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[Mission 2023] Insights SECURE SYNOPSIS: 18 November 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


General Studies – 1


 

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

1. The tribal revolts and rebellions represent the sacrifices of unsung heroes who increased the moral quotient of the national movement in their shared experience of colonial oppression. Elaborate. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Indian Express Insights on India

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

To write about how various forms of oppression resulted in various tribal revolts and its significance.

Directive word: 

Elaborate – Give 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 mentioning that eighteenth and the nineteenth centuries witnessed many tribal uprisings against the oppression of ruling class.

Body:

Mention about the various issues faced by tribals such as imposition of a high land revenue demand by the state, corrupt practices, the colonial policies further aggravating their hardships such as destruction of Indian handloom and handicraft industries eviction of peasants from their lands, encroachment on tribal lands etc, money lenders, eviction etc. Cite a few instances of peasant and tribal revolts such as Bhil, Mappila, Santhal etc to substantiate your points.

Next, Write about its significance of these tribal revolts.

Conclusion:

Conclude by mentioning that the legacy of the tribal movements in the present day. 

Introduction

The Tribal population, being conservative, was interested in retaining the existing salient features of their society. Tribal movements were inspired by revolutionary tendencies. They wanted to make use of the situation to fight and eliminate evils and ill-tendencies that existed in the contemporary tribal society. Before British influence, tribals had depended on the forest for food, fuel and fodder. They practiced shifting cultivation (jhum, podu, etc.), taking recourse to fresh forest lands when their existing lands showed signs of exhaustion. The colonial government changed all this.

Body

Tribal revolts and rebellions : Causes

  • Imposition of Land revenue Settlement. For instance, Famine, enhanced land revenue demands and economic distress goaded the Chuar aboriginal tribesmen of the Jungle Mahal of Midnapore district and also of the Bankura district (in Bengal) to take up arms.
  • British policies and acts like the establishment of the Forest  department  in  1864, Government  Forest  Act (1865) and Indian  Forest  Act (1878) which restricted the activities of tribals in forest areas led to their ire against the British. : Koya revolt against British for denial of tribal’s rights over forest areas.
  • Extension of settled agriculture. E.g.: : The British expansion on their territory led to an uprising by the martial Pahariyas of the Raj Mahal Hills in 1778.
  • New excise regulations which imposed a ban on tribals to make their own liquor, an important trait of their culture.
  • Large scale transfer of forest land. : large-scale transfers of land from Kol headmen to outsiders like Hindu, Sikh and Muslim farmers and money-lenders who were oppressive and demanded heavy taxes.
  • Restrictions on shifting cultivation in forest. For e.g.: Khasi and Garo rebellions against occupation of hilly land and ban on shifting cultivation.
  • Introduction of the notion of private property.
  • Exploitation by low   country   traders   and money lenders. E.g.: Santhal rebellion against moneylenders and traders. The Ulgulan uprising against money lenders
  • Work of Christian Missionaries and against the interference of other religions such as Hinduism, Islam and Christianity. g: Tana Bhagat Movement

Significance in raising moral quotient of national movement

  • The uprisings helped create an united notion against the oppressive nature of British rule.
  • It laid bare the colonial rule of East India company.
  • It played an important role in bringing the tribal people together and imparting to them the consciousness of belonging to one country.
  • The Tribal rebellions in India took place for social, cultural and political reasons, particularly against the acquisition of their land and exerted their rights over forest resources.

 

Conclusion

It is evident that the colonial rule even, during the days of the east India Company witnessed numerous uprising and disturbances. These varied grievances reached their climax in the revolt of 1857, which in spite of targeting certain groups of Indians remains the prominent uprising against the British before the beginning of the Indian Freedom movement.

 

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.

2. The discourse around political finance in India usually revolves around the issue of corruption. Do you agree with the view that the electoral bond scheme has ‘institutionalised corruption’? (250 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question:

It is important that independent institutions check the growing black hole of electoral bonds with a minimum level of institutional safeguards.

