Print Friendly, PDF & Email

SECURE SYNOPSIS: 24 January 2020


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.Discuss the heritage of the India’s ancient developments in the field of Science and Technology.(250 words)

Reference: Ancient India by R S Sharma class XI NCERT

Why this question:

The question is based on the contributions of ancient India to science and technology and its significance and relevance even in today’s times.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must discuss the contributions of Ancient India to science and technology of the past and even to the present.

Directive:

Discuss – This 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:

Briefly explain India’s ancient caliber of development in science.

Body:

Explain that one of the oldest civilizations in the world, the Indian civilization has a strong tradition of science and technology. Ancient India was a land of sages and seers as well as a land of scholars and scientists. Research has shown that from making the best steel in the world to teaching the world to count, India was actively contributing to the field of science and technology centuries long before modern laboratories were set up.

Many theories and techniques discovered by the ancient Indians have created and strengthened the fundamentals of modern science and technology. While some of these groundbreaking contributions have been acknowledged, some are still unknown to most.

Quote examples of scientists, researchers etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude with significance and relevance of such discoveries and inventions even in today’s times.

Introduction:

India is one of the oldest civilizations in the world that has a strong tradition of science and technology. Ancient India was a land of sages and seers as well as a land of scholars and scientists. Research has shown that from making the best steel in the world to teaching the world to count, India was actively contributing to the field of science and technology centuries long before modern laboratories were set up. Many theories and techniques discovered by the ancient Indians have created and strengthened the fundamentals of modern science and technology. While some of these ground-breaking contributions have been acknowledged, some are still unknown to most.

Body:

contributions made by ancient Indians to the world of science and technology:

  • The Idea of Zero:
    • Mathematician Aryabhata was the first person to create a symbol for zero and it was through his efforts that mathematical operations like addition and subtraction started using the digit, zero.
    • The concept of zero and its integration into the place-value system also enabled one to write numbers, no matter how large, by using only ten symbols.
  • The Decimal System:
    • India gave the ingenious method of expressing all numbers by means of ten symbols – the decimal system.
    • In this system, each symbol received a value of position as well as an absolute value.
    • Due to the simplicity of the decimal notation, which facilitated calculation, this system made the uses of arithmetic in practical inventions much faster and easier.
  • Numeral Notations:
    • Indians, as early as 500 BCE, had devised a system of different symbols for every number from one to nine.
    • This notation system was adopted by the Arabs who called it the hind numerals.
    • Centuries later, this notation system was adopted by the western world who called them the Arabic numerals as it reached them through the Arab traders.
  • Fibbonacci Numbers:
    • The Fibonacci numbers and their sequence first appear in Indian mathematics as mātrāmeru, mentioned by Pingala in connection with the Sanskrit tradition of prosody.
    • Later on, the methods for the formation of these numbers were given by mathematicians Virahanka, Gopala and Hemacandra , much before the Italian mathematician Fibonacci introduced the fascinating sequence to Western European mathematics.
  • Binary Numbers:
    • Binary numbers are the basic language in which computer programs are written.
    • Binary basically refers to a set of two numbers, 1 and 0, the combinations of which are called bits and bytes.
    • The binary number system was first described by the Vedic scholar Pingala, in his book Chandahśāstra, which is the earliest known Sanskrit treatise on prosody ( the study of poetic metres and verse)
  • Ruler Measurements:
    • Excavations at Harappans sites have yielded rulers or linear measures made from ivory and shell.
    • Marked out in minute subdivisions with amazing accuracy, the calibrations correspond closely with the hasta increments of 1 3/8 inches, traditionally used in the ancient architecture of South India.
    • Ancient bricks found at the excavation sites have dimensions that correspond to the units on these rulers.
  • A Theory of Atom:
    • One of the notable scientists of the ancient India was Kanad who is said to have devised the atomic theory centuries before John Dalton was born.
    • He speculated the existence of anu or a small indestructible particles, much like an atom. He also stated that anu can have two states — absolute rest and a state of motion.
    • He further held that atoms of same substance combined with each other in a specific and synchronized manner to produce dvyanuka (diatomic molecules) and tryanuka (triatomic molecules).
  • The Heliocentric Theory:
    • Mathematicians of ancient India often applied their mathematical knowledge to make accurate astronomical predictions.
    • The most significant among them was Aryabhatta whose book, Aryabhatiya, represented the pinnacle of astronomical knowledge at the time.
    • He correctly propounded that the Earth is round, rotates on its own axis and revolves around the Sun i.e the heliocentric theory.
    • He also made predictions about the solar and lunar eclipses, duration of the day as well as the distance between the Earth and the Moon.
  • Wootz Steel:
    • A pioneering steel alloy matrix developed in India, Wootz steel is a crucible steel characterized by a pattern of bands that was known in the ancient world by many different names such as Ukku, Hindwani and Seric Iron.
    • Produced by the Tamils of the Chera Dynasty, the finest steel of the ancient world was made by heating black magnetite ore in the presence of carbon in a sealed clay crucible kept inside a charcoal furnace.
  • Smelting of Zinc:
    • India was the first to smelt zinc by the distillation process, an advanced technique derived from a long experience of ancient alchemy.
    • Zawar in the Tiri valley of Rajasthan is the world’s first known ancient zinc smelting site.
    • The distillation technique of zinc production goes back to the 12th Century AD and is an important contribution of India to the world of science.
  • Plastic Surgery:
    • Written by Sushruta in 6th Century BC, Sushruta Samhita is considered to be one of the most comprehensive textbooks on ancient surgery.
    • The text mentions various illnesses, plants, preparations and cures along with complex techniques of plastic surgery.
    • The Sushruta Samhita ’s most well-known contribution to plastic surgery is the reconstruction of the nose, known also as rhinoplasty.
  • Ayurveda:
    • Long before the birth of Hippocrates, Charaka authored a foundational text, Charakasamhita, on the ancient science of Ayurveda.
    • Referred to as the Father of Indian Medicine, Charaka was the first physician to present the concept of digestion, metabolism and immunity in his book.
    • Charaka’s ancient manual on preventive medicine remained a standard work on the subject for two millennia and was translated into many foreign languages, including Arabic and Latin.
  • Iron-Cased Rockets:
    • The first iron-cased rockets were developed in the 1780s by Tipu Sultan of Mysore who successfully used these rockets against the larger forces of the British East India Company during the Anglo-Mysore Wars.
    • He crafted long iron tubes, filled them with gunpowder and fastened them to bamboo poles to create the predecessor of the modern rocket.
    • With a range of about 2 km, these rockets were the best in the world at that time and caused as much fear and confusion as damage.
    • Due to them, the British suffered one of their worst ever defeats in India at the hands of Tipu.

