Print Friendly, PDF & Email

SECURE SYNOPSIS: 13 October 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 : Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.

1. Discuss the issues of fiscal independence specific to urban local bodies. Also, make some suggestions to improve local finance and account in what way extant fiscal illusion is a great deterrent to mobilisation. (250 words)

Reference: Financial Express 

Why the question:

The author presents to us the financial difficulties that the urban local bodies are facing in the current times.

Key Demand of the question:

One must bring out the issues of fiscal independence specific to urban local bodies. Also, make some suggestions to improve local finance and account in what way extant fiscal illusion is a great deterrent to mobilisation.

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 talk about the urban local bodies, their mandate, functioning with special emphasis on their fiscal factor.

Body:

It is quarter century since the creation of municipalities under 74th Constitutional Amendment Act. It is imperative at this juncture to assess the progress of municipal governance in India.

Discuss the concerns associated with special focus on fiscal mobilisation.

Suggest what needs to be done to overcome the issue of the extant fiscal issues.

Explain that the stable source of revenue for the local government bodies whether from their own sources or in the form of grants should lie at the heart of efforts to empower them.

Conclusion:

The present model of urban governance vesting power in a singular municipality should be relooked. Urban governance reforms should focus on political empowerment of local government that promotes local democratic accountability.

Introduction:

Urban Local government implies the governance of an urban area by the people through their elected representatives. 74th Constitutional Amendment Act, 1992 provided constitutional status to local urban bodies.

Body:

Current Scenario:

  • The Economic Survey 2017-18points out that urban local governments, or ULGs, generate about 44% of their revenue from own sources as against only 5% by rural local governments, or RLGs.
  • Per capita own revenue collected by ULGs is about 3%of urban per capita income while the corresponding figure is only1% for RLGs.
  • There is a gap between tax potential and actual collection,resulting in colossal underperformance.
  • When they are not taxed, people remain indifferent.
  • LGs, States and people seem to labour under a fiscal illusion.

Major issues with Fiscal Dependence of Urban Local Bodies:

  • Financial condition:The first and most serious problem facing the urban local bodies is the acute scarcity of finance. City municipalities do not collect enough taxes. The Economic Survey of 2018 pointed out municipalities do not realise the full potential of property tax.
  • Excessive State Control: There is also strict control exercised by the state government over urban bodies. This proves to be more of a curse than a boon, because, instead of providing guidance and support through the control mechanism, the control turns out to be negative, restricting the functioning of these bodies.
  • Irregular Elections: Elections to urban bodies have suffered constant postponement for indefinite lengths of time. In some States, elections to urban local bodies have not been held for years, defeating the goal of decentralised governance.
  • Poor governance:The largest reason for the poor condition of India’s cities is the failure of municipal governance. There is a lack of planning and governance at the urban local body level.
  • Lack of management capacity:Indian municipalities do not have the management capacity to either plan economic activity or execute it. The system of recruitment fails to bring in the best men. Several vacancies are not filled for years and transfers are effected at the free will of the senior bureaucrats and the government.
  • Corruption:In these bodies corruption, favouritism and nepotism are rampant. In the case of most of the bodies, the state government is empowered to take disciplinary action and the urban body has very little control over its personnel.
  • Urban planning:Urban planning is done at the state government level and municipalities have little or no role in it. There is no direct responsibility for the consequences of planning as long as the municipality completes the plan. Poor planning, poor accountability, and poor governance have led to disasters.
  • Lack of coordination:Poor coordination among centre, state, and various departments at local level lead to poor implementation of urban policies. Inability to coordinate leads to administrative inefficiency and thus poor urban governance.