Key Demand of the question:

To critically analyse the performance of electoral bonds in improving transparency or acting as a mode of institutionalised corruption.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving aims and objectives of introduction of electoral bonds.

Body:

In the first part, mention the functioning and features of electoral bond scheme – can be bought by any Indian citizen or company incorporated in India. The scheme allows parties to receive these bonds. Trace changes introduced by it.

Next, write about how this new instrument of political party funding is aimed to ensure greater transparency by addressing the issue of anonymous financing. It sought to eliminate black money from the system.

Next, write about how they have increased opacity instead of increasing transparency and has the potential to be used as mechanism of institutionalised corruption.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

Introduction

An electoral bond is a non – redeemable debt instrument. Designed to be a bearer financial instrument in the manner of a promissory note it is much more similar to a bank note which is liquid able in nature, or generally which is payable to the bearer on demand. This bond can be purchased by any citizen belonging to our country or any corporation registered or established in India.

Body

About Electoral Bond

  • Electoral bonds have been introduced to promote transparency in funding and donation received by political parties.
  • The scheme envisages building a transparent system of acquiring bonds with validated KYC and an audit trail. A limited window and a very short maturity period would make misuse improbable.
  • The electoral bonds will prompt donors to take the banking route to donate, with their identity captured by the issuing authority. This will ensure transparency and accountability and is a big step towards electoral reform.
  • The previous system of cash donations from anonymous sources is wholly non-transparent. The donor, the donee, the quantum of donations and the nature of expenditure are all undisclosed.
  • According to government the system of Bonds will encourage political donations of clean money from individuals, companies, HUF, religious groups, charities, etc.
  • After purchasing the bonds, these entities can hand them to political parties of their choice, which must redeem them within the prescribed time.
  • Some element of transparency would be introduced in as much as all donors declare in their accounts the amount of bonds that they have purchased and all parties declare the quantum of bonds that they have received.
  • The electoral bonds are aimed at rooting out the current system of largely anonymous cash donations made to political parties which lead to the generation of black money in the economy.

Critical analysis of electoral bonds

  • Since its introduction, electoral bonds have become an essential source of financing for all major political parties.
    • Between March 2018 and January 2021, electoral bonds worth Rs 6,514.50 crore were redeemed by parties.
  • While the ruling government has managed to receive the lion’s share (60.17%) of political funding made through the bonds, over half of the total income of all national and regional parties too was contributed through this method.
  • for both the principal political parties, it seems that the quantum of political donations channelised through cash donations/non-identifiable sources has decreased substantially.
  • Instead, today more funds are channelised through the formal banking system. This was not the case with the earlier system in which half of the political donations were not traceable as they were made in cash form.
    • Viewed from this angle, the electoral bonds scheme is an improvement over the previous system.
  • Electoral bonds have only legitimized opacity: The move could be misused, given the lack of disclosure requirements for individuals purchasing electoral bonds.
  • Electoral bonds make electoral funding even more opaque. It will bring more and more black money into the political system. Electoral bonds would cause a “serious impact” on transparency in funding of political parties
  • With electoral bonds there can be a legal channel for companies to round-trip their tax haven cash to a political party. If this could be arranged, then a businessman could lobby for a change in policy, and legally funnel a part of the profits accruing from this policy change to the politician or party that brought it about.
  • The amendments would pump in black money for political funding through shell companies and allow “unchecked foreign funding of political parties in India which could lead to Indian politics being influenced by foreign companies.
  • Companies no longer need to declare the names of the parties to which they have donated so shareholders won’t know where their money has gone.
  • They have potential to load the dice heavily in favour of the ruling party as the donor bank and the receiver bank know the identity of the person. But both the banks report to the RBI which, in turn, is subject to the Central government’s will to know.

