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[Mission 2023] Insights SECURE SYNOPSIS: 08 August 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: Salient features of world’s physical geography.

1. Diversity in climatic conditions has resulted into a marked diversity in natural vegetation. Elaborate upon the major types of vegetation in India and its features. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2023 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the reasons for diversity in vegetation of India and to mention in detail about different types of vegetation in India.

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 talking about how the varied climatic conditions has given rise to wide range of natural vegetation.

Body:

Mention about the different types of vegetation present in India. Draw a simple representative map of India highlighting major vegetation in India.

Explain in detail, the types of vegetation. Account for the major climatic factors responsible for it, the major features of each vegetation and major flora – fauna found there.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

 

Introduction

The natural vegetation is the endowments of nature. They grow naturally by following the climatic variables. The types of natural vegetation differ according to precipitation, soil, climate, and topography. The cultivated crops and fruits, orchards form part of vegetation, but not natural vegetation. India is bestowed with a wide range of flora and fauna. Due to a diverse geographical and climatic condition, an extensive range of natural vegetation grows in India.

Body

Types of Natural Vegetation in India

  • Tropical Evergreen Rain forests
    • The Tropical Evergreen rain forests are found in the areas where precipitation is more than 200 cm.
    • They are largely found in the Northeastern regions of Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Assam, Nagaland, the Western Ghats, the Tarai areas of the Himalayas, and the Andaman groups of Islands.
    • They are also found in the hills of Khasi and Jaintia.
    • The trees in this area have intense growth.
    • The major trees found in this area are Sandal Wood, Rosewood, Garjan, Mahogany, and bamboo.
    • It has copious vegetation of all kinds – trees, shrubs, and creepers giving it a multilayered structure.
    • The elephants, monkey, lemur are the common animals found in these areas.

  • Deciduous or Monsoon type of forests
    • The Deciduous forests are found on the lower slope of the Himalayas, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Orissa, Karnataka, Maharashtra Jharkhand, and the adjoining areas.
    • The precipitation in this area is between 100 cm and 200 cm.
    • Teak is the dominant species seen in the area.
    • Along with that Deodar, Blue Gum, Pal Ash, Sal, Sandalwood, Ebony, Arjun, Khair, and Bamboo are also seen.
    • The trees in this forest shed their leaves during dry winter and dry summer.
    • Based on the availability of water, these forests are again divided into moist and dry deciduous.
  • Dry deciduous forests
    • These forests grow in areas where the precipitation is between 50 cm and 100 cm.
    • These are mainly seen in the areas of the Central Deccan plateau, Punjab, Haryana, parts of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and South-east of Rajasthan.
  • Mountain Forests/Montane Forests
    • Montane forests are those found in mountains.
    • Mountain forests differ significantly along the slopes of the mountain.
    • On the foothills of the Himalayas until a height of 1500 meters, evergreen trees like Sal, teak, and bamboo grow copiously.
    • On the higher slope, temperate conifer trees like pine, fir, and oak grow.
    • At the higher elevation of the Himalayas, rhododendrons and junipers are found.
    • Further, then these vegetation zones, alpine grasslands appear up to the snowfield.
  • Tidal or Mangrove forests
    • The tidal or mangrove forests grow by the side of the coast and on the edges of the deltas
    • Ex: the deltas of the Cauvery, Krishna, Mahanadi, Godavari, and Ganga.
    • In West Bengal, these forests are known as ‘Sundarbans’.
    • The ‘Sundari’ is the most major tree in these forests.
    • The important trees of the tidal forests are Hogla, Garan, Pasur, etc.
    • This forest is an important factor in the timber industry as they provide timber and firewood.
    • Palm and coconut trees beautify the coastal strip.
  • Semi-deserts and Deserts vegetations
    • This area receives rainfall of less than 50 cm.
    • Thorny bushes, acacia, and Babul are found in this vegetation region.
    • The Indian wild date is generally found here.
    • They have long roots and thick flesh.
    • The plants found in this region store water in their stem to endure during the drought.
    • These vegetation are found in parts of Gujarat’s, Punjab, and Rajasthan.