Conclusion:

Indian heritage is one of the richest and oldest among the world. From the time of ancient India, scientific and technological developments were done. Many famous mathematicians from India contributed a lot in the development of theories that we still use and applied in majority of fields. Indian civilization has a long recorded history of scientific culture that goes back to more than 5000 years. Indian heritage has been known for its various developments like gemstone therapy, ayurvedic medicine, physics, farming, literature and many more.

 

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources, Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.

2. Discuss the interrelationship between an outbreak of a disease and economy of a country while analyzing the case of recent outbreak of Corona virus. (250 words)

Reference: Indian Express

Why this question:

The outbreak of a new virus in China has sent shivers through world financial markets, with investors drawing comparisons to the 2003 SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) outbreak in order to assess its potential economic impact. Thus the question.

Key demand of the question:

Discuss in detail the impact of an outbreak of a disease upon the economy of the sufferer country in general and more specifically explain how it can lead to a sudden slump in the economy.

Directive:

Discuss – This 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 by mentioning the recent outbreak of Corona virus in China.

Body:

Start with fact – A 2017 paper by economists Victoria Fan, Dean Jamison and Lawrence Summers estimated that the expected annual losses from pandemic risk to be about $500 billion — or 0.6% of global income — per year, accounting for both lost income and the intrinsic cost of elevated mortality.

A paper by Jong-Wha Lee and Warwick McKibbin estimates the global economic loss due at SARS at $40 billion in 2003.

However, price action in markets indicates that the impacts of such outbreaks are limited.

After Chinese authorities reported the outbreak of SARS to the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2003, the MSCI China index of shares decoupled from its global peers – but made up the lost ground in only six months.

Explain that there are both winners and losers.