Alternate mechanisms for electoral funding

  • According to Former Chief Election Commissioner S.Y. Quraishi, an alternative worth exploring is a National Electoral Fund to which all donors can contribute.
  • The funds would be allocated to political parties in proportion to the votes they get. Not only would this protect the identity of donors, it would also weed out black money from political funding.
  • The total cost of MPLADS funding for all MPs is nearly ₹4,000 crore every year, and scrapping the scheme even for one year in an MP’s five-year term will be enough to bankroll state funding of Lok Sabha candidates. This is a legalized way of allowing MPs and MLAs to shower money on their constituencies at state expense.
  • Direct funding of candidates, who will be reimbursed according to their final share of the votes cast.
  • The best way to bring about such transparency in political funding is to put a complete ban on cash donations by individuals or companies to political parties.
  • Making it mandatory for all parties to receive donations only by cheque, or other modes of money transfer.
  • There should be clear provisions for getting tax benefits for all those making such donations.
  • Make it mandatory for political parties to submit details of all donations received with the Election Commission and also with the income-tax department.
  • State funding of political parties can be considered. The Indrajit Gupta Committee on State Funding of Elections had endorsed partial state funding of recognised political parties.
  • The mechanics of this process need to be carefully worked out to establish the allocation of money to national parties, State parties and independent candidates, and to check candidate’s own expenditure over and above that which is provided by the state.
  • Voters have to be made aware through awareness campaigns about ill effects of money power during elections. Bringing political parties under the preview of RTI act.

Conclusion

The 255th Law Commission Report on Electoral Reforms observed that opacity in political funding results in “lobbying and capture” of the government by big donors. Various commissions, including the Election Commission, have given detailed recommendations on suitable remedies. Public funding needs to be examined and introduced with proper checks and balances.

 

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

3. Critically analyse the performance of Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana scheme (PMGKAY) in addressing the food needs of the poor by distributing free foodgrains. Do you think the further extension of the scheme is a prudent move or an electoral freebie? (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Why the question:

The extension of the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY), a scheme to distribute free foodgrains to the poor, for another three months, comes as a surprise for many reasons.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the performance PMGKAY and the comment on the decision of its extension.

Directive word: 

Critically analyze – 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. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, one needs to look at the good and bad of the topic and give a balanced judgment on the topic.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by writing about the aims and the objectives of PMGKAY.

Body:

First, in brief, write about the major features of PMGKAY.

Next, write about the achievements of PMGKAY since its inception. Cite statistics to substantiate. Highlight the role of PMGKAY in the pandemic times.

Next, write about the limitations of PMGKAY and suggest ways to improve it.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a balanced view on the extension of PMGKAY.

Introduction

Body

About  PMGKAY

  • PMGKAY was part of the Centre’s initial COVID-19 relief
  • The scheme aimed at providing each person who is covered under the National Food Security Act 2013 with an additional 5 kg grains (wheat or rice) for free, in addition to the 5 kg of subsidised foodgrain already provided through the Public Distribution System (PDS).
  • It was initially announced for a three-month period (April, May and June 2020), covering 80 crore ration cardholders. Later it was extended till September 2022.
  • Its nodal Ministry is the Ministry of Finance.
  • The benefit of the free ration can be availed through portability by any migrant labour or beneficiary under the One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC) plan from nearly 5 lakh ration shops across the country.

Achievements of NFSA and PMGKAY

  • It was the first step by the government when pandemic affected India.
  • The scheme reached its targeted population feeding almost 80Cr people.
  • It has proven to be more of a safety net to migrant people who had job and livelihood losses.
  • This has also ensured nutrition security to children of the migrant workers.

Limitations of NFSA and PMGKAY

  • Expensive: It’s very expensive for the government to sustain and increases the need for an abundant supply of cheap grains. In 2022, India has had to restrict exports of wheat and rice after erratic weather hurt harvest, adding to pressure on food prices, and rattling global agricultural markets.
  • Increase Fiscal Deficit: It could pose a risk to the government’s target to further narrow the fiscal deficit to 6.4% of gross domestic product.
  • Inflation: The decision on the program could also affect inflation. The prices of rice and wheat, which make up about 10% of India’s retail inflation, are seeing an uptick due to lower production amid a heatwave and patchy monsoon.

