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[Mission 2022] Insights SECURE SYNOPSIS: 3 June 2022

 

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

1. Compare and contrast the Permanent Settlement and Mahalwari Settlement, introduced by the British. What were the impact of the new forms of revenue settlements introduced by the British? (250 words)

Difficulty: Easy

Reference: A Brief History of Modern India by Spectrum Publishers

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

To bring out the major differences between Permanent settlement and Mahalwari settlement and to write about the overall impact of Permanent, Ryotwari and Mahawlari settlement on Indian agriculture.

Directive:

Compare and contrast – provide for a detailed comparison of the two types, their features that are similar as well as different. One must provide for detailed assessment of the two.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Begin by briefly writing about the nature of the two settlements.

Body:

In detail, bring out the differences between both the settlement systems – context of introduction, areas of introduction, fixation of Land revenue, collection of revenue and revision of land revenue etc.

Next, write about the overall impact these Land Revenue systems on Indian agriculture – Commercialization of Agriculture, Fragmentation of Lands, Absentee Landlordism, indebtedness of peasants and depressing effect upon the rural economy etc.

Conclusion:

Write about how these impacts led to mobilization of peasants and over a period of time, the peasant issues became a part of mainstream national movement.

Introduction

Land revenue was one of the major sources of income for Britishers in India. There were broadly three types of land revenue policies in existence during the British rule in India.

Before independence, there were three major types of land tenure systems prevailing in the country:

  • The Zamindari System
  • The Mahalwari System
  • The Ryotwari System

Body:

Zamindari SystemMahalwari System
Under the Zamindari system, the land revenue was collected from the farmers by the intermediaries known as Zamindars.Under the Mahalwari system, the land revenue was collected from the farmers by the village headmen on behalf of the whole village.
Zamindari system was started by the Imperialist East India Company in 1793.In this system, the entire village is converted into one big unit called ‘Mahal’ and treated as one unit as far as payment of land revenue is concerned.
Lord Cornwallis entered into ‘Permanent Settlement’ with the landlords with a view to increase land revenue. Under this arrangement, the landlords were declared as zamindars with full proprietorship of the land.

The Zamindars were made responsible for the collection of the rent.

Mahalwari system was popularised by Lord William Bentinck in Agra and Awadh. It was later extended to Madhya Pradesh and Punjab.

The responsibility of collecting and depositing the rent lied with the village headmen.

The share of the government in the total rent collected by the zamindars was kept at 10/11th, and the balance going to zamindars.The Mahalwari system is found to be less exploitative than the Zamindari system.
The system was most prevalent in West Bengal, Bihar, Orrisa, UP, Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.The system was prevalent in Agra, Awadh, Punjab, Orrisa and Madhya Pradesh.

Impact of British land revenue policies:

  • Pauperisation of the rural economy:The rural economy as a whole was affected. All the classes from zamindars to peasants were affected. Many lost their livelihoods due to loss of land and right to cultivate.
  • Shifting from food crops to cash crops:In order to meet the high revenue demand the farmers had to shift from food to cash corps like indigo, cotton, which led them to buy food grains at higher prices and sell the cash crops at low prices.
  • Food scarcity and famines:The shifting to cash crops and decreasing productivity of land badly affected the society in the form of famines. This led to many famines in India, causing death of millions.
  • Increase in money-lending: The land settlements introduced a market economy with cash payments of revenue. This led to an increase in money-lending activities, which put Indian peasants under debt, which were exploited by money lenders.
  • Led to inequalities: The Land tenure system led to increase in social inequalities. While rich defended their properties, the poor didn’t have any resources to do so. Further due to illiteracy they were exploited by money lenders for interests.
  • Handicrafts and industries affected:It impacted circular economy. The peasants and zamindars earlier had purchasing power to buy handicrafts. Loss of income of peasants affected the handicrafts industry too. Handicrafts men resorted to agriculture that further put pressure on land. The industries were affected due to lack of raw materials.
  • Impact on local administration: It deprived village panchayats of their two main functions: land settlements and judicial and executive functions. Thus the old politico-economic-social framework of village communities broke down.

Conclusion:

The overall impact of the all this was stagnation and deterioration of agriculture. It led to series of famines in 19th century. The unsustainable system led to series of peasant revolts. The miseries of the peasant were one of the important cause for the revolt.

