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[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 15 OCTOBER 2018

[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 15 OCTOBER 2018

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LIST of TOPICS (Static)

 


General Studies – 2


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

1) No amount of concern over India’s place in the world university rankings or pumping resources into infrastructure building can help, if the university culture is not conducive to creativity. Comment. (250 words)

The hindu

why this question

India’s poor performance in global university rankings has led to expression of concern from various quarters add sections of the society. There have been calls for providing more autonomy and funds  to universities at academic institutions providing higher education. In this context it’s important to understand the importance of University culture conducive to creativity.

Directive word

Comment- here we have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.  

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to  Express our opinion on the importance of University culture which is conducive to creativity vis a vis the importance of  better performance in university rankings as well as allocation of more funds towards higher education.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  performance of Indian universities in the global university rankings. Also mention the recent announcement by the PM of India to invest Rs One lakh crore for infrastructure in higher education by 2022.

Body-

Discuss why a culture conducive to creativity is important for a university. Bring out the role and relatively less importance of, improving university rankings and pumping more funds. E.g rankings, though imperfect, suggest that Indian universities are lagging in their research output. This by itself should be worrying, but another aspect, namely the migration overseas even at the undergraduate level, suggests that not even the dissemination of knowledge here is considered good enough by Indians; University teachers are paid well enough and the availability of material is no longer a problem, with highly affordable Indian editions of the best international textbooks; The crucial factor is the absence of the norms internal to the Indian university that enable desirable outcomes with respect to teaching and research. Among these norms would be an expectation of excellence from both teachers and students and the assurance of autonomy to the former. This autonomy, it may be asserted, is to be expected not only in relation to external agencies such as the UGC or the MHRD but also within the university, including from peers. In fact, within the university the latter is all that counts etc

Conclusion– based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.


Topic – Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.

2) The judiciary alone cannot take forward the mission of deepening democracy and protecting social freedoms in India. Do you agree? Comment. (250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

India is the world’s largest democracy with one of the most proactive and forward looking higher judiciary. Indian judiciary has largely defended the constitution and its values very well in the face of a challenging political atmosphere and regressive socioeconomic conditions. However it has its limits and needs to be complemented by political and societal efforts as discussed by the article.

Directive word

Comment- here we have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to express our opinion as to whether or not the judiciary alone can take forward the mission of deepening democracy and protecting social freedoms in India. We have to form our opinion based on a proper discussion and backed by sufficient arguments/ facts/ examples.

Structure of the answer

Introduction- write a few introductory lines about India’s vital democratic institutions- The legislature and the executive; the judiciary; the press; and the civil society.

Body-

Discuss the reforms brought by Indian judiciary and its efforts towards deepening the democracy in India and protecting social freedoms of its citizens. E.g briefly discuss the slew of verdicts by the Supreme Court, on triple talaq, Section 377, adultery, and the Sabarimala temple. Also mention the ruling on right to privacy and briefly discuss the role played by PILs in strengthening democracy and protecting social freedoms in India.

Bring out the need for other institutions like the legislatures and the executive, the civil society, the press to supplement the efforts of the judiciary. E.g On the one hand there is a complete abnegation of the role of the legislature, and on the other there is a dichotomy between social morality and judicial morality (itself an interpretation of constitutional morality); If the judiciary has assumed the role of the single most important pillar of India’s parliamentary democracy, built on separation of powers, it is mainly because of the degradation and abuse of the roles of the legislature and the the executive, the press and the civil society; Parliament, instead of representing the highest democratic ethos, panders to electoral majorities, leaving it incapable of challenging barbaric social/religious practices enforced by dominant interests; the judiciary does not exist in a vacuum. Even when it attempts to correct regressive social practices, it is still a reflection of our society. Nothing could be more illustrative of this than the serious lack of diversity and representation, especially in the higher judiciary etc.

Conclusion– based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.

 


General Studies – 3


Topic– Indian economy : issues

3) Examine the issues that the collapse of IL&FS highlights and discuss steps that are needed for course correction?(250 words)

Financial express

Reference

Why this question

The collapse of IL&FS raises several questions with respect to corporate governance structure, lack of transparency and other issues which have been discussed in the articles. The topic has received widespread coverage in news and needs to be prepared in detail

Key demand of the question

We have to briefly explain the turn of collapse events leading to collapse of IL&FS, examine the learnings from the collapse of IL&FS, and discuss steps to prevent such incidents in the future.