 

Way forward

  • Study of scheme: The central authorities should commission a study and make its findings public. Just as it did in the initial months of the pandemic.
    • It should be the basis for updating the database of foodgrain-drawing card holders, scrutinizing the data critically and zeroing in on the needy.
  • Need to go beyond the mandate of the NFSA: as is being done under the PMGKAY, the government can supply the foodgrains at a reasonable price.
  • Ration on regular basis: Centre should consider providing 1 kg pulses free to States on a regular basis, or at least at highly subsidized rates.
  • Rules on quota: To keep the budgetary allocation under control, rules on quota for rice or wheat can be changed suitably.
  • Diversion from PDS: central and State authorities need to ponder over the scheme’s continuance, given the chronic problem of diversion from the Public Distribution System (PDS).

 

Conclusion

There should be an all-encompassing database for migrant workers and their family. This should accurately capture the data on migration. The One Nation One Ration Card should be implemented in true spirit by all the states. Along with food security, there should be a sustainable income support through schemes like MGNREGS accompanied by free vaccines in nearest future. The leakages in PDS should be minimized through modernize PDS. To avoid leakages, there should be food-token system.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

4. The Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are considered to be the backbone of the economy. They are also pivotal to the nation’s growth as they employ lakh of unskilled and semi-skilled individuals. Evaluate the impact of e-commerce on MSMEs. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Live Mint , Insights on India

Why the question:

The issue of co-existence of organized and unorganized sectors in a developing country like India is not new. While the debate persists, specifically in the services sector, a relatively new (though related) variant of the problem now concerns the co-existence of traditional brick-and-mortar sellers with online marketplaces (so-called e-commerce aggregators), such as Flipkart and Amazon.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about contribution of MSME in India’s growth and how e-commerce has affected MSMEs.

Directive word: 

Evaluate – When you are asked to evaluate, you have to pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidence.  You must appraise the worth of the statement in question. There is scope for forming an opinion here.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving factual status of proportion of MSME vis-à-vis the population dependent on it also adding the dimension of the demographic demand of India.

Body:

Elaborate upon the importance of MSMEs in socio-economic development of the country. GDP growth, Job creation, exports and entrepreneurship etc.

Mention about the challenges created by e-commerce platforms with respect to MSMEs such as – competition, discounts, imports etc.

Next, suggest ways in which they both can co-exist.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward and summarising the overall impact of MSMEs in socio-economic development of India.

Introduction

The Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises(MSMEs) sector is an important pillar of the Indian economy as it contributes greatly to growth of the Indian economy with a vast network contributing about 45% to manufacturing output.

MSMEs provide about 110 million jobs which is 22-23% of the total employment in India. It is next highest to Agriculture. However, this sector still faces several challenges. Barely 15% of MSME units have registered with the UDYAM Platform. Heterogeneity, fragmentation and informalization highlight the need for reforms in this sector.

 

Body

Advantages of onboarding MSME’s to e-commerce

  • Increase revenues and profit margins: Improved timeliness of marketing, global client base and flexible business conduct can aid MSMEs to increase revenues and provide specific e-commerce benefits such as online referral systems to acquire more customers, knowledge-based customisation to improve customer acquisition and use service & feedback channels to enhance the future sales experiences.
  • Reduce spend on marketing and distribution costs: Because of increased competition in this space, e-commerce players are heavily spending on digital and traditional media to improve site traffic, gain customers, establish customer relationships and boost sales.
    • In addition, digital channels provide a cost-effective and efficient Infomedia space to advertise and communicate with target audiences, wherein most e-commerce platforms provide links on social media channels, which is then used by their partners to create awareness about their products and services.
  • Use data analytics to understand, engage and retain customers: Through their portals/websites, most B2B e-commerce players generate, store and analyse customer data including products, prices and technical details accessed, time spent on every page, orders placed and purchases made over a period.
  • Building a global reputation: Online transactions create an auditable history of a company’s performance and reliability. Often consumers depend on these records to identify companies that are most likely to provide a satisfactory service.
  • Access to foreign markets: One of the biggest challenges with traditional export channels is the inability of small enterprises to participate in that process.
    • To overcome this, e-commerce platforms provide a level playing field for all types of businesses that seek access to foreign markets.