Despite the disruption to the wider economy, virus outbreaks have tended to benefit pharmaceutical stocks, while tourism and travel-related stocks — hotels, airlines and luxury and consumer goods — tend to get punished.

Discuss the case of China and corona Virus outbreak.

Conclusion:

Conclude with what should be the way forward.

Introduction:

The outbreak of a new virus in China has sent shivers through world financial markets, with investors drawing comparisons to the 2003 SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) outbreak in order to assess its potential economic impact. An IMF paper by David Bloom, Daniel Cadarette, and JP Sevilla notes that even when the health impact of an outbreak is relatively limited, economic consequences can be quickly magnified.

Body:

Interrelationship between an outbreak of a disease and economy of a country

  • A 2017 paper by economists Victoria Fan, Dean Jamison and Lawrence Summers estimated that the expected annual losses from pandemic risk to be about $500 billion — or 0.6% of global income — per year, accounting for both lost income and the intrinsic cost of elevated mortality.
  • Another 2016 study by the Commission on a Global Health Risk Framework for the Future estimated that pandemic disease events would cost the global economy over $6 trillion in the 21st century — over $60 billion per year.
  • A paper by Jong-Wha Lee and Warwick McKibbin estimates the global economic loss due at SARS at $40 billion in 2003.
  • A May 2006 economic briefing by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimated that world gross domestic product suffered a 0.1% hit due to the outbreak.

Positive impacts:

  • Despite the disruption to the wider economy, virus outbreaks have tended to benefit pharmaceutical stocks.
  • Chinese drugmakers Jiangsu Bioperfectus Technologies Co Ltd, Shandong Lukang Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, and Jiangsu Hengrui Medicine Co Ltd were among those outperforming the wider market.
  • Facemask manufacturers Tianjin Teda Co Ltd and Shanghai Dragon Corp also outperformed.

Negative impacts:

  • Sectors like tourism and travel-related stocks — hotels, airlines and luxury and consumer goods — tend to get punished.
  • During the SARS outbreak, retail sales figures in China showed a marked drop-off as consumer spending took a hit.
  • Shares of long-haul flight operators Air France, Lufthansa and British Airways-owner IAG retreated, as news of the contagion raised concerns over disruptions to travel during a coming Chinese holiday.
  • China-exposed luxury goods makers including LVMH, Kering, Hermes and Burberry also fell.
  • People didn’t take public transport, stayed away from work, stayed away from shops, restaurants, cinemas, conferences etc.
  • The impact from the disease was massive on the economy, but almost all of it indirect, due to the precautionary behaviour of the population.

Impact on Indian Economy:

  • The viral outbreak comes at a difficult time for the Indian economy and could make the slowdown worse. Coronavirus could further slow down the already struggling economy.
  • While S&P has estimated the crisis would slow China’s GDP growth this year to 5%, no formal estimates of the impact on India are available.
  • A supply shortage of components that go into the manufacturing of a wide range of goods will likely be the first manifestation of the disruption.
  • This could translate into shortages of finished products, higher prices, assembly lines shutting down, end of online discounts and job losses.

Way forward:

opportunity_for_india

  • India and the other countries should be prepared to face the effects both in terms of the spread of the virus and in dealing with the economic slowdown which can occur.
  • The public should not panic and the spread of misinformation should be regulated.
  • The affected countries could try to look for alternate options while taking this opportunity to strengthen their domestic markets.
  • Try to help the people in China by not making the situation harder for them than it already is.

Conclusion:

Further, in the long-term perspective, a well-researched pandemic/epidemic management strategy delineating the roles of different authorities and action points at various stages need to be formulated.

 

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

3. Is India witnessing erosion of civil liberties in the country? Critically analyse the secret transition from the tag of world’s largest democracy to a flawed democracy’ in the backdrop of recently  released Democracy Index.(250 words)

Reference:  The Hindu

Why this question:

Economist Intelligence Unit released Democracy Index, India’s rankings slipped by 10 ranks to 51st place in the latest Democracy Index 2019. Thus the question.

Key demand of the question:

Discuss in detail the causes of such slippage in the ranking and explain why India is witnessing erosion of civil liberties.

Directive:

Critically analyze – When 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 judgment.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Highlight the findings brought out by the report that ranked India at 51st place.