Conclusion

                There is an urgent need to address these problems and Environment Management Act is a dire need along with Environment Service Cadre for better management of forests and wildlife in India.

 

Topic: Salient features of world’s physical geography.

2. What is a drought? Explain the classification and characteristics of a drought. Why do droughts recur in India? (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2023 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about droughts, its characteristic and classification and reasons for tis recurrence.

Directive word: 

Explain – Clarify the topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the context. You must be defining key terms wherever appropriate and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start by defining a drought.

Body:

In the first, give a brief about susceptibility of India to droughts.

Next, write about the Characteristics of Drought- Seasonal Characteristics and Intra-Seasonal Variability, its spread, nature and impact.

Next, write about the various types of drought classification in India.

Next, write about the reasons for recuring droughts in India.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward to deal with recuring droughts.

 

Introduction

Drought is a prolonged dry period in the natural climate cycle that can occur anywhere in the world. It is a slow-onset disaster characterized by the lack of precipitation, resulting in a water shortage. Drought can have a serious impact on health, agriculture, economies, energy and the environment.

Body

Classification of droughts

  • Meteorological Drought
  • It is a situation where there is a reduction in rainfall for a specific period below a specific amount i.e. the actual rainfall in an area is significantly less than the climatologically mean of that area.
  • According to Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), a drought exists when the average annual rainfall is less than 75% of the normal.
  • IMD also mentioned that rather than the total amount of rainfall, its evenness matters more.
  • We can observe that even though India gets an average annual rainfall of 110 cm, the evenness of rainfall, due to the erratic and concentrated nature of rainfall, there are frequent droughts.
  • Hydrological Drought
  • It is associated with the reduction of water levels. There are 2 types of Hydrological Droughts
  • Surface water Drought – It is concerned with the drying up of surface water resources such as rivers, streams, lakes, ponds, tanks, reservoirs, etc.
  • Groundwater Drought – It is associated with the fall in the groundwater level.
  • Agricultural Drought
  • It occurs when soil moisture goes below the level needed to sustain plant growth. It is also called as Soil Moisture Drought.
  • The erratic rainfall conditions and inadequate soil moisture result in crop failures.
  • Socio-Economic Drought
  • It reflects reduced availability of food and income loss due to crop failure.
  • Ecological Drought
  • It occurs when the productivity of the natural ecosystem fails due to a shortage of water and causes environmental damages like the deaths of cattle, wildlife, and trees in the forest.

Characteristics of Drought

  • Droughts occur when there is abnormally low rainfall for an extended period of time.
  • This means that a desert would not be considered in drought unless it had less rainfall than normal, for a long period of time.
  • Droughts can last from weeks to months and even years.

Reasons why drought recur in India

  • Natural factors:
    • Erratic monsoons: The South-west monsoon accounts for 70 to 80 per cent of the annual rainfall over major parts of India. Failure of monsoons, for reasons like El Nino etc, is the major reason for droughts in India.
    • Skewed distribution of monsoon: This makes some regions, like the leeward side of Western Ghats, chronically prone to droughts.
    • Depletion of water resources: Depletion of surface and sub-surface water resources, especially in areas of low yearly rainfall.
  • Anthropogenic factors:
    • Inappropriate agricultural activitiesleading to excessive water use cause depletion in water levels.
    • Activities such as deforestation and encroachment of wetlandslessen the ability of land to hold water.
    • Anthropogenic activities leading to global warming, result in fluctuations in phenomenon like monsoons.

