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

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General Studies – 1


 

Topic : Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian sub-continent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India).

1. Examine the biological significance of soil and give a bio-climatic classification of the soils found on the surface of the earth. (250 words)

Reference: fundamentals of physical Geography by G C Leong

Why the question:

The question is about the biological significance of soil and the bio-climatic classification of the soils found on the surface of the earth.

Key Demand of the question:

One is expected to explain the bio-climatic classification of the soils found on the surface of the earth while bringing out the biological significance of soil.

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must 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.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start with the definition of Soil.

Body:

Soil is a mixture of organic matter, minerals, gases, liquids, and organisms that together support life.

Discuss then the biological significance of it; as a medium for plant growth, as a means of water storage, supply and purification, as a modifier of Earth’s atmosphere, as a habitat for organisms.

Then move onto discuss the bio-climatic classification of the soils.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic : India and its neighborhood- relations.

2. Discuss the significance of Myanmar for India while throwing light on the political logic that has shaped India’s Myanmar policy since the 1990s. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

Recently Indian Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla and Chief of the Army Staff Gen. Manoj Naravane visited Myanmar. Thus the context of the question.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the significance of Myanmar for India while throwing light on the political logic that has shaped India’s Myanmar policy since the 1990s.

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 with a brief background of India-Myanmar relations from past to present.

Body:

Discuss first the significance of Myanmar to India. Explain in detail the factors such as Myanmar is an immediate neighbor, essential for the development of NES. Myanmar is strategically important to India as it is the only ASEAN country that shares a border with India. It is also the only country that can act as a link between India and ASEAN. Myanmar is India’s gateway to Southeast Asia and could be the required impetus to realize India’s Look East Policy. For India, Myanmar is key in linking South Asia to Southeast Asia and helping enhance its regional outreach etc.

Discuss India’s policy towards Myanmar.

Then explain the recent initiatives taken by India to strengthen ties with Myanmar.

Conclusion:

Conclude that India’s political engagement and diplomatic balancing seem to have worked so far in its ties with Myanmar. The new initiatives could mark a significant upturn in the bilateral relations as these help establish India’s presence in sectors where it ought to be more pronounced.

 

Topic : GS-2: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

GS-3: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, And Railways etc.

3. Examine the whys and wherefores for the poor performance of the Discoms in India and propose measures to overcome these weaknesses. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

The article analyzes the reasons for the poor performance of the Discoms in India and suggests measures to overcome these shortcomings.

Key Demand of the question:

Examine the poor performances outplayed by the Discoms in the recent times in the country and propose measures to overcome these weaknesses.

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must 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.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Briefly state key facts suggesting the poor performance of Discoms in the country.

Body:

Distribution Companies (Discoms) play a critical role in the electricity supply chain. These utilities typically buy power from generators and retail these to consumers. India has done well in ensuring the adequate production of electricity in the country. However, the Discoms continue to perform badly.

List down the reasons for their bad performance. Bring out the challenges they have been facing such as inefficiency, lack of cost-reflective tariff structure, default of payments to Discoms etc.

Suggest suitable measures to address the situation.

Conclusion:

Conclude with both short term and long term measures.

 

Topic: GS-2: Mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.

GS-3: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment

4. What are Micro finance Institutions? Discuss the impact of digitization on the growth of MFI sector while explaining the challenges associated with the sector. (250 words)

Reference: Financial Express 

Why the question:

The article explains the need for social impact monitoring of the MFIs in the country and the impact that digitization has had on their growth factor.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain what MFIs are and discuss the impact of digitization on the growth of MFI sector while explaining the challenges associated with the sector.

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 what MFIs are; a microfinance institution is an organisation that offers financial services to low income populations.

Body:

Explain the role played by them; MFIs provide the much-needed aid to the economically underprivileged that would have otherwise been at the mercy of the local moneylender and high interest rates.

The model had its genesis as a poverty alleviation tool, focused on economic and social upliftment of the marginalized sections through lending of small amounts of money without any collateral to women for income-generating activities.

Then discuss the Digitalization and growth of MFI sector. Explain the challenges associated with MFI.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward that MFIs need to focus on creating a sustainable and scalable microfinance model with a mandate that is unequivocal about both economic and social good..

 


General Studies – 3


 

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

5. Discuss the concept of climate feedback loops and critically examine their impact on future climate of the world. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

The question is premised on the concept of climate feedback loops and their impact on climate change.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the concept in detail while explaining its impact on climate change in the coming future.

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:

Climate change feedback is important in the understanding of global warming because feedback processes may amplify or diminish the effect of each climate forcing, and so play an important part in determining the climate sensitivity and future climate state.

Body:

Climate feedback loops are “processes that can either amplify or diminish the effects of climate forcing.” (“Forcings” here are the initial drivers of our climate – things like solar irradiance, GHG emissions, and airborne particles like dust, smoke, and soot that come from both human and natural sources and impact our climate.)

Use examples from the article and explain the negative impact that such feedback loops can have on climate change in near future.

Conclusion:

Conclude with need to address the concerns with urgency.

 

Topic : GS-2: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

 GS-3: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

6. Examine the option of biofuel as a potential alternative to farm fires in the country. (250 words)

Reference: Financial Express 

Why the question:

The article brings to us the discourse on stubble burning and Biofuels as a potential alternative solution to address the issue.

Key Demand of the question:

One has to analyse the option of biofuel as a potential alternative to farm fires in the country.

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must 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.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

First discuss the issue at hand – the Farm fires.

Body:

Over the last 25 years, conservation cropping, which includes reduced soil cultivation and retention of crop stubble, has continued to evolve. More and more farmers recognise the benefits in terms of productivity and sustainability. Notwithstanding this, strategic burning of stubbles, based on sound agronomic principles, may occasionally be a valid option. Stubble management is one of many complex issues that farmers must contend with.

Discuss the ill-effects of stubble burning/farm fires. Take hints from the article and explain in what way bio-fuels are potential options.

Conclusion:

Conclude with potential and importance.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic : Probity in Governance: Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and probity; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information,

7. What is the objective of the Right to Information Act? Evaluate the ethics underlying the provisions of this Act.(250 words)

Reference: jstor.org

Why the question:

The question is about RTI and the underlying ethical perspectives.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the objectives of RTI and evaluate the ethics underlying the provisions of this Act.

Directive:

Evaluate – When you are asked to evaluate, you have to pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidences.  You have to appraise the worth of the statement in question. There is scope for forming a personal opinion here.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by explaining the background of RTI.

Body:

Explain briefly the provisions of RTI Act 2005. The basic object of the Right to Information Act is to empower the citizens, promote transparency and accountability in the working of the Government, contain corruption, and make our democracy work for the people in real sense.

Discuss then the salient features of it.

Then discuss the underlying ethical perspectives, explain the benefits such as how it leads to greater good governance.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance.


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