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[Insights Secure STHIR– 2021] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 21 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.  Discuss the multiple reasons for discontent that was simmering among the Sepoys that started the Great Revolt 1857. Was the revolt of 1857 just a Sepoy mutiny? (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 military causes of the Revolt of 1857 which caused discontent among the Sepoys and to analyze as to whether the revolt of 1857 was just a Sepoy mutiny.

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 by writing about the start of Mutiny among Sepoys that started the great revolt of 1857 in brief.

Body:

In the first part of the body mention he various that led to discontent among the sepoys. Low wages, Racial Discrimination, Overseas Travel, Homogeneity among Sepoys from Awadh, Religious belief of Sepoys, Threat of displacement by new recruits, sympathies of Sepoys with peasants and immediate cause of the issue of greased cartridges etc.

In the next part, mention how some British histories and contemporary officials have termed the revolt of 1857 as just a Sepoy Mutiny. Argue that it was more than just a mutiny. Provide substantiated arguments in favor of revolt being a popular uprising.

Conclusion:

Comment on the overall nature of the revolt in prevalence of multiple divergent views to conclude the answer.

 

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

2. The administrative and legal system introduced by the British was shaped by various ideas and ideologies but at the same time it centered on protecting the British interests. Critically Analyze. (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 ideas that influenced the introduction of administrative reforms in India and to analyze the actual behind introduction of reforms.

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:

In brief, mention various administrative reforms introduced by the colonial government.

Body:

In the first part, mention in detail, various factors and forces that influenced introduction of reforms in India. Utilitarian Perspective, the racial superiority, need to build a rational and modern society, to impart human justice and proper government structures etc.

In the next part, analyze the rationale behind introduction of reforms. Though the British on a moral high horse claimed that reforms were aimed at modernizing India but they were also guided by the motive of protecting their own interests in India. Substantiate the points with examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude by passing a balanced judgment regarding the motive behind introduction of reforms in India.

 

Topic:  Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

3. The time has come to insist that the work women perform for the family should be valued equally with men’s work during the continuance of marriage. Do you think that women should be paid ‘salary’ for the domestic household work they perform? Debate. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

Veteran actor Kamal Haasan and his Makkal Needhi Maiam party who recently promised salaries for housewives as a part of the party’s election manifesto, has revived the debate on the recognition of domestic work as work.

Key Demand of the question:

To debate as to whether household work performed by women on a daily basis must be paid for by their counterparts.

Directive:

Debate – Weigh up to what extent something is true. Persuade the reader of your argument by citing relevant research but also remember to point out any flaws and counter- arguments as well. Conclude by stating clearly how far you agree with the original proposition.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Begin by mention the various nature of household services provided by women on a daily basis and how it is unpaid and not included in national income.

Body:

Write a few stats related to unpaid nature of household work and the number of women who engage in it without any recognition on a daily basis from the article.

Argue for case of women to be paid for domestic household work. Mention legal cases, facts figures and the historical perspectives that are given in the article to substantiate your arguments.

In the next part, argue for the downside of what happens, if we recognize the women household work as ‘salary’ in pure employee-employer relationship.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a balanced way forward.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic:  Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.

4. Many States have not been able to provide quality supply, especially to rural and small electricity consumers. The enactment of consumer-centric rules brings the rights of consumers to the fore. In this regard, critically analyze the newly promulgated “Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020” (250 words)

Reference:  The Hindupib.gov.in

Why the question:

Union Government for the first time lays down Rights to the Electricity Consumers through “Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020”

Key Demand of the question:

To analyze “Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020” and see if these new rules are adequate to solve the woes of electric consumers in India.

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:

Begin by writing about the aims and objectives of “Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020”

Body:

In the first part, briefly mention the consumer side issues of electricity sector in India. Distribution Companies monopolies, Lack of Choice, no quality supply, rural-urban disparity, no focus on small electricity consumers and lack of grievance redressal etc.

In the light of the above mention the “Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020” and how they try and address the above issues. Analyze the pros. t new electricity connections, refunds and other services are given in a time bound manner, willful disregard to consumer rights will result in levying penalties, Call Centre for Consumer Services, Reliability of supply and Grievance redressal mechanism etc.

Analyze the shortcomings of the rules – lack of accountability, doubts on the efficacy of automatic compensation payments, overburdened DISCOMS, dilution of progressive mechanisms and detrimental to investments in rooftop solar units etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic:  Transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers.

5. While the Indian agriculture is gradually becoming more hazardous due to climate change-driven factors, the farmers’ risk-bearing capacity is waning owing to steady shrinkage in the size of land holdings. A truly farmer-friendly Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) would, therefore, be a boon for them. Comment. (250 words)

Reference: Business – Standard 

Why the question:

The government’s flagship scheme for crop insurance, the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY), is yet to overcome hiccups despite having completed five years of existence and undergone a thorough revamp in February 2020.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the reforms needed in PMFBY in order to bolster it to solve farmers’ issues resulting of uncertain climate and decreasing land holdings.

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:

Begin by writing about the aims of PMFBY and the recent changes that were brought in to it February 2020.

Body:

In the first part, write in detail the features of PMFBY incorporating the recent changes that were brought in the scheme.

In the next part, highlight the inadequacies of PMFBY which have not benefitted the farmers. Comprehensive coverage of risks, states’ inability to meet their obligations, insurance companies’ ability to make timely payments, Generation of yield-loss data, reporting of the losses and withdrawal of insurance companies etc.

Suggest steps to make PMFBY more farmer friendly which will help the scheme holistically cover the farmers in case of calamity related crop losses.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Emotional intelligence-concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance.

6. Conflict, arguments, and change are natural parts of our lives, as well as the lives of every agency, organization, and nation. How does emotional intelligence help in conflict resolution? (150 words)

Reference: Ethics 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 write the role of emotional intelligence in resolving conflicts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by defining conflict resolution in the light of the above given statement.

Body:

In brief mention about the conflicts and arguments that happen on daily basis and their nature. Give examples.

Next, mention how emotional intelligence plays in the process of conflict resolution process. Wrtie about self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship management and their role in the resolution process. Substantiate with examples

Conclusion:

Write about importance of conflict resolution in an empathetic and a productive manner using EI.

 

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. Civil servants must not just lead by the example of their power but by the power of their example. Elaborate. (150 words).

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

A civil servant must not use their power to lead subordinates and people but become an example which itself is a power to lead them.

Directive:

Elaborate – Give 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:

Begin by describing by what you understand the above give statement in the question.

Body:

In the body, mention how civil servants are a repository wit vast power that the system bestows up on them. The civil servants use it to lead their subordinates and the people and govern them. But mention the drawbacks of such thing with examples.

Next, mention how leading by example is not just power in itself but a motivation for other to follow. It will supplement your efforts in governance and build credibility. Substantiate with examples.

Conclusion:

Summarize the importance of the above statement.


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