Measures needed

  • Systemic measures: Drought monitoring, advanced warning systems and drought management Plans at various levels.
  • Integrated Watershed Management: Focus on conserving as well as rejuvenating the natural sources of water along with practices like rain water harvesting etc. especially in drought-prone areas and deserts
  • Irrigation: Irrigation facilities reduce dependency on monsoon, and techniques like drip irrigation improve water use efficiency.
  • Agriculture: Proper agricultural practices (right crops, crop rotation etc.) based on agro-climatic conditions
  • Capacity Development: Human resource development, training, education (including public awareness campaigns) and capacity building

Way forward

  • The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched the Integrated Drylands Development Programme (IDDP) with the overall goal to strengthen resilience by working on the twin vulnerabilities of poverty and unsustainable land management in the drylands.
  • The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) developed a Drought Risk Reduction frameworkthat takes an integrated development approach and provides a comprehensive framework for both higher-level and local action.
  • The Integrated Drought Management Programme (IDMP) and its partners have adopted three pillars of drought management:
  • Drought monitoring and early warning systemsto determine drought status.
  • Vulnerability and impact assessment to determine who and what are at risk and why.
  • Mitigation, drought preparedness, and response to set out actions and measures to mitigate drought impacts and to prepare to respond to drought emergencies.
  • There is a need for a more organized and common conceptual frameworkfor assessing drought risk and for analysing the “Benefits of Action and Costs of Inaction” (BACI).
  • The framework is set out within the model for the overall process of developing a National Drought Management Policy, which was codified by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the Global Water Partnership (GWP) in their 2014 National Drought Management Policy Guidelines.

 

 


General Studies – 1


 

Topic: issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.

3. The establishment of Panchayati Raj was to promote democratic decentralization and empower women in administration. However, the practice of Sarpanch Pati negates both. How can this practice be ended? (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question:

Following reports of husbands or male members of families taking oath instead of the elected women representatives in newly formed Madhya Pradesh panchayats, the State is coming out with an advisory to prevent a repeat of such instances.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the practice of Sarpanch Pati, reasons behind it, its impact and ways to prevent it.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by writing aims and objectives of Panchayati Raj.

Body:

First, write about the practice of Sarpanch Pati and reasons behind this practice.

Next, write about the impact of this practice on the aims and objectives of PRI’s. Substantiate with facts and examples.

Mention the measures that are needed to remedy this situation.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 

Introduction

The 73rd constitutional amendment constitutionalized the local self-government with reservation of one third seats in Panchayats for women. A number of states raised the quantum of reserved seats to fifty percent. This was aimed at empowering women and ensuring their participation in political process and decision making at grass root level.

However, due to poor socio-economic status of women and prevailing patriarchal set-up, the intended benefit of emergence of women leadership at Panchayat level was not fully realized. The effective political power and decision making is wielded by husbands of elected women representatives. This phenomenon is referred to as ‘sarpanch-pati’.

Body:

Prime Minister called for an end to the practice of “husbands of women sarpanches” or “sarpanch pati” exercising undue influence on the work of their wives elected to power.

Causative factors:

  • Poor socio-economic status of women:Women in general have poor access to education, they are restricted to domestic spaces, they lack economic independence, they are not allowed participation in decision making at family level. This situation of lower social status results in them being mere ’titular heads’ and hampers their ability to challenge their husbands. In most cases, such “takeovers” have happened without the wife’s consent.
  • The lack of information and knowledge about government programs especially for both women and child development poses problems. However, again limited exposure to formal education breeds information gap and dependency on second-hand knowledge. In fact, consequently, political lineage determines the distribution of benefits of the different schemes.
  • Socio-Cultural barriers due to traditional society:Indian society in villages is still traditional and conservative e.g. in rural areas tradition of parda or veil is very strong especially North Indian states, women are discouraged in public spaces, even government officials at local level avoid talking to women due to conservative outlook. The veil, when imposed on women, severely hinders their public participation. This gives de facto control to Husbands in day to day activities of panchayats. Even in Gram Sabha meetings Husbands of elected representative take charge.
  • Absence of government initiative:Despite this widespread phenomenon, government failed to act against the practice, either through a strong deterrence through law or through public awareness.
  • Dual responsibility:Women traditionally burdened with domestic workers face difficulties in balancing the official work with their home.
  • The communication problem hinders performance as most of the correspondences, rules and also the regulations are in English.
  • Due to the lack of exposure and experience women, members face difficulty in asserting themselves. And the fact that the majority of women enter politics through reservation and kinship arrangement only accentuates this problem.

