Print Friendly, PDF & Email



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.

Topic:  Salient features of Indian society

1) Cleanliness must move beyond caste. With reference to the Swach Bharat Abhiyaan, how can social integration aid in national cleanliness and hygiene? Examine. (200 Words)

The Hindu


Swachh Bharat mission has been launched with an objective of cleaning the nation, eliminating open defecation and bringing cleanliness and hygiene by 2019. However the campaign seems to have missed important part of cleanliness efforts, that is people those who are involved in actual cleaning.

In India work of cleaning and hygiene are imposed on particular castes since thousands of years. With some minor changes the practice continues to this day. The ironical part is that, those who are engaged in cleaning are the most neglected and oppressed sections of the society. Thus SBM will not be success until welfare of these sections is focused upon and rest of the sections of the society are truly involved in the program of cleaning.

How can social integration aid in national cleanliness and hygiene?

  • Social integration would break the caste links that have forced particular sections in cleaning efforts. Participation of all sections of society would heighten the efforts towards the cleaning India.
  • Inclusive social efforts would remove the indignity and contempt attached to cleaning work and increased participation of the people thereby would give this campaign a form of mass movement.
  • With all sections participating in the SBM, people would understand the importance and value of cleaning and hygiene. This would lead to every person to be the agent of change in cleaning the nation.
  • Particular castes of the society have been forced in manual scavenging, cleaning manholes and all sorts of menial work. Social integration and consensus would help in modernizing the techniques of scavenging, cleaning manholes, reducing the deaths associated with it and making cleaning efforts more inclusive.
  • Social integration and inclusive participation would also help in building sound infrastructure towards cleaning efforts, creating human resource to strengthen the national efforts.
  • Participation of all sections would remove the concept of impurity associated with cleaning, change the people’s attitude towards it and realizing the true objective of art 17 of the Indian constitution making SBM a watershed movement not only in cleanliness drive but also in national integration.

Unfortunately government of India while launching the SBM, has missed the caste angles associated with cleaning. Removing social pressure and forced responsibility of cleaning on particular caste would be great achievement for India. Thus there should be concerted efforts on the part of government to bring all sections of the society in a cleanliness drive thereby making SBM a true mass movement.


Topic: Salient features of Indian society; Social empowerment; Political ideologies and their effect on society

2) Alternate opinions form the backbone of a civic society. How can intellectuals and activists play a more meaningful role in social transformation? Discuss. (200 Words)

The Hindu


Civic society due to its very nature tends to be diversified in its form, structure and composition. This gives rise to diversified thinking and views among the people. Though the majority of the people of society prefer the uniformity in thinking and practices, alternative opinions and views too carry high importance. Uniformity tends to turn into authoritarian way thereby neglecting or sometimes suppressing the other views. This hinders the growth of the society and stagnates its development prospects.

On the other hand alternative opinions show the flaws in the majoritarian opinion and help to create more correct and inclusive opinions. Alternative opinions also give different perspective of thinking that could bring out what is best for the society. Intellectual and activists are important part of the society which can propound alternate thinking and opinions thereby playing meaningful role in the society.

How can intellectual and activists play more meaningful role in social transformation-

  • In most cases, activists work with the dispossessed and the marginalized. They can imagine a better world for those the larger society forgets about and, in doing this, they sacrifice their interests. Their actions are not geared towards personal benefit but for the benefit of communities and individuals with whom they can stand in solidarity.
  • Often the actions of the activist improve the well-being of others who are not just family and friends. Her actions are not rationally utilitarian but morally robust, as powerfully exemplified by countless activists who have worked with labour, women, the marginalised and the dispossessed.
  • It is the activists who can make sure that the moral skills of a society do not vanish. It is activists, who give up their personal, material comforts for the larger values of dignity, respect and equality of individuals in a society, who can function as the moral compass for others.
  • When the larger society fails in its moral sense activists and intellectual will arise to counter them. They could provide alternative thinking and opinions to degenerated society to bring society back on the moral and ethical guidelines.
  • Intellectual provide moral and ethical foundation to the work and actions of the activists. They are the ones who inject fresh thinking into the society and help in to evolve in better manner.
  • Intellectual have shaped the new ideas. Whether it is politics, science or humanities, intellectual have been forefront in propounding such ideas bearing the brunt of the society.
  • Intellectual have fueled many revolutions in the world and they would do many more in the future. Whenever socio-economic inequalities have hindered the human progress, intellectual have provided alternative methods of socio-economic transformations.

Activists and intellectuals are essential to protecting the society from two of the greatest dangers — power and profit. Getting rid of such people is to compromise our present as well as the future of our society. Thus intellectuals and activists are indispensible part of the society and social transformation. 


