improvement, in the health status of people. Public health and health services have been synonymous in India. This integration has dwarfed the growth of a comprehensive public health system, which is critical to overcome some of the systemic challenges in healthcare. Poor strata of population have denied proper health care due to lack of universal healthcare. The above figures from a NSSO survey show the improving trend.

Body:

Rural healthcare situation:

  • The latest data on live births, infant mortality and deaths suggests more people in rural areas are visiting doctors than ever before at private and government clinics/hospitals.
  • The percentage of live births where the mother got medical attention at delivery either at a government or private hospital rose from 73.1 in 2012 to 81.9 in 2017 at the all-India level.
  • Similarly, 47% got attention before their death in 2017, up from 34.6% in 2012. In both events, birth and death, all the 22 states in surveyed showed an improvement from the previous time.

Impact of Better healthcare services in India:

  • Nagaland fares the best, with the lowest death rate and the lowest birth rate, says the latest bulletin of the Sample Registration System.
  • The death rate in 29 states and Delhi for 2017 ranges from 3.6% in Nagaland to 7.5% in Chhattisgarh. Nagaland scores well on birth rates, too, sharing the fifth spot with Chandigarh at 13.5%.
  • The health indicators of its rural areas are good as well, with the birth rate at 14% against an all-India rural average of 21.8% and the death rate at 4.2% versus 6.9%.
  • The IMR in its rural areas is 7%.
  • Fewer children are dying at birth not just in urban areas but also in rural regions.
  • The infant mortality rate, widely accepted as a crude indicator of the health scenario of a country, fell from 58% (infant deaths per 1,000 live births) in 2008 to 37% in 2017 in rural areas, while birth rate came down to 21.8% from 24.4% during the same period in those areas.
  • Death rate declined during the decade.
  • The rate of decline in these years has been higher in rural areas (around 14.5%) than in urban areas (10.5%).

Conclusion:

India needs a holistic approach to tackle problems in healthcare industry. This includes the active collaboration of all stakeholders public, private sectors, and individuals. Amore dynamic and pro-active approach is needed to handle the dual disease burden. A universal access to health makes the nation fit and healthy, aiding better to achieve the demographic dividend


Topic: Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary; Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.

2) Nearly 90% of all pending cases in the country come from India’s lower courts (district and subordinate courts), which are the first port-of-call for most legal disputes. Discuss the causes and consequences of such a situation and suggest solutions.(250 words)

Livemint

Why this question: 

The article brings out the sorrow state of affairs the Judiciary in India is facing with respect to pendency of cases.

Demand of the question:

The answer must analyse the underlying causes of such pendency facing the judiciary along with suggestions as to what needs to be done to overcome the same.

Directive word: 

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/figures to justify the question statement.

Body

  • There are more than 3 crore cases pending in different courts of India. Many of these cases are pending for more than 10 years – Around 2.7 crore cases pending in District and Sub-ordinate Courts.
  • Then discuss Why too many cases are pending in Indian courts? Discuss the causes that have led to rise in the number of cases registered.
  • What are the consequences of pendency? The common man’s faith in the justice system is at an all-time low. Denies the poor man and under trial prisoners their due of justice. Economic reforms remain only on paper without speedier justice system. Foreign investors are increasingly doubtful about the timely delivery of justice, which affects the success of programs like ‘Make in India’. Judiciary is unable to handle the “avalanche” of litigation. Judiciary becomes overworked and lose its efficiency. Justice delayed is justice denied and Justice hurried is justice buried.

Conclusion 

Conclude with what needs to be done, suggest solutions.

Introduction:

The justice system in any democracy is set up, under the Constitution to serve the public without “fear or favour, affection or ill-will” as far as judges are concerned. The Indian Judiciary plays an increasingly important role in the life and the governance of this country. Pendency of cases across courts in India has increased in the last decade.