 

Topic: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

2. The quest improve tourism through better connectivity and improved infrastructure should not affect the integrity and safety of heritage monuments. Examine the role of heritage impact assessment in overcoming the above dichotomy. (250 words)

Difficulty: Tough

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

On Thursday, the Supreme Court reserved its orders on petitions against excavation and construction work by the Odisha government along the Puri Jagannath temple as part of the Puri Heritage Corridor Project.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the dichotomy about promoting tourism and monument preservation and the role of heritage impact assessment in the above.

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must investigate 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, write about the dichotomy between about promoting tourism and monument preservation.

Body:

In first part, write about how both are importance from heritage and economy and livelihood point of view.

In the next part, write about how heritage impact assessment can play a role in overcoming the above dichotomy.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

Introduction

India’s cultural heritage and, in particular, its archaeological and built heritage is unparalleled in the world. India has one of the largest geo-political expanses and one of the greatest volume and diversity in heritage. This vast heritage repository of India is recognized globally as significant part of its unique cultural identity

The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a batch of petitions against excavation and construction work by the Odisha government along the Puri Jagannath temple as part of the Puri Heritage Corridor Project, calling the pleas “frivolous”. The petitioners alleged that the construction work would damage the heritage site.

Body

Heritage monument and their importance: Threats faced

  • An initial survey indicates the total quantum of India’s built heritage and archaeological remains may roughly amount to a total of 400000 plus heritage structures across the country including the centrally protected monuments, state protected monuments, heritage buildings under various religious trusts, historic cities and archaeological sites.
  • Urban growth and modernisation are inevitable phenomena in the developing and developed countries, in which, cultural heritage properties as sensitive urban components may encounter irreparable losses.
  • In the context of UNESCO World Heritage, the uprising conflict between urban development policies and heritage conservation in recent years has drawn more attention to Heritage Impact Assessment (HIA).
  • Moreover, any construction work without scientific handling around heritage sites may lead to permanent damage to cultural sites. This may even be irreversible and hence may lead to loss of heritage sites.
  • India has a vast history and the sites are a testimony to the history and the richness of our past. Hence protection of monuments is of utmost importance.

Role of heritage impact assessment

  • HIA is an assessment tool to identify and analyse human-induced impacts on cultural heritage properties by the aim of maintaining a balance between cultural heritage protection and urban development needs towards sustainability.
  • Heritage Impact Assessment is a procedure to identify and analyse the potential impacts of human-induced threats on cultural heritage, and therefore, it supports better protection and management of heritage assets.
  • Effects on cultural heritage attributes from development or other changes may be adverse or beneficial. It is necessary to identify all changes on all attributes.
  • Changes arising from developments must also be assessed for their impact on integrity and authenticity. The property should have baseline statements regarding integrity and authenticity at the time of inscription.
  • Direct impacts are those that arise as a primary consequence of the proposed development or change of use. Direct impacts can result in the physical loss of part or all of an attribute, and/or changes to its setting – the surroundings in which a place is experienced, its local context, embracing present and past relationships to the adjacent landscape.
  • Indirect impacts occur as a secondary consequence of construction or operation of the development, and can result in physical loss or changes to the setting of an asset beyond the development footprint. For example, construction of related infrastructure such as roads or powerlines that are required to support the development.
  • Impact assessment is an iterative process. Results of data collection and evaluation should be fed back into the design process for the development, or proposals for change or for archaeological investigation.
  • Conservation is about managing sustainable change. Every reasonable effort should be made to avoid, eliminate or minimise adverse impacts on attributes

Conclusion

Any construction that may affect heritage sites must be preceded by thorough heritage assessment. The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act (or AMASR Act) is an act of the Parliament of India that provides for the preservation of ancient and historical monuments. This needs to be suitably modified to ensure that heritage impact assessment is conducted in the right manner and heritage sites are conserved scientifically for generations to come.

 

 


General Studies – 2


 

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.

3. Many companies think that corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a peripheral issue for their business and customer satisfaction is more important for them. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty: Moderate

Reference: Live Mint

Why the question:

After having lobbied policymakers for years since 2014 on how they could deploy corporate social responsibility (CSR) funds, Indian companies ran into some essential amendments made in 2021.