Issues faced

  • The current GST Rules provide that any offline seller with annual turnover under ₹40 lakh and engaged in intra-state sales must obtain GST registration to sell online.
    • Additionally, offline sellers under ₹1.5 crore annual turnover with intra-state sales cannot continue with simplified GST compliance processes under the composite GST scheme if they want to sell online.
    • Accordingly, even where an MSME’s turnover does not cross the threshold, it would be required to register itself under GST and fulfil all subsequent compliance requirements.
  • Under the current GST framework, many small businesses may not be able to transition from conventional sales to e-commerce platforms because their GST registration under the composition scheme may not be adequate, posing a hurdle in small business owners’ efforts to access the large customer base that global e-commerce majors and several others may offer.
  • Moreover, MSMEs operating through online platforms are burdened with cumbersome and time-consuming periodical compliance needs like registration and the monthly filing of returns, which further dissuades them from registering under the GST Network.
  • Yet, we must proactively get MSMEs selling online, as also artisans and farmer-producer organizations scattered across India, and provide them marketing support.

Overcoming these obstacles

  • It may be prudent to provide an enabling GST ecosystem in the interest of all suppliers, online as well as offline.
  • In the spirit of empowering small retailers and not placing online platforms at a disadvantage to brick-and-mortar businesses, MSMEs should be liable for GST only at the threshold value, irrespective of whether they sell offline or online.
  • Enabling GST parity between offline and online sellers with respect to registration would be logical and help in integrating small business owners in the country with the e-commerce ecosystem.
  • Also, amending the rules to allow small offline sellers to sell online (with intra-state restrictions) without needing a GST registration will increase GST and income tax collections for the government, increase control and transparency, and improve efficiency of tax collection.

 

Conclusion

India’s e-commerce sector is projected to reach $80 billion by 2021 and $300 billion by 2030. For MSMEs, e-commerce is rightly synonymous with economic stability, growth and security; and is a channel that allows even the smallest MSMEs to showcase their products in any part of the world without having to shell out on expansion or changing locations. These platforms have empowered small businesses by removing barriers, providing a large customer base and consequently, ensuring increased revenues. For growth and development of MSMEs, e-commerce marketplaces are perhaps the best catalysts for directing their transformation at minimal costs, investment and innovation. A collaborative effort between the government, the private sector, industry groups, training organisations and SMEs is the most efficient way to support MSMEs.

 Value additions

Significance of MSME’s to India’s economy

  • Boon for Rural Development: Compared with large-scale companies, MSMEs aided in the industrialisation of rural areas at minimal capital cost. The sector has made significant contributions to the country’s rural socio-economic growth and complemented major industries as well.
  • Front Runner in Make in India Mission: As India aims that the products that are ‘Make in India’ are also ‘Made for the World,’ adhering to global standards of quality. MSME is acquiring the centre stage in the mission. It is taken as a backbone in making this dream a possibility.
  • Simple Management Structure for Enterprises: Considering India’s middle-class economy, MSME offers a flexibility that it can start with limited resources within the control of the owner. From this decision making gets easy and efficient.
    • On the contrary, a large corporation requires a specialist for every departmental functioning as it has a complex organisational structure.
  • Economic Growth and Leverage Exports: It is the most significant driver in India contributing to the tune of 8% to GDP.
  • Nowadays, Multi National Companies are buying semi-finished, and auxiliary products from small enterprises. It offers immense potential in creating a linkage between India’s MSME base and big companies.

 

Topic: Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.

5. Considerable success has been achieved in containing terrorism and terror financing over the past few years. But it requires better understanding of the modes used by terror financiers in India for the security forces, enforcement and intelligence agencies to design processes for prevention, adequate due diligence and put an end to terror financing. Examine. (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 and mentioned as part of Mission-2023 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the measures taken against terrorism and terror financing, their successes and limitation, and further measures that are needed.

