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SECURE SYNOPSIS: 12 November 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.


General Studies – 1


 

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

1. What are Indian Miniatures? Discuss the evolution of the tradition of Indian Miniature Paintings. (250 words)

Reference: artsandculture.google.com

Why the question:

The article brings to us the importance of Indian miniature art forms and their evolution.

Key Demand of the question:

One is expected to analyse the evolution of the tradition of Indian Miniature Paintings.

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 Indian miniatures are. Brief upon genres of Indian Painting.

Body:

Miniatures are the small sized, handmade, very colourful paintings and main feature of these Miniature paintings include complex and gentle brush work which provides them unique identity.

 In the eastern and western India miniature Paintings developed in the 9th to the 11th century as a reaction to large scale wall painting. The colours used in Miniature were handmade from vegetables, minerals, stones, indigo etc.

Then discuss briefly the different schools of miniature paintings in India.

Trace the evolution of the Indian paintings.

Conclusion:

Conclude with their importance.

Introduction:

Miniatures are small sized, handmade, colourful paintings. Main features were complex and gentle brush work. The eastern and western India miniature Paintings developed in the 9th to 11th century as a reaction to large scale wall painting. The colours used were handmade from vegetables, minerals, and stones, indigo.

Body:

  • Miniature Schools in India:
  • Pala School of Painting
  • During 9th to 12th century Palas of Bengal and Bihar developed earliest example of miniature painting. Paintings with no name are the features of this school of painting.
  • Apabhramsa School
  • Developed during 11th to 15th Lack of Natural scenes, bulging eyes, angular faces and decorated margins are the features.
  • Gujarat School
  • Ideas were from the Biography of Mahavira known as
  • Deccan School
  • Bijapur was main centre, rose under Ibrahim Adil Shah, contemporary to the Mughal Style, continued to grow independently.
  • Miniature Paintings during Mughal Era
  • Mughal school of painting emerged from Persian miniature influenced by Hindu, Buddhist and Jains and is considered the landmark in the history of painting in India, originated during reign of Akbar.
  • Adoring the ruler and displaying his life rather than portraying the God was prominent. This style was secular marked by naturalism based upon close observation of nature and delicate drawing.
  • Akbar
    • Established Karkhanas and Tasveer Khanas.
    • Use of calligraphy and 3 D figures.
    • The illustrated manuscript of Tuti-nama was earliest example.
  • Jahangir
    • Mughal Painting reached its pinnacle. The theme – naturalism and portrait paintings, flowers, trees, birds, animals etc., with decorated margins. Eg: Jehangir-Nama.
  • Shah Jahan
    • Gained technical perfection but became static, less lively with European influence.
    • Used gold and silver, and encouraged use of pencil. Eg – Shah Jaha Nama;
  • Rajput School of Painting
  • Every Rajput School that emerged in 16th and 17th century had illustrations based on themes of Ramayana and Mahabharata, natural landscape, with Mughal influence. The use of natural colours were prominent.
  • Marwar
    • Primitive and vigorous folk style and a series of Ragamala considered earliest example.
  • Bundi
    • Started as early as in 1625 AD. Bhairavi Ragini considered one of the earliest example.
  • Mewar
    • Tamasha Paintings and Chawand Ragamala of 1605 is major examples.
  • Malwa
    • Was greatly influenced by the Chaura-Panchasika style.
  • Kishangarh
    • Radha and Krishna was central theme of this style. Kishangarh is known for its Bani Thani Paintings.
  • Pahari School of Painting
  • Developed in Sub-Himalayan states of Himachal Pradesh and J&K in 17th to 19th centuries under the patronage of Mughals, were Pahari Paintings.
  • Basholi & Kangra Schools:
    • Splendid Devi series, magnificent depiction of Rasamanjari text, are prominent examples.
  • Miniature Paintings in South India
  • Tanjore Painting
    • During 18th and 19th centuries – techniques of shading, bold drawing, and use of bright colours thrived at Tanjore. Created on glass and board.
  • Mysore Painting
    • Patronised by the rulers of Mysore and continued in the British India, depicted Hindu Gods and Goddesses. Eg:
    • Use of gesso paste prepared by mixing Zinc Oxide and Arabic Gum.

