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[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 16 OCTOBER 2018

[Insights Secure – 2018] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 16 OCTOBER 2018

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LIST of TOPICS (Static)


General Studies – 1


 

Topic- Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

1) Discuss the problems faced by women farmers in India. Also discuss how those problems could be solved.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

With increasing feminization of agriculture it is important to discuss the problems of women farmers in India and also to discuss the solution to their problems.

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 problems faced by the women farmers in India and what solutions could help them tackle those problems and challenges more effectively.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  role of women in Indian agriculture. E.g mention the proportion of women farmers in India-According to Oxfam India, women are responsible for about 60-80% of food and 90% of dairy production, respectively. Mention that women farmers play a  multidimensional role at every stage in agriculture — from sowing to planting, drainage, irrigation, fertilizer, plant protection, harvesting, weeding, and storage.

Body-

  1. Discuss the problems faced by them. E.g The Agriculture Census (2010-11) shows that out of an estimated 118.7 million cultivators, 30.3% were females. Similarly, out of an estimated 144.3 million agricultural labourers, 42.6% were females. In terms of ownership of operational holdings, the latest Agriculture Census (2015-16) is startling. Out of a total 146 million operational holdings, the percentage share of female operational holders is 13.87% (20.25 million); a lack of ownership of land does not allow women farmers to approach banks for institutional loans as banks usually consider land as collateral; women farmers have hardly any representation in society and are nowhere discernible in farmers’ organisations or in occasional protests; A declining size of land holdings may act as a deterrent due to lower net returns earned and technology adoption etc.
  2. Discuss how those problems could be solved. E.g Provision of credit without collateral under the microfinance initiative of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development should be encouraged. Better access to credit, technology, and provision of entrepreneurship abilities will further boost women’s confidence and help them gain recognition as farmers; The possibility of collective farming can be encouraged to make women self-reliant. Training and skills imparted to women as has been done by some self-help groups and cooperative-based dairy activities (Saras in Rajasthan and Amul in Gujarat). These can be explored further through farmer producer organisations. Moreover, government flagship schemes such as the National Food Security Mission, Sub-mission on Seed and Planting Material and the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana must include women-centric strategies and dedicated expenditure; making gender friendly farm tools and machinery etc.

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


General Studies – 2


Topic–  mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.

2) Metoo movement brings out the issue of sexual harassment, among many others. Analyze the lacunae in India’s sexual harassment laws and what needs to done? (250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

Metoo movement has showed us once again, what we already know – that sexual harassment in India is commonplace. Since metoo movement and issues arising out of the movement, are important for mains, analyzing the lacunae in India’s sexual harassment laws is important.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to discuss in detail the gaps in India’s sexual harassment laws, observations of committees formed for the purpose and the ways in which the law can be strengthened to ensure such incidents find no place in our society.

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 metoo movement and the allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct which is coming to light.

Body

  • Highlight the law dealing with such cases – enactment of Sexual Harassment (Prohibition, Prevention and Redressal Act) 2013 has been a bit of relief for women professionals and workers across India. Companies have shifted from turning a blind eye towards such issues to addressing them, and taking appropriate steps before things escalate.
  • Discuss how in bringing in this legislation, government referred to the vishakha guidelines. Discuss the provisions of the Act in brief – This Act contains almost all of the directives given by the SC in Vishakha case and it also consists of several other provisions such as: the Complaint Committees have been granted the powers of Civil Courts in garnering evidences; if the employers fail to comply with the provisions of the Act they will be liable for penalties up to Rs. 50,000; also, the Act includes in its purview workers of un-organized sectors such as daily wage laborers working in construction business or maids working in homes etc.
  • Highlight the issues in the legislation – mostly companies are not supportive of ICC and this is not the failure of the act. It is primarily because the companies only take sexual harassment prevention as a compliance and not something which is vital for women at their workplace; it has not specifically made conduct of sexual harassment as crime but only a civil wrong which is a major flaw; when the victim is willing to initiate criminal proceeding only then a criminal complaint would be filed; also there is a possibility of senior male employee or boss of the victim might force her to withdraw her complaint.
  • Discuss the view of Verma committee on sexual harassment laws

Conclusion – Give your view as to whether there is a need to bring changes in law and discuss way forward.


Topic – Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.

3) The outcomes of laws need to be analysed before enactment. Discuss in the context of the need for legislative impact assessment in India.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

Governance is a complex process and hasty law making creates several problems or is inadequate to meet the desired objectives. It is therefore important to discuss about the meaning and scope of legislative impact assessment.

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 legislative impact assessment and how it measures outcomes before enactment of laws, its advantages etc.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  reasons behind hasty lawmaking- emergency situation; under public pressure; empty reforms etc.

Body-

  1. Discuss the problems of hasty lawmaking e.g the ‘rush towards law’ results in policies and legal frameworks that are mostly reactive and seek to offer quick-fix solutions to complex problems. As a result, both lawmakers and citizens are frequently blindsided by the unanticipated impact of these moves and the laws often run aground on issues of implementation; Ultimately, the time and effort it takes to undo and resolve the issues caused by such hasty lawmaking can compound the problem that the law was intended to resolve, making the entire exercise of ‘fixing’ the issue futile etc.
  2. Discuss the concept of legislative impact assessment and elaborate it further. E.g  laws and rules need to be comprehensively analysed prior to their enactment so as to minimise such negative externalities, or at the very least, to identify them;  allow us to identify optimal law and policy changes and ensure that preferred options are those that are economically feasible, operationally viable, and socially acceptable, among several other considerations. Above all, such a framework would promote transparent and democratic law-making in the country and allow citizens to understand and debate trade-offs created by such laws even before they are formalised etc.