Key Demand of the question:

To wrote about the issues with CSR and steps needed to make it more effective.

Directive:

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

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Begin by defining CSR and its evolution in India.

Body:

First, write about the various aims and objectives behind CSR in India.

In the next part, write about the various issues in CSR – lack of community participation in CSR activities, need to build local capacities, issues of transparency and non-availability of clear CSR guidelines.

Next, write about the various measures that are needed to make CSR more effective.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

Introduction

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is referred as a corporate initiative to assess and take responsibility for the company’s effects on the environment and impact on social welfare and to promote positive social and environmental change.

Body

CSR is based on the philosophy of Trusteeship believes in inherent goodness of human beings. Companies have to spend at least 2% of last 3 years’ average net profits on CSR activities. This may sound costing companies on their profit but in reality it can make companies more profitable and sustainable.

Importance of CSR

  • Corporate Social Responsibility links Corporate Sector to Social Sector
  • Upholds Trusteeship: Corporate social responsibility gives a chance to the organization to contribute towards the society, environment, country and so on.
  • Promote Relationship: Relationship is the oxygen of life. It enhances the “social quotient” of the company hence help in getting appeal for its product from people. Ex Lifebuoy soap success story
  • It imparts an ethical, responsible character to company’s profile, helps it to justify its product, growth and create a distinct aura of company in public sphere. E.g.: Nanhi Kali project of Godrej group.
  • Competitive advantage: Businesses that show how they are more socially responsible than their competitors tend to stand out. Research shows that a strong record of CSR improves customers’ attitude towards the company. TATA group enjoys much social appeal when compared with fellow competitors. The Classmate notebooks which contributed Rs. 1 towards social welfare gained appeal over other brands.
  • Boosts employee morale: CSR practices have a significant impact on employee morale, as it reinforces his confidence on Company’s empathy.
  • Presence and involvement of company in CSR activity will provide a soft corner to it in government’s approval, preferences. Its active involvement to implement government flagship program like Swaccha Bharat Mission enhances company’s credibility in government’s eyes.
  • Promotes Socio-Economic Development: If the company is engaged in CSR programs it attracts foreign investment and helps the country to get valuable foreign exchange. This in turn leads to socio-economic developmental activities.
  • Attracts FDI: If the company is engaged in CSR programs it attracts foreign investment and helps the country to get valuable foreign exchange

Companies think CSR is a peripheral issues for their business:

  • The games promoters played included many innovations, such as setting up their own non-profit units and trusts to siphon funds and using third parties to route money back to their pockets for a commission.
  • The idea behind India becoming the world’s first country to have a CSR tax was undermined by such silly games, resulting in a sub-optimal impact of this initiative on the ground.
  • The most common reason that companies cited for not meeting the target is that they had undertaken long-term projects. This means that the amount was earmarked for a long-term initiative and the company is carrying forward the spend.
  • Many companies also said that they lacked prior expertise and delay in project identification as reasons for not spending.
  • There has been very little strategic thinking and innovation in the CSR where corporations can play a leadership role in contributing to society.
  • This also shows that companies in India have generally not understood the larger goals of CSR, viewing it more as a charitable endeavour.
  • More industrialised states are winning over poorer, more remote regions where development aid is acutely needed.

Conclusion

Socially beneficial activities involve an element of welfare, charity and providing maximum good to maximum number of people. While doing them the donator will definitely get benefitted in terms of positive wishes, economic gains or prestige enhancement. Hence Corporate Social Responsibility makes companies more profitable and sustainable

 

Topic: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

4. Myanmar is the lynchpin of India’s Act East Policy. India should focus on building supportive international environment, so that the Myanmar could be encouraged to follow the democratic road map. However, other measures of reaching out to east must also be explored. Critically examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

Even a cursory look at the situation in Myanmar, post the February 1, 2021, military takeover, conjures up a picture of a country that is spiralling downwards. There are reliable reports of the strengthening of the People’s Defence Force, with the support of various ethnic militias. There is no sign of the restoration of normalcy as witnessed by one of the authors during a recent tour of the India-Myanmar border.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the importance of Myanmar to India’s act east policy and steps needed put Myanmar back on a democratic path.