Conclusion:

The tradition of painting in India spans the period of thousands of years. The exquisite mural of Ajanta and Ellora, Buddhist manuscripts, Mughal and Kangra schools of miniature paintings stands testimony to this fact. Indian miniature paintings are highly influenced with religion, philosophy and faith

 

Topic: Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.

2. Underline the chief characteristics of Mansabdari system, Discuss the way it organized the Mughal administration. (250 words)

Reference: class XI NCERT, Medieval Indian history by R S Sharma

Why the question:

The question is based on the Mansabdari system and its utility in the Mughal administration. s

Key Demand of the question:

One must bring out the chief characteristics of Mansabdari system and explain in what way it organized the Mughal administration.

Directive:

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by explaining what Mansabdari system is.

Body:

Mansabdari System had the following characteristics:

  • Akbar introduced the Mansabdari system in his administration
  • Under this system, every officer was assigned a rank (Mansab)
  • Lowest rank was 10 and the highest was 5000 for the nobles.
  • Princes of royal blood received even higher ranks.
  • The ranks were divided into two – Zat and Sawar.
  • Zat means personal and it fixed the personal status of a person.
  • Sawar rank indicated the number of cavalrymen of a person who was required to maintain.
  • Every sawar had to maintain at least two horses.
  • All appointments, promotions and dismissals were directly made by the emperor.

Explain the basic features of the Mughal administration and focus on the utility of Mansabdari system to it.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance.

Introduction:

The Mansabdar was a military unit within the administrative system of the Mughal Empire introduced by Akbar. The word mansab is of Arabic origin meaning rank or position. The system determined the rank and status of a government official and military generals. Those mansabdars whose rank was one thousand or below were called Amir.

Body:

The mansab of a Mughal noble denoted the following:

  • Salary of the officer
  • Status of the officer
  • Number of soldiers, horses and elephants etc., maintained by an officer.

Every mansabdar had to maintain as many soldiers as were indicated by his rank of ‘Zat’ while the rank of ‘sawar’ indicated the number of horsemen among them. Irvin expressed the view that Zat indicated the actual number of cavalry under a mansabdar besides other soldiers while sawar was an additional honour.

During the reign of Akbar, the mansabdars were asked to keep as many horsemen as were indicated by numbers of their ranks of sawar. But, the practice was not being maintained by other Mughal emperors.

Main Characteristics of the Mansabdari System:

  • The king himself appointed the Mansabdars. He could enhance the Mansab, lower down it or remove it.
  • A Mansabdar could be asked to perform any civil or military service.
  • There were many categories of the Mansabdars. Based on the rank salary was given. Only the princes of the royal family and most important Rajput rulers were given a Mansab of 10,000.
  • A Mansabdar was paid his salary in cash.
  • Sometimes Jagir was given to Mansabdars to realise revenue and salary.
  • Mansabdari system was not hereditary.
  • Mansabdar had to maintain out of his” salary a stipulated quota of horses, elephants, camels and mules and carts.
  • The horses were classified into six categories and the elephants into five.
  • For every ten cavalry men, the Mansabdar had to maintain twenty horses for horses had to be provided rest while on march and replacements were necessarily in times of war.
  • A record of the description (‘huliy’) of each horseman under a Mansabdar and of branding (‘dag’) horses to prevent corruption was kept.