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: 

Start by giving statistics related the latest trends in containing terrorism.

Body:

First, write about the counter-terrorism measures taken in the recent past and evaluate their successes and limitations.

Next, write about the need to have a better understanding of terror funding and measures that are needed to overcome the above-mentioned limitations.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a forward.

Introduction

Terrorism looms large over the world today. Amorphous terror groups, newer cyber linked terrorism, increasing lone wolf attacks are all adding to the ominous threats of violence. India has borne the brunt of terrorism and has witnessed serious loss of life and property in senseless violent explosions in large cities in the past few decades.

As the world shrinks with technological and communication changes, terrorists, weapons and funds are also able to move across national boundaries easily. International co-operation between law enforcement authorities in this area is a sine qua non for combating such cross border challenges.

Body

Challenges of terrorism and terror financing

  • No Global Definition of Terrorism: There are no universally accepted definitions for what constitutes terrorism, so it is hard to classify a particular activity as a terrorist activity, which provides terrorists with an edge and allows some countries to remain silent and veto any action at global institutions.
  • Expanding Web of Terrorism: The Internet provides a relatively unregulated and unrestricted place where terrorists can craft and disseminate propaganda through seemingly limitless numbers of websites and social media platforms, tailoring their pitch so as to target thousands of potential new recruits to join their organization and further their cause.
  • Terror Financing: According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank, criminals launder an estimated two to nearly four trillion dollars each year. Fund movements by terrorists have also been concealed through charities and alternative remittance systems.
    • It taints the international financial system and erodes public trust in the integrity of the system.
    • Furthermore, the lack of regulation of crypto currency could make it a breeding ground for terrorists.
  • Bio-Terrorism: Biotechnology is boon for mankind but it is also a substantial threat because small amounts of biotic agents can be effortlessly hidden, transported and discharged into vulnerable populations.
    • Tropical agricultural pathogens or pests can also be used as anticrop agents to hamper food security worldwide.
  • Cyber Attack: The world is moving towards a digital village where data is the new oil, terrorists use unlawful attacks in a country’s cyberspace, networks and use the information to intimidate or coerce a government or its people in furtherance of political or social objectives.

Steps taken by government

  • National Investigation Agency (NIA): The NIA aims to set the standards of excellence in counter terrorism and other national security related investigations at the national level by developing into a highly trained, partnership oriented workforce. NIA aims at creating deterrence for existing and potential terrorist groups/individuals. It aims to develop as a storehouse of all terrorist related information.
    • New powers were granted to NIA to investigate outside India and the list of offences under it’s jurisdiction was expanded.
  • NATGRID : It is a core database of security agencies to collect intelligence. It will be easily accessible to all state and central security agencies.
  • National Security Guard is a counter terror unit under Ministry of Home Affairs. It was raised post 1984 Operation Blue Star. India has raised four Regional Hubs of NSG battalions in important strategic locations, to meet any unforeseen challenges.
  • Multi Agency Centre under Intelligence Bureau collects 24×7 real time intelligence and acts as a fusion centre.
  • Navy’s IFC-IOR (Fusion Centre in Indian ocean Region) provides info on commercial shipping to littoral nations.
  • Coastal Security : Coastal Security Scheme (CSS) to strengthen security infrastructure of Marine Police Force in coastal states/UTs.
    • Central Marine Police Force (CMPF): to protect sea, coasts, ports and vital institutions and investigate crimes committed in the coastal water
  • Financial Intelligence Unit-IND (FIU-IND) is the central national agency responsible for receiving, processing, analysing and disseminating information relating to suspect financial transactions.
  • The Navy constituted a Joint Operations Centre to keep vigil over India’s extended coastline. Operation Sagar Kavach post 26/11 has led to coordination between Navy, Indian Coast Guard and marine Police.