Directive word

Examine – When you are asked to examine, you have to probe deeper into the topic,  get into details, and find out the causes or implications if any .

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Highlight that IL&FS is an infrastructure lending company, an NBFC, with significant shareholdings of public sector entities like LIC etc. The company which has several subsidiaries is in the eye of a storm because defaulted on a few payments and failed to service its commercial papers (CP) on due date—which means the company has run out of cash or it is facing a liquidity crunch.

Body

  • Discuss the effects of the crisis – company’s default spells trouble for its investors, which include banks, insurance companies, and mutual funds. Investors and traders have been worried over the cascading effects of IL&FS’s defaults, with further defaults hitting mutual funds with exposure to IL&FS and its group companies. Highlight that LIC has assured that it would not allow IL&FS to default, and that IL&FS has moved to NCLT for relief
  • Examine the learnings – poor quality of credit rating agencies, lack of transparency in functioning of such behemoths, poor regulatory oversight mechanism, issues for infrastructure lending etc
  • Discuss the course correction – better regulation of corporate structures, combined with greater disclosure and transparency and stronger corporate governance. Second, a clearer separation of public and private is needed, rather than the muddy links and ownership structures that now exist etc

Conclusion – Highlight that lessons needs to be learnt and discuss way forward.


Topic:  Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices

4) Discuss the problems faced by the scheme for  promotion of Agricultural Mechanization for in-situ Management of Crop Residue. (250 words)

Reference

Why this question

Burning of crop residues in the northern parts of India is one the main causes of several air pollution in cities like Delhi. In situ management of crop residue and promotion of agricultural mechanization has not yielded the desired results. It is important to discuss the failure of the scheme and the reasons behind it.

Directive word

Discuss- this is an all-encompassing directive which mandates us to write in detail about the key demand of the question. we also have to discuss about the related and important aspects of the question in order to bring out a complete picture of the issue in hand.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to write in detail about the scheme for Agricultural Mechanization for in-situ management of crop residue and bring out the reasons as to why the scheme has been unable to yield the desired outcomes and results.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  problem of burning agricultural residue in India.

Body

Write a few introductory lines about the  scheme in question and bring out the reasons as to why it has failed to achieve the desired outcomes. E.g  the effectiveness of the machines made available to farmers, like chopper, happy seeders, super straw management system (Super-SMS) and rotavator, is questionable; happy seeder has the potential of causing a rat and termite attack when wheat seeds are sown; Even If a farmer buys all the machines at subsidised rates, he will have to spend hefty amounts; The machines require higher basic horsepower (BHP) tractors, which cost much higher than all these machines and also the operating costs are higher; the cost of various machines has jumped significantly in the past couple of years etc.

conclusion– based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.  


Topic-  Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

5) A comprehensive protection of traditional knowledge in India can be secured only through a multipronged approach. Discuss.(250 words)

epw

Why this question

The article provides a deep and  a clear insights into the need for protecting Traditional Knowledge, challenges involved therein and possible solutions.

Directive word

Discuss- this is an all-encompassing directive which mandates us to write in detail about the key demand of the question. we also have to discuss about the related and important aspects of the question in order to bring out a complete picture of the issue in hand.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to write in detail about the need for a multipronged approach in order to secure a comprehensive protection of Traditional Knowledge in the current IPR regime.

Structure of the answer

Introduction- write a few introductory lines about the  Traditional Knowledge, its diversity, content, nature of record/ transmission etc.