Changes introduced by Jahangir and Shah Jahan:

  • Difference in the highest Mansab
  • Reduction in the number of soldiers
  • Difference in the categories of Mansabdars
  • Relaxation in control

Merits of the Mansabdari System:

  • Removal of the chief defects of the Jagirdari system
  • Increased military efficiency
  • Extra revenue to the state
  • Merit as the basis of selection

Demerits of the Mansabdari System

  • The mansabdars got their salaries from the emperor and paid themselves the salaries to their troops. This made the troops more loyal to the mansabdars than to the king.
  • The system proved very expensive.
  • Dishonest mansabdars and officials used to ally together during inspection, borrowed horses from one another and showed their full quota.
  • Caste system prevailed in the mansabdari system.
  • Since the property of a mansabdar was confiscated after his death, he used to spend it lavishly during his life time.

Conclusion:

The Mughal rulers maintained a large and efficient army till the reign of Aurangzeb. This was necessary to do so for they conquered several parts of the country and were accordingly required to maintain law and order and check revolts and Mansabdari system was the most efficient system.

 

Topic: population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

3. Is regional inequality in India actually a problem of economic geography? Discuss (250 words)

Reference: Live Mint 

Why the question:

The article captures in detail how Economic geography is central to India’s regional inequality distresses. It emphasizes the need for issue to be looked through the prism of economic geography—density, distance, division by the policy makers.

Key Demand of the question:

Question seeks to examine the interlinkages between economic geography and the regional inequalities and disparities.

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 brief introduction of the prevalent inequalities and disparities in the country.

Body:

Discuss the following dimensions in detail:

  • What is regional inequality?
  • What is regional disparity in India?
  • The causes of regional disparities in India? What are the major causes of inequality in India?

Take cues from the article and explain how the World Bank repeatedly identified the key dimensions of economic development—density, distance and division to deal with inequalities that are regional in nature.

Provide for a comparison of regional inequalities – say north and south and then justify how economic geography aspects in the policy making can help resolve the issue.

Conclusion:

Conclude with significance of the economic geography in policy making.

Introduction:

Regional imbalance is the disparity in the economic and social development of geographic regions. It is reflected by the indicators like per capita income, the proportion of population living below the poverty line, the percentage of urban population, and percentage of population engaged in agriculture vis-à-vis engaged in industries, infrastructural development of different states.

Body:

Linkages of Regional Disparity with Economic Geography

Geographical Factors

  • The difficult terrain of flood prone areas, hilly terrain, rivers and dense forests leads to increase in the cost of governance, and makes mobilization of resources challenging.
  • Himalayan states like Himachal Pradesh, Northern Kashmir, Uttarakhand, remained backward due to its inaccessibility and other inherent difficulties. Even North Eastern States, connected by narrow Siliguri Corridor.

Location Oriented Advantages

  • Like availability of irrigation, raw materials, market, port facilities etc. some regions get special favour in respect of site selections of various developmental projects
  • E.g. oil refineries are mostly located in close to coasts – Bombay High, Vishakapatnam refinery etc.

New Investment advantages:

  • New investment in the private sector generally concentrate in regions having basic infrastructural facilities.
  • Term-lending institutions and commercial banks tend to concentrate investments in the relatively more developed States.

Restricted Success of Green Revolution

  • Benefits of green revolution were restricted to Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh as this belt had advantage of irrigation facilities with adequate policy support from State Governments, which other areas lacked and couldn’t reap benefits of Green Revolution.

Issues of Planning Mechanism

  • Lack of fulfilment of Local needs; one size fits all approach, poor implementation of plans etc. reduced capacity of Planning Commission to ensure balanced development.

Intra-Regional Disparity

  • Demand for creation of separate states in the wake of popular agitation was based on perceived neglect of certain backward regions of bigger states such as creation of Telangana from Andhra Pradesh
  • State specific reasons exist for backwardness of regions within states E.g. Backwardness of Vidarbha and Marathwada in Maharashtra and Northern Karnataka is due to scarcity of water.
  • Backwardness of certain regions in Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Orissa isdue to the distinct style of living of the inhabitants who are mostly tribals and the neglect of such regions by the ruling elite.