Measures to strengthen urban local bodies in India:

  • Greater autonomy:The urban local bodies should be given greater autonomy. India needs to follow a devolved model that empowers urban local bodies. Municipalities should be more autonomous in their functioning, so that they can deliver quality service.
  • Governance Reforms: Governance reform are needed as catalyst for change. The Government may consider the adoption of a common categorisation of urban bodies across the country so as to assist a systematic planning process and devolution of funds. All areas having population more than 10 lakhs should be defined metropolitan areas.
  • Timely elections and recruitment: For strengthening ULBs, a minimum level of staffing should be provided in metropolitan areas. Elections to ULBs should not be, generally, delayed beyond six months.
  • Encouraging public-private partnership:Successful PPP programs should be formulated at both state and city levels to fund city development. Role of the state should be to create an enabling environment with an aim to expand and deepen private sector investments in infrastructure.
  • Planning:Government needs to coordinate at various levels with regard to implementation of various programmes. The urban local bodies should prioritise the development programmes. Any mega project envisaged needs to be developed taking into account the views of all the stakeholders.
  • Holistic approach:It is important to integrate various urban development and related programs at local, state and national levels to develop sustainable city or metropolitan regions. Urban institutions should be strengthened and roles of different organisations should be fixed.

Conclusion:

Urban local government institutions are constituted for the maintenance and planned development of urban areas. The objective is to ensure that suitable levels of infrastructure and services are available to the citizens. In many parts of India, the quality of life in urban areas is miserable and the citizens lead a difficult life. To overcome this problem, a series of reforms need to be initiated by the Indian government to strengthen local-level governance.

 

Topic : Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources. Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

2. “The NEP has highlighted India’s digital divide and aspires to bridge it in a time bound manner”, do you agree? Analyse. (250 words)

Reference: rstv.nic.in

Why the question:

The question is based on the Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu’s article on New Education Policy 2020.

Key Demand of the question:

One has to explain in what way the NEP 2020 has highlighted India’s digital divide and aspires to bridge it in a time bound manner.

Directive:

AnalyzeWhen 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.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Briefly talk about the coming of NEP 2020 and highlight how it is different from previous education policies.

Body:

Explain that the policy places a welcome emphasis on a holistic, learner-centred, flexible system that seeks to transform India into a vibrant knowledge society. It rightfully balances the rootedness and pride in India as well as acceptance of the best ideas and practices of learning from across the globe. Its vision is truly global and at the same time Indian.

Discuss in what way it exposed the existing digital divide especially in the context of education.

Highlight in what way the policy can bridge this digital divide.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

Recently approved the new National Education Policy 2020, has made for large scale, transformational reforms in both school and higher education sectors. It is Built on the foundational pillars of Access, Equity, Quality, Affordability and Accountability, and aligned to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by promoting technology based education.

Closure of schools and universities over the last four months have highlighted the inequities in the Indian education system, with some students able to continue the learning process via online tools, while others being left out. The National Education Policy (NEP), has a new section on digital education to ensure “equitable use of technology”.

Body:

Highlights of Digital education under the NEP 2020:

  • New technologies involving artificial intelligence, machine learning, block chains, smart boards, handheld computing devices, adaptive computer testing for student development, and other forms of educational software and hardware will transform learning process.
  • An autonomous body, the National Educational Alliance for Technology (NEAT),will be created to provide a platform for use of technology to enhance learning, assessment, planning, administration, and so on, both for school and higher education, with special focus on improving the learning experience, with a special focus on the needs of the students with disabilities.
  • Harnessing the distributed energy that democratising technology can unleash, creative energies of youth along with opening of new arenas for employment.
  • To support the development of a vibrant body of knowledge and practice, NEAT will organise multiple regional and national conferences, workshops, etc. to solicit inputs from national and international educational technology researchers, entrepreneurs, and practitioners.
  • The National Research Foundationwill initiate or expand research efforts in the technology, including fundamental research in the domain, development   of   the   technology and   assessment of its socio-economic impact.
  • Need to be pay special attention to emerging disruptive technologies that will necessarily transform the education system and what it teaches to students.