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


Topic – Social sector issues related to education

4) Despite the affinity for education in Indian society, the lack of world class universities in India is surprising. Examine.(250 words)

Indian express

Why this question

The article discusses the lack of good quality higher educational institution in India and ways in which the same can be achieved. A lot many developments have taken place in the past year with focus on autonomy of institutions, changes in regulatory structure etc, which needs to be examined.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to discuss the status of higher educational institution particularly with respect to their ranking at global level, examine causes behind their poor performance in these rankings, discuss the impact and finally, give suggestions on how to improve the situation.

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 – Discuss the recent Times Higher Education World University Rankings and India’s performance in it.

Body

  • Discuss reasons behind the poor performance of Indian universities in ranking – international faculty and students that do not really work for an Indian institution, poor number of publications etc. Also discuss the point made in the article that in countries such as India the focus has only been on creating good public institutions, without creating an enabling environment for private education, which is now changing.
  • Discuss the impact of poor quality of such institutions
  • Discuss the steps taken by government for addressing this situation – Changes proposed in higher education regulatory architecture , greater autonomy etc

Conclusion – Summarize your arguments and explain why Indian universities are not performing well and discuss the way forward.


Topic– Issues relating to poverty and hunger.

5) Discuss the role biotechnology played in Green Revolution? Do you think the answer to India’s hunger problem lies in biotechnology?(250 words)

Indian Express

Why this question

The article highlights the role genetic modification played in developing new varieties of seeds which ushered in the era of green revolution in the country. The article also examines the role biotechnology can play in addressing the hunger problem of India. Considering the fact that India has fallen in HDI table and GHI index, hunger has had a huge role to play. Hence this question is important for GS2 and GS3

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to bring out the ways and means in which biotechnology helped in Green revolution in India. Thereafter we need to bring out the problem of hunger and hidden hunger in India. Next, our focus needs to be on explaining the role biotechnology can play in addressing the hunger problem. Not to mention, we also need to bring out the risks involved. In conclusion, we need to mention the way forward.

Directive word

Discuss – Here in your discussion, you need to bring out how genetically modified seeds were introduced and the impact they had on green revolution.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Explain what green revolution is and that genetically modified crops were introduced first in India during green revolution.

Body

  • Discuss the GM seeds which were used in Green Revolution and the advantages they offered such as higher yield etc
  • Discuss the plight of hunger and hidden hunger. Highlight India’s abysmal record in dealing with these issues
  • Discuss how biotechnology can help – enhance productivity, fortified food items such as golden rice etc can tackle the nutrient and micronutrients deficiency etc
  • Discuss the issues with usage of GM crops.

Conclusion – Give your fair and balanced view on whether GM can solve India’s hunger problem and discuss the way forward.

 


General Studies – 3


Topic:  Part of static series under the heading – “Livestock”

6) Economics of animal rearing will play a major role of the dream of doubling farmer’s income is to be achieved. Examine, in this context, the steps taken by the government in promoting animal rearing and suggest ways to promote this sector?(250 words)

 

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to answer the following points

  • How economic of animal rearing might lead to doubling cof income
  • Steps taken by government for promoting livestock
  • Ways to promote this sector

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Mention that India has the largest stock of dairy animals and is the world’s largest producer of milk.  

Body

  • Give reasons how it might lead to doubling of income for farmers
    • Of late growth rate of livestock farming has been more than that of food crops.
    • Livestock is more resilient during droughts and is not affected by monsoon variability.
    • Meat and dairy products are less fluctuating as compared to food crops. Government does not need to provide Minimum Support price for animal products.
    • Demand for animal products has more elasticity with income.
      Distribution of ownership or livestock is more egalitarian as compared to land ownership, which is highly skewed.
  • Discuss the steps taken by the government such as National Dairy Plan Phase I, National Program for bovine breeding and dairy development and Dairy Entrepreneurship development scheme etc
  • Give suggestions on how to promote this sector

 


General Studies – 4


Topic- Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions;

7) “Technology itself is value-neutral. It is the responsibility of the companies and the government to deploy it in ways that will maintain and protect our digital commons.” Comment.(250 words)

Reference

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 statement. We have to form our opinion based on a proper discussion and presentation of valid arguments/ facts in our support.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  way technology has been transforming human lives and how the new corridors of technology AI, bioengineering etc seek to transform human world.

Body-

  1. Discuss how technology is value-neutral. Give an example to illustrate your point that although technology is value neutral and can be used in productive, peaceful ways as well as in a destructive manner and for nefarious purposes etc.
  2. Discuss the main stakeholders in the realm of technology- technology companies; the government and the people. Discuss why there is a responsibility on part of the government and the companies to deploy technology towards the common good of all. E.g Solving problems is how businesses succeed. Profitability is ultimately a by-product of a company’s vision. To continue thriving, a global corporation has to find a bigger problem to solve, rather than protect a business model that has delivered in the past; need to make technology accessible and affordable for all etc.

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



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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