Body:

Reasons for pendency of Cases:

  • Shortage of judges: around 5,580 or 25% of posts are lying empty in the subordinate courts. It leads to poor Judges to Population Ratio, as India has only 20 judges per million population. Earlier, Law Commission had recommended 50 judges per million.
  • Frequent adjournments: The laid down procedure of allowing a maximum of three adjournments per case is not followed in over 50 per cent of the matters being heard by courts, leading to rising pendency of cases.
  • Low budgetary allocation leading to poor infrastructure: India spends only about 0.09% of its GDP to maintain the judicial infrastructure. Infrastructure status of lower courts of the country is miserably grim due to which they fail to deliver quality judgements. A 2016 report published by the Supreme Court showed that existing infrastructure could accommodate only 15,540 judicial officers against the all-India sanctioned strength of 20,558.
  • Burden of government cases: Statistics provided by LIMBS shows that the Centre and the States were responsible for over 46% of the pending cases in Indian courts.
  • Special leave petition: cases in the Supreme Court, currently comprises to 40% of the court’s pendency. Which eventually leads to reduced time for the cases related to constitutional issues.
  • Judges Vacation: Supreme Court’s works on average for 188 days a year, while apex court rules specify minimum of 225 days of work.
  • Lack of court management systems: Courts have created dedicated posts for court managers to help improve court operations, optimise case movement and judicial time. However only few courts have filled up such posts so far.
  • Inefficient investigation: Police are quite often handicapped in undertaking effective investigation for want of modern and scientific tools to collect evidences.
  • Increasing Literacy: With people becoming more aware of their rights and the obligations of the State towards them, they approach the courts more frequently in case of any violation

Impacts of Judicial Pendency

  • Denial of ‘timely justice’ amounts to denial of ‘justice’ itself: Timely disposal of cases is essential to maintain rule of law and provide access to justice. Speedy trial is a part of right to life and liberty guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution.
  • Erodes social infrastructure: a weak judiciary has a negative effect on social development, which leads to: lower per capita income; higher poverty rates; poorer public infrastructure; and, higher crime rates.
  • Affects human rights: Overcrowding of the prisons, already infrastructure deficient, in some cases beyond 150% of the capacity, results in “violation of human rights”.
  • Affects the economy of the country as it was estimated that judicial delays cost India around 1.5% of its Gross Domestic Product annually.
  • As per the Economic Survey 2017-18, pendency hampers dispute resolution, contract enforcement, discourage investments, stall projects, hamper tax collection and escalate legal costs which lead to Increasing cost of doing business.

Measures needed:

  • Improving infrastructure for quality justice: The Parliamentary Standing Committee which presented its report on Infrastructure Development and Strengthening of Subordinate Courts, suggested:
  • States should provide suitable land for construction of court buildings etc. It should undertake vertical construction in light of shortage of land.
  • Timeline set out for computerisation of all the courts, as a necessary step towards setting up of e- courts.
  • Addressing the Issue of Vacancies: Ensure the appointments of the judges be done in an efficient way by arriving at an optimal judge strength to handle the cases pending in the system. The 120th Law Commission of India report for the first time, suggested a judge strength fixation formula.
  • Supreme Court and High Courts should appoint efficient and experienced judges as Ad-hoc judges in accordance with the Constitution.
  • All India Judicial Service, which would benefit the subordinate judiciary by increasing quality of judges and help reduce the pendency.
  • Having a definite time frame to dispose the cases by setting annual targets and action plans for the subordinate judiciary and the High Courts. The judicial officers could be issued a strict code of conduct, to ensure that the duties are adequately performed by the officials.
  • Strict regulation of adjournments and imposition of exemplary costs for seeking it on flimsy grounds especially at the trial stage and not permitting dilution of time frames specified in Civil Procedure Code.
  • Better Court Management System & Reliable Data Collection: For this categorization of cases on the basis of urgency and priority along with bunching of cases should be done.
  • Use of Information technology (IT) solutions: The use of technology for tracking and monitoring cases and in providing relevant information to make justice litigant friendly. A greater impetus should be given to
  • Process reengineering: Involves redesigning of core business processes to achieve dramatic improvements in productivity and quality by incorporating the use of technology in court rules. It will include:
  • Electronic filing of cases: e-Courts are a welcome step in this direction, as they give case status and case history of all the pending cases across High courts and Subordinate courts bringing ease of access to information.
  • Revamping of National Judicial Data Grid by introducing a new type of search known as elastic search, which is closer to the artificial intelligence.
  • Alternate dispute resolution (ADR): As stated in the Conference on National Initiative to Reduce Pendency and Delay in Judicial System- Legal Services Authorities should undertake pre-litigation mediation so that the inflow of cases into courts can be regulated.
    • The Lok Adalat should be organized regularly for settling civil and family matters.
    • Gram Nyayalayas, as an effective way to manage small claim disputes from rural areas which will help in decreasing the workload of the judicial institution.
    • Village Legal Care & Support Centre can also be established by the High Courts to work at grass root level to make the State litigation friendly.