Challenges:

  • India is far behind some developing countries where digital education is getting increased attention.
  • In countries where e-learning is popular, students have access to various online resources such as Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) which help students, teachers and professionals upgrade their skills.
  • The major challenge in EDTech reforms at the national level is the seamless integration of technology in the present Indian education system, which is the most diverse and largest in the world with more than 15 lakh schools and 50,000 higher education institutions.
  • Further, it is also important to establish quality assurance mechanisms and quality benchmark for online learning developed and offered by India HEIs as well as e-learning platforms.
  • Many e-learning players offer multiple courses on the same subjects with different levels of certifications, methodology and assessment parameters. So, the quality of courses may differ across different e-learning platforms.
  • Democratization of technology is now an important issue, comprising internet connectivity, telecom infrastructure, affordability of online system, availability of laptop/desktop, software, educational tools, online assessment tools, etc.
  • Our education system has not trained our teachers and students to think creatively and manage in a crisis situation, and has underplayed the importance of e-learning, they are unprepared for the transition from the classroom to online.
  • Parents feels too pressed, having to support their children’s classes while working from home themselves.
  • The physical classroom does not only impart the syllabus. Children are also socialised, and there is an element of sport and play which is absent in virtual learning.
  • The matrix for socialisation is not replicated on an LCD screen.
  • Poor are disconnected and irrespective of background, some children cannot relate to the online classroom, and many more are losing out on midday meals.

Measures needed:

  • There should be ease of digital access and the ability of parents to support learning at home.
  • Online classes offered as live teaching can be sustained only with a mix of activities, worksheets and interactive sessions.
  • Teachers should have a structured plan which does not suffocate or burden them and also keep the students involved.
  • All institutions will have to chalk out an infrastructure plan which can be used in such a crisis.
  • Teachers need to be considerate about how children feel or what they are going through these days so an understanding should be developed.

Conclusion:

Going forward, the use of technology in teaching or recruitment will lead to a new era wherein the best of faculty will be available from across the globe to students. Education quality will be gauged not just by the quality of faculty but will also have quality of IT infrastructure and familiarization of the faculty will digital teaching technologies as important parameters.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic:  Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.

3. Why was the monetary policy committee formed? Discuss its composition and mandate while highlighting its significance. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

Recently monetary policy review was in news, after the reconstitution of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC).

Key Demand of the question:

Explain the coming of MPC, its mandate, composition and significance.

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:

The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is a committee constituted by the Reserve Bank of India and led by the Governor of RBI. Monetary Policy Committee was formed with the mission of fixing the benchmark policy interest rate (repo rate) to restrain inflation within the particular target level.

Body:

The question is straightforward and there isn’t much to deliberate.

One must discuss the backdrop in which the MPC was constituted, its mandate and composition.

The Monetary Policy Committee is responsible for fixing the benchmark interest rate in India. The meetings of the Monetary Policy Committee are held at least 4 times a year and it publishes its decisions after each such meeting. Suggest its functioning.

Hint at challenges or concerns if any associated with its functioning and suggest remedies for the same.

Conclusion:

Conclude with its importance.

Introduction:

The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is a committee of the Central Bank in India (Reserve Bank of India), headed by its Governor, which is entrusted with the task of fixing the benchmark policy interest rate (repo rate) to contain inflation within the specified target level. Monetary Policy Committee is defined in Section 2(iii)(cci) of the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 and is constituted under Sub-section (1) of Section 45ZB of the same Act.

Body:

Reasons for formation of MPC:

  • MPC was set up consequent to the agreement reached between Government and RBI to task RBI with the responsibility for price stability and inflation targeting.
  • MPC was constituted under the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 as an initiative to bring more transparency and accountability in fixing the Monetary Policy of India.
  • MPC conducts meetings at least 4 times a year and the monetary policy is published after every meeting with each member explaining his opinions.

Composition of the MPC:

  • The MPC will have six members, – the RBI Governor (Chairperson), the RBI Deputy Governor in charge of monetary policy, one official nominated by the RBI Board and the remaining three members would represent the Government of India.
  • These Government of India nominees are appointed by the Central Government based on the recommendations of a search cum selection committee consisting of the cabinet secretary (Chairperson), the RBI Governor, the secretary of the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, and three experts in the field of economics or banking as nominated by the central government.
  • The three central government nominees of the MPC appointed by the search cum selection committee will hold office for a period of four years and will not be eligible for re-appointment.
  • These three central government nominees in MPC are mandated to be persons of ability, integrity and standing, having knowledge and experience in the field of economics or banking or finance or monetary policy.
  • RBI Act prohibits appointing any Member of Parliament or Legislature or public servant, or any employee / Board / committee member of RBI or anyone with a conflict of interest with RBI or anybody above the age of 70 to the MPC.
  • Further, central government also retains powers to remove any of its nominated members from MPC subject to certain conditions and if the situation warrants the same.