Impacts of Sarpanch-pati system:

  • Disempowerment of women: This phenomenon hinders the intended empowerment of women which was one of the aims of 73rd constitutional amendments through reservation of seats. In terms of social status of women, the status-quo is maintained.
  • Poor implementation of law: This phenomenon effectively manipulates the law effectively preventing its implementation in letter and spirit. The rule of law in such situation is casualty to social prejudices against women.
  • Lack of opportunity in decision making: this phenomenon reduces women’s ability to participate in decision making at village level.

Way forward:

  • Reservation of seats in Panchayats was revolutionary step for the empowerment of women.
  • However, for this to be effective government should address the phenomenon of ‘sarpanch pati’ through an effective law by outlawing such practice.
  • Capacity building of women in matters of governance, raising society’s awareness about women rights and sensitizing bureaucracy about importance of women participation at panchayat level.
  • The State Election Commission, Chief Election Officer and state government to take effective steps to prevent proxy leadership in the elected bodies in panchayati raj system and different urban bodies.
  • The returning officers of the panchayati raj institutions should take an affidavit/declaration from the women candidates that they would be disqualified if their husbands were found working on their behalf.
  • The state government must empower women in the execution of different schemes at the grass root level and they and their committees should be entrusted with the task of monitoring both construction and maintenance of the Jal, Jeevan, Haryali schemes.

 

 

Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

4. What is the ‘One China Policy’? Examine as to how the Taiwan issue exemplifies the volatile cocktail of geopolitical contestations between U.S and China. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The HinduIndian Express

Why the question:

The August 3 visit of U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan, the first such high-level engagement in 25 years, was in China’s view further evidence of Washington “hollowing out” its commitment to a One China Policy.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the One China Policy, its impact of contemporary geopolitics between U.S and China.

Directive word: 

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: 

Begin by giving context of ‘One China Policy’.

Body:

In the first part, briefly trace the evolution of ‘One China Policy’.

Next, write about the geopolitical ramifications of Taiwan issue on already worsening geopolitical tensions between U.S and China. Mention the recent developments that have led to deterioration of relations.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward on how diplomacy should prevail to sort out issues.

 

Introduction

The One-China policy refers to the policy or view that there is only one state called “China”, despite the existence of two governments that claim to be “China”. As a policy, this means that countries seeking diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China (PRC, Mainland China) must break official relations with the Republic of China (ROC, Taiwan) and vice versa. The One China policy is different from the “One China principle”, which is the principle that insists both Taiwan and mainland China are inalienable parts of a single “China”.

Body

 

Background

  • United States House Speaker and senior Democratic Party politician Nancy Pelosivisited Taiwan.
  • In Taipei,  Pelosi held talks with President Tsai Ing-wen, addressed the legislature, and received a civilian honour. The trip was the highest-level visit from the U.S. to Taiwan in 25 years.
  • China, which had publicly warned the U.S. against going ahead with it, saying it would violate commitments under the ‘One China Policy’, has since responded with diplomatic, military and economic measures.

Taiwan issue exemplifies the volatile cocktail of geopolitical contestations between U.S and China

  • The joint communique that established diplomatic relations between the U.S. and China in 1979 declared that “the United States of America recognises the Government of the People’s Republic of China as the sole legal Government of China”.
  • Since the establishment of relations with China, the U.S. no longer has formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan under the ‘One China Policy’.
  • Within this context, the very first paragraph of the communique adds, “the people of the United States will maintain cultural, commercial, and other unofficial relations with the people of Taiwan.”
  • China has seen Ms. Pelosi’s visit as a political one and thus as a violation of this communique, which it has described as the very foundations of the relationship.
  • The U.S. does not support a declaration of independence by Taiwan.
  • It has gradually reversed the policy of avoiding official-level engagements with the Taiwan government.
  • Successive governments have had on and off relations with Taiwan.
  • S. defence personnel have been, unannounced, training with their Taiwanese counterparts for some time.