Body:

  • Give a brief introduction about the recent India’s ranking in the Democracy Index.
  • Write about the probable reasons for the dire situation; talks about the repeal of both Article 370 and Article 35A, NRC exercise in Assam, the CAA bill etc.
  • Mention the needed measures to be followed in this regard.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

Democracy is a form of government in which power ultimately comes from the people who are governed, either through direct voting or through elected representatives. India is today the largest functioning democracy in the world. The “State of Democracy in the World in 2018” index report titled “Me Too? Political participation, protest and democracy” was published recently by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). India was ranked 41, a mid-range country among flawed democracies.

Body:

Liberty_in_Jeopardy

Reasons for India being classified as a flawed democracy:

  • Illiteracy, Poverty, Gender Discrimination, Casteism, Communalism, Religious Fundamentalism, Regionalism, Corruption, and Criminalization of Politics are still plaguing Indian Democracy.
  • According to the last two reports, there is a rise of “conservative religious ideologies” in the country.
  • Vigilantism, violence, narrowing scope for dissent, threat to minorities and marginalised groups has affected India’s ranking.
  • The new citizenship law has enraged the large Muslim population, stoked communal tensions and generated large protests in major cities.
  • the repeal of both Article 370 and Article 35A and how ahead of the move, “the government deployed a large number of troops in J&K, imposed various other security measures and placed local leaders under house arrest, including those with pro-India credentials.”
  • The government also restricted Internet access in J&K.
  • The NRC exercise in Assam excluded 1.9 million people from the final list, and that “the vast majority of people excluded from the NRC are Muslims.”
  • Important issues like horse-trading in politics, the anti-defection law, pros and cons of post-poll alliances and discretionary powers of the governor has brought to light the various challenges facing Indian democracy.
  • Journalists are increasingly under attack, with murders taking place in several areas.
  • As a result of limited scope for fair reportage, the Indian media is classified as only “partially free”. This is a fact which is also supported by the “Freedom in the World Report, 2018”.
  • Unlike pre-poll alliances, where the voters are aware of whom they are voting for, post-poll alliances present a new set of challenges.
  • Anti-Defection law does not seem to be doing much to stop MLAs from defecting.
  • Dynastic politics, lack of strong opposition at the centre and Religion based politics. Ex: Government’s decision to classify Lingayats as a religious minority in Karnataka.
  • The delay in disposal of cases by the courts is a concern to people.
  • Misuse of data on social media sites, privacy of users and the power of social media to influence important political outcomes.

Conclusion:

Democracy is important because it gives representation to a larger section of society in the Government. But the world still witnesses full democracies, flawed democracies, hybrid regimes and even authoritarian regimes. Efforts from institutions like United Nations and nations world over are needed so that representation by citizens of various nations of the world may be met and their voices be heard. At the same time, democracy also needs to have various internal checks like independence of judiciary so that its real goals are achieved.

Way Forward

  • Universal literacye. education for all, poverty alleviation, elimination of gender discrimination, removal of regional imbalances, administrative and judicial reforms and sustained economic, social and environmental development.
  • A set of rules which would curb the menace of defection as well as the misuse of powers of the governor’s office is required.
  • A defecting MLA must be disqualified from contesting or becoming a minister for at least six years.
  • A distinction needs to be drawn whether a member is leaving a party for ideological differences or for money and power.
  • In case of hung assembly, whether the governor must call the single largest party first, or a post-poll alliance, the process must be uniform across the country.
  • The governors’ discretionary powers must be abolished and replaced with clear guidelines based on the Sarkaria Commission.
  • Stricter data protection laws are required to ensure that political parties do not indulge in practices that involve undue influencing of voting behaviour.
  • Voter education, electoral reforms and periodical highlighting of the performance (or non-performance) of elected representatives should be high priority.
  • People must exercise their right to vote, participate in democracy and contribute towards the development of the country.
  • The youth must be aware of the problems that the country is facing and choose the candidate who is most likely to bring about a change
  • Democracy cannot survive without both citizens’ participation and politicians’ accountability.
  • The promises of democracy can only be realised through collective action in civil society.
  • The state must respect the articulation of the politics of voice and not just the politics of the vote

 

Topic:  India and its neighborhood- relations.