Conclusion:

The fundamental requirement of a good judicial administration is accessibility, affordability and speedy justice, which will not be realized until and unless the justice delivery system is made within the reach of the individual in a time bound manner and within a reasonable cost. Therefore, continuous formative assessment is the key to strengthen and reinforce the justice delivery system in India.


Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation, Media

3) “National Policy on Biofuels 2018 is essentially a resolution but not a solution in itself”. Critically analyse.(250 words)

Reference

Why this question:

The National Policy on Biofuels-2018 approved by the Government envisages an indicative target of 20% blending of ethanol in petrol and 5% blending of bio-diesel in diesel by 2030.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must analyse National Policy on Biofuels 2018 and critically discuss in what way it is not an end in itself.

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: 

Describe in brief the national biofuel policy 2018. 

Body:

The answer must discuss the following aspects – 

First discuss the salient features of national biofuel policy 2018.

Then discuss other than the policy what are the on ground requirements to propel the use of biofuels in India, discussion should debate about  the availability of resources, technology etc. and justify that one policy alone would not change the energy scenario but a framework regulating the energy sector in a multi-pronged approach is the need of the hour.

Conclusion:

Conclude with solutions.

Introduction:

Any hydrocarbon fuel that is produced from an organic matter (living or once living material) in a short period of time (days, weeks, or even months) is considered a biofuel. Biofuels may be solid, liquid or gaseous in nature. The National Policy on Biofuels-2018 approved by the Government envisages an indicative target of 20% blending of ethanol in petrol and 5% blending of bio-diesel in diesel by 2030.

Body:

Salient features of National Policy on Biofuels, 2018:

  • Categorization: The Policy categorises biofuels as “Basic Biofuels” viz. First Generation (1G) bioethanol & biodiesel and “Advanced Biofuels” – Second Generation (2G) ethanol, Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) to drop-in fuels, Third Generation (3G) biofuels, bio-CNG etc. to enable extension of appropriate financial and fiscal incentives under each category.
  • Scope of raw materials: The Policy expands the scope of raw material for ethanol production by allowing use of Sugarcane Juice, Sugar containing materials like Sugar Beet, Sweet Sorghum, Starch containing materials like Corn, Cassava, Damaged food grains like wheat, broken rice, Rotten Potatoes, unfit for human consumption for ethanol production.
  • Protection to farmers: Farmers are at a risk of not getting appropriate price for their produce during the surplus production phase. Taking this into account, the Policy allows use of surplus food grains for production of ethanol for blending with petrol with the approval of National Biofuel Coordination Committee.
  • Viability gap funding: With a thrust on Advanced Biofuels, the Policy indicates a viability gap funding scheme for 2G ethanol Bio refineries of Rs.5000 crore in 6 years in addition to additional tax incentives, higher purchase price as compared to 1G biofuels.
  • Boost to biodiesel production: The Policy encourages setting up of supply chain mechanisms for biodiesel production from non-edible oilseeds, Used Cooking Oil, short gestation crops.

Biofuel policy is not a panacea in itself:

  • Supply-chain infrastructure that is required to deliver biofuels to the final consumer remains inadequate.
  • To convert India’s existing biofuel potential into reality, huge investments need to be made in creating bio refinery capacity. However, this is easier said than done. While state-owned oil marketing companies are in the process of setting up 12 bio-refineries, this can only be a base to build on.
  • On the ground, private sector investment in this space has been hampered by financial constraints and lack of cohesive support from the Central to the local level.
  • Efficiently transporting low value biomass to the refineries is another challenge.
  • The policy is totally silent on octane, which has direct consequences on air quality and pollution as it assists in proper combustion of fuels, thereby affecting vehicular emissions.
  • Over ambitious:
    • The policy states that a viability gap funding scheme for 2G ethanol bio refineries of Rs. 5,000 crore in 6 years in addition to additional tax incentives, higher purchase price as compared to 1G biofuels will be provided.
    • The policy is overambitious in light of the fact that the capability of 2G has not been realised till today. Therefore, completely relying on a mechanism which has not been proven commercially is flawed.