Objectives of Monetary Policy:

Monetary Policy was implemented with an initiative to provide reasonable price stability, high employment, and a faster economic growth rate. The major four objectives of the Monetary Policy are mentioned below:

  • To stabilize the business cycle.
  • To provide reasonable price stability.
  • To provide faster economic growth.
  • Exchange Rate Stability.

Mandate of MPC:

  • As per the suggestions made by Chakravarty Committee, aspects such as price stability, economic growth, equity, social justice, and encouraging the growth of new financial enterprises are some crucial roles connected to the monetary policy of India.
  • While the Government of India tries to accelerate the GDP growth rate of India, the RBI keeps trying to bring down the rate of inflation within a sustainable limit.
  • In order to achieve its main objectives, the Monetary Policy Committee determines the ideal policy interest rate that will help achieve the inflation target in front of the country.
  • Monetary Policy Department (MPD) is an important organ of the Reserve Bank of India that assists the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) in creating the monetary policy.

Conclusion:

The MPC replaces the current system where the RBI governor, with the aid and advice of his internal team and a technical advisory committee, has complete control over monetary policy decisions. A Committee-based approach will add lot of value and transparency to monetary policy decisions.

 

Topic : Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life. Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

4. Antibiotic Resistance needs to be addressed in totality by all sectors, including healthcare, veterinary and agricultural domains. Comment. (250 words)

Reference: India Times 

Why the question:

According to experts, the usage of sanitizers and soaps during COVID-19 may reduce Anti-Microbial Resistance.

Key Demand of the question:

As the scope of this Anti-Microbial resistance problems is wider (I.e. it can transmit from animals to humans), it needs to be addressed by all sectors, including healthcare, veterinary and agricultural domains.

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 defining what AMR is.

Body:

Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria change in response to the use of these medicines. It means bacteria are resistant to antibiotics. Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a broader term, encompassing resistance to drugs to treat infections caused by other microbes as well, such as parasites, viruses, and fungi.

Discuss the grave concerns posed by AMR, account for the causative factors.

Explain in what way the issue needs a multi-pronged approach, one can present some case studies to substantiate the same.

Conclusion:

One can conclude with the efforts of the government in various sectors to address the issue.

Introduction:

Antimicrobial resistance occurs when microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change in ways that render the medications used to cure the infections they cause ineffective. When the microorganisms become resistant to most antimicrobials they are often referred to as “superbugs”. Antimicrobial resistance is now regarded as one of the major threats to public health across the globe.

Body

Antimicrobial resistance occurs naturally but is facilitated by the inappropriate use of medicines, for example using antibiotics for viral infections such as cold or flu, or sharing antibiotics.

Other factors that have contributed to anti-microbial resistance are:

  • Low-quality medicines
  • Wrong prescriptions and poor infection prevention and control also encourage the development and spread of drug resistance.
  • Lack of government commitment to address these issues
  • Poor surveillance and a diminishing arsenal of tools to diagnose
  • Self-medication and lack of awareness among the people on when to use antibiotics have also lead to AMR
  • Antibiotics which are critical to human health are commonly used for growth promotion in poultry. This increases the chance of mutation of the microorganism which might render our present antibiotics useless
  • Untreated disposal of sewage water bodies – leading to contamination of rivers with antibiotic residues and antibiotic-resistant organisms.

Why AMR is a global concern?

  • More than two million people every year are affected with antibiotic-resistant
  • In developing countries such as India, a rise in AMR would lead to more healthcare spending. Ex: longer stay at the hospital, expensive drugs.
  • Antimicrobial resistance is putting the gains of the Millennium Development Goals at risk and endangersachievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • The failure to treat infections caused by resistant bacteria also poses a greater risk of death.
  • Increase in the cases of AMR in India will also prevent us from reaping the dividends of demographic growth.