Conclusion and way forward

  • There is a need for National Counter Terrorism Centre. A centrally co-ordained Terrorism Watch Centre, which could also operate as a think tank with sufficient inputs from academic and private experts.
  • A strategy for fighting terror in India has to be evolved in the overall context of a national security strategy.
  • Socio-economic development is a priority so that vulnerable sections of society do not fall prey to the propaganda of terrorists promising them wealth and equity.
  • A more comprehensive approach, as embodied in the proposed Convention on Countering International Terrorism (CCIT) is required in tackling the contemporary form of terrorism.

 

Topic: Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.

6. The long-drawn armed conflict in Kashmir has claimed thousands of lives and made the economy bleed, and has posed grave threats to the country’s security. The abrogation of Article 370 has added fuel to the fire. What measures are needed to find a long-term peaceful resolution to the conflict in Kashmir? (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 3 and mentioned as part of Mission-2023 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the impact of insurgency in Kashmir and measures need to put an end to it.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start by giving context.

Body:

First, write about the reasons for the long-drawn-out conflict in Kashmir and its impact over the security and economy of the region.

Next, write about the impact of abrogation of Article 370 on the security scenario in the country.

Next, write about the measures that are needed to be taken in order to find a solution to the Kashmir issue in the long run.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a forward.

 Introduction

The volatile security scenario in J&K is a manifestation of Pakistan’s proxy war with India, combined with the unsettled political issues of the state. Many steps have been taken for maintaining peace in the state; but political instability, separatism and Pakistan-sponsored terrorism continue to surround the erstwhile state of J&K.

Body

Background

  • The reorganisation of the state on August 5, 2019, included the effective nullification of Articles 370 and 35(A) that gave the erstwhile state its special status and the mandate to define its domicile rules that also laid down conditions for employment.
  • The UT of Jammu and Kashmir has a legislature, but Ladakh doesn’t have one.

Current challenges

  • Cross border terrorism
    • Attacks like Pulwama, Uri by terrorist organizations have time and again posed a challenge to peaceful environment.
  • Political misadministration
    • Mis-governance, the politics of entitlement, all pervasive corruption and rampant rent-seeking together with despicable babudom contribute to the erosion of faith in the system.
    • As values of merit, honesty and integrity are seen as impediments to material success, a society loses its moral fibre: this has happened throughout Jammu and Kashmir.
  • Radicalisation of the Kashmiri youth
    • Kashmiri children in schools and colleges outside the State are often mistreated when any misadventure takes place in J&K.
    • The incidents of violence against minorities, including Muslims, in north India have only worsened their problems.
    • Unfortunately, from the perspective of the youth of Kashmir, there is a growing trust-deficit.
    • Not only does Jammu and Kashmir have more people than the rest of country 0-14 age-group, its youth population (15-34 years) also has a bigger employment problem.
    • The lack of quality jobs may be one reason for the frustration of Kashmiri youth.
  • Human rights abuses
    • Human rights abuses in Jammu and Kashmir range from mass killings, enforced disappearances, torture, rape and sexual abuse to political repression and suppression of freedom of speech.
  • Threats to Civilians
    • A spate of targeted killings in Kashmir has kept the minorities and migrant workers on edge.
    • Civilians are soft targets for the terrorists in this milieu. According to police figures, J&K saw 28 civilian killings, surpassing the 22 casualties of security personnel so far in 2021.
  • Allegations of fake encounter come up from time to time.

Measures needed and strategy required

Soft measures

  • Non-violent and democratic methods to achieve political aspirations.
  • Engaging the non-state actors through interlocutors, Tier-2 diplomacy should help alleviate the fears and misunderstandings that have cropped up.
  • The way out of the deadlock is to strengthen democracy.
  • Empowerment of Local Governments which involves people at the grassroots level.
  • Setting aside of the mutual fears of the people of Jammu and of Kashmir and bringing the people of Ladakh into this ambit as well.
  • Socio economic development through various governmental schemes.
  • Economic development through investments can be a game changer for Kashmir. All Kashmiris should get the due share in the growth story of India.
  • Urgent steps should be taken to bridge the gaps of trust deficit in the minds of Kashmiri youth.
  • De-radicalisation camps should be organised for the youth.
  • Conducting recruitment rallies to employ the youth, who are in a different state of mind

