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[Insights Secure – 2020] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 29 April 2020

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General Studies – 1


 

Topic: salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

1. Raja Ravi Varma’s art marks an historic turn in the development of Indian modern art and Indian artists, at the beginning of the movement for Indian Independence. Discuss. (250 words).

Reference : Indian Express 

Directive word

Discuss- this is an all-encompassing directive which mandates us to write in detail about the key demand of the question. we also have to discuss about the related and important aspects of the question in order to bring out a complete picture of the issue in hand.

Why this question:

April 29 is the birth anniversary of the famed Indian painter Raja Ravi Varma (1848-1906), remembered for giving Indians their western, classical representations of Hindu gods and goddesses. Through his printing press, Varma’s humanised depiction of Hindu pantheon travelled beyond the surfaces of costly canvases, and into the prayer and living rooms of working-class homes.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to write in detail about the works of Raja Ravi Varma, his contribution towards Indian paintings and his significance in the history of Indian art.

Structure of the answer

Introduction:

write a few introductory lines about Raja Ravi Verma. Raja Ravi Varma was an Indian painter and artist, considered as one of the greatest painters in the history of Indian art.

Body-

Discuss in points, his works, significance and contribution.

  • Ravi Varma’s works, which incorporated the use of oil as a medium and a distinctly European style of realism, influenced other artists and shaped a new perception of “Indian Art”.
  • All this took place at a time in Indian history when a “modern and progressive India” was the call of the day.
  • This unique style incorporated a European naturalism and realism, with distinctly Indian mythological themes.
  • The distinguishing factor, however, was Ravi Varma’s depiction of mythological figures in a natural human style rather than the traditional supernatural imagery used to convey gods, goddesses and their myths or tales.
  • Ravi Varma’s groundbreaking work lay not only in his style of art, but also in his influence on other artists and collectors.

Conclusion:

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

 


General Studies – 2


 

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

2. What are Zoonotic diseases? Examine the challenges posed by it in India? How should India gear itself to deal with this challenge. (250 words)

Reference : The Print 

Why this question

The coronavirus onslaught has presented an unprecedented challenge for India in scale and expanse, but there are other viral diseases that the country battles year to year. One such disease is the monkey fever, which originated in Karnataka and peaks as the summer begins. It is a zoonosis like the novel coronavirus, which means it reached humans via an animal carrier.

Key demand of the question

Following points are to be brought out in your answer

What are zoonotic diseases

How they are a huge health risk – apart from the obvious fact that they can lead to loss of significant no of lives, what other factors exacerbates the risk

How India deals with these diseases and the changes required

Directive word

Examine – When you are asked to examine, you have to probe deeper into the topic,  get into details, and find out the causes or implications if any . In the above case, discuss points as highlighted above.

Structure of the answer

Introduction:

explain zoonotic diseases along with some current examples to establish the scare on account of zoonotic diseases.

Body

How they are a huge health risk – apart from the obvious fact that they can lead to loss of significant no of lives, what other factors exacerbates the risk. Explain points like ecosystem changes brought about, no vaccination etc

How we deal with such diseases, highlight our experience in dealing with Zika scare and now Nipah scare.

Examine how can we improve our handling of these diseases – virology centres, border screening, awareness etc

Conclusion:

Mention that it is important to take proactive action, rather than reactive in this case as the health cost of an outbreak will be immense.

 

Topic: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

3. Despite the baggage of fraught and convulsive neighbourhoods, the transformation of the India-Israel bilateral relationship into a strategic partnership over the course of past tumultuous 25 years is commendable. Elaborate. (250 words)

Reference : idsa.in 

Why this question:

Israel and India are exploring to open new vistas of partnership in the world of finance, including collaboration between market regulators and allowing Israeli investment in corporate bonds, taking advantage of a favourable climate in both countries.

Key demand of the question:

One must explain how has the bilateral relations between evolved from outright hate in 1950’s to strategic partnership today. Also discuss about how there is a co-operation today in various fields from agriculture to defence to science and technology.

Directive word

Elaborate – Give 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:

In a few introductory lines define the current bilateral relations between India and Israel.

Body:

Discuss the evolution of India-Israel bilateral relations from 1948 onwards. Trace the changes in trends of co-operation. How and why is there a shift? Discuss the various areas of co-operation. Talk about the significance of growing India-Israel strategic relations.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

 

Topic: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

4. “India- EU relations are like a loveless arranged marriage “. Critically discuss. (250 words)

Reference : mea.gov.in 

Why this question:

For long, the EU and India partnership had been slow-moving and fragmented, struggling to maintain momentum. Unfairly large emphasis was laid on foreign policy cooperation, but on many issues divisions far exceeded commonalities, leading to disappointment and an overall delusion in the potential of the partnership. Today, not only do the EU and India have a thriving commercial relationship and growing security collaboration, but both partners have developed greater depth in political cooperation internationally while exploring new and innovative areas for further broadening their partnership.