Topic:  Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability,

3) Private investigations can assist individuals and the state in thoroughness and expertise without an integrity compromise. Critically comment on the need to regulate private investigative agencies. (200 Words)

The Hindu


Economic growth and development have led to the establishment of a large number of private detective agencies. The scale of their work makes them ‘business enterprises’. Their professional expertise ranges from digging up dirt for divorce proceedings to background checks on corporate entities, to tracking terrorism. Thus government is mulling over plans to regulate such agencies.

Need to regulate private investigative agencies-

  • Business establishments are increasingly reliant on private investigators for gathering information and intelligence. However there has been growing concern over how these agencies function, as some of them conduct operations without due verification of those employed as agents.
  • Private investigative agencies have been found to be violating the rights of the citizens and there have been no checks on such violations.
  • Government regulation would enforce proper norms for the functioning of private detective agencies. It would make sure that agencies with “dubious reputation” close down their businesses.
  • Through legislation, the government can regulate the functioning of private detective agencies so that they are run within legal parameters and are accountable to a regulatory authority.
  • One of the added advantage would be that private detective agencies following high standards of the work can relieve police some of their duties so that police can focus more on important issues like national security, law and order, terrorism etc.
  • Private detective agencies could bring much needed expertize and novel practices into the practices that are missing currently.

Some of the concerns of government regulation-

  • Government could dictate the terms and conditions of the private investigation and may hamper their efficiency and efficacy of the work.
  • Regulation and license system for the private investigation agencies should not create the parallel force to existing security agencies.
  • Regulation of private agencies should clearly define their areas of work, cases that they could deal with and responsibility.

The Private Detective Agencies (Regulation) Bill has been pending in Parliament for the past seven years. Government should make necessary changes to allay the concerns of all stakeholders that would bring clarity and transparency in the functioning of private detective agencies. Regulation of private detective agencies would surely create new ecosystem that would redefine the investigation.

Topic:  Role of civil services 

4) Police reforms require structural changes making the establishment more independent and resistant to external influences. Comment. (200 Words)

The Indian Express


Following are the structural aspects linked with police reforms:

  • There is need to increase the number of police force, mainly at base level of hierarchical structure. The global average ratio of police-population is 270 to 100,000, where it’s 120 in India. Increase in number will reduce the stress of indivisual police official.
  • Structural changes in funding for police reforms are also an area of concern. As can be seen through recently launched central government umbrella scheme for police reform. It has been observed that state are not willing to outlay funds for police reforms and thus MPF scheme has been launched by central government.
  • Low participation of woman in police force is part of structural lacunae. In order to sensatise the police force towards issues linked with woman safety, more number of women should be inducted in police force.
  • Second Administrative Reforms Commission has noted the absence of independent oversight authorities that specialise in addressing all kinds of police misconduct, and are easily accessible. In light of this, under the Model Police Act, 2006 drafted by the Police Act Drafting Committee (2005), and the Supreme Court guidelines (2006), states are required to set up state and district level complaints authorities.
  • One of the recommendations given by Padmanabhaiah Committee and the Second Administrative Reforms Commission this regard has been to raise the qualification for entry into the civil police to class 12th or graduation. It has also been recommended that constables, and the police force in general, should receive greater training in soft skills (such as communication, counseling and leadership) given they need to deal with the public regularly.
  • States must have their own specialized investigation units within the police force that are responsible for crime investigation. Separation of crime investigation and law and order related work is also structural component of police reforms.
  • In order to improve efficiency and transparency of police functioning separate body should be create in order to deal with the matters such as promotions, posting and transfer etc.
  • There is need to use technology in more efficient manner as compared to existing situation. Digital infrastructure should be empowered to reduce delays, ensure transparency and provide insulation from external influences.
  • Structural reforms should give boost to community police through good relations between police and people living in that area.


Decades has been passed to the first report about police reforms got published. Every time law and order issues arise, damage control takes the leading role. We need to strengthen the institutional setup of police force to focus on preventive aspects for crime control and law related functions. Police reforms must be taken on agenda in normal peaceful times though cooperative efforts by states themselves.

Supplementary information :

 Supreme Court in 2006 has given 7 directions for police reforms in Prakash Singh vs. Union of India case. The seven directives are enlisted below.

  1. Constitute a State Security Commission (SSC) to:
  • Ensure that the state government does not exercise unwarranted influence or pressure on the police.
  • Lay down broad policy guideline and
  • Evaluate the performance of the state police
  1. Ensure that the DGP is appointed through merit based transparent process and secure a minimum tenure of two years.
  2. Ensure that other police officers on operational duties (including Superintendents of Police in-charge of a district and Station House Officers in-charge of a police station) are also provided a minimum tenure of two years.
  3. Separate the investigation and law and order functions of the police.
  4. Set up a Police Establishment Board (PEB) to decide transfers, postings, promotions and other service related matters of police officers of and below the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police and make recommendations on postings and transfers above the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police
  5. Set up a Police Complaints Authority (PCA) at state level to inquire into public complaints against police officers of and above the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police in cases of serious misconduct, including custodial death, grievous hurt, or rape in police custody and at district levels to inquire into public complaints against the police personnel below the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police in cases of serious misconduct.
  6. Set up a National Security Commission (NSC) at the union level to prepare a panel for selection and placement of Chiefs of the Central Police Organisations (CPO) with a minimum tenure of two years.


