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[Insights Secure STHIR– 2021] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 14 June 2021

 

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General Studies – 1


 

Topic: American War of Independence and Civil war

1.  “The American War of Independence “deprived Great Britain of one empire, but it strengthened the foundations of another. Examine the statement in the context of colonization of India.(250 words)

Reference:  Mastering Modern World History by Norman Lowe

Why the question:

The question is based on the theme of  American War of Independence.

Key Demand of the question:

The question expects us to examine whether the loss of British Control in America led to changes in its approach which enabled it to strengthen its hold over another empire (India). Thus we need to point out the steps British took in India post American declaration of independence that enabled it to strengthen its hold over India.

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 brief history of the American war of Independence.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

Briefly first explain how Britain started ruling America. Discuss the causes of the American war of Independence

Explain then the significance of the war – The main significance is that the war ended the “Divine Right of Kingship”. America overturned Monarchy (rule by kings) and it became a Republic (head of the state is not hereditary).

Examine the steps taken by the British to consolidate its hold over India and the learning that British took from American Revolution which enabled it to take these steps. E.g. Pitts India act 1784, posting experience people in India like Cornwallis, Lord Wellesley’s policy of territorial expansion etc.

Mention that post American declaration of independence we lived in the era of pax Britannica which meant that Britain took learnings.

Conclusion:

Conclude with significance.

 

Topic: Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location-changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

2. What is Sea Snot? How it formed and what are the causes of its formation? Discuss its impact. (250 words)

Reference:  India Today

Why the question:

The largest Sea Snot outbreak is being witnessed in Turkey’s Marmara Sea, which connects the Black Sea to the Aegean Sea. This outbreak of mucilage is believed to be one of the largest on record, till date, and has created havoc along the country’s coastline for months.  Thus the question.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss what Sea snot is, how is it formed and its causes of formation while explaining its impact.

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 the definition of Sea snot. When algae are overloaded with nutrients as a result of water pollution and climate change, it begins to create a thick slimy layer on the surface of the water. This layer is colloquially known as sea snot. These algae feast and grow in warm and nutrient-rich water.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

What are the causes of Sea Snot? – One of the biggest causes of this layer of snot is global warming and the increasing temperature of the water bodies. The climatic conditions and the severe variations in climate change is another cause, increased water pollution etc.

Discuss its formation process.

With the increased water pollution, global warming and deteriorating climatic condition, the overall situation of water bodies across the globe are being affected. Considering sea snot, it also leaves a severe impact on marine life.

Conclusion:

Conclude with its impact.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: Bilateral, Regional and Global Groupings and agreements involving India

3. Highlight the challenges associated with the globalisation in the current times and explain important role G-7 can play in dealing with these challenges. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian Express

Why the question:

The article highlights the challenges associated with the globalisation and important role G-7 can play in dealing with these challenges. Thus the question.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain the challenges associated with the globalisation in the current times and explain important role G-7 can play in dealing with these challenges.

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:

Start by explaining the challenges associated with the globalisation in the current times.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

Discuss the context that makes this G-7 Summit significant. The most significant expectation of the summit is that it will help determine the shape of globalisation. The summit also seeks to redefine the broader relationship between states and markets in three ways.

Discuss the geopolitical context; there are two geopolitical “cold wars” that cast a shadow on the G-7. In the context of rising geopolitical tensions with China, greater coordination and unity of purpose amongst the G-7 will become more important.

Suggest solutions to the challenges.

Conclusion:

Conclude that if the G-7 wants to truly exercise more leadership, it will have to convince the world that all its wonderful new principles, resilience, inclusion, global public goods, are not simply ruses to serve only the interests of the developed world.

 

Topic: India and its neighborhood- relations.

4. Discuss the Lord Curzon’s conceptualization of India’s neighbourhood and emphasis on frontiers and explain in what way the integration he fore saw is still relevant and can serve as a template for both India and India-US partnership. (250 words)

Reference:  Hindustan Times

Why the question:

The opinion in the newspaper explains the Curzonian imprint on Indian foreign policy.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss in what way the Lord Curzon’s conceptualization of India’s neighbourhood and emphasis on frontiers and explain in what way the integration he fore saw is still relevant and can serve as a template for both India and India-US partnership.