Key demand of the question:

The question wants us to express our knowledge and understanding about the India-EU relations, its evolution, the concerns and challenges and the way forward.

Directive:

Critically 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. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, all you need to do is look at the good and bad of something and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Provide the Background of India-EU relations.

  • India-EU relationship dates back to 1960s when India was the first country to establish relationship with European economic union which later evolved into common market -European union
  • For more than a decade, the EU and India partnership had been slow-moving and fragmented, struggling to maintain momentum. India was acknowledged as a strategic partner in 2004.
  • But fifteen years on there is still no mutually agreed set of clear priorities. The EU-India relationship fails to acknowledge each partner’s individual realities.

Body:

Discuss the following points:

  • Brief summary if India EU relations
    • Trade and Investment
    • Energy Cooperation
    • Research and development
    • And so on
  • Concerns in India-EU relations
    • India’s protectionism to automobile sector
    • India’s Intellectual property regime with the provision of compulsory licensing and manufacture of generic medicine
    • Domestic source obligation in the multi brand retail
    • European Union’s heavily subsidised agro industry. This could hurt Indian farmers
    • EU Import restriction: like ban on the import of mangoes from India
    • Work visa restriction – movement of skilled professionals
  • Way forward

Conclusion:

Based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.

5. What do you understand by Genome Sequencing? Discuss the various efforts by India in this regard and how will it lead to precision medicine and develop its commercial gene testing services?  (250 words)

Reference : Indian Express 

Why this question:

The ongoing analysis of the gene sequences of the novel coronavirus has so far not revealed anything to suggest that the virus present in India is in any way different from that circulating in other parts of the world. There is also no evidence, as of now, of any one particular strain of the virus being more deadly than the other, scientists have said.

Key demand of the question:

The question is straightforward; one must explain the concept of what is genome sequencing and in what way it will help in precision medicine and commercial gene testing services.

Directive:

Explain – Clarify the topic by giving 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:

In brief explain the context of the question.

Body:

Explain first what is whole genome sequencing? Discuss the various efforts taken by the Government of India in this regard. Explain the challenges involved.

Conclusion:

Conclude with significance of such a project.

 

Topic: Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.

6. The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent countrywide lockdown to prevent its transmission have variedly impacted the Indian Maoists. Critically examine. (250 words)

Reference :  idsa.in Economic Times 

Why this question:

the lockdown has certainly increased Maoists’ desperation to meet their demands of food supplies and other essentials. Maoists, all across the left wing extremism (LWE)-affected states, primarily procure their rations and other essential commodities through a network of aides from village-level haat bazaars (weekly markets).  With haat bazaars being temporarily shut, they are reportedly facing acute shortage of food supplies. Also, since the entire economic and construction activities have been grounded in these areas to ensure the efficacy of the lockdown, the Maoists’ finances have taken a beating given that extortions from contractors, mining industry, truck drivers, etc., formed a major part of their finances.

Key demand of the question

One needs to examine the how the COVID-19 lockdown has halted the finances and other support system to the Maoists, leading to increased pressure on the villagers nearby. Also one needs to talk about how this has led to variations in the form of attacks as seen in Sukma recently, while a faction of Naxals have apparently called for truce with the government authorities.

Directive word

Critically examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we have to look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, all you need to do is look at the good and bad of something and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer

Introduction:

In a few introductory lines briefly discuss the COVID-19 lockdown across nation and how it has affected the supplies of goods and services across the nation to one and all.

Body:

       The question must discuss the following points:

  • How the naxals are affected due to the lockdown and breakage in supply of goods and services.
  • The ramifications of the same in the form of attacks on the security forces, threats on the local villagers, headmen of village , exploiting the villagers for meeting their ends etc.
  • Also on the other hand, how a faction of naxals are calling for a truce with the government.

Also discuss why there is a need to remain cautious with respect to internal security and measures to attain the same.

Conclusion:

Give a balanced way forward.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics.

7. Ethics are less a goal than a pathway, less a destination than a trip, less an inoculation than a process. Illustrate. (250 words).

Reference : Ethics by Lexicon

Why this question:

The question is about evaluation of Ethics as a subject more of a process than mere end.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must discuss in detail the evolution of “Ethics” as a process and not mere end.

Directive:

Illustrate – means use examples; data, diagrams and charts to make it clearer (clarify by giving an example).

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

In a few introductory lines define what you understand by Ethics.

Body:

The answer needs to be a narrative of examples justifying that ethics doesn’t just mean the final end but the process that takes one to the end. Bring in philosophies of moral thinkers, ideologies that justify means are equally important as that of ends. Students must appreciate the answer mainly through a good set of examples in such questions.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance of Ethics in general.