OTHER FACTORS:

  • Extremist violence, law and order problem etc. have been obstructing the flow of investments into backward regions.

Government Interventions to Reduce Regional Disparities

Higher resource transfers from the Centre to the Backward States via;

  • NITI Aayog’s planning and collaboration with states
  • Finance Commission: Centre -State transfers and creation of Special Category status.
  • The large weight given to “Income Distance” by 14th Finance commission is an important step in reducing per-capita income distance between states.

Development Programmes

  • Programmes of agriculture, community development programme etc. aimed at providing basic facilities and services to people in all the regions.

Provision of Facilities in Areas which Lag Behind Industrially

  • River valley projectsand multi-purpose projects; E.g. Ken-Betwa inter river link project for Bundelkhand region etc.

Programmes for the Expansion of Village and Small Industries

  • Industrial estates have been set up in all States, and are increasingly located in smaller towns and rural areas.

Diffusion of industrial activity and infrastructure

  • The claims of relatively backward areas have been kept in view for equitable development in location of public sector projects.
  • For North east region- East West Corridor project, Bhupen Hazarika Bridge,
  • Subsidies, exemptions and tax breaks given to industries for investing in backward regions. For instance, North East Special Infrastructure development.

Schemes for Development of Backward Areas

  • The Backward Region Grant Fund (BRGF) implemented in 272 identified backward districts in all States of the country to redress regional imbalances in development; Development Grant and Capacity Building.
  • Pradhan Mantri Khanij Kshetra Kalyan Yojana (PMKKKY) for the welfare of tribals and others affected by mining.

Competitive Federalism

  • States compete with each other to attract funds and investment, which facilitates efficiency in administration and enhances developmental activities.

Way Forward

  • Location specific targeted action would be required in less prosperous regions to ensure that a minimum acceptable level of prosperity.
  • Need to invigorate civil society in these areas as it is now well accepted in developmental studies that the region with higher social capital tends to develop more rapidly and sustainably.
  • NITI Aayog’s Three Year Action Agenda underlines the specific action for North Himalayan states, North-Eastern states, Coastal regions and Islands and Desert & Drought prone areas this action plan should be diligently implemented.

 


General Studies – 3


 

 Topic : Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.

4. One of the key solutions to India’s hidden hunger is restoring agriculture’s broken link with nutrition. Comment. (250 words)

Reference: Indian Express 

Why the question:

The article brings to us the importance of linking agriculture and Nutrition to overcome the challenge of hidden hunger.

Key Demand of the question:

One is expected to justify in what way one of the key solutions to India’s hidden hunger is restoring agriculture’s broken link with nutrition.

Directive:

Comment– here we have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by highlighting the problems of hidden hunger in the country.

Body:

Explain how in India food staples are not dense on minerals and vitamins, but they do provide a broad range of essential minerals and vitamins — a base which needs to be strengthened by non-staple foods.

Present facts to justify the current conditions of hidden hunger in the country.

Discuss how to address the problem of low intake of minerals and vitamins through agriculture; take cues from the article and establish the need to interlink agriculture and nutrition in the country.

Conclusion:

Conclude with urgency to address such issues and interlink agriculture with nutrition.

Introduction:

Hidden hunger is a lack of vitamins and minerals. Hidden hunger occurs when the quality of food people eat does not meet the nutrient requirements, so the food is deficient in micronutrients such as the vitamins and minerals that need for their growth and development.

Body:

India’s status on Hidden Hunger

  • Global Hunger Index 2020- India ranks 94/ 107 countries.
  • According to FAO estimates in ‘State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020’, 189.2 million people are undernourished in India.
  • According to the report 34.7% children aged under five in India are stunted (too short for their age), while 20% suffer from wasting, (weight is too low for their height).
  • Iron deficiency and anaemia are well-recognized and persistent problems in India.
  • Nearly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year gets lost or wasted.
  • 40 percent of the fruits and vegetables, and 30 percent of cereals produced, are lost due to inefficient supply chain management.

