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[Insights Secure STHIR– 2021] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 7 January 2021

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General Studies – 1


 

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

1. “Our nation is like a tree of which the original trunk is swarajya and the branches are swadeshi and boycott.” Comment with regards to swadeshi movement. (250 words)

Reference: India’s struggle for Independence by Bipan Chandra.

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1.

Key Demand of the question:

To explain regarding the swadeshi and boycott facets of swadeshi movement which were aimed towards achieving swaraj.

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 briefly elaborating the quote by Bal Gangadhar Tilak on swadeshi movement – the reasons for it launch and its aims and objectives.

Body:

Bring out the relation of swarajya (self-rule) being the ultimate aim that was to be achieved and the means were swadeshi and boycott.

Write in detail about how swadeshi movement emphasized the above message of swadeshi and boycott in various items and forms.

Briefly write about its impact.

Conclusion:

Underscore the importance of swadeshi movement in taking our country a big step toward Swaraj.

 

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

2. The moderates were like shields and extremists like swords. Without being together, the moderates seemed toothless and extremists appeared too vulnerable to repression. Congress collapse at Surat was a great triumph for the colonial rulers. Discuss. (250 words)

Reference: India’s struggle for Independence by Bipan Chandra.

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the impact of Surat Split which rendered moderates ineffective, extremists prone to backlash and made the national movement enter a dormant phase.

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:

Begin the answer by giving context of Surat split which divided the nationalist ranks.

Body:

Describe the metaphor of ‘swords and shields’ used for extremists and moderates respectively. How as a united front they could put pressure on the government and moderate can handle any backlash.

Write about the impact of Surat Split on moderates, extremists and national movement as whole. Use examples to substantiate your points. Elaborate how this was major triumph for the colonial government.

Conclusion:

Mention the bitter lessons learnt from the Surat split to avoid future splits.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic:  Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources;

3. The success of the National Education Policy 2020 (NEP) hinges not just upon the budgetary allocation but on proper planning and execution of the key aspects of the policy as envisaged. Examine. (250 words)

Reference: Live Mint

Why the question:

The finance ministry’s pre-budget consultations have commenced, it may be pertinent to keep watch of the government’s plan on funding the National Education Policy 2020 (NEP) especially in the wake of the pandemic.

Key Demand of the question:

To examine in detail the factors which are key in making the NEP 2020 a success.

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:

In brief, put forward the aims and objectives of NEP 2020.

Body:

Elaborate on the key components of NEP 2020. Highlight the impediments to achieve the above mentioned aims and objectives.

Mention the variables on which the success of NEP 2020. Budgetary Allocation, mobilizing resources through privatization, new regulatory architecture, consultations all relevant stakeholders, convergence between state and central governments and political will etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 

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

4. The role of investigative journalism in enhancing transparency and holding the government accountable is indeed immense but investigative journalism is not an excuse to break ordinary criminal laws. Critically Analyze. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

A judge in London on Monday rejected an American effort to have the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange extradited to the United States, where he faces charges of conspiring to hack government computers and violating the Espionage Act by obtaining and releasing confidential documents in 2010 and 2011.

Directive:

Critically analyze – When asked to analyse, you have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts and present them as a whole in a summary. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, one needs to look at the good and bad of the topic and give a fair judgment.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Initiate by mentioning the role of investigative journalism in ensuring transparency and accountability. Cite examples.

Body:

Elaborate on the role of investigative journalists in a democracy. Exposing graft and wrongdoing, putting pressure on the officials to do work and discreet spread of ideas and information etc.

Mention about the various obstacles in the path of investigative journalists. Pressure from the affluent, Laws. Unfairly charging with espionage, penalizing the whistleblower etc.

Mention the over-reach on the part of investigative journalism in some cases. But also mention the need to avoid going by the letter of the law for achieving the greater good. Talk about the Julian Assange case.

Conclusion:

Conclude by stressing on need to balance both the interests of investigative journalism without venturing out of the ethical boundaries.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic:  Security challenges and their management in border areas – linkages of organized crime with terrorism;

5. What is maritime domain awareness? Analyze its significance in protecting India’s maritime interests as well as generating cooperative synergies with the neighbourhood and the allies. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

Of late, the Indian Navy has been on a drive to improve domain awareness in the Indian Ocean. The Navy is seeking to expand India’s surveillance footprint by setting up radar stations in the Maldives, Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Key Demand of the question:

To explain about the concept of is maritime domain awareness and its importance in maintaining India’s strategic interests and security.

Directive:

Analyze – When asked to analyse, you have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts and present them as a whole in a summary.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

A very straightforward introduction, by defining maritime domain awareness is apt.

Body:

In this part set forth, the need and the significance of maritime domain awareness.

Mention about protecting maritime interests: Various nature of threat at sea, monitoring Chinese activity, enemy presence in the eastern littorals, safety and security of Indian commercial ships, countering string of pearls, fight transnational crime and monitoring of maritime activity in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz.

Describe the role played by maritime domain awareness in developing cooperative synergies: Liaison Officers with Indian ocean neighbours, collaboration with major Indo-pacific states, partnerships with gulf states.

Conclusion:

Summarize the overall importance of is maritime domain awareness in navigable waterways, including all maritime-related activities, infrastructure, people, cargo, and vessels and other conveyances.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic:  role of Family society and educational institutions in inculcating values.

6. Religion and Spirituality play a vital part in the development and enhancement of social values. Substantiate. (150 words)

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications.

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4.

Key Demand of the question:

To bring forth the role of religion and spirituality in defining and understanding social values.

Directive:

Substantiate – When you are asked to Substantiate, 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 using suitable case studies or/ and examples.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Develop a link for the intersection of religion and spirituality with social values.

Body:

Using examples from religions and cultures across the world stress up on how they play a part in the development of social values.

The relationship between religion and social values that must account for the context of narratives, histories and practices. Mention about some values such as Honesty, compassion, peace, forgiveness and duty etc.

Also, mention the negative link between religion and social values, such as prejudice based on caster and color, discrimination based on gender.

Conclusion:

Pass a balanced judgement on the link between social values and religion.

 

Topic:  ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions;

7. What are the ways to solve complex ethical dilemmas? Explain with examples. (150 words)

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications.

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4.

Key Demand of the question:

To determine some steps which can resolve ethical dilemmas and achieve the most morally justified outcome.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Being the answer by defining ethical dilemmas. Give an examples of a classic ethical dilemma.

Body:

Determine as to why ethical dilemmas are hard to solve per se.

Enumerate various way to resolve an ethical dilemma and arrive at morally justified solution for a complex ethical problem.  Establishing the facts, determining your legal obligations, indulge in ethical reasoning based on normative theories, choosing the best option and addressing outcomes from the option you choose.

The above can be best illustrated using an example.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarizing the need to have effective resolution of ethical dilemmas.


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