Way forward:

  • It is understandable that Taiwan is not the priority of India’s foreign policy as the present government is interested in big power diplomacy. But India should not neglect Taiwan at the cost of its national interests.
  • Even as India launches its “Act East” policy and ambitious initiatives such as “Make in India”, it is time to highlight the importance of Taiwan for an emerging India and bring the India-Taiwan relationship into focus.
  • As India becomes more and more important in Taiwan’s policy, it is time for Indian policy makers to review India’s Taiwan policy and fashion a new approach.
  • Greater cooperation between India and Taiwan could prove critical in helping New Delhi and Taipei achieve their economic goals at home and their strategic aims in the region.
  • It is time to acknowledge the importance of India-Taiwan relations. India should consider its own interests not the third party’s ones, when it thinks of developing relations with Taiwan or other countries.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

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

5. How is the Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) different from existing rocket fleet of ISRO? Discuss the significance of addition of SSLV to the group of Indian rockets.  (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian ExpressIndian Express

Why the question:

The ISRO Sunday said the maiden flight of newly developed Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) can be termed as a partial success, with the three solid fuel-based propulsion stages working normally but the satellites getting injected into a wrong elliptical orbit owing to failure of logic to identify a sensor failure.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about differences between SSLV with that of PSLV and GSLV and significance of its addition to India’s rocket fleet.

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 by giving the context of launch of SSLV.

Body:

First, write about the differences between SSLV and the existing rocket fleet, that is, PSLV and GSLV.

Next, write about the advantages the addition of SSLV will provide to ISRO in terms of technology, satellite launch, commercial benefits, private participation.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward as to how India can master this SSLV technology.

 

Introduction

ISRO launched India’s maiden Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) carrying an earth observation satellite and a student satellite recently. The space organisation has embarked on a mission to place satellites that weigh up to 500kg into the 500km low earth orbit (LEO), as it aims for a bigger share of the small satellite vehicle market.

Body

SSLV vis-à-vis existing fleet of ISRO

  • The 34-metre Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) is 10 metres shorter than ISRO’s warhorse rocket Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and can put payloads up to 500kg into 500km planar orbit.
  • Unlike the PSLV, the SSLV uses solid fuel hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene to fire the three stages of the rocket which takes the payloads to the desired altitude.
  • The liquid-propelled Velocity Trimming Module (VTM) then inserts the satellite into orbit.
  • The SSLV has a low turnaround time and can be assembled within a fortnight, allowing the space agency to provide launch on demand service in the fast growing low earth orbit launch sector.
  • The SSLV is 34 metres in height with a vehicle diametre of two metres and a lift off mass of 120 tonnes.
  • The PSLV, on the other hand, is 44 metres tall, 2.8 metres in diametre and a lift-off mass of 320 tonnes. It has the capacity to put up to 1,800kg payloads into orbit.

 

Importance of SSLV

  • With a growing market for the global launch services for small satellites, ISRO’s SSLV would make for an attractive option due to its low cost, ability to launch on demand, and capacity of carrying multiple loads.
  • The launch of small satellites has until now been dependent on ‘piggy-back’ rides with big satellite launches on ISRO’s work-horse – the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle which has had over 50 successful launches so far.
  • The launch of small satellites as a consequence has been dependent on the finalising of launch contracts for the larger satellites by ISRO.
  • Operating SSLV on smaller and more commercial missions will free up the massively used Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) for bigger missions to space.
  • The PSLV has successfully conducted over 50 missions depositing not just domestic but also customer satellites into Low Earth Orbit (LEO).
  • The SSLV is the smallest vehicle at 110-ton mass at ISRO. It will take only 72 hours to integrate, unlike the 70 days taken now for a launch vehicle. Only six people will be required to do the job, instead of 60 people. The entire job will be done in a very short time and the cost will be only around Rs 30 crore. It will be an on-demand vehicle.
  • SSLV is perfectly suited for launching multiple microsatellites at a time and supports multiple orbital drop-offs.
  • The development and manufacture of the SSLV are expected to create greater synergy between the space sector and private Indian industries – a key aim of the space ministry.