AMR in India: Recent study

  • The presence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in street fruit juices being sold in Delhi has been reported by a study published in the 13th issue of the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
  • Antibiotic susceptibility tests indicated that all strains collected in India were resistant to ampicillin and cefotaxime, but susceptible to Chloramphenicol.
  • The study also reported that the use of municipal water by 95 per cent of vendors, with a high total bacterial count, could be a source of microbial contamination in all types of fruit juices as vendors use this for dilution or making ice.
  • The resistance of common infection causing, or food-borne bacteria such as E coliand Salmonella sp to these antibiotics is of great public health concern, as infection by such bacteria will be difficult to treat since they may not respond to these antibiotics.

What accelerates the antimicrobial resistance and also it’s spread in the society?

  • No unified mechanism either internationally or nationally to address this challenge
  • The absence of stringently framed and implemented regulatory frameworks to limit the use of antimicrobials in livestock and food animals, especially for non-therapeutic purposes, has been one of the drivers of antibiotic overuse at the community level.
  • In India, current effluent standards do not include antibiotic residues, and thus they are not monitored in the pharmaceutical industry effluents.
  • More connected world in 21stcentury could serve as an excellent carrier to transfer these superbugs to every part of the globe which will create a global wide health concern much like Covid-19.

AMR and how India has tried to tackle this challenge so far:

  • The National Health Policy 2017 highlights the problem of antimicrobial resistance and calls for effective action to address it.
  • In 2012, India’s medical societies adopted the Chennai Declaration, a set of national recommendations to promote antibiotic stewardship.
  • India’s Red Line campaign demands that prescription-only antibiotics be marked with a red line, to discourage the over-the-counter sale of antibiotics.
  • National Action Plan on AMR resistance 2017-2021 has been put in place.
  • India has instituted surveillance of the emergence of drug resistance in disease causing microbes in programmes on Tuberculosis, Vector Borne diseases, AIDS, etc.
  • The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) banned the use of antibiotics and several pharmacologically active substances in fisheries.
  • The government has also capped the maximum levels of drugs that can be used for growth promotion in meat and meat products.

Some more measures that could be taken to address this issue in India:

  • Creating awareness about the use and abuse of antibiotics among the doctors, people and pharmacies in the society
  • Improve surveillance of antibiotic-resistant infections
  • Strengthen policies, programmes, and implementation of infection prevention and control measures.
  • Regulate and promote the appropriate use and disposal of quality medicines
  • Prevent infections by regularly washing hands, preparing food hygienically, avoiding close contact with sick people, practicing safer sex, and keeping vaccinations up to date.
  • Only use antibiotics when prescribed by a certified health professional.
  • Invest in research and development of new antibiotics, vaccines, diagnostics and other tools.

World Antimicrobial Awareness Week is a global campaign that aims to increase awareness of antimicrobial resistance worldwide and to encourage best practices among the general public, health workers and policy makers to avoid the further emergence and spread of drug-resistant infections.

Conclusion

The world urgently needs to change the way it prescribes and uses antibiotics; particularly in India. Even if new medicines are developed, without behaviour change, antibiotic resistance will remain a major threat. Behaviour changes must also include actions to reduce the spread of infections through vaccination, hand washing, practicing safer sex, and good food hygiene.

 

Topic : Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, Robotics, Nano-technology, Biotechnology And issues relating to Intellectual Property Rights.

5. The new space reforms seek to shift the Space related activities in the country from “Supply Based Model” to a “Demand Based Model”. Examine. (250 words)

Reference: pib.gov.in

Why the question:

The article talks about the privatisation of the space domain and its benefits.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain in what way the new space reforms seek to shift the Space related activities in the country from “Supply Based Model” to a “Demand Based Model”.

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:

Discuss the importance of Space as a key sector and need for increased focus towards privatisation.

Body:

Briefly talk about the existing system of operation of Space technology in the country.

Explain the recent space reforms that have been undertaken by the government.

Discuss in detail the shift in Space related activities in the country from “Supply Based Model” to a “Demand Based Model”.

