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[Insights Secure – 2020] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 22 October 2020

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General Studies – 1


 

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

1. Give a comparative analysis of Buddhist and Jain literature as a source of ancient Indian history. (250 words)

Reference: Ancient Indian history NCERT by R S Sharma

Why the question:

The question is straightforward and aims to discuss the contributions of Buddhist and Jain literature as a source of ancient Indian history.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain in detail the contributions of the two literatures while giving a comparative analysis of the two.

Directive:

Compare– provide for a detailed comparison of the two types, their features that are similar as well as different. One must provide for detailed assessment of the two.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Both Buddhist and Jain literature are classified under Brahman literature.

Body:

Most ancient Buddhist texts are also Tripitaka. Buddha’s religious ideas and words are collected in Sutta Pitaka. It is called the Encyclopedia of Buddhism. Jain literature on the other hand is classified into two major categories Agam and Non‑agam sutras. Agam literature consists of many texts, which are the sacred books of the Jain religion. They are written in the Ardha-magadhi, a form of Prakrit language. Non-agam literature consists of commentary and explanation of Agam literature, and independent works, compiled by ascetics and scholars. They are written in many languages such as Prakrit, Sanskrit, Apabhramsa, Old Marathi, Rajasthani, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannad, Tamil, German, and English.

Provide for key features of the two literatures and explain in what way they prove to be one of the important sources of ancient Indian history.

Conclusion:

Conclude with the ideologies of the two sects that hold relevant even today through their literature.

 

Topic: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times. Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.

2. Discuss the starring role and influences of Basavanna as a social reformer. (250 words)

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is based on the theme of important social reformers and their contributions to the society.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain in detail about the personality of Basavanna and his role and contributions as a social reformer.

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:

Basavanna (1106–1167)) was a philosopher and a social reformer, who fought against social evils of his time such as caste system and the ritual practices of Hinduism.

Body:

Explain that his teachings and philosophy transcend all boundaries and address the universal and eternal. Basava was a great humanitarian, who advocated a new way of life, in which divine experience was at the center of life and where caste, gender and social distinctions carried no special importance.

Discuss in detail his contributions to the Indian society.

Explain the bringing of Lingayat faith by him, his contributions through Vachanas etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude with his teachings that hold relevant even in today’s times.

 


General Studies – 2


 

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

3. Discuss the current prevailing innovation ecosystem in India and government measures to promote it. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

The article, authored by Amitabh Kant, CEO of the NITI Aayog, discusses the innovation ecosystem in India and government measures to promote it.

Key Demand of the question:

One has to explain in detail the current prevailing innovation ecosystem in India and government measures to promote it.

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 explaining what you understand by an innovation system.

Body:

Firstly, highlight the significance of Innovation system; Innovation is important to the advancement of society. Innovation helps solve problems, especially as the world’s problems continue to evolve. New and innovative products/technologies have increased the standard of living and provided people with opportunities to improve their lives. Give examples to justify their significance.

Then move onto explain the measures taken by the government in this direction. The Indian government is putting in place a framework of collaboration, facilitation and responsible regulation. Give examples of each to justify better.

Conclusion:

Conclude on a positive note that is India is on the right path.

 

 Topic: GS-2: Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.

 GS-3: Disaster and disaster management.

4. Indian cities are progressively witnessing the disaster of  urban flooding. What are the key causes for their increase? Also discuss foremost mitigation measures for urban flooding. (250 words)

Reference: wr i-india.org

Why the question:

The article brings to us the grave concerns of urban flooding in the country.

Key Demand of the question:

One must discuss the main reasons responsible for increase in the number of urban floods every year in the country and discuss mitigation measures to resolve the same.

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 talking about the urban flood management in India.

Body:

First, discuss the issue facing the urban areas in the case of floods. Explain the underlying reasons ranging from lack of urban water and sanitation infrastructure, lack of urban governance in this field etc.

Explain that with multiple, recurring failure of grey infrastructure globally, alternatives are now being sought. Natural ecosystems such as lakes, floodplains or parks, forests -are nature-based solutions (blue-green infrastructure) and offer flexible, low-cost solutions for flood mitigation and management and offer multiple co-benefits.

