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[Insights Secure STHIR– 2021] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 5 March 2021

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General Studies – 1


 

Topic: gender equality

1. The deep-set prejudices against gender equality are one of the core factors responsible for poor recognition of women rights in the country. Critically examine. (250 words)

Reference:  The Hindu 

Why the question:

The article brings to light the Supreme Court’s failure to protect the rights of women.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain in what way often even today our society works based on set prejudices towards gender equality.

Directive:

Critically examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we have to 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. 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:

Start with brief context of the question.

Body:

Firstly explain the parochial nature of our Indian society from past to present.

Then explain in what way the deep-set prejudices against gender equality are one of the core factors responsible for poor recognition of women rights in the country. Give examples.

Discuss what the consequences of such prejudices are, quote some data/facts to substantiate.

Conclusion:

Conclude with solutions to address the issue.

 

Topic: Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary—Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity

2.  When the judiciary surpasses the line of the powers set for it in the name of judicial activism, it could be rightly said that the judiciary then begins to invalidate the concept of separation of powers set out in the Constitution. Critically analyse. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian polity by Lakshmikant

Why the question:

The question is from the static portions of GS paper II.

Key Demand of the question:

The answer must bring out the concerns associated with overusing or misusing the powers under judicial activism.

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:

Start with what you understand by judicial activism.

Body:

First explain the fact that judicial activism can be good if the intention of the court is to protect and preserve the rights of citizens, and not merely criticize the government.

Then hint at the fact that It is being claimed that, in many recent judgments, the Supreme Court has become hyper-activist in making laws. Neither is the broad separation of powers among the three organs of the state maintained nor is the law being preserved.

Explain doctrine of separation of power. Present the demerits of judicial activism.

Give examples to substantiate.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary; Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.

3. Differentiate between judicial review and judicial activism in India. In your opinion do you think it is ever possible for the Indian judiciary to partake more of judicial activism? Explain, (250 words)

Reference:  Indian polity by Lakshmikant

Why the question:

Judicial Review, Judicial Activism and Judicial Overreach are terms which come often in news. The question intends to differentiate between judicial review and judicial activism in India.

Key Demand of the question:

One has to between judicial review and judicial activism in India and explain with justifications if it is possible for the Indian judiciary to partake more of judicial activism.

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:

Define the terms – judicial activism, judicial overreach in short.

Body:

Explain that though legislature has the power to make laws, this power is not absolute. Judicial Review is the process by which the Judiciary reviews the validity of laws passed by the legislature.

Judicial activism denotes a more active role taken by Judiciary to dispense social justice.

Compare and contrast the two features of Judiciary and express a fair and balanced opinion.

Conclusion:

Conclude with suitable examples and justify as to what should be ideally done.

 

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

4. The new guidelines to regulate digital content give the executive unbridled power without any checks and balances making it contra-constitutional. Analyse. (250 words)

Reference:  The Hindu

Why the question:

The article presents a detailed analysis of the new guidelines to regulate digital content.

Key Demand of the question:

One must analyse in what way such guidelines can be contra-constitutional.

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:

Start with elaboration of the features under the new guidelines for regulation of digital content.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

Explain the fact that the guidelines virtually undermine the enabling provisions of Article 19 of the Constitution and weaponised the restrictive clause of reasonable restriction, without really spelling out what constitutes reasonable restriction.

Under the guidelines, it appears as if the citizens have been empowered and that there is now a fair grievance redressal mechanism for users of digital platforms. The guidelines include social media sites, messaging apps, over-the-top streaming services (popularly known as OTT services), and digital news publishers.

List down more lacunae and suggest what needs to be done.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

 


General Studies – 3


 

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

5. Unless climate change is labeled as a primary perpetrator of extreme weather events, climate action will continue to fade. Explain. (250 words)

Reference:  The Hindu

Why the question:

The question is based on the need to recognise climate change as one of the key driving factors of extreme weather events in the recent times.  

Key Demand of the question:

Explain in what way unless climate change is labeled as a primary perpetrator of extreme weather events, climate action will continue to fade.

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:

It is common to hear policymakers and the public refer to natural disasters, such as this year’s Himalayan glacier flooding that overwhelmed Uttarakhand, or the cold snap that paralyzed Texas, as acts of God. But what precipitated both events was human-made global warming.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

First explain impact of global warming and climate change in general. Provide for both Indian and World perspective.

Present the concerns associated. When the cause and effect are connected, responses are usually swift. But global warming is still seen as a danger that lies over the horizon.

For ex: While COVID-19 triggered the mobilisation of trillions of dollars in financing, the equally frightening climate scenario has not.             

Suggest a way forward.

Conclusion:

Sustainable growth depends on timely climate action. For that to happen, policymaking needs to connect the dots between carbon emissions, atmospheric warming, melting glaciers, extreme floods and storms.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.

6. Is the morality of an action dependent upon the circumstances of the act or is it independent of it? Examine. Can an action be unethical yet moral? (250 words)

Reference:  Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is based on the theme of morality and its linkages with ethics.  

Key Demand of the question:

One has to explain the statement in question and examine the validity of morality vis-à-vis ethicality of a situation.  

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start with the definition of what Morality is.

Body:

Morality is individual’s own sense of right or wrong which is subject to change according to their changing social milieu and associated social, cultural, religious and political conditionings. Besides this there is an existence of transcendental, objective moral truths which functions regardless of geographic location, place in history or form of culture. Humans have historically recognized some objective moral absolutes; these principles transcend culture, location and history.

The doctrine that says that morality is depended on circumstance sees morality in relative terms and it has important implications for how we conduct our lives, organize our societies, and deal with others.

Give examples and explain if anything unethical can be moral and vice-versa.

 Conclusion:

Conclude with fair and balanced opinion.

 

Topic: Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.

7. “Persuasion makes society work smoothly while physical coercion grinds it to a halt”. In this context, compare the effectiveness of persuasion as an influence tactic vis-a-vis coercion in bringing change in society. In what ways persuasion can be used by civil servants to remove social evils existing in society? give examples. (250 words)

Reference:  Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is based on the theme of Persuasion.

Key Demand of the question:

Compare the effectiveness of persuasion as an influence tactic vis-a-vis coercion in bringing change in society and explain in what ways persuasion can be used by civil servants to remove social evils existing in society.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start with the definition of persuasion.

Body:

The basic theme of the question is to compare the importance of persuasion vis-à-vis coercion to influence others and bring change in society. The answer can be framed in the following manner:

• In brief define persuasion and coercion.

• Citing examples examine the conditions under which persuasion proves to be better tactic vs coercion.

• Thirdly, suggest some ways/measures through which civil servants can use persuasion to remove certain social evils.

 Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.


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