Way forward:

  • Any bio-fuel policy must be strongly backed by sufficient technology and production scale in order to be financially feasible and implementable.
  • Given the current market dynamics, sugar industry’s share in the bio-fuel mix is unrivalled – thereby underscoring the need for better pricing for ethanol.
  • The consideration for using food grains is a tricky one as food supply chains might get affected if there aren’t proper checks.
  • While source diversification is indeed a positive, proper enhancement of supply-chain infrastructure to reach the final consumer will prove vital.
  • The government should also take steps to remove policy barriers that have discouraged private investment in building supply chains.

Conclusion:

From encouraging the use of biofuels in public transport to ensuring that civic bodies actually realise the potential of municipal waste and sewage the policy needs to be implemented in mission mode on a nationwide basis.


Topic:Disaster and disaster management.

4) Discuss the concept of community-based Disaster Management and highlight its principles and challenges.(250 words)

National policy on disaster management. IGNOU Notes on Disaster Management.

Why this question:

The question is directed to evaluate the significance of community-based Disaster Management.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must discuss in detail the community-based Disaster Management- its features, importance and challenges.

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: 

Begin with brief on what you understand by community-based Disaster Management.

Body:

Discussion should include the following: 

Community-based disaster management (CBDM) is an approach to building the capacity of communities to assess their vulnerability to both human induced and natural hazards and develop strategies and resources necessary to prevent and/or mitigate the impact of identified hazards as well as respond, rehabilitate, and reconstruct following its onset.

Explain the principles of CBDM.

CBDM empowers communities to be pro-active in disaster management and creates a space for them to develop strategies on their own terms rather than waiting for already overstretched governments and NGO’s.

Bring out associated challenges if any.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

Community-based disaster management (CBDM) is an approach to building the capacity of communities to assess their vulnerability to both human induced and natural hazards and develop strategies and resources necessary to prevent and/or mitigate the impact of identified hazards as well as respond, rehabilitate, and reconstruct following its onset. Simply put, the aim of CBDM is to

  • reduce vulnerabilities and increase capacities of vulnerable groups and communities to cope with, prevent or minimize loss and damage to life, property, and the environment,
  • minimize human suffering
  • Hasten recovery.

Body:

Importance of CBDRM:

  • The same plan, regardless of the regional characteristics, is implemented or imposed everywhere.
  • Local knowledge, experiences, skills, resources and techniques are not given due importance. Rather external resources and techniques are proposed to be utilized.
  • Negligence about local cultural instincts and heritage.
  • Prioritisation is decided by an outsider and not the stakeholders or the community itself.
  • Local community does not have any information about the disaster management plans for their area and the role of different sectors in helping the community during disasters.

Advantages of CBRDM:

  • Feelings of coordination and self belonging to the society are developed.
  • Local geo-climatic and socio-cultural characteristics get attention of the people in development and disaster management.
  • Local initiatives begin and community provides assistance to the executing agencies involved in disaster management.
  • There is exchange of knowledge, information, skills and techniques between the community and the experts involved from outside.
  • Community comes forward to put forward its ideas for selection of appropriate programmes suitable to their locality and society.
  • Community can monitor the quality of works being done in its locality. It will also generate a sense of responsibility among the community.
  • It will lead to capacity building of the community on issues of disaster-safe developmental activities.

Conclusion:

There is a need for coordination in the Community-Based Approach among all the stakeholders. This bottom-up, participatory approach can make community members more receptive of new knowledge and information presented to them.


Topic:  Disaster and disaster management.

5) Highlight development perspective to disaster management with focus on disaster management in riverine regions.(250 words)

National policy on disaster management. IGNOU Notes on Disaster Management.

Why this question:

The question aims to analyse the development angle possible in riverine regions that are hit by disasters.

Key demand of the question:

Explain in detail the development aspects associated with disaster hit region and in what way they are essential in overall development of the region.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

In brief explain the significance of development in disaster hit regions.