Hard measures

  • There is need for the Army to maintain status quo of the overall security situation, and primarily only address strategic security challenges.
  • In hinterland operations, it must adhere to all HR norms/guidelines and not give any triggers which, in the current fragile situation, could prove to be extremely counterproductive.
  • Army columns could operate only as Quick Reaction Teams for major intelligence based surgical operations.
  • A series of actions involving the reduction of violence to the extent possible, soft policing(such as use of non-lethal means) for riot control, and the establishment of the rule of law in the remotest of areas is needed.
  • The police must be prepared to take over the majority of responsibilities from the Army in the hinterland against targeted civilian killings.

Conclusion

A balanced mix of hard and soft powers can help improve the situation in J&K. The need of the hour is proper integration of Kashmir, Jammu, and Ladakh with India. Integration should not be seen in a limited dimension of territory. India should be able to win the heart of the people of Kashmir.

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Case Study

7. You are working as the Quality Control Officer in a major pharmaceutical company which known for making major drugs. During a routine inspection you come across the information that the company has been using sub-standard materials to manufacture a syrup used for treatment of diseases in children, which is by and large exported to many poor African countries. Upon bringing this to the notice of your CEO, he mentions that it being done as per agreement with the governments of the respective countries to make the syrup affordable and assures that the material used has no known adverse effects.

A few days later, reports emerge that many children who had taken that syrup have died and it has become a major international news with African nations demanding accountability of the manufacturer. Your CEO has denied any wrongdoing and has issued a statement that no substandard materials were used. He calls you in his chamber and asks you to corroborate his statement and if you fail to do so, all the blame will be shifted on you. If you agree to do it, then you will receive a ‘handsome’ bonus and salary hike with a promotion.

    1. What are the options available to you in this situation? Discuss their merits and demerits.
    2. What option will you chose? Justify.
    3. What can be done to prevent such incidents from happening in the future?

Difficulty Level: tough

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by giving the context. Bring out the key stakeholders in the above case study.

Body:

In the body, Write about the various options available to you and their pros and cons.

Next, write about the option you will take in the above scenario and justify ethically.

Next, write about your suggestions to prevent such incidents from happening again.

Conclusion:

Conclude by stressing on the importance of transparency and accountability in above such cases.  

Introduction

Drugs are wonders of science and elixirs that save lives. Human civilisation thrives today due to discovery of medicine. The average lifespan of a human is around 60-68 years because of discovery of medicine and invention of drugs.  Denying quality drugs is a denial of human right.

Body

Stakeholders

  • Myself as Quality control officer
  • Children in Africa and elsewhere
  • Pharma company and its CEO
  • Indian government and its reputation

 

Options available

Option 1: Do as the CEO says and corroborate with his statement

Merits: A bonus and a salary hike will go a long way to make my living easier and comfortable.

Demerits: No accountability for the lives lost and company may do such wrongdoing once again in future.

Option 2: Come clean and state the facts to the police and media

Merits: My conscience will be clean. There will be justice and accountability. The pharma company will be held responsible, and CEO indicted. It will ensure that such incidents don’t happen ever again in the country.

Demerits: I may lose my job and the blame may be shifted on me. Closure of company leading to loss of jobs for many.

 

Option I will chose

I will go with option 2 as that is the only correct option. The truth always triumphs, and an independent enquiry will show that substandard material was used. I may be sued or fired as I was Quality control officer, but justice will be served. My talent or skills can get me another job but lives lost cannot come back.

 

Preventing such incidents from happening in future

  • There must be proper certification by third party institution before drugs are sent for distribution.
  • License to pharma companies must be given only after a thorough inspection is done. Eevry year the license must be removed.
  • Revoking license if sanitary measures are not adhered to.
  • Drug trials before drugs are used on humans.

Conclusion

Every life is important and children the future generation. They must be protected from all evils especially one due to human error. Instead of protecting these drugs are killing children which is unacceptable. Hence quality drugs and accountability is the key to prevent such incidents from occurring again.


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