 

 

 

Conclusion

Small satellites are now being developed in large volumes for mega-constellations for Earth observation, Internet of Things (IoT) and low latency communications (internet) thus democratizing space and making new space applications a reality. Advances in small satellite platforms, miniaturization of instruments and the availability of low-cost launches for small satellites, can enable new, geodetic missions which can benefit from the use of constellations of small satellites.

 

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life

6. Artificial intelligence (AI) is being increasingly applied to healthcare. It has the potential to transform many aspects of patient care and treatment, as well as administrative processes related to healthcare sector. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Live Mint

Why the question:

Last month, Alphabet’s artificial intelligence subsidiary, DeepMind, stunned the world of science by presenting something truly spectacular: a snapshot of nearly every existing protein on Earth— 200 million of them. This feat of machine learning could speed the creation of new drugs. It has already upended my own scepticism about the role AI can play in the pharmaceutical industry.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the application of AI in healthcare – treatment as well administrative processes.

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.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start by defining Artificial intelligence (AI).

Body:

First, in brief, write about the factors the myriad of applications of AI.

Next, write about the applications of AI in healthcare sector – in diagnosis, treatment, patient care etc. Substantiate with facts and examples.

Next, write about how AI can play a part in improving healthcare administration. Substantiate with facts and examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward to harness AI in healthcare.

 

Introduction

Artificial   intelligence   refers   to   the ability   of machines to perform cognitive tasks like thinking, perceiving,     learning, problem solving     and decision  making.  It  enables  computer  system  to carry   out   task   on   their   own   that   otherwise requires human intelligence. Artificial intelligence system learns from experience,     uses     the     learning     to     reason, recognises   images,   solves   complex   problems, understands languages and creates perspectives

Body

Background

Last month, Alphabet’s artificial intelligence subsidiary, DeepMind, stunned the world of science by presenting something truly spectacular: a snapshot of nearly every existing protein on Earth— 200 million of them. This feat of machine learning could speed the creation of new drugs. It has already upended my own scepticism about the role AI can play in the pharmaceutical industry.

 

 

Artificial intelligence in healthcare

  • Save lives: A lot of organisations and medical care centres are relying on AI to save lives. An organization called Cambio HealthCare developed a clinical decision support system for stroke prevention that can give the physician a warning when there’s a patient at risk of having a heat stroke.
  • Managing medical records and other Data: The first step in health care is compiling and analysing information (like medical records and other past history), data management is the most widely used application of artificial intelligence and digital automation. Robots collect, store, format, and trace data to provide faster, more consistent access.
  • Treatment plan:Artificial intelligence systems analyse data and reports from a patient’s file, external research and clinical expertise to help select the correct, individually customized treatment plan.
  • Virtual nurses: The AI has been used to develop a digital nurse to help people monitor patient’s condition and follow up with treatments, between doctor visits. In 2016, Boston Children’s Hospital developed an app Alexa that gives basic health information and advice for parents of ill children.
  • Medication monitoring: AI helps monitor medication courses of patients. It is very important to ensure proper dose regime to be followed by the patient. For instance, the AiCure app monitors the use of medication by a patient.
  • Drug development: Developing pharmaceuticals through clinical trials can take more than a decade. AI can make this process faster and cheaper. Amidst the recent Ebola virus scare, a program powered by AI was used to scan existing medicines that could be redesigned to fight the disease.
  • Precision medicine: Genetics and genomics look for mutations and links to disease from the information in DNA. With the help of AI, body scans can spot cancer and vascular diseases early and predict the health issues people might face based on their genetics.
  • Health Monitoring: Wearable health trackers like those from FitBit, Apple and others monitors heart rate and activity levels. They can send alerts to the user to get more exercise and can share this information to doctors (and AI systems) for additional data points on the needs and habits of patients.