Highlight the advantages of such a move; discuss the associated concerns and challenges.

Conclusion:

Conclude on a positive note that such a move is a welcome step.

Introduction:

Space programmes have for long been viewed as either strategic or symbols of national prestige for big countries that are prepared to invest significant resources in the pursuit of a credible presence in outer space. India, however, is quite some distance away from adapting to the unfolding changes in the global space business transforming from supply based model to Demand based Model.

Body:

Ways in which Privatisation of Space sector will create Demand Based model:

  • Increasing Demand: Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)’s annual budget has crossed ₹10,000 crore ($1.45 billion) and is growing steadily. However, demand for space-based services in India is far greater than what ISRO can provide. Therefore, private sector investment shall supply for extra demand that is being created, for which a suitable policy environment needs to be created.
  • Overall growth of space sector: Private sector participation is needed to ensure overall growth of the space sector. ISRO has a strong association with the industry, particularly with Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) like Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and large private sector entities like Larsen and Toubro. Role of private industries shall boost competitive growth.
  • Country’s security: The most basic way to secure our space capabilities is to distribute them across many different satellites and spacecraft, so that continuity is unaffected even if an adversary manages to disable one or more of our satellites.
    • For instance, the US is highly vulnerable in space because it depends on thousands of its satellites. But it is also best equipped to deal with a potential attack on its space assets because it can find alternatives to switch to.
  • International trends and experience- Elon Musk’s “SpaceX” and its high profile projects have highlighted the increasing significance of the private players in the space sector. In India, despite the various strategic, security and regulatory constraints, a limited private ecosystem has evolved around the ISRO.
  • Greater pool of resources: Public resources- land, labour, capital are limited. Private sector participation will open a new pool of resources and talent. It will bring more funding, and experience into space exploration activities.
  • Human Capital: Restricting space activities to ISRO, limits proper utilisation of talent all over the country. With demographic dividend, private sector participation can exploit the talent across the nation contributing a lot to space explorations in India.
  • Technological advancement:Commercialisation will also develop better technologies which are important. It will allow integration of many other technologies like artificial intelligence into space exploration activities. With experience from space activities, the private sector can increase the role of technology in other areas.
  • Risk Sharing: Every launch consists of various risks. Private sector helps in sharing the risk of cost factor. Failure costs will be distributed. Also with increased private participation, failures will reduce due to increased available human capital and mind.
  • Commercial demand: There is a need to enhance internet connectivity for the masses, which is another demand pull factor for increased commercial interest in space. Asteroid mining is also another potential area that looks promising, with scope for monetisation and disrupting commodity markets.

Challenges for private space entities in India:

  • Monopoly:In India ‘Space’ means Indian Space Research Organization. Globally the technology is highly protected because of its dual use capability. Even if it was not, it would be prohibitively expensive. Although ISRO encourages private sector participation in the national space programme, its model is still very 20th century — in terms of governmental domination.
  • Funding: A major challenge in setting up a space business in India is funding. Space industry is capital intensive and upstream activities come with a long gestation period.
  • Investor’s Dilemma: The lack of clarity among the investors and lack of the ecosystem required for significant contribution is a challenge for the investors.
  • Lack of Regulation: India is a party to the Outer Space Treaty, where one of the fundamental requirements laid upon states is the supervision of space activities within its borders, the country did not have any formally legislated laws. This is a potential roadblock for commercialization.
  • Growth Challenges: Scaling up, international marketing and funding are challenges.
  • Lack of Support:The Indian ecosystem has neither incubation support nor pointers to seek support of leaders such as ISRO for space start-ups.
  • Political and bureaucratic hurdleslimit private space operations in India.
    • Low in-house capacity of ISRO restricts them to very few launches in a year. Privatization can offload 30-40% of the work and help them work more efficiently.

Conclusion:

The private sector already supplies majority of the sub-systems in satellite manufacturing. This can be further scaled up into other activities with proper regulation and partnership of the ISRO and private sector to promote demand based model of market. To achieve this India must deregulate the space sector to encourage private enterprise if we are to compete in the new space economy.

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic : Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and nonpartisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.