4. Do you think India needs to re-orient its foreign policy to face the challenge of increasing Chinese influence in South Asian region? Analyse.(250 words)

Reference: The Hindu

Why this question:

The editorial highlights the Myanmar’s growing dependence on China.

Key demand of the question:

Discuss in detail why and how India needs to re-orient its foreign policy to face the challenge of increasing Chinese influence in South Asian region.

Directive:

Analyze – When 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:

Start with the fact that Myanmar in recent times seems to have abandoned its earlier stance of non-alignment in favor of closer relations with China.

Body:

One has to explain in detail the implications of China-Myanmar bonhomie; like the Increase in China’s influence in domestic politics etc.

Discuss the impact of it on India; Increasing Chinese influence in India’s immediate and extended neighborhood could affect India’s interests in future.

Explain the changes that India should fold in to address the upcoming threat.

Conclusion:

Conclude with what India should do to tackle the situation.

Introduction:

South Asia has been one of the world’s most volatile regions and hitherto dominated by the United States. The region is now at a transformative stage with far-reaching implications for the states in the region, including India. China has also broadened its diplomatic activities ever since, playing a key role in international institutions and wielding greater geopolitical influence in Asia and around the world. In the process it has become the second most influential country in the world after the US.

Body:

The importance of India-China relations in India’s overall foreign policy cannot be overstated. Not only is China’s rise changing Asia’s geopolitical landscape and the global balance of power, its involvement in South Asia in recent years has augmented its position from being India’s largest neighbour to an engaged great power across the subcontinent.

Increasing Chinese influence in South Asian region:

  • Defence outreach: Back in 1980s and 1990s there was a Sino-Pak military axis; today even the defence forces of Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Maldives have Chinese equipment.
  • Friendlier approach: China is off late changing its hostile relationships with some neighbours to becoming friendlier. For example, with Philippines, Myanmar, Singapore, Japan and South Korea.
  • Soft loans: China has been extending soft-loans to neighbouring nations to help them develop state of infrastructure. The downside of this has been countries being caught in a debt-trap, like in Sri Lanka and Maldives.
  • Concerns about China involvement: China has only two real friends in the world: Pakistan and North Korea. Big and small nations are increasingly wary about Chinese intensions.
  • Even in The Arctic Circle council, Greenland (Denmark) expressed deep distrust towards China’s investment in its aviation sector.
  • Reorienting diplomacy: China’s ‘major power diplomacy’ consists of four aspects: economic expansion, political penetration, “friendship” creation, and core interest protection.

Challenges posed:

  • China seeks to connect South Asia with China; while India seeks to bring South Asia closer from within as well as more connected with Eurasia and South East Asia.
  • There is a large measure of uncertainty about the geopolitical implications of the BRI in South Asia.
  • China’s deep pockets make it difficult for India to control the expansion of China’s influence in India’s neighbourhood.
  • India’s main concern is that deeper connectivity between India’s neighbours and China will reorient the foreign policies of South Asian states in ways that could eventually undermine Indian interests and challenge its claims to regional authority.
  • More broadly, China’s engagement in South Asia might also adversely influence domestic politics in the subcontinent and strengthen anti-India political forces; the latter could spill over onto the domestic politics in India’s states, thereby impacting periphery security and social stability.
  • A major faultline would be the militarizing of China’s regional connectivity projects.
  • Such a hypothetical scenario would pose military security challenges to India as well as place China in a position to act as a direct security provider in the subcontinent, an outcome that would have profound consequences for the geopolitics in the region.

India must re-orient its foreign policy:

  • India must regain its role as a prime mover of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), the organisation it abandoned.
  • Indian government must promote the alternate regional groupings such as South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC), BIMSTEC, the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal (BBIN) Initiative and Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR).
  • India must recognise that doing better with its neighbours is not about investing more or undue favours. It is about following a policy of mutual interests and of respect.
  • India is more culturally attuned to than China is. Each of India’s neighbours shares more than a geographical context with India. They share history, language, tradition and even cuisine.
  • With the exception of Pakistan, none of them sees itself as a rival to India, or India as inimical to its sovereignty.
  • When dealing with Beijing bilaterally, New Delhi must match China’s aggression, and counter its moves with its own.
  • When dealing with China in South Asia, however, India must do exactly the opposite, and not allow itself to be outpaced.
  • Maintaining regional peace is the responsibility of all the countries. India needs to rekindle the SAARC process in order to secure historical affinity with its neighbours.
  • Indian policymakers must take the long view and pursue an approach of peaceful competition in the neighbourhood.

