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UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice – Insights SECURE: 5 June 2024

 

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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. The Cold War was a multifaceted conflict that extended far beyond military confrontations, shaping the global landscape across various fields and having a profound impact in the process. Analyse. (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.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about different arenas (Korea, Vietnam, etc.) of the cold war. Apart from these different arenas, mention the different fields (ex: space race, sports) in which the cold war played out.

Directive:

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

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Begin your answer by writing briefly what the primary cause of the cold war was.

Body:

First write about the “hot” aspects of the war, the different places where the two superpowers technically battled each other (Korea, Vietnam etc.). Proceed to write about the different fields in which the cold war ended up playing out – sports, space race, weapons race etc.

Write about the impact of the above.

Conclusion:

You can conclude by summarising.

 

Topic: urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

2.  India’s steady decline in freshwater resources presents a significant challenge for urban centres. However, treated and reused wastewater can serve as a highly valuable resource, mitigating pressure on existing freshwater resources and enhancing the quality of rivers and aquifers. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The PrintInsights on India

Why the question:

A prolonged and record-breaking heatwave has led to a water crisis in Delhi, forcing authorities to crack down on water wastage and impose fines. This is not the first Indian city this year to face water scarcity; Bengaluru and Pune have already borne the brunt of it.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the measures needed to overcome water stress in the country and role of treated and reused wastewater in the above.

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: 

Begin by defining and giving the status of water stress in India. Cite a statistic of show the level of water stress in the country,

Body:

First, write about the impact of water stress on the quantitative as well as qualitative aspect of fresh water and how it will impact us.

Next, write about role of treated and reused wastewater – reduces pressure on freshwater sources, improves river and aquifer quality, and brings economic and environmental benefits.

Next, write about the limitations of treated and reused wastewater – nfrastructure development, public acceptance, and technical considerations etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: Parliament and State legislatures—structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.

3. In the context of India, both coalition governments and single-party majority governments have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages. Which type of government do you believe is more suited for India in the present day? State your own opinion.

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The HinduLive Mint

Why the question:

The 2024 Lok Sabha election result, which has left the BJP with less than a majority of seats, will likely lead to changes — not just in terms of how the coalition, if it fructifies in governmental terms, is run, but also in the internal dynamics of the BJP.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about pros and cons of coalition governments and single-party majority governments and your opinion of better suited government for India.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving context.

Body:

In the first part, discuss the pros and cons of single-party majority governments – offer stability, efficient decision-making, and clear accountability, but they risk authoritarianism, lack diverse representation, and can lead to political polarization etc.

Next, discuss the pros and cons of coalition governments – more inclusive, representing a wide range of interests, and ensure checks and balances, but they often suffer from instability and slow decision-making.

Conclusion:

Based on above arguments give a fair and balanced view as conclusion.

 

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.

4. Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) remains high in certain parts of India, posing a significant public health challenge. Examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

A The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 2.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the high MMR in certain parts and measures needed to tackle it.

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 statistic regarding MMR in India and how it is relatively high in certain parts of the country.

Body:

Frist, write about the various measures against MMR – LaQshya, Poshan Abhiyan, Janani Suraksha Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan, Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana, Surakshit Matritva Aashwasan Initiative (SUMAN) etc.

Next, write the reasons why there are high trends of MMR in India despite above measures.

Next, write about the measures that are needed to reduce mortality rates in low performing states.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

5. Increased capital expenditure is vital for India’s economic development. Critically examine. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: moneycontrol.com

Why the question:

The NDA winning the 2024 elections with a slimmer majority raises a pertinent question whether government outlay on infrastructure will continue with the same fervour as seen in the past.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the impact of increased capital expenditure on the economy of India.

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

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by defining a capital expenditure.

Body:

First, write about the positive impact the increased capital expenditure will have on the economy of India – speedy and sustainable revival, crowding in private investment, boost to investment activity and support economic growth in the next year etc.

Next, write the downside of increased capital expenditure – higher inflation, higher fiscal deficit etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward to have a prudent increase in capital expenditure whilst adhering to fiscal limits of borrowing.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service

6. By prioritizing citizen needs, fostering collaboration, and continuously seeking improvement, responsive civil servants play a vital role in ensuring effective governance and public service delivery. Elaborate. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the essential traits of responsive civil servant.

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 describing a responsive civil servant.

Body:

Elaborate on the essential traits of a responsive civil servant. Cite examples to substantiate how those traits make him responsive.

Conclusion:

Complete by mentioning the importance of civil servants being responsive.

 

Topic: Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and nonpartisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.

7. Fortitude is a fundamental attribute that empowers individuals to navigate life’s challenges with courage, resilience, and integrity. Discuss. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications.

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the importance of fortitude.

Directive:

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:

Start by defining fortitude.

Body:

Explain how Fortitude is firmness of spirit, especially in difficulty. It provides for constancy in the pursuit of virtue. Fortitude is a willingness to freely go beyond the call of duty, to make sacrifices, to act on your convictions. Fortitude includes the courage to confront our personal weaknesses and attraction to vice. Substantiate with examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

 

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