6. What do you understand by impartiality? why is it one of the most important value for civil servants?  Discuss with relevant examples. (250 words)

Reference: Ethics integrity and aptitude by lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is based on the theme of Impartiality and relevance to civil services.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss what Impartiality is; explain its importance to civil servants with suitable examples.

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:

Define Impartiality; Impartiality refers to equal interest and equal lack of interest without hatred or passion. For a public servant, it means that decisions should be based on objective criteria, rather than on the basis of bias, prejudice or personal interest.

Body:

Discuss in what all contexts the civil servants need to practice impartiality, discuss the different types of Impartiality.

Explain the importance of Impartiality as an attribute for a civil servant; in upholding the constitutional values, in practicing good work culture, in handling tough and challenging situations, in tackling corruption etc.

One can present a case study to substantiate the above advantages of practicing impartiality to civil servants.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

Impartiality is a principle of justice holding that decisions should be based on objective criteria, rather than on the basis of bias, prejudice, or preferring the benefit to one person over another for improper reasons. For a public servant, it means that decisions should be based on objective criteria, rather than on the basis of bias, prejudice or personal interest.

“Impartiality is the life of justice, as justice is the life of all good governments”

Body:

Types of Impartiality:

  • Public Impartiality: A public servant as an instrument of government serving the public without discriminating on the basis of caste, religion and gender.
  • Personal Impartiality: Being just and fair in personal conduct, without any fear or favour.
  • Political Impartiality: Principle of working without reservation and with devotion to the success of every government and its policies. It basically means you are not partial to any particular party or government.

Importance of Impartiality as an attribute for a civil servant:

  • Upholding constitutional values: impartiality helps a civil servant to uphold constitutionalism and prevent authoritarian government. It helps in upholding rule of law and makes the civil servant accountable to law and law alone. Also, it is in accordance with the constitutional provisions including Article 14, 15 and so on.
    • g. Providing for citizens’ welfare measures without any favour, equitable.
  • Fulfilling all interests equally: As it is observed “Impartiality doesn’t mean neutrality. It also means partiality towards the poor”. Impartiality brings in objectivity and often when funds are to be allocated, an impartial civil servant would not favour his/her own village or city but allocate funds based on the needs.
  • It keeps up the morale of the civil servant and with the sense of righteousness, the works get done efficiently. A positive environment is created in the office and a conducive work culture is created.
    • g.: a civil servant cannot be partial towards one set of employees. Whether in performance assessment or granting leaves, the criteria should be objective without partiality.
  • In accordance with professional ethics: Impartiality being one of the foundational values of civil service, a civil servant is expected to be fair and non-partisan. It is also one of the basic values as per the Nolan committee recommendations.
    • g.: Following due process of Law in resolving professional conflicts like Sexual Harassment etc.
  • Majoritarianism prevention: especially in a diverse country like India, minority voices can be suppressed if the civil servant becomes partial towards majority for vested interests.
    • g. Though in a state majority spoken language is promoted, civil servants have to make provisions for linguistic minorities to safeguard their language.
  • Handling emergency situations: like communal riots, ethnic conflicts etc., an impartial civil servant would have a better credibility and persuasive capability in negotiations.
    • g. N Ravi, an interlocutor is effective in north east insurgency negotiations because of his impeccable record of impartiality.
  • Controlling corruption: It will keep oneself free from nepotism, political-corporate nexus and corruption.
    • The examples are Sagayam IAS of Tamilnadu cadre or Ashok Khemka of Haryana etc.,

Conclusion

Present-day civil servants need to perform multiple functions of giving suggestions to political representatives, addressing public grievances, institutionalization of the socio-economic changes, delivering goods and services. Hence a value committed and impartial bureaucracy is need of the hour.

 

Topic : Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and nonpartisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.

7. Write a short note on the following terms:

i) Work Ethos

ii) Conscience

iii) Principle of natural Justice.  (250 words)

Reference: Ethics integrity and aptitude by lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is straightforward and one has to elucidate on the above mentioned terms in detail.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss each term in detail, its significance and relevance.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Define each of the terms mentioned in the question one by one.