Conclusion:

India and China need to engage in a strategic conversation on the subcontinent and its various parts towards coordinating some of their regional connectivity visions and policies. The failure to pursue such a dialogue, and to arrive an understanding on an agreed framework for Indian and Chinese policies, would constitute a recipe for regional instability and a costly zero-sum rivalry that neither country can afford in a rapidly changing international environment.

 

Topic:  Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

6. Recently India achieved the complete phase out of one the most potent ozone depleting chemical – Hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC)-141 b , discuss the impact of such a move.(250 words)

Reference: Vikas Pedia

Why this question:

India has successfully achieved the complete phase out of Hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC)-141 b. Thus the question.

Key demand of the question:

Discuss in detail the positive impact of Phasing out of Ozone Depleting substances and also the challenges involved in doing so.

Directive:

Discuss – This 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:

India has successfully achieved the complete phase out of Hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC)-141 b, which is a chemical used by foam manufacturing enterprises and one of the most potent ozone depleting chemical after Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) .(HCFC)-141 b is used mainly as a blowing agent in the production of rigid polyurethane (PU) foams.

Body:

Government of India through Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change

Brought out a notification through which the issuance of import license for HCFC-141b is prohibited from 1st January 2020 under Ozone Depleting Substances (Regulation and Control) Amendment Rules, 2019 issued under Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.

Nearly 50% of the consumption of ozone depleting chemical in the country was

Attributable to HCFC-141b in the foam sector.

Discuss in detail the environmental benefits of the phase out; healing of the stratospheric ozone layer, aids climate change mitigation etc.

Explain the challenges involved in phasing out.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) notified that the issuance of import license for HCFC-141b is prohibited from 1st January 2020 under Ozone Depleting Substances (Regulation and Control) Amendment Rules, 2019. Ozone Depleting Substances (Regulation and Control) Amendment Rules, 2019 have been issued under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986. This step is among the first at this scale in Article 5 (special status of developing countries) parties under the Montreal Protocol.

Body:

HCFC- 141 b:

  • It is a chemical used by foam manufacturers.
  • It is used mainly as a blowing agent in the production of rigid polyurethane (PU) foams.
  • It is one of the most potent ozone depleting chemical after Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs).
  • the foam manufacturing sector is a mix of large, medium and small enterprises having varying capacities, with the preponderance of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

Impacts of HCFCs on the environment:

  • Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) are a large group of compounds, whose structure is very close to that of Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), but including one or more hydrogen atoms.
  • As VOCs, they may be slightly involved in reactions to produce ozone, which can cause damage to plants and materials on a local scale.
  • At a global level however, releases of HCFCs have serious environmental consequences. Although not as stable and therefore not so persistent in the atmosphere as CFCs, HBFCs or Halons, they can still end up in the higher atmosphere (stratosphere) where they can destroy the ozone layer, thus reducing the protection it offers the earth from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
  • HCFCs also contribute to Global Warming (through “the Greenhouse Effect”). Although the amounts emitted are relatively small, they have a powerful warming effect (a very high “Global Warming Potential”).

Impact of phasing out of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFC)-141 b:

  • Nearly, 50% of the consumption of ozone depleting chemicals in the country was attributable to HCFC-141 b in the foam sector.
  • India has now emerged as one among the few countries globally and a pioneer in some cases in the use of technologies, which are non-Ozone Depleting and have a low Global Warming Potential (GWP).
  • The phase out of HCFC-141b from the country has twin environmental benefits, viz, assisting the healing of the stratospheric ozone layer, and towards climate change mitigation due to transitioning of foam manufacturing enterprises at this scale under HPMP to low global warming potential alternative technologies.

Conclusion:

India is one of the few countries that are pioneer in the use of non-Ozone Depleting technologies and have a low Global Warming Potential (GWP). The Ministry also adopted a structured approach to engage with foam manufacturing enterprises for providing technical and financial assistance in order to transition to non-ODS and low GWP technologies under the HCFC Phase-out Management Plan (HPMP).

 

Topic:  Philosophical basis of governance and probity; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.