Body-

Discuss the need for providing comprehensive protection to traditional knowledge. E.g Developing countries, traditional know­ledge holders and ILCs largely realised the imperative for the protection of traditional knowledge under the IPR regime administered internationally through the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), 1992, in the wake of certain cases of biopiracy of plants such as neem, turmeric, and ayahuasca; the National IPR Policy insistently makes the case for defensive measures, or measures which are primarily targeted at preventing IPR claims on traditional knowledge being granted to unauthorised entities. It extensively advocates the use of documentation (strengthening and expanding the Traditional Knowledge Digital Library [TKDL]), as a means to establish prior art, made available to patent examiners across the world, thereby preventing IPR claims to traditional knowledge being granted to unauthorised entities, while also encouraging the possibility of its greater use for further research and development; It has been recognised that there are a number of gaps in securing positive patent protection for traditional knowledge, which includes both a formal gap in the legal scope of possible protection as well as practical gaps (WIPO 2008);  Concerns have also been manifest throughout the world about persons other than those belonging to ILCs or traditional knowledge holders exploiting or abusing the patent system to secure patents over traditional knowledge which are legitimately the property of the former

Discuss how Traditional Knowledge can be comprehensively secured. E.g comprehensive protection of traditional knowledge can be secured only through a multipronged approach which includes using the conventional IPR regime to the extent feasible to secure both negative and positive protection, increased interface between the IPR regime and other regimes (biodiversity, ABS regimes), amendments to the existing legislation to further strengthen the traditional knowledge enabling provisions, as well as considering the case for a sui generis mechanism. Such efforts are, however, not enough in a globalised world order and it is indispensable that the interests of a developing country like India, with rich traditional knowledge and ILCs dependent on it for livelihood, prevail in the rule-setting organisations at the global level, be it the TRIPS or CBD etc.

Take the help of the article attached to the question to understand the issue better and to frame your answer.

Conclusion– based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.


Topic– Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation

6) The lack of success of Namami Gange is having adverse impact of biodiversity of Ganges river. Analyse. (250 words)

Reference

Why this question

The article assesses the status of river Ganga with respect to its biodiversity and highlights how the biodiversity of the river is being impacted due to various reasons. Namami Gange is in the news and assessing the impact of the programme, and the reasons why pollution of Ganga rivers continues unabated and the impact it has had on biodiversity etc is important and needs to be prepared.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to discuss the status of Namami Gange programme and highlight the impact on biodiversity as a result of pollution, dam construction etc. First, we need to analyse how defective Namami Gange has been in achieving its stated objectives. Next, we need to analyze the impact of such pollution on biodiversity of Ganges. Finally, we need to discuss steps to correct the situation.

Directive word

Analyze – When asked to analyze, you  have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts and present them as a whole in a summary.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Explain the objective and status of Namami Gange. Mention that according to a new report from the CAG, this new push to clean the Ganga is not delivering results. Government had only used $260 million of the $1.05 billion earmarked for the flagship programme between April 2015 and March 2017. All of these projects had a consistent list of problems: unused funds, an absence of a long-term plan, and delays in taking concrete action.

Body

  • Discuss the reasons why the flow of water, and the quality of water has deteriorated – dam construction, effluent discharge etc
  • Discuss the impact on biodiversity in various stretches of the river as highlighted in the WII report. Mention that the problem is only likely to worsen in the days to come as a result of promotion of waterways.
  • Discuss the steps that need to be undertaken to correct the situation – in the Upper Ganga, micro hydel power projects should be considered instead of larger dams, Flow Augmentation is a calculated release of water stored in reservoirs into the stream to maintain its natural flow. A good flow in the river will also help tackle huge pollution due to abundant dilution of water with the pollutants etc

Conclusion – highlight the emphasis government has put on Namami Gange and discuss the way forward.


Topic – Part of static series under the heading – “Irrigation”

7) What do you understand by micro irrigation? Discuss its importance to a country like India?(250 words)

Key demand of the question

The question is quite straightforward in its demand. It expects us to explain what micro irrigation is and thereafter, give reasons for its importance to a country like India.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Give a brief introduction to status of irrigation in India and highlight that micro irrigation is gaining currency.

Body –

  • Explain what micro irrigation is – Slow application of water on localized volume of soil by surface drip, subsurface drip, bubbler, and micro sprinkler systems.
  • Explain its importance for India – allows judicious use of water for a water stressed country like India. It also helps to save fertilizer consumption per unit of land etc

Conclusion – Discuss the status of micro irrigation in India and highlight the steps through which micro irrigation in India can be promoted.

 



NOTE: 

We are giving hints for each question. Please use your creativity and originality to come up with answers that are unique to you. But do so without deviating from core demand of each question. Ultimately you should use your reason and judgement to write your own answer. 

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