Body:

Work ethos is a belief that hard work and diligence have a moral benefit and an inherent ability, virtue or value to strengthen character and individual abilities. It is a set of values centered on importance of work and manifested by determination or desire to work hard.

Conscience is a cognitive process that elicits emotion and rational associations based on an individual’s moral philosophy or value system.

Principles of natural justice are those rules which have been laid down by the Courts as being the minimum protection of the rights of the individual against the arbitrary procedure that may be adopted by a judicial, quasi-judicial and administrative authority while making an order affecting those rights.

State the importance of each of the above values and list their advantages.

Conclusion:

Conclude with their importance.

  1. Work Ethos: It is at the heart of why we work, what drives us and gives us purpose and meaningin the workplace. It is a state of mental being that leads to employee engagement.

DIMENSIONS OF WORK ETHOS:

  • Rightful expectations: having realistic understanding of work expectations and aligning oneself to the same.
  • Sense of loyalty towards the organization: Employee loyaltycan be defined as employees who are devoted to the success of their organization and believe that being an employee of this organization is in their best interest

5 P’s of work ethos

  • Purposepurposeis an abiding intention to achieve a long-term goal that is both personally meaningful and makes a positive mark on the world.
    • g.: Mahatma Gandhi’s had clear purpose central to all his actions, it was to lead life of ahimsa and satyagraha.
  • Pride –  feeling of deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one’s own achievements, the achievements of those with whom one is closely associated, or from qualities or possessions that are widely admired.
  • Patience – The capacity to accept or tolerate delay, problems, or suffering without becoming annoyed or anxious.
    • g.: The patience of Nelson Mandela in tolerating imprisonment for decades, in order to achieve freedom.
  • Persistence – The Process of continuing in an opinion or course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition.
    • g.: The role of E. Shreedharan in figuring out solutions to resolve pamban bridge collapse was epitome of persistence.
  • Perspective – particular attitude towards or way of regarding something.

All these elements are essential in developing wholesome work ethos.

  1. CONSCIENCE: Conscience is the inner voice of a person which guides the right and wrong. Conscience aims to make moral decisions in ‘overwhelming forces of inescapable situations’despite the risk of adverse consequences. E.g. : Gandhiji’s civil disobedience movement was true to his conscience although it broke the law.

Conscience at various levels:

  • Individual level: every person has conscience which assists them to take important decision. Thus it can act as strong tool to evade away the individual self-centred thinking.
  • Political Level: Conscience can help to lesson corruption, nepotism and profit seeking behaviour. Thus provoke them to act in benevolence of society at large and uphold the constitution principles. At each and every decision they should keep in mind that they were elected to serve the citizens and not to serve their own needs and greed.
  • Bureaucratic Level:The crisis of conscience is important whether to just mere follow the orders from superior’s v/s to follow the right path of judgement. The intrinsic voice of serving the nation maintaining highest standards of honesty and probity is important as they are link between citizens and political figures.
  • Citizen Level:Collective and individual conscience of inhabitants is very important because it describes the existing society conditions such as keeping surrounding clean, actively contributing in elections, dissent to undemocratic principles. Therefore, adhering to it will also control mass prejudice such as riots and lynching of offenders. 
  • NATURAL JUSTICE: Natural justice is a principle that intends to ensure law with fairness & to secure justice. So, the principles of Natural Justice are made to ensure that the decision-making processes are transparent & impartial, and are also based on evidence and hence should be fair

Principles of Natural Justice:

  • ‘no one can be left unheard’: Means that the court should hear the other party and no one should be condemned unheard. This maxim is based on the basis of the rule of fair hearing.
    • g.: The idea of Innocent until proven guilty is based on the above idea.
  • ‘no one can be a judge in his case’: This maxim gives rise to the duty to act fairly, to listen to the arguments and to reach a decision in a manner that is untainted by bias.
    • g.: The concept of habeas Corpus is based above principle.

  • Join our Official Telegram Channel HERE for Motivation and Fast Updates
  • Subscribe to our YouTube Channel HERE to watch Motivational and New analysis videos