7. Discuss in what way PRAGATI (Pro-Active Governance And Timely Implementation) can bring in more e-transparency and e-accountability with real-time presence leading to a culture of Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation.(250 words)

Reference: News on Air

Why this question:

Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired the 32nd interaction through PRAGATI- the ICT-based, multi-modal platform for Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation in New Delhi yesterday. Thus the context of the question.

Key demand of the question:

The question is straightforward and aims to analyse the impact of PRAGATI in ensuring accountability and transparency.

Directive:

Discuss – This 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 short discuss the objectives of PRAGATI (Pro-Active Governance And Timely Implementation).

Body:

It is the ICT based multi-modal platform for Pro- Active Governance and Timely Implementation, involving Central and State Governments.

As the name suggests, is aimed at starting a culture of Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation. It is also a robust system for bringing e-transparency and e-accountability with real-time presence and exchange among the key stakeholders.

The PRAGATI platform uniquely bundles three latest technologies: Digital data management, video-conferencing and geo-spatial technology. It also offers a unique combination in the direction of cooperative federalism since it brings on one stage the Secretaries of Government of India and the Chief Secretaries of the States. With this, the Prime Minister is able to discuss the issues with the concerned Central and State officials with full information and latest visuals of the ground level situation.

Discuss the importance of it.

Explain challenges if any.

Conclusion:

Conclude on a positive note highlighting the need of such policies to ensure good governance in the country.

Introduction:

PRAGATI (Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation) is a unique integrating and interactive platform aimed at addressing common man’s grievances, and simultaneously monitoring and reviewing important programmes and projects of the Government of India as well as projects flagged by State Governments. The Prime Minister chaired the 32nd interaction through PRAGATI- the ICT-based, multi-modal platform for Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation in New Delhi recently.

Body:

Unique features of PRAGATI:

  • The PRAGATI platform uniquely bundles three latest technologies: Digital data management, video-conferencing and geo-spatial technology.
  • The three objectives of PRAGATI are:
    • Grievance Redressal
    • Programme Implementation
    • Project Monitoring
  • It also offers a unique combination in the direction of cooperative federalism since it brings on one stage the Secretaries of Government of India and the Chief Secretaries of the States.
  • It is a three-tier system (PMO, Union Government Secretaries, and Chief Secretaries of the States).
  • Issues to be flagged before the PM are picked up from the available database regarding Public Grievances, on-going Programmes and pending Projects.

PRAGATI brings in more e-transparency and e-accountability:

  • It will be a monthly conference call with state chief secretaries and secretaries of the Union government for the speedy redressal of grievances and monitoring and implementation of projects.
  • PRAGATI uses data from CPGRAMS for grievances, Project Monitoring Group (PMG) and the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation. PRAGATI provides an interface and platform for all these three aspects.
  • For holistic development of the country, it is necessary to facilitate from central government level the projects of the states.
  • It also offers a unique combination in the direction of cooperative federalism since it brings on one stage the Secretaries of Government of India and the Chief Secretaries of the States.
  • With this, the Prime Minister is able to discuss the issues with the concerned Central and State officials with full information and latest visuals of the ground level situation. Such an effort has never been made in India. It is also an innovative project in e-governance and good governance.
  • PM gives suitable directions for redressal of grievances and compliance on the projects and programmes and motivated all officers to work in coordinated manner for outcome;

Some of the issues discussed under PRAGATI included:

  • Two sets of public grievances of more than 20 people relating to (a) payment of Employees Provident Fund of private sector and (b) Income Tax refunds; It was noted that all the grievances had been redressed. Also, the intervention through PRAGATI is leading to system improvement so that such grievances do not arise.
  • Two issues flagged by States of Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra, regarding National Highways and clearance for Navi Mumbai airport, respectively.
  • Six Central Government projects involving more than a dozen Union Government Ministries and thirteen States. It was noted that various actions and permissions relating to projects were pending for several years. Due to PRAGATI, on several issues there was definite progress. In fact, some of the issues were almost finally resolved.
  • Progress of School Toilet Programme, and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan

Conclusion:

The Pragati programme will attempt to find solutions for issues picked up from the available data base regarding public grievances, on-going programmes and pending projects. This new system of governance will definitely give a boost to government projects that have been publicized due to their delays. The need of the hour is speedy implementation and completion of government projects.