Concerns associated with Hidden Hunger

  • Women and Children at the highest risk:
    • The highest numbers of women and children suffering from “hidden hunger” live in South Asia, especially India.
  • Serious health effects:
    • Its adverse effects on child health and survival are particularly acute, from conception to the age of two, resulting in serious physical and cognitive consequences.
  • Economic Toll: Impose a significant burden on the affected persons and societies in terms of health costs, lost human capital and reduced economic productivity.

Relation between Agriculture and Nutrition is broken?

  • Forgotten objective of agriculture to produce food that provides enough minerals that sustain health, in our efforts to improve agricultural productivity and raise farm incomes.
  • Availability of low-quality diet:
    • The poor cannot afford to purchase sufficient quantities of vegetables, fruits, which contain relatively high amounts of bio-available minerals and vitamins.
  • Moving away from vital global cycles of nutrients: The conventional industrial agriculture is a main factor that is leading to the degradation of fertile land, the extensive demand of water for irrigation, loss of biodiversity etc.

Restoration of link between Agriculture and Nutrition

  • Improve the densities of minerals and vitamins in food staples: 
  • Increase in the consumption of non-staple food items by raising incomes and lowering the real prices of non-staple foods.
  • Bio-fortification of food staples: To increase densities of nutritious components and decrease the densities of undesirable compounds.
  • The bio-fortified staples should be closely linked to programs like the PDS, the mid-day meal and anganwadi, becoming an integral part of the National Nutrition Mission (POSHAN Abhiyan).
  • Addition of zinc and/or iodine to fertilisers: The recent evidence shows that nitrogenous fertilisers increase the densities of proteins, minerals and vitamins.
  • Increase the supply of key foods: The vegetables, fruits, pulses, animal products are already dense in minerals and vitamins to contribute to nutrient intakes.
    • Eg: Operation Flood has improved the efficiency of milk production and consumption.
  • Adopting Nutrient Management Techniques: Improve nutrient management practices by applying nutrients in the right amount, with the right method and with the right placement.
  • Shift to Organic Agricultural practices offers practical solutions to address major global challenges. It produces healthy, nutritious food for a growing population.

Way Forward

  • Balancing focus on increasing productivity and farmers’ incomes and investing in improved nutrition through agriculture.
  • The organic agriculture would enable farmers to earn a fair living, help people in intake of nutritious food.
  • Agricultural policies should be coherent with global practices; incentives like subsidies on chemical fertilizers and pesticides should be removed.
  • The behaviour-change communication needs to be focussed to improve women’s, infants’, and young children’s utilization of health services.
  • India requires an agriculture that can feed the world without depleting our natural resources and an agriculture that can cope with a changing climate, as well as contributing to the mitigation of climate change.

 

Topic : Disaster and disaster management.

5. Write a note on key community based disaster management strategies. (250 words)

Reference: egyankosh.ac.in

Why the question:

The question is based on the topic of community based disaster management strategies.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss and throw light on key community based disaster management strategies.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Community members play a vital role in reducing the impact of a disaster.

Body:

Community-Based Disaster Management (CBDM) initiates a process involving sequential stages that can be operationalized to reduce disaster risk. Processes of CBDM are guided by principles of subsidiarity, economies of scale, equity, heterogeneity, and public accountability.

The different stages in CBDM are disaster/vulnerability risk assessment, risk reduction planning, early warning systems, post-disaster relief, and participatory monitoring and evaluation.

Discuss in detail the different strategies.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance and if possible present a case study to justify the same.

Introduction:

Disaster Management can be defined as the organization and management of resources and responsibilities for dealing with all humanitarian aspects of emergencies, in particular preparedness, response and recovery in order to lessen the impact of disasters.

Community based disaster management has emerged as a key priority in disaster management in the context of paradigm shift which is taking place globally from a response oriented reactive management approach to a holistic approach which attaches immense importance to prevention, preparedness, mitigation and response. According to UNISDR, “Where communities are equipped and prepared, disasters clearly have much lesser impact, especially in terms of the loss of lives”.