Topic: Indian economy; Environment

5) Analyse the impact of climate change on the Indian Economy. Suggest some key systemic measures for the same.  (200 Words)


Climate change is proved fact of contemporary era. The process of global warming has been fasten by anthropological activities to such as extent that , studying climate change and its impacts on various sectors has become the precondition for planning and policy making. India being a tropical country is facing the multispectral and multilayered impacts of climate change.

Impacts of climate change on Indian economy are:


  • More than 50% people of the country derive their livelihood from agriculture activity, directly or indirectly. The climate change causing drier spells in many parts of India reducing the productivity of agricultural lands.
  • Change in weather is leading to the extreme weather events which as hazardous to agriculture produce. Being the largest source of income such events hampers the rural wages and livelihood opportunities. Eg: recent unrest over farm loan waiver issue
  • In case of industrial sector, economics of environment friendly products and process are taking over the traditional one. This change has created stress on economics as the initial investment and expertise are in input stage.
  • Due to dominant discourse over climate change at International level, environmental norms are getting stringent in India. Many projects have been stalled with huge amount of locked capital investment. This has reduced the economic growth and industrial production.
  • Huge money is involved in research and development of environmentally sustainable projects.
  • Number of environmental refugees and displaced people is increasing in India, mostly from the areas such as mineral rich region, coastal region. Such kind of forceful migration creates negative impacts on local economy and collectively on macro economy as well.
  • Cost of environmental economics lacks precise and well accepted methods of calculation. This aspect of economics is though under shadow in current policy parameters, it forms the big dimension of consideration.
  • Climate change has created long terms negative impacts on revenue areas such as forestry, animal husbandry, tourism etc.

Measures to mitigate impacts of climate change on Indian economy:

  1. Efforts are going on to reduce the dependence of Indian agriculture on monsoon. These efforts should be in right direction that involves sustainable practices such as local water harvesting, organic farming , dry land agriculture etc.
  2. On policy level India must become proactive member at International front in support of right of people getting affected by ongoing climate change. Eg UNFCC and COP meetings
  3. At domestic level as well, ecofriendly technologies must be made user friendly, affordable and recyclable in order to increase their usage by people.
  4. Micro, small and medium enterprises can provide good solution to stalled projects by providing livelihood opportunities to people along with sustainable manufacturing processes.
  5. Energy sector can lead the economy in this area as proper convergence has to establish in conventional and non-conventional energy resources. Eg: Grid connectivity, decentralised solar power generation, small dam hydroelectricity projects etc
  6. Weather forecasting can save huge economic cost as it will help in disaster prevention through precautionary measures.
  7. There is need to invest more on research and development field for environment friendly products and processes. IPR norms must protect them along with incentives given by private and public sector industries.


Indian economy has very specific characters such as high dependency on single source of income, low insurance penetration, informal sector etc. Considering these very specific indigenous characteristics, environmental economics must become the integrated part of economic studies in country.


Topic:  Ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions;

6) Use of force by the State or Law Enforcement identifies key conflicts of ethical interest. Comment. (150 Words)


Introduction :- State has the responsibility to uphold the rights of citizens. However it uses the force in many cases owing to the dilemmas

Individual rights vs law and order in society :- In order to ensure the stability and tranquillity in society state uses the force which may curb the individuals rights as seen in imposing curfews and prohibition orders in disturbed areas.

Larger citizens right vs sentiments of community :- The verdicts of Supreme courts against the Tripple Talaq case shows that rational interpretations of community practices and enforcing their correct versions may hurt the community even though it is right

Private interest vs public interest :- Sometimes for greater goods of people and society state has to use force against private entities like in case of generic medicines which creates dilemma for the rights, freedom of private people.

Use of force by state is important when it serves the nation and people at large like Abraham Lincoln used force only to make America a strong, united and great nation.

Use of moral force by state rather than physical force will serve the people bitterly like government persuade people morally to behave in certain manner. Ex Give it Up campaign by Indian government to peruse people to give their LPG subsidies. 

However force is used to suppress in many instances. Hence use of force by state or law enforcing agencies must be the last course of action. However good may be the intensions it creates dilemma for the sufferers. Better implementations of laws, constitutional provisions, efficient service delivery by people will help in state taking this course frequently.