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[Insights Secure – 2020] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 16 July 2020

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INSIGHTS NEW SECURE – 2020: YEARLONG TIMETABLE

 


General Studies – 1


 

Topic: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

1. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a crushing impact of on the Indian craft sector. In this light, discuss the Role of handicrafts in Indian Economy. What are the specific challenges that they face and how can they be addressed? (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu thewire.in

Why this question:

Hit hard by the lockdown imposed in the wake of COVID-19, artistes from Etikoppaka, a small village famous for toy making, are looking to the government for support. Most of the artisans have not received any orders since the outbreak of the dreaded virus. The question is about discussing the importance of Indian handicrafts and its contribution to the economy, the challenges it faces and the solutions to it.

Key demand of the question:

One has to bring out the significant place the handicraft industry holds in contributing to the economy and in what way it is facing challenges on various fronts.

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:

Highlight some facts on the Indian handicrafts industry with its importance. Talk about how the covid-19 pandemic has halted their income and affected their livelihoods.

Body:

Start by stating how our country is gifted with a rich range of beautiful handicrafts. Almost every state of the country has its unique handicrafts. These products are a part and parcel of the culture of the concerned communities. Passed on from generation to generation, these handicrafts have the potential of sustaining the artisans economically.

Explain in detail role of handicrafts in the Indian economy.

What are the specific challenges with a focus on covid19 induced difficulties ?

How can these challenges be addressed?

Conclusion:

Conclude that skill up gradation and development in handicraft sector is an excellent approach for development of artisans, poverty reduction and providing income generation which would also help in achievement of sustainable development goals and thus contribute majorly to the economy.

 

Topic: urbanization, their problems and their remedies. Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human 11 Resources. Issues relating to poverty and hunger.

2. High densities and agglomeration effects, the secret sauce of successful big cities, are precisely what make them vulnerable to threats such as pandemics. Critically discuss. (250 words)

Reference: Hindustan Times 

Why this question:

The Covid-19 pandemic has upended the world as we know it. In the subsequent blame game, dense cities occupy pole position. Prima facie, this looks like a fair accusation given the extent of the outbreak in Mumbai, Delhi, New York and London. However, a more granular look at the data suggests that this is not accurate.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must how its not just the high density and agglomeration effects of the big cities which are making them vulnerable to pandemics.

Directive word

Critically 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.

Structure of the answer

Introduction:

The ongoing crisis is creating changes that could end up dividing society into pre- and post-COVID-19 days. Give a brief about how people are being pushed into poverty and need for a social security net in the form of basic income.

Body:

Discuss how the big cities have borne the brunt of the pandemic due to the high population density and agglomeration effects. Give examples for the same. Further argue that this is not just the only reason for rising numbers. Show how poor urban policies and poor socio-economic conditions of the urban poor have also added to the chaos. A recent study on metropolitan counties in the United States (US) suggests that socio-economic factors and levels of education were better at explaining outcomes related to mortality and spread of infection. Discuss about the measures.

Conclusion:

Give a way forward for better urbanization.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

3. The Chahbahar project is important for India’s regional goals, and for its relations with Iran. That is reason enough to act quickly. Critically analyze. (250 words)

Reference: Indian Express 

Key demand of the question:

Iran’s decision to drop India from a plan to build a rail link from the strategic Chabahar port to Zahedan on the Afghan border is a wake-up call for Delhi.

Directive word:

Critically analyze- here we have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts, and present them as a whole in a summary.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

write a few introductory lines about how Iran recently dropped India from its plan to build a rail link from the strategic Chabahar port to Zahedan on the Afghan border.

Body:

Discuss the strategic importance of Chahbahar port to India.

Highlight how Chabahar will not be the first time delays in the completion of ambitious infrastructure projects undertaken by India in the region have inflicted setbacks on India’s strategic goals.

Discuss the reasons behind such delays.

  • India dragged its feet on building the rail link from Chabahar to Zahedan.
  • The delays were over contract disagreements.
  • then the fear of US sanctions.
  • Later, after the US provided a “carve-out” to India on the port and the rail link, the difficulty under the sanctions regime in finding international suppliers for material

Discuss the strategic implications of this for India

Provide the immediate measures that India must take to further avoid such mishaps in future.

Conclusion:

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

 


General Studies – 3


 

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

4. The contribution of a melting ice sheets covering West Antarctica and Greenland leading to sea-level rise be significant and challenging to entire globe and humanity. Discuss. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why this question:

Scientists have warned that oceans are likely to rise as much as 1.3 metres by 2100 if the Earth’s surface warms another 3.5 degrees Celsius.

Key demand of the question:

One must discuss in detail the increasing Global warming has led to the melting of the icesheets in Antarctica, Greenland and Arctic leading to rise in sea levels. Further one must explain the ill effects it poses to humans, biodiversity etc. Provide the measures that needs to be taken.