Directive word: 

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: 

Begin giving context regarding Indo-Myanmar relations.

Body:

In the first part, mention about the importance of Myanmar to India’s Act East Policy.

Next, write the various options to ensure the return of democracy in Myanmar. Using U.N and ASEAN, Bilateral diplomacy etc.

Next, write about the other measures of outreach that must be explored by India for a successful Act east policy.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

Introduction

Myanmar (formerly called Burma) military grabbed power in a coup, third time in the nation’s history since its independence from British rule in 1948. Military (also called Junta and Tatmadaw) has alleged that the general elections held in November 2020 were full of irregularities and that therefore, the results are not valid. This marked the end of Myanmar’s short-lived experience with democracy which began in 2011, when military implemented parliamentary elections and other reforms.

Body

Geo-strategic significance of Myanmar for India

  • Geopolitical interests: Myanmar sits at the intersection of India’s ‘Neighbourhood First’ and ‘Act East’ policies, and therefore is an essential element in India’s practice of regional diplomacy in the Indo-Pacific, and serves as a land bridge to connect South Asia and Southeast Asia.
  • Strategic location: It serves as a buffer between India and China. Myanmar has coastal access to the Bay of Bengal. It connects Bangladesh, China and the restive North-eastern states of India. It is also close to India’s Nicobar archipelago.
  • National security: Myanmar-China border has become the epicentre of local armed separatist groups operating on Myanmar soil, and Indian groups, ranging from ULFA in Assam to the NSCN (IM) in Nagaland.
  • Economic interests: India has interests in natural resources of Myanmar and also developing certain projects like India–Myanmar–Thailand trilateral highway and Kaladan multi-modal project which is to link India’s landlocked north-eastern States to the Myanmar Port of Sittwe, located in the Bay of Bengal. Instability in Myanmar will be a roadblock to these ambitions.
  • Countering China: A weakened Myanmar falling into the clutches of China as a satellite state will pressurize India to do Beijing’s bidding in regional affairs.

Various options to ensure the return of democracy in Myanmar

  • International efforts should provide strong incentives and support for critical democracies in the region such as India, Japan and Indonesia to increase dialogue with and assistance for pro-democracy political parties and non-state ethnic nationalities authorities in Myanmar.
  • The United States should increase high-level diplomatic engagement with ASEAN to enhance that organization’s resilience to attempts by China to undermine the role the bloc may play in putting the country back on a path toward democracy.
  • Despite the military’s best effort to quash it, civil society in Myanmar persists and serves an increasingly important role providing essential services to vulnerable communities and by organizing anti-coup activities.
  • The United States and other democracies should continue to provide financial and technical support to civil society.
  • Support political dialogues across Myanmar’s diverse, anti-coup movement. These include dialogues under the People’s Representative Committee for Federalism and the National Unity Consultative Council.
  • Where possible, the United States should support solidarity and trust-building within the anti-coup movement.
  • Dialogues should aim to sincerely address past discrimination and abuses, including those by the NLD and others who have held positions of power.

Approach to be taken by India

  • India faces the most challenging dilemma on how to respond to the military coup in Myanmar. India supports the process of democratic transition in Myanmar.
  • Though India has expressed deep concern over recent developments in Myanmar, cutting off from the Myanmar military is not a viable option as India has significant economic and strategic interests in Myanmar and its neighbourhood.
  • The dual power centres of the military and the civilian government that existed in Naypyitaw until recently, suited India.
  • While India’s national interests clearly lie in dealing with whoever is in power in Myanmar, India would find it difficult to openly support the junta given the strong western and American stance.
  • On the other hand, it can ill-afford to offend the junta by actively seeking a restoration of democracy there.
  • India should continue to engage with the present regime in Myanmar working towards mutual development of people of both the countries while it should support sharing experiences in constitutionalism and federalism to assist Myanmar in resolving the prevailing stalemate.

Conclusion

India is left with very few clear policy options. And yet, it must continue to maintain relations with the government in power in Myanmar while discreetly pushing for political reconciliation in the country. In the meantime, the focus must be on improving trade, connectivity, and security links between the two sides.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: issues of buffer stocks and food security;

5. Agriculture is extremely vulnerable to climate change. The accelerating pace of climate change, combined with global population and income growth, threatens food security everywhere. Discuss. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 3.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the impact of climate change on Indian agriculture and suggest steps to adapt to it.