Suggest more mitigation measures to address the issue. Discuss a case study of any one city in the country to substantiate better.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic : Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment. Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

5. Explain the prominence of defence offset policy in India and also assess the effect of the recent amendments on the policy objectives. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

The article highlights the government’s dilution of the “offset” policy in defence procurement.

Key Demand of the question:

One must explain the significance of Defence offset policy in India and discuss the effect of recent amendments of it on the policy objectives.

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:

Start by explaining what an offset policy implies.

Body:

The offset policy, introduced in 2005, mandates foreign suppliers to spend at least 30% of the contract value in India. The policy was adopted on the recommendations of the Vijay Kelkar Committee.

List down the objective of defence offset policy in detail. The key objective of the defence offset policy is to leverage capital acquisitions to develop Indian defence industry by fostering the development of internationally competitive enterprises domestically, augmenting capacity for research, design and development related to defence products and services and partially compensating for a significant outflow of the country’s resources in the large purchase of foreign goods.

Then explain the significance of it. Give examples.  

Hint at the possible challenges involved in practicing such a policy.

Conclusion:

Conclude that the offset policy can play a vital role in the growth of a vibrant domestic defence sector, if it is designed and executed correctly, as is evident from the experience in the aerospace sector.

 


General Studies – 4


 

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.

6. Write a note about ethical dilemmas in government and private institutions. (250 words)

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is based on the theme of ethical dilemma.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss about the ethical dilemmas in government and private institutions.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Ethical Dilemma refers to a situation where decision/Choice has to be made between two undesirable/Desirable situations.

Body:

Ethical dilemmas are situations in which there is a choice to be made between two options, neither of which resolves the situation in morally satisfactory manner. In such circumstances, social and personal ethical guidelines can provide no satisfactory outcome for the selector.

An ethical dilemma is an intricate situation that often involves an apparent mental skirmish between moral imperatives, in which to obey one would result in disobeying another.

Discuss the types of ethical dilemma that can be witnessed in public administration such as

  • Personal Cost Ethical Dilemmas: It rises from situations in which compliance with ethical conduct results in a substantial personal cost to the decision maker in a problematic situation.
  • Right-versus-Right Ethical Dilemmas: It arises from situations of two or more conflicting sets of bonafide moral values.
  • Conjoint Ethical Dilemmas: It develops when a careful decision-maker is exposed to an amalgamation of the above-indicated ethical dilemmas in searching for the “right-thing-to do”.

Give examples to explain and substantiate better.

Conclusion:

Conclude with solutions to address such situations.

 

Topic : Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in-human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics – in private and public relationships.

7. Critically analyse the essence, determinants and consequences of human action with reference to J. S. Mill act utilitarianism Charvaka and Karmayoga. (250 words)

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question aims to analyse the essence, determinants and consequences of human actions.

Key Demand of the question:

One has to analyse the essence, determinants and consequences of human action with reference to J. S. Mill act utilitarianism Charvaka and Karmayoga.

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:

Start by explaining the fact that in the determinants and consequences of ethics in human action ‘Human action’ is the starting point of ethics. One of the very first points of consideration in judging the morality or immorality of any act of a person is that it must be a conscious human act, before it can have any moral quality whatsoever.

Body:

Discuss in detail what you understand by essence, determinants and consequences of human action in general.

Explain then each of the three concepts – J. S. Mill act utilitarianism, Charvaka and Karmayoga.

Mill can be characterized as an act utilitarian in regard to the theory of objective rightness, but as a rule utilitarian in regard to the theory of moral obligation. He defines morality as a system of rules that is protected by sanctions.

Charvaka holds direct perception, empiricism, and conditional inference as proper sources of knowledge, embraces philosophical skepticism and rejects ritualism and supernaturalism.

Karma yoga, also called Karma marga, is one of the three spiritual paths in Hinduism, one based on the “yoga of action”. To a karma yogi, right action is a form of prayer.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance of such philosophies.


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