Body:

  • ‘National Disaster Management Authority’ prescribe the following principles for ‘Community based Disaster Management'(CBDM):
  • various stages needed in CBDM are
    • disaster/vulnerability risk assessment,
    • risk reduction planning,
    • early warning systems,
    • post disaster relief and
    • Participatory monitoring and evaluation.
  • CBDM by its nature,
    • demands a bottoms-up approach with intensive,
    • micro interventions at the local Panchayats,
    • ward or village level with the intention of generating confidence,
    • awareness,
    • knowledge,
    • partnership and ownership for planning and rolling out local disaster
    • Management plans encompassing all levels of disaster management Continuum.
  • Equity and inclusion of marginalized segments of the society and bringing the vulnerable groups to the centre stage of planning and implementation of the CBDM has to be prioritized.
  • Persons with disability, women and children, underprivileged, older persons and pregnant women should be prioritised under CBDM
  • CBDM should converge with existing mainstream, institutional mechanisms and social welfare delivery programmes to make it holistic, cost effective, and multi-dimensional and community centric.
  • For Eg: In the wake of traumatic memory of 2015 floods, followed by the 2016 cyclone in Tamil Nadu, especially in Chennai, the Greater Chennai Corporation (GCC) has come up with its own disaster management plan However, the plan is not comprehensive and not community oriented.
  • India Witnessed worst Monsoon this year in 25 years, with floods ravaging Patna ; Several areas of Patna were flooded due to Ganga River overflowing following heavy monsoon rains More than 4,000 people, including women and children, were rescued from the flood-affected areas of Patna this year.

Ways in which CBDM can work here in such cases:

  • Disaster management plan should be made available in regional language too, and not alone in English to serve the purpose for the Community involved.
  •  There is a need to Ensure that the CDMP document is made available and easily accessible at every educational institution, both government and private offices and public places
  • The city corporation needs to generate frequent awareness and target orientation programmes in a manner, that is understandable to the most Vulnerable population of the city
  •  The capacity of the residents could be built with help of dedicated NGOs and experts
  • The CBDM approach should take to popularise the concepts related to disasters both natural and man-made through pictures, drawings and murals in public places
  • The societal resilience as prescribed by Sendai Framework, for dissemination of disaster risk information to general public and communities at risk of exposure to disaster; and to build the knowledge of government officials at all levels, civil society, communities and volunteers, would be ideal in vision of CBDM.
  • Community participation is a must to report encroachment of Wetlands in city limits, so as to prevent their damage which act as absorbers during floods
  • River bank dredging, Illegal sand mining should be reported by the community along river channels so as to not affect their flowing capacity
  • Also, the concerns for Climate change and sea level rise along coastal cities to include preparedness for sea level rise, as well as heat wave, along with integration of ‘Coastal Regulation Act’ is needed

Conclusion:

There is need for proactive approach with the Public domain to achieve Sendai framework goals to tackle disaster risks, along with upcoming greater vulnerabilities of climate change-induced disasters.

 

Topic :  Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment. Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

6. Discuss the potential of Green Hydrogen based Vehicular fuel in the Indian context. (250 words)

Reference: Financial Express 

Why the question:

The article explains the fuelling of green future in India.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the potential of Green Hydrogen based Vehicular fuel in the Indian context.

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:

Present the context of Indian transport industry, vehicular fuel and status.

Body:

Explain the current variety of fuels that are being used in India.

Discuss the fact that India needs to explore the potential of Green Hydrogen based Vehicular fuel.

Explain what Green Hydrogen based Vehicular fuels are.  Discuss their possible use in near future in Indian context.

Conclusion:

Conclude by highlighting their relevance and importance to India.