Directive word: 

Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you must debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You must give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin the answer by context.

Body:

Mention the way in which climate change in impacting agriculture. Reduced yields, encouraging weed and pest proliferation. Changes in precipitation patterns, crop failures and long-run production declines etc. Cite statistics to substantiate your points.

Write about the measures that are needed to mitigate its impact.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

Introduction

Climate change generates considerable uncertainty about future water availability in many regions. It will affect precipitation, runoff and snow/ice melt, with effects on hydrological systems, water quality and water temperature, as well as on groundwater recharge. In many regions of the world, increased water scarcity under climate change will present a major challenge for climate adaptation. Sea-level rise will affect the salinity of surface and groundwater in coastal areas

Body

Climate change and agriculture

  • Extreme heat: Crops need suitable soil, water, sunlight, and heat to grow. However, extreme heat events and reductions in precipitation and water availability have hampered the crop productivity.
  • Changing Rainfall Patterns: Rainfall patterns have already begun shifting across the country, and such changes are expected to intensify over the coming years.
    • This is likely to mean more intense periods of heavy rain and longer dry periods, even within the same regions.
  • Floods: Flooding in many agricultural regions of the country have been witnessed and these floods have devastated crops and livestock, accelerated soil erosion and have polluted water.
  • Yield: Milk yield in livestock to be impacted during heat waves.
    • Changes in breeding season in marine fisheries with shift in seasonal catch  Significant negative impact on commercial poultry due to heat stress.
  • High rainfall leads to greater loss of top soil due to erosion.
  • Rise in sea level may lead to loss of farmland by inundation and increasing salinity of groundwater in coastal areas.
  •  The major impacts of climate change will be on rain fed or un-irrigated crops, which are cultivated on nearly 60 percent of cropland.
  •  Increase in the mean seasonal temperature can reduce the duration of many crops and hence reduce final yield.
  •  Climate change has a direct impact on crop evapotranspiration.

Impact on food security

  • Climate change has been found to have an impact on food safety, particularly on incidence and prevalence of food-borne diseases. Increased climate variability, increased frequency and intensity of extreme events as well as slow ongoing changes will affect the stability of food supply, access and utilization.
  • Impact translates from climate to the environment, to the productive sphere, to economic and social dimensions, bringing a range of additional risks on availability of food, on access to food and utilization of food, as well as on the stability of these characteristics, for both farm and non-farm households.
  • At the farm/household level, climate change impacts may reduce income level and stability, through effects on productivity, production costs or prices.
    • Such variations can drive sales of productive capital, such as cattle, which reduces long-term household productive capacity.
    • Exposure to risks lowers incentives to invest in production systems, often with negative impacts on long-term productivity, returns and sustainability.
    • Reductions and risks to agricultural income have also been shown to have effects on household capacity and willingness to spend on health and education.
    • Evidence from recent analyses of the impacts of various types of weather anomalies on farm income indicates that the impacts are greatest for the poorest farmers.
  • At national level, exposure to climate risks can trigger shocks on agricultural production and food availability, with risks of market disruptions, effects on supply and storage systems, as well as increases in agricultural commodity prices (food and feed), impacting accessibility and stability of food supplies for the entire population, particularly in countries with significant shares of the population spending a large part of their income on food.
    • This triggers macro-economic effects for countries for which agriculture is an important part of GDP and/ or constitutes an important source of employment.
    • Climatic risks can also hinder agricultural development by discouraging investments.
  • At global level, climatic shocks impacting areas of global importance for food supplies can have remote impacts through effects on: (i) supply flows and food price spikes, with increased market volatility; and (ii) impacts on bilateral contracts and/or import/export behaviour with disruption of trade patterns.

Conclusion

Food price volatility is likely to be exacerbated by climate change. Trade is expected to play a major role in adjusting to climate-change-driven shifts in agricultural and food production patterns. Recent experience indicates that climate change effects on food price volatility are greatly influenced by domestic policies, with export bans contributing to price fluctuations. Ultimately, global markets will not be accessible to the poorest countries and the poorest populations without sufficient purchasing power.