Conclusion

Artificial intelligence has a lot of potential for India. Nearly 200 Artificial Intelligence start-ups in India are today innovating and creating AI-based solutions for various industries. It can complement Digital India Mission by helping in the big data analysis which is not possible without using AI. ‘Make in India’ programme can be strengthened and help India in becoming a major manufacturing hub with AI-assisted technology.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world..

7. Explain the application of Kant’s Categorical Imperative to self-development of civil servants.  (150 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4 and part of ‘Philosophical Mondays’ in Mission-2023 Secure.

Directive word: 

Explain – Clarify the topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the context. You must be defining key terms wherever appropriate and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Give a simple elaboration on Kant’s Categorical Imperative.

Body:

Write about the application of CI to self-development of civil servants – A civil servant may have talent which with the help of some culture might make him a useful man in many respects. But he finds himself in comfortable circumstances and prefers to indulge in pleasure rather than to take pains in enlarging and improving his happy natural capacities. Cite examples to substantiate.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

Introduction

Immanuel Kant (1724–1804) argued that the supreme principle of morality is a standard of rationality that he dubbed the “Categorical Imperative” (CI). Kant characterized the CI as an objective, rationally necessary and unconditional principle that we must always follow despite any natural desires or inclinations we may have to the contrary.

The CI states that it is immoral to use another person merely as a means to an end and that people must under all circumstances be treated as ends in themselves. This is in contrast to some interpretations of the utilitarian view, which allow for use of individuals as means to benefit the many.

Body:

Kantian ethics refers to a deontological ethical theory ascribed to the German philosopher Immanuel Kant. The theory, developed as a result of Enlightenment rationalism, is based on the view that the only intrinsically good thing is a good will; an action can only be good if its maxim – the principle behind it – is duty to the moral law.

Kant’s Categorical Imperative:

  • Kant believed that there was a supreme principle of morality, and he referred to it as The Categorical Imperative.
  • The CI determines what our moral duties are. Kant thought that all acts should be judged according to a rule he called the Categorical Imperative.
  • A categorical imperative denotes an absolute, unconditional requirement that exerts its authority in all circumstances, both required and justified as an end in itself.
  • He gives the highest honor for the categorical imperative because it became universal law that can be applied to any and every one.
  • Kant is saying that simply willing that our moral rule become a universal law produces a logical contradiction.
  • His categorical imperative ensures that we aren’t doing these acts in mimic of others but rather in line with one universal law.

Categorical imperative for civil servants

  • According to Kant, ethics based on the consequences are based up on hypothetical imperative and do not have moral sanction. The lack of absoluteness in consequential approach makes them a matter of desire.
  • For instance, where a Public Servant has to take a decision where among stakeholders, one’s gain is others loss e.g. in situation of land acquisition for setting up factory, farmers livelihood is lost but at the same time there will be job creation for Youths. In such a situation Consequential approach becomes a matter of preference for Public Servant with no objective guide to arrive at moral action.
  • This framework has the advantage of creating a system of rules that has consistent expectations of all people. If an action is ethically required, it would apply to every person in a given situation. Thus, speaking truth in all situations is categorical imperative which is applicable universally.
  • This approach is helpful in resolving dilemmas a civil servant may face during performance of duty where a course of action may resolve a genuine problem by going against established procedure. The categorical imperative of giving precedence to duty helps in resolving such dilemmas

Conclusion:

Kant’s philosophy of human individuals as end in itself endorses the golden rule of “treating others as one’s self would wish to be treated”.  As no one would wish to be used simply as a means, therefore one should not also use other human beings as means to achieve their ends. This philosophy can be of great help in resolving the ethical dilemmas where there is debate between relative importance of means and ends.


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