Body:

Explain that with the kind of economic losses and developmental setbacks that the country has been suffering year after year, it makes good economic sense to spend a little extra today in a planned way on steps and components that can help in prevention and mitigation of disasters, then be forced

to spend many multiples more later on resto-ration and rehabilitation. The design of development projects and the process of development should

take the aspect of disaster reduction and mitigation within its ambit; otherwise, the development ceases to be sustainable and eventually causes more hardship and loss to the nation.

Quote a case study from recent times – Assam floods etc. to justify your answer.

Conclusion:

Conclude by suggesting way forward.

Introduction:

India is vulnerable, in varying degrees, to a large number of disasters. Floods  affect  an  average  area  of  around  7.5  million  hectares  per  year.  According  to  the  National  Commission on Floods, the area susceptible to floods was estimated in 1980 to be around 40 million hectares  and  it  is  possible  to  provide  reasonable  degree  of  protection  to  nearly  80  per  cent  (32  million  ha).  Riverine  flooding  is  perhaps  the  most  critical  climate-related  hazard  in  India. 

Body:

India’s key vulnerabilities:

  • Coastal states, particularly in the eastern coast and Gujarat on the west coast are vulnerable to cyclones.
  • 4 crore hectare land mass is vulnerable to floods.
  • 68% of the net sown area is vulnerable to drought.
  • 55% of total area is in Seismic zones –III to V and vulnerable to earthquakes.
  • Sub-Himalayan region and Western Ghats are vulnerable to landslides.

Disasters  lead  to  enormous  economic  losses  that  are  both  immediate  as  well  as  long  term in nature and demand additional revenues. Also, as an immediate fall-out, disasters reduce revenues from the affected region due to lower levels of economic activity leading to loss of direct and indirect taxes.  In  addition,  unplanned  budgetary  allocation  to  disaster  recovery  can  hamper  development interventions  and  lead  to  unmet  developmental  targets.

With  the  kind  of  economic  losses  and  developmental  setbacks  that  the  country  has  been suffering year after year, the development process needs to be sensitive towards disaster prevention and  mitigation  aspects.  There  is  thus  need  to  look  at  disasters  from  a  development  perspective  as well.

Current institutional measures to tackle such incidences:

  • The National Cyclone Risk Mitigation Project (NCRMP), to be implemented with financial assistance from the World Bank, is envisaged to have four major components:
    • Component A: Improvement of early warning dissemination system by strengthening the Last Mile Connectivity (LMC) of cyclone warnings and advisories.
    • Component B: Cyclone risk mitigation investments.
    • Component C: Technical assistance for hazard risk management and capacity-building.
    • Component D: Project management and institutional support.
  • These components are highly interdependent and have to be implemented in a coherent manner.
  • In 2016, National Disaster Management Plan was unveiled to tackle disaster. It provides a framework to deal with prevention, mitigation, response and recovery during a disaster.
  • The NDMA had come up with its National Guidelines of Management of Cyclones in 2008. The basic premise of these guidelines is that the mitigation has to be multi-sectoral.
  • Developing Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) frameworks for addressing the sustainability and optimal utilisation of coastal resources as also cyclone impact minimisation plans.
  • Ensuring cyclone resistant design standards are incorporated in the rural/ urban housing schemes in coastal areas
  • Implementing coastal flood zoning, flood plain development and flood inundation management and regulatory plans.
  • Coastal bio-shields spread, preservation and restoration/ regeneration plans.
  • There is a need for private sector participation in designing and implementing policies, plans, and standards.
  • Need of Disaster Management program to be inclusive including women, civil society, and academia.

Way forward:

  • For addressing  natural  calamities  such  as  floods  and  drought,  there  already  exist  a  number of plan schemes under which a lot is being done and can be done.
  • State Governments need to make full use of the existing plan schemes and give priority to implementation of such schemes that will help in overcoming the conditions created by the calamity.
  • Reconstruction efforts must involve rebuilding in a better way. Climate proofing in Kerala calls for structures to be built with wind- and water-resistant materials.
  • People need to relocate out of harm’s way. During the 2015 floods, Chennai illustrated the price of unrestricted urban development.
  • Early warning is vital. Because of investments in these systems, Cyclone Phailin (2013) claimed less than 40 lives in Odisha. In Kerala, there was no timely forecast from national weather services. The State needs a reliable flood forecasting capability.
  • There needs to be tougher implementation of logging and mining regulations in fragile ecologies. Deforestation worsened the effects of Kerala’s floods and mudslides, as the report of the Western Ghats ecology expert panel 2011 had warned.
  • Non-structural measures for flood forecasting provide early warning in flood prone areas have proved to be successful for flood management. High-tech warning systems on the ground will not be useful until the authorities, key stakeholders and communities are trained to act upon the information obtained from these facilities.
  • Different stakeholders need to come together for mapping risks, vulnerabilities, and resources, engage in regular preparedness actions like drills and capacity building, develop and update emergency plans, check the availability of resources at the local level and act upon early warning intimations.