 

Topic: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

6. Military exercises establish India’s military capabilities and is also a great way of securing allies, which will help in times of need. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The Week

Why the question:

Days after the Quad meeting in Tokyo, India has decided to participate in the world’s biggest maritime exercise ‘Rim of the Pacific’ or RIMPAC, hosted by the US. Leaders of India, Japan, Austalia and the US met last month to keep China on check as the Chinese military is expanding its footprints in the Indo-pacific region.

Key Demand of the question: 

To understand the role of military exercises.

Directive word:

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

Introduction: 

Begin by describing India’s geographic location and the corresponding potential and the need for military exercises.

Body:

First give a few instances of few military exercises with friendly nations in the recent past such as Malabar exercise, Yudh Abhyas etc.

Next, stress on the potential outcomes of such exercises such as for Naval exercises, it would improve the operational turnaround and improve logistics of the armed forces in the region and also improve Maritime Domain Awareness.

Next mention that the benefit ranges from inter-operability to demonstration of capabilities, developing trust, comradery and familiarity between militaries.

Conclusion:

Conclude by mentioning that such exercises are a key to confidence building measure (CBM) and an indication of the faith reposed by India on another nation or a group of member nations.

Introduction

A military exercise or war game is a measure to test the performance of the armed forces without engaging in the battlefield. It facilitates better coordination between the militaries, observation of enemy’s tactics, and familiarisation with new technologies, enabling on-the-job training of each other’s crews. These are useful in case of joint military operations be it in war or in operations other than war such as disaster relief, and humanitarian aid. According to a 2021 study, joint military exercises between allies deter adversaries.

Body

Importance of Military exercises for India

  • India has realised the potential of joint military exercises as part of military diplomacy. In the last decade or so, India has undertaken army joint exercises with 18 countries, naval exercises with 14 countries and air force exercises with eight countries.
  • The objectives for joint military exercises are different, it ranges from inter-operability to demonstration of capabilities, developing trust, comradery and familiarity between militaries.
  • The location of exercises in itself is an indication of deep engagement and trust with the partners. The naval exercises between India, Japan and the US in the Sea of Japan obviously is a signal directed to China.
  • These exercises also act as a platform to assess weapons, equipment and a display of technology that can be made available to allies.
  • Such exercises are also seen as an assurance that a critical supply of spares and accessories will be guaranteed during a possible conflict.
  • Perhaps, the most important advantage of joint military exercises is ‘strategic signalling’.
  • A joint exercise with one or more nations serves the purpose of signalling to a third country of the influence we have in the region and a demonstration of our resolve to further our diplomatic objectives.
  • On the intangible side, military exercises promote brotherhood and camaraderie between soldiers and militaries.
  • Besides goodwill, it is a tool for projection of a nation’s soft power.

Criticisms against Military Exercises

  • However, there is also a criticism against holding war games with one expert stating that they are of a simple basic variety which doesn’t provide any value addition to the Indian force.
  • Moreover, the joint exercises are periodical in nature while the crew and the platforms that participate are rarely the same.
  • This brings in the aspect of continuity and its benefits. With a new crew every time, the earlier lessons have often got to be re-learnt from scratch.
  • There is still plenty of room for improvement for India in this area.
  • The defence diplomacy of India is still not in complete sync with its foreign policy. It has not been used as a tool to fulfil our foreign policy objectives.

Conclusion

India needs to understand as once said by John F Kennedy, “Diplomacy and defence are not substitutes for one another, either alone would fail”. India needs to understand this philosophy as the present age of smart power. To be the major player in the world India will have to combine its hard power and soft power into effective strategies to achieve the best results.  Such activities are ideal tools of defence diplomacy and strategic communication which can further our national security interests and provide the necessary backing for India to adopt a firmer approach while dealing with adversaries.

Value addition

Some of the famous exercises that the Indian armed forces participate in:


  • Yudh Abhyas with the US
    • Maitree Exercise with Thailand
    • Shakti with France
    • INDRA with Russia
    • KAZIND with Kazakhstan
    • DUSTLIK with Uzbekistan
    • Malabar with Australia, India, Japan and US
    • RIMPAC with Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Philippines, South Korea Singapore, Thailand, Tonga, the UK and US
    • COBRA-GOLD with Asia-Pacific countries

the Malabar Naval games have gained significant media attention owing to the rise of Quad collective.