Introduction:

Transport sector in India contributes one-third of the total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, within which the lion’s share is that of road transport. The government has made concerted efforts to tackle vehicular emissions with policies steps and programmes such as the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (FAME I) scheme, FAME II, tax benefits, etc. Most recent and innovative step taken is to promote use of Green Hydrogen.

Body:

Hydrogen is a non-toxic colourless gas, even when it’s referred to as green hydrogen. It’s the most abundant element – it’s estimated that 90% of all atoms are hydrogen atoms, comprising around three quarters of the total mass in the universe.

Green hydrogen production:

  • Hydrogen can be produced by the electrolysis of water.
  • This is by using an electric current to break water, H2O, into its component elements of hydrogen and oxygen.
  • If this electric current is produced by a renewable source (e.g. Solar PV or a wind turbine), the clean hydrogen produced is known as green hydrogen.

green_hydrogen_producton

Advantages of green hydrogen:

  • 100 % sustainable: Green hydrogen does not emit polluting gases either during combustion or during production.
  • Storable: Hydrogen is easy to store, which allows it to be used subsequently for other purposes.
  • Versatile: Green hydrogen can be transformed into electricity or synthetic gas and used for domestic, commercial, industrial or mobility purposes.
  • Transportable: It can be mixed with natural gas at ratios of up to 20 % and travel through the same gas pipes and infrastructure.

Disadvantages of green hydrogen:

  • High cost: Energy from renewable sources, which are key to generating green hydrogen through electrolysis, is more expensive to generate.
  • High energy consumption: The production of hydrogen in general and green hydrogen in particular requires more energy than other fuels.
  • Safety issues: Hydrogen is a highly volatile and flammable element and extensive safety measures are therefore required to prevent leakage and explosions.
  • Greenhouse gas emission: Standard Steam Methane Reformation process has considerable disadvantage of releasing large quantities of CO2 into the atmosphere, CO2 is well known to be a highly significant greenhouse gas. Any small gas leakage of methane from its source and on through the process is also a significant contributor to climate change.

Applications of green hydrogen:

  • Electricity generation and Drinking water facilitation.
  • Applications in Space Mission – development of Rocket Fuel
  • Energy Storage: Compressed hydrogen tanks are capable of storing energy for long periods of time promoting energy storage.

Transport and mobility

  • Hydrogen’s great versatility allows it to be used in those consumption niches that are very difficult to decarbonise, such as heavy transport, aviation and maritime
  • These projects are promoted by the European Union (EU) and aim to introduce it in passenger aircraft.

Impact of green hydrogen

  • Hydrogen as a fuel is a reality in countries like the United States, Russia, China, France and Germany.
  • Hydrogen technologies will supply 18 per cent of the world’s total energy needs in future.
  • It will be able to power around 425 million vehicles around the world by 2050– Hydrogen Council.
  • The European Commission’s Energy Roadmap for 2050 has proposed that 85 per cent of energy will be produced by renewables.

Way Forward:

  • Hydrogen Council (2020) on hydrogen cost competitiveness that states scaling up and augmenting fuel cell production from 10,000 to 200,000 units can deliver a 45% reduction in the cost per unit.
  • Similarly, the versatility of hydrogen allows for complementarity across its numerous applications.
  • National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) is considering setting up a green hydrogen productionfacility in Andhra Pradesh.
  • The ministry of road transport and highways issued a notification proposing amendments to the Central Motor Vehicles Rules (1989) to incorporate safety standards for hydrogen fuel cell technology vehicles.
  • As per a policy brief issued by TERI, demand for hydrogen in India is expected to increase 3-10 fold by 2050.
  • Against this backdrop, the future of hydrogen, particularly green hydrogen, looks promising in India.

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world.

7. Briefly explain Aristotle’s views on virtues. (250 words)

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is based on the Aristotle’s views on virtues.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain in detail Aristotle’s views on virtues.

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:

Aristotle defines moral virtue as a disposition to behave in the right manner and as a mean between extremes of deficiency and excess, which are vices. We learn moral virtue primarily through habit and practice rather than through reasoning and instruction.