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 brief explain the scenario of how global warming and increasing emission of GHGs has led to rise in earth’s mean temperature.

Body:

Explain the process of how ice sheet melting and the factors that are leading to rise in sealevel water rise.

Explain in detail the effects of this melting of ice sheets.

  • This will redraw the planet’s coastlines.
  • About ten percent of the world’s population today live on land less than five metres above the high tide line, who will be climate migrants.

Discuss the initiatives taken across Globe to curb these ill-effects.

Suggest measures on how to control the ice sheet melting.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 

Topic: Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security.

5. What do you understand by “coordinated social engineering attack”? Examine the threats posed by such attacks and to what extent is India ready in facing such cybersecurity challenges. (250 words)

Reference: Indian Express  ,imperva.com

Why this question

A Twitter hack affecting top politicians and celebrities in the United States has helped a Bitcoin wallet receive over $100,000 via at least 300 transactions.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to discuss about the social engineering attacks, the challenges posed by it in the growing connected world. One must also discuss about the measures needed from the various stakeholders to ensure cybersecurity and lastly how prepared India is in this front and measures needed.

Directive word

Discuss – Your discussion should bring out the life and teachings of their life and discuss their relevance in the current age

Structure of the answer

Introduction:

Explain what is meant by Coordinated Social engineering attack – Social engineering is an attack vector that relies heavily on human interaction and often involves manipulating people into breaking normal security procedures and best practices in order to gain access to systems, networks or physical locations, or for financial gain. Give a few examples.

Body:

Deliberate on the implications of the security incidents on various areas. Then talk about the measures needed to tackle Social engineering attacks by various stakeholders. Brief about the various measures taken by India in fighting against such cybersecurity threat incidents. What else should be done?

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 


General Studies – 4


 

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

6. The COVID-19 pandemic could be the “perfect storm” for reinforcing stereotypes about certain vulnerable sections. Analyze. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu , apa.org

Why this question:

History has shown that epidemics and pandemics tend to provoke xenophobia and stigma. This was the case with diseases such as Ebola and MERS and it is now the case with COVID-19. An increasing number of news reports document instances of stereotyping, harassment and bullying directed at people perceived to be of certain vulnerable sections following the spread of the new coronavirus.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Define what is stereotyping. The give a brief about how the pandemic has further intensified the stereotyping in society. Talk about how Groups labelled COVID-19 superspreaders represent some of the most vulnerable categories in Indian society.

Body:

discuss how the various kinds of stereotyping has begun since the pandemic began. Substantiate it with examples like Superspreaders especially the vulnerable sections of society.

E.g.: a number of groups are labelled superspreaders. Prominent examples of such groups include those who attended the Tablighi Jamaat religious congregation in Delhi, workers providing essential services (vegetable/fruit vendors, pharmacists, garbage collectors, grocery and milk sellers, bus conductors), and migrant workers returning to their hometowns. In the category of essential workers, the vegetable vendors in Ahmedabad city and the Koyambedu vegetable market in Chennai have received significant media attention.

Explain the ramifications of such stereotyping on such people and how it defeats the entire fight against the pandemic.

E.g. : Research documents a range of negative consequences (direct and indirect) associated with negative stereotyping, such as discrimination and hostility, negative attitudes, and a lingering effect of lack of self-control and aggression. Such outcomes are already visible in India. Incidents of people, particularly Muslims, being harassed for their suspected affiliation with Tablighi Jamaat have been reported. The Orissa High Court, in its order early May (which was stayed by the Supreme Court), required migrants, returning from other parts of the country, test negative before they were allowed to enter the State, without specifying who would pay for the cost of tests and the fate of those who would test positive.

Provide measures that are needed to overcome these challenges.

Conclusion:

Give a balanced conclusion as to how this needs to be overcome to fight the pandemic in a holistic and effective manner.

 

Topic: Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.

7. Discuss the impact of Social influence on public services? (250 words)

Reference: Ethics by Lexicon

Why this question:

The question is to examine the role of Social influence on public service.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must explain what is social influence, its reach, effect on public services.

Directive:

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

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Briefly state what you understand by social influence.

Body:

Discuss the following aspects:

How does social influence affect behaviour? – Social influence occurs when a person’s emotions, opinions or behaviours are affected by others intentionally or unintentionally. Social influence takes many forms and can be seen in conformity, socialization, peer pressure, obedience, leadership, persuasion, sales, and marketing.

Quote examples to justify – Our beliefs, attitudes, and behaviours are influenced by many things, and often produce automated behaviour. Principles of social influence, or the ways in which we are influenced, include the reciprocity principle, commitment and consistency, social proof, liking, authority, and scarcity.

Then relate it to public services.

Conclusion:

Conclude with whether social influence is good or bad for public services, form a balanced opinion.


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