Conclusion:

India should prepare to mitigate and deflect the destruction caused by riverine floods. We need to employ technology, strict following of command structure and most importantly the participation and cooperation of local communities in the affected area.


Topic Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

6) Designing a sustainable and inclusive transport systems in urban India is the need of the hour. Elucidate. (250 words)

Livemint

 

Why this question:

 The article talks about Carpooling as an idea that needs regulatory intervention in India. Forcing us to think over the need to design a sustainable and inclusive transport systems in urban India.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must provide for detailed analysis of inclusive and sustainable urban transport system in India.

Directive:

ElucidateGive a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the particular context. You must be defining key terms where ever appropriate, and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Discuss the context of the question briefly.

Body:

The answer must capture the following aspects – 

First highlight the benefits of having such a system; Densification reduces mobility needs and enhances public transport. Large cities use public transport more, but lack non-motorized transport. The amount of transport increases with city size (by population). The household income is the single largest determinant of the amount of transport. Indian cities need investments in public and non-motorized transport infrastructures and disincentives of private modes.

Then discuss need for inclusive and sustainable urban transport, what needs to be done to achieve the same.

Suggest solutions ranging from carpooling, mass rapid transport system etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

India is a country with the second largest road network in the world. Out of the total stretch of 5.4 million km of road network, almost 97,991 km is covered by national highways. Traffic congestion has increased dramatically in India. Congestion and the associated slow urban mobility can have a huge adverse impact on both the quality of life and the economy.

Body:

Problems faced by Urban Transport in India:

  • Unprecedented Transport Growth: According to Niti Aayog, the number of registered motor vehicles has increased from 5.4 million in 1981, to 210 million in 2015. This rapid growth in demand in the absence of widespread public transport system has caused a rapid increase of private car ownership in India.
  • Inadequate Public Transport: According to government data, there are about 19 lakh buses in the country and only 2.8 lakh of them are run either by state transport undertaking or under stage carriage permits.
  • Further, a CSE study points out that the share of public transport is expected to decrease from 75.5% in 2000-01, to 44.7 per cent in 2030-31, while the share of personal transport will be more than 50%
  • Urban Pollution: According to a WHO study 14 out of the top 15 most polluted cities in the world belong to India. Vehicular pollution has been one of the major contributors to rising urban air pollution in Indian cities along with other factors such as construction activity, road dust and industrial activity.
  • Urban Congestion: Major Indian cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bengaluru are ranked among world’s most congested cities. For example: Average speed for vehicles in Bengaluru is reported as 17 km/h. These high levels of congestion have huge economic implications in the form of reduced productivity, fuel waste, and accidents. Further, there is an acute shortage of parking spaces both on and off the streets in the urban centres.
  • Road safety: Traffic injuries and fatality: According to the Report ‘Road Accidents in India-2016’, road accidents in India have decreased by around 4.1% in 2016 from 2015. However, fatalities resulting from these accidents have risen by about 3.2%. The major reasons for traffic crashes include poor quality of roads, poor traffic management, unsafe and overcrowded vehicles and unsafe driving behaviour.
  • Equity Issues: Unplanned urbanization in India has led to gentrification (as per upper and middle socio-economic class) of city centres and lower income groups are forced to live in peripheral suburbs which have increased their cost and time they allocate to commute. Most of the lower income groups and urban poor fail to afford private transport and even public transport are high for them. For example, a CSE study ranks Delhi Metro as the second most unaffordable metro (after Hanoi in Vietnam) with lower income group people spending nearly 22% of their monthly transport on Delhi Metro fares.
  • Mobility for women: Safety or the lack thereof, is the single biggest factor constraining women’s mobility. According to Action Aid UK, 79% of women in major Indian cities reported being harassed on streets. Overcrowding in public transport adds to insecurity and safety issues with a large number of women complaining about harassment in public transport across major Indian cities like Delhi and Mumbai.

