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[MISSION 2023] Insights SECURE : Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 21 February 2023

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General Studies – 1


 

Topic: History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the society.

1. What are the factors that led to the downfall of Napoleon Bonaparte? Evaluate the role of Napoleonic invasion of Russia that served as a major turning point in European history that led to the fall of Napoleon.

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

Russia asked French President Emmanuel Macron to remember the fate of Napoleon Bonaparte, after he called for Russia’s defeat against Ukraine on Sunday (February 19). It also accused the president of being duplicitous in his diplomacy with Moscow

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the factors that led to the downfall of Napoleon and role of Napoleon’s invasion of Russia in it.

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 context.

Body:

In the first part, write about the reasons for the downfall of Napoleon as the emperor of France – Overextension of Napoleon’s empire, formation of the Sixth Coalition, Continental system, Mistakes by Napoleon and Invasion of Russia by Napoleon.

Next, give context about Invasion of Russia by Napoleon and its outcome. Mention how it began the downfall of Napoleon and to what extent it was responsible for his decline.

Conclusion:

Conclude by giving a balanced opinion.

 

Topic: Role of women and women’s organization

2. Creating a safe workplace for women is essential to ensuring that women can work without fear of harassment, discrimination, or violence. However, the progress to create a safe workplace for women has been slow and insufficient. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question:

The recent case of allegations of sexual harassment that some of India’s sportswomen (wrestling) are said to have faced have shocked us. Those affected had to sit in protest in the capital to make themselves heard. This shows that any internal complaints committee (if there is one) does not function.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the importance of creating safe workspaces for women and hindrances to do so.

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: 

Start by citing a statistic about harassment of women at workplace.

Body:

First, in detail, write about the importance of creating safe working place for women – improving access, ensuring equity, boosting productivity etc.

Next, write in the measures taken for to create safe working place for women – POSH act, Vishakha guidelines, setting up One Stop Centres under the Nirbhaya fund etc. Write about the limitations of the above. Suggest steps to overcome the same.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.


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. What are the types of e-Governance in India? Examine the challenges associated with e-Governance 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 – 2 and mentioned as part of Mission-2023 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about e-governance, its types and challenges associated with it.

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: 

Start by defining e-governance.

Body:

First, write about the various types of e-governance in India – Government to Citizen (G2C) Initiatives, Government to Business (G2B) Initiatives, Government to Government (G2G) Initiatives, G2E (Government to Employee) etc. Cite examples of the above.

Next, write about the various challenges associated with e-governance in India and suggest measures to overcome the same.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.

 

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.

4. The implementation of smart governance practices in India has the potential to improve the efficiency and transparency of government services, reduce corruption, and enhance citizen participation in the policymaking process. Discuss the various initiatives taken to promote smart governance in the country. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 2 and mentioned as part of Mission-2023 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about smart governance, its advantages and measures initiated to promote smart governance in the country.

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 defining smart governance.

Body

First, write about the various advantages associated with smart governance – transform the way government services are delivered, improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of governance etc.

Next, write about the various initiatives in recent years to implement smart governance practices in various sectors – Digital India, Aadhaar, MyGov, Smart Cities Mission, Cowin and E-Courts etc. Write about the achievements and limitations.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment

5. The establishment of GST Appellate Tribunal to resolve the rising number of disputes is step in the right direction but still there is need for more reforms in the goods and services tax (GST) regime. Critically examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Why the question:

Meeting in person after nearly eight months, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council last Saturday reached a broad consensus on establishing GST Appellate Tribunals to resolve disputes under the tax regime launched in July 2017.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about various successes and limitations of GST and reforms that are needed in it.

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 by aims and objectives behind the launch of GST.

Body:

First, write about the achievements of GST in the past 5 years. Substantiate with examples, facts or statistics. Write about the setting up of GST Appellate tribunal and advantages associated with it.

Next, write about the shortcomings of GST in the past 5 years. Substantiate with examples, facts or statistics.

Next, suggest reforms in GST.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 

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

6. What do you understand by emission trading? As a policy tool to control greenhouse gas emissions, the carbon emissions trading scheme can achieve the goal of reducing emissions while minimizing overall emissions reduction costs through market transactions. Examine.  (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Why the question:

After the passing of the Energy Conservation (Amendment) Bill last December, the Centre is now in the final stages of notifying an Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) that would require polluting industries to achieve certain standards of energy efficiency and permit them to ‘trade’ these improvements.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about carbon market and emission trading scheme and India’s potential in using it to fight climate change.

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 defining emission trading

Body:

In the first part, in detail, write about the structure and functioning of emission trading in a carbon market and its brief history.

Next, write about the potential of emission trading in reducing carbon emissions and fighting climate change. Write the ways in which it would help. Substantiate with facts and examples.

Next, write about the challenges and limitations associated with emission trading in India. Mention ways to overcome them.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: social influence and persuasion.

7.  Social influence can be a double-edged sword because it can have both positive and negative effects. Examine. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

To write about how social influence can have both positive and negative outcomes.

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 defining social influence.

Body:

First, write about the positive outcome that social influence can have – powerful tool for promoting positive behaviours and bringing about social change. Cite examples to substantiate.

Next, on the other hand, social influence can also be used to promote negative behaviours and beliefs. Cite examples to substantiate.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a balanced opinion.


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