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UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice – Insights SECURE: 14 June 2024

UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice 14 June 2024
UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice

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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.  While India maintained a non-aligned stance in principle, its foreign policy during the Cold War was marked by pragmatic alliances and relationships that occasionally aligned more closely with one superpower than the other. Examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Insights on India ,  Insights on India

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

Highlight nature of engagement of NAM countries with the superpowers. Evaluate the role played by India, as a member of NAM.

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:

Introduce NAM, and the background in which it emerged.

Body:

Elaborate on the role played by NAM in easing tensions between the superpowers by citing examples. Note how NAM did not practise isolationism or neutrality.

Next, write the role played by India as part of NAM, and steps taken by it to reduce geo-political tensions.

Next, write about the nature of non-alignment by India.

Conclusion:

Conclude by giving a balanced opinion on the issue.

 

Topic: Salient features of world’s physical geography.

2.  The formation of global wind belts is influenced by several interrelated factors that contribute to the movement of air around the planet. Discuss.  (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.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about factors affecting horizontal movement of air, causes behind wind belts and their distribution.

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 context regarding wind belts.

Body:

First, draw a neat labelled diagram showing the global distribution of various wind belts and explain each belt in detail. The three major global wind belts are polar easterlies, westerlies, and trade winds.

Next, explain the factors that lead to the development of pressures belts – Atmospheric Pressure Gradient, Coriolis Effect, Frictional Force etc, Earth’s revolution, Seasonal variations.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

 


General Studies – 2


 

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

3. Effective parliamentary debates ensure that multiple viewpoints are considered, leading to more comprehensive and well-rounded legislation. Discuss. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Indian ExpressInsights on India

Why the question:

With a higher proportion of opposition MPs in the new Lok Sabha, one hopes the House would no longer be treated as a mere notice board for the government.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about importance of debates in the parliament for our democracy.

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.

Introduction: 

Begin by writing about the importance of parliamentary debates and discussion to our democracy.

Body:

Further elaborate how these debates and deliberations are enriching for our democracy. Cite examples to substantiate your points.

Next, give instances of reduced discussions on debates in key national issues in the parliament.

Next, evaluate the legislative process with respect of debates and discussions. Mention hasty passage of bills, frequent litigations, lack of expertise, bypassing Rajya Sabha, lack of referral to parliamentary committees etc.

Mention the measures that are needed to remedy this situation.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 


General Studies – 3


 

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

4. How do vaccines function? Explain the types and the process of making vaccines. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question:

Researchers have unearthed two promising vaccine candidates that could engage B-cells to make broadly neutralising antibodies to attack HIV.

Key Demand of the question:

To explain about functioning, type and process of manufacturing vaccines.

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 vaccine.

Body:

In the first, in detail write the functioning of a vaccine.

Next, write about the various types of vaccines.

Next, write about the process of making a vaccine – including antigen production (using live attenuated, inactivated, or subunit methods), purification, formulation with additives like adjuvants and stabilizers, extensive testing through clinical trials, regulatory approval, large-scale manufacturing, and distribution etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

 

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

5. The Montreal Protocol is celebrated as the most effective international climate agreement due to its global consensus, rapid implementation and successful reduction of ozone-depleting substances. Examine the reasons for its success and the learnings it has for other environment related agreements. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate         

Reference: Down to EarthInsights on India

Why the question:

In a promising development for the environment, a new study released has reported the first significant decrease in atmospheric concentrations of potent ozone-depleting substances (ODS) known as hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs).

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the reasons which makes the Montreal protocol a success.

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 the answer by writing about the Vienna Convention and subsequent Montreal Protocol.

Body:

In the first part, write the reasons which make Montreal protocol most successful global climate treaty – negotiations, funds, universal ratification, clear articulation and innovation in substitutes etc.

Next, write about the performance – phasing out Chlorofluorocarbon, Ratifying Kigali Amendment to Montreal Protocol, Hydrochlorofluorocarbons Phase out Management Plan (HPMP) etc.

Next, write about the learnings it has for other environmental related agreements.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward..

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: ethical issues in international relations and funding;

6. Enforcing morality in international relations involves leveraging international laws, ethical leadership and conflict resolution mechanisms to promote and uphold ethical standards globally. Comment. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications.

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

To write international morality and its nature and how to enforce it.

Directive:

Comment– here we must express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by defining international morality.

Body:

Start by explaining what is international ethics – moral principles, customary International Law, Human rights, Cooperation, Non-aggression etc. Cite examples to substantiate your points.

Next, write about the ways to enforce it – laws, leadership organizations, diplomacy, economic incentives, civil society, media, education, corporate responsibility et. Cite examples to substantiate

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

 

Topic: Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion

7. The link between changing one’s attitude and changing one’s behaviour is bidirectional and often reciprocal. Explain. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications.

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

To develop a link between changing your attitude and changing your behaviour.

Directive:

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:

In the introduction, define attitude and behaviour. Mention the difference between attitude and behaviour.

Body:

With relevant examples elaborate on how attitude can be change and that change in the resultant behaviour. Mention the bidirectional and often reciprocal relationship between the both.

Next, write about how behaviour and attitude affect us and the need to adopt behaviours which are of empathy, compassion, fortitude and integrity.

Conclusion:

Complete the answer by stressing how changing to right behaviours and attitude can impact our life positively.

 

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