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 the current context of the question.

Body:

Explain that more than any other figure from India’s recent history, Curzon grappled with the geopolitical complexities of the Indian subcontinent and its neighbourhood. That he did so as a foreigner makes these insights no less “Indian”—for the substrate of his reflections was not nationality or ideology, but geography and the permanent interests that it produces for any power looking at the game board from India’s position.

Curzon recognized that India’s security depends upon its ability to exercise influence over a defined geopolitical space beyond India’s own shores. Curzon recognised that India’s main landward attention must be directed to its frontiers — namely, to the task of maintaining viable buffer states in adjacent regions.

Take hints from the article and explain.

Conclusion:

Conclude with relevance of his ideas even in today’s context.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, Nano-technology, biotechnology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

5. Data localisation is undoubtedly a black dot on the idea of flawless concept of the internet as a borderless world. In this context, discuss the scope and extent of Data-localisation. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian Express

Why the question:

Several big websites around the world went down for about half an hour because of a major issue with the content delivery network (CDN) of American cloud computing services provider Fastly.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the scope and extent of Data-localisation.

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:

Data localization is the act of storing data on any device that is physically present within the borders of a specific country where the data was generated.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

Explain why Data Localisation is Important? – To protect the personal and financial information of the country’s citizens and residents from foreign surveillance and give local governments and regulators the jurisdiction to call for the data when required.

Storing of data locally is expected to help law enforcement agencies to access information that is needed for the detection of a crime or to gather evidence. This gets significant importance due to increasing relevance of technology in nature as well as the resolution of crimes.

Data localisation is undoubtedly a problem on the face of the idealized conception of the internet as a borderless world.

And though this idea of the borderless internet has lost some of its sheen in recent years, it’s hard to deny that it has been one of the main reasons for explosive digital growth.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance.

 

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life. Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.

6. Bitcoins have seen better validation and mainstreaming in the last one year. In this context, explain how Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoins work? Why are governments and central banks suspicious of them? Explain. (250 words)

Reference:  The Hindu

Why the question:

El Salvador became the world’s first sovereign nation to adopt bitcoin cryptocurrency as legal tender. Thus the question. 

Key Demand of the question:

Explain how Cryptocurrencies work and why the governments are suspicious about them.

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:

A cryptocurrency is a digital asset designed to work as a medium of exchange. Cryptocurrencies typically use decentralized control as opposed to centralized digital currency and central banking systems. Cryptocurrencies are built on the back of blockchain technology, a system of distributed, cryptographically-secured account keeping. Bitcoin is the first decentralized cryptocurrency.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

Present the status of Cryptocurrencies across the world first.

Explain how they work.

Highlight the concerns associated with them; Discuss the measures being taken to mitigate some of the challenges.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

 

Topic: Disaster and disaster management.

7. The incidence of overlapping hazards in the country must drive the Government of India to focus with urgency on long-term preparedness along with multi-disciplinary approach. Elucidate. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian Express

Why the question:

Cyclones along the Western and Eastern coasts amidst the pandemic alert us to the need for year-long preparedness, approaching a multi-disciplinary approach to averting disasters, reducing vulnerabilities. Thus the question.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the need and urgency for the government of India to come up with a long term plan along with multi-disciplinary approach to prevent and cure the incidence of overlapping hazards in the country.

Directive:

Elucidate – 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:

Start with brief background of the question.

Body:

Within a span of a week, first the Western Coast (Gujarat in particular) and then the eastern coast (Odisha and West Bengal) were battered with cyclones —Tauktae in the west and Yaas in the east. While cyclones and storms are not unusual on the Eastern coast (we have witnessed Aila, Bulbul, Amphan in the past), what was unique this time was that an environmental hazard happened in the middle of another mega hazard – the Covid-19 pandemic.

Explain that amidst such conditions the disaster risk reduction activities need to be geared towards first an interdisciplinary diagnosis of various risk drivers.

Take cues from the article and explain.

Conclusion:

Conclude with suggestions and solutions to address the issue.


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