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Case Study

7. You are the S.P of a district. The C.M of your state is against the VIP culture followed by some politicians. He passes orders to do away with VIP culture. Consequently, the DGP issues order to withdraw police security provided to over 100 people in the state. According to the order, police security was a part of VIP culture which was causing drain on resources as well as unnecessary hassle to common man.

There are 5 people in your district from whom security has to be withdrawn within 24 hours of the order. You do a risk assessment of the 5 people. You come to conclusion that 4 out of 5 people do not need security cover. However, there is serious threat to the life of the 5th person, Mr X, if his security cover is withdrawn. Anti-social elements are posing a risk to safety and his life because of past political rivalry. (250 words)

    1. Who are the stake holders in the above case?
    2. What are the dilemmas in front of you?
    3. What will be your course of action?
    4. How can we put an end to VIP culture in India? 

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4 and part of ‘Case Study Fridays’ in Mission-2022 Secure.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

In brief, mention the facts of the case and the major ethical issues involved along with the stakeholders.

Body:

Write in detail about the course of action that you will take to address the problem.

Next, write about ways in which VIP culture can be ended.

Conclusion:

Stress on the importance of change to end VIP culture.

Introduction

VIP culture is that of assuming self-importance wherever one can, and treating oneself as ‘superior’ & ‘entitled to special treatment’ when they hold ‘important’ positions in society.

There is a sense of entitlement merely because they come from powerful sections of society. For those who belong to the elite club it means no standing in queues, preferential treatment in availing government services and even disregard of the law.

The history of VIP culture in our country goes back to the British era where the masters enjoyed power and privileges over common citizens.

Body

Stakeholders

  • Myself as SP,
  • CM as head of the government
  • All those whose security cover were withdrawn
  • Mr X in particular.

Dilemmas faced

There are strict orders to comply and remove security of people and ban the VIP culture. It is true that extra security cover is a drain on resources and man-power who can be used productively elsewhere for the greater welfare of the society.

However, every life is important. Hence if there is perceived and confirmed threat to the life of Mr X, I must bring it to the attention of the higher authority and try to ensure that Mr X’s safety is assured. Sometime, for the greater good, injustice to one person also cannot be justified.

But proposing to continue additional security for one person by myself will also attract punitive measures on me, as it may seem that I’m bypassing higher authority orders.

Course of action

Firstly, I will tip off Mr X about the threat he has from anti-social elements. So that he may beef up the security through private firms and ensure his safety through other means.

Secondly, I would try to appraise my higher officials regarding the threat and seek guidance on the next course of action. As officially, I’m bound to maintain law and order of the society I will carry an investigation to see if there is a larger conspiracy involved. If the investigation yields result, I would take action as per IPC sections. Post this I would conduct another risk assessment and based on that I would recommend whether security to Mr X is needed.

How to put an end to VIP culture in India

  • The Government banned the use of red and blue beacons equating them to the symbols of VIP culture.
    • The supreme court in Abhay Singh v. Union of India case termed red beacons a “menace”.
    • It said, red lights symbolise power and a stark differentiation between those who are allowed to use it and those who are not.
    • A large number of those using vehicles with red lights have no respect for the laws of the country and they treat the ordinary citizens with contempt.
  • Conscience should guide us. There cannot be rules and regulations to guide every action. In the absence of any such laws, rules or regulations, conscience should guide a bureaucrat’s decision both in public and private life.
  • We must ban the habitual traffic diversions and road blocks when VIPs are on the move.
  • Every urban commuter is familiar with the interminable wait for some minister or the other to pass by or the security personnel who push traffic to the kerb to make way for a VIP.
  • For a country that aspires to a seat at the global high table, India would do well to emulate the relatively simple style of leaders in western democracies.
  • Though the privileges are justifiably considered compensation for public servitude, a little less overt display of privilege would allay those negative perceptions.

Conclusion

At the heart of VIP culture debate is ‘equality’. And by equality we mean not merely formal equality (of equality before the law and the equal protection of the laws). There is a moral facet to it as well. The argument, which has a moral force, is that in a democratic republic like ours, all citizens — rich or poor — ought to be treated alike, at least in certain respects.


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