Measures needed:

  • Any solution if expected to be successfully implemented will definitely require effort and planning on a huge scale. This is especially for when we are coming up with plans which can reach the entire country.
  • Corruption will have to be curbed, and it will be extremely vital that the raw material is of the highest quality are used for the longevity and strength of the roads.
  • Road pricing system: people should be charged based on the length of the road and the duration for which they use the road. This will be difficult to implement and will require huge technological investment to become possible.
  • Improvement in public transport and additional schemes like BRT. The Bus Rapid Transport is implemented in some cities like Pune, and it can be very helpful if implemented correctly.
  • People should try and use carpooling and bike pooling as much as possible. Use of bicycles for smaller distances also improves individual health along with reducing pollution and road congestion.
  • Strict and stringent measures against traffic violators. A regulation in the traffic rules and fines levied for breaking them.
  • Metro can play a huge role in improving the traffic issues to a great extent. If Nagpur metro becomes successful, it will pave the way for implementation in other cities as well which can be very beneficial.
  • Increase in the use of CNG and electric vehicles and providing relief to those who use the same.
  • Well engineered, safe infrastructure for travel should be ensured. Further, there is an urgent need to address the issue of low woman mobility by ensuring women safety through gender-sensitive transport policies, dedicated seats/ coaches and emergency helplines.
  • There should be focus on enhancing non-motorised transport. Focus should be to encourage use of non-motorised transport for short distances. Further, Pedestrian zones, bike lanes should be made to ensure safety to commuters. For example, well designated Bike-lanes and bike-sharing solutions have promoted use of bicycles as a mean of transport in cities like Amsterdam and Paris.
  • Commuters should be provided with multiple modes of connectivity. To ease out travelling, a single smart card can be provided. For example, London’s Oyster “smart” card enables a commuter to change from one mode to another with minimal loss of time or effort.

Conclusion:

It’s time that city leaders and officers in India recognize the benefits of sustainable mobility and incorporate well-defined strategies and policies into their own public agendas. The future of their economies and their citizens depends on it.


Topic: Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.

7) What is persuasion? What role does it play in public life? Discuss.(250 words)

Ethics by Lexicon publications

Why this question:

The question is based on the theme of persuasion.

Key demand of the question:

Explain in detail the virtue of persuasion and the role it plays in public life.

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: 

Define what is persuasion.

Body:

Persuasion is an umbrella term of influence. Persuasion can attempt to influence a person’s beliefs, attitudes, intentions, motivations, or behaviors.

Explain the various associated theories of persuasion. Explain how these can be applied to different situations differently.

Explain using a case study/example how persuasion can be put to use in public life, what importance does it hold.

Conclusion:

Conclude by reasserting its significance.

Introduction:

Persuasion is symbolic process in which communicators try to convince other people through transmission of a message to change their attitudes or behaviours. Persuasion is the process of changing or reinforcing attitudes, beliefs or behaviour of a person.

Body:

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.

Role in Public life:

  • Effecting social change: To deal with issues like girl child education, inter caste marriage, temple entry for women, persuasion may be the only solution because change has to be brought keep intact the dignity and respect of all stake holders. g.: The advertisements for polio drops for children are a form of persuasion
  • Public policy formulation and implementation: Sometimes persuasion works better than coercion; success of the initiatives like Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan- cleanliness drives and Ujjwala give it up campaign can be attributed to persuasion.
  • Following rules: It helps in making people follow rules which bring inconvenience to them, like District collector visiting houses in the morning to persuade people for waste segregation before disposal.
  • Moral conditioning: Persuasion can bring change in attitude of people. In Delhi Metro various signboards on certain seats asks passengers to offer that seat to needy people. Similarly, regular announcements to keep the station clean persuade people to change their behaviour.
  • Incentivising good behaviour: For instance in income declaration scheme a window was open to declare black money with some fine and no legal action that incentivized people instead of penalizing them.

Conclusion:

Persuasion can bring a lasting change in people’s behaviour and is highly effective in implementation of public policies provided the tools are used in a right way.