Body:

Moral virtues are exemplified by courage, temperance, and liberality; the key intellectual virtues are wisdom, which governs ethical behaviour, and understanding, which is expressed in scientific endeavor and contemplation.

Discuss the importance of his philosophy applied to ethics in general.

Quote examples where Aristotle’s views on virtues can be witnessed.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance.

Introduction:

Aristotelian ethics have been described as goal directed that focuses on ultimate end of humans inspired by virtues which has to be mean between the extremes, the vices that balances the motives desires and challenges humans face.

For ex: being calm and composed one can enjoy fruits of actions more effectively, rather than when having extreme moods.

Body:

According to Aristotle Happiness exists in the rational exercise of the soul’s faculties in conformity with the mean virtues. For Eg: When we logically rationalise our emotions can we regulate and facilitate emotions for development of oneself, else emotions cause destruction of oneself.

Aristotle considered the importance of law and education in making citizens virtuous. Aristotle believed that courage is the mean, the right attitude, towards fear and confidence. He argued that Man must have a specific or proper function, which is uncommon to anything else, and which is an activity of the soul.

The best activity of the soul is eudemonia (happiness or joy or the good life), which can be achieved by living a balanced life and avoiding excess by pursuing a golden mean in everything between the two vices of excess and deficiency.

Aristotle distinguishes two kinds of virtue: those that pertain to the part of the soul that engages in reasoning (virtues of mind or intellect), and those that pertain to the part of the soul that cannot itself reason but is nonetheless capable of following reason (ethical virtues, virtues of character).

All free humans are born with the potential to become ethically virtuous and practically wise, but to achieve these goals they must go through two stages: during their childhood, they must develop the proper habits; and then, when their reason is fully developed, they must acquire practical wisdom (phronêsis). Evil people are driven by desires for domination and luxury, and although they are single-minded in their pursuit of these goals.

Aristotle assumes that when someone systematically makes bad decisions about how to live his life, his failures are caused by psychological forces that are less than fully rational. His desires for pleasure, power or some other external goal have become so strong that they make him care too little or not at all about acting ethically. To keep such destructive inner forces at bay, we need to develop the proper habits and emotional responses when we are children, and to reflect intelligently on our aims when we are adults. But some vulnerability to these disruptive forces is present even in more-or-less virtuous people; that is why even a good political community needs laws and the threat of punishment.

Aristotle defines moral virtue as a disposition to behave in the right manner and as a mean between extremes of deficiency and excess, which are vices. We learn moral virtue primarily through habit and practice rather than through reasoning and instruction. Virtue is a matter of having the appropriate attitude toward pain and pleasure. For example, a coward will suffer undue fear in the face of danger, whereas a rash person will not suffer sufficient fear. Aristotle lists the principle virtues along with their corresponding vices, as represented in the following table. A virtuous person exhibits all of the virtues: they do not properly exist as distinct qualities but rather as different aspects of a virtuous life.

Conclusion:

Virtue ethics comes with its own set of objections like self-centredness, failure of practicality and lack of lawfully guided principles, the constant self-awareness, self-development and knowledge building that a person inculcates as a result of virtue ethics cannot be overlooked. Emotional intelligence along with practicality where required will make a wholesome combination for an individual’s growth and help her/him contribute essentially to the society.

Happiness is the highest good and the end at which all our activities ultimately aim. All our activities aim at some end, though most of these ends are means toward other ends.

Only happiness is an end in itself, so it is the ultimate end at which all our activities aim

Aristotle defines the supreme good as an activity of the rational soul in accordance with virtue. Virtue for the Greeks is equivalent to excellence

Virtuous person is someone who performs the distinctive activity of being human well. Rationality is our distinctive activity, that is, the activity that distinguishes us from plants and animals. All living things have a nutritive soul, which governs growth and nutrition.


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