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[Insights Secure – 2019] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 22 DECEMBER 2018

[Insights Secure – 2019] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 22 DECEMBER 2018

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Tomorrow’s Static Topic:  Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment. 


General Studies – 1


Topic – Indian Art and culture.

1) Sufis and medieval saints failed to modify either religious ideas and practices or the outward structure of Hindu/Muslim societies to any appreciable extent. Comment.(250 words)

 

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to discuss the impact of Sufi and medieval saints on the society and highlight the reasons why they were not able to make an appreciable change.

Directive word

Comment – When you are asked to comment, you have to pick main points and give your ‘opinion’ on them based on evidences or arguments stemming from your wide reading. Your opinion may be for or against, but you must back your argument with evidences.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – The Sufi and Medieval saints represent an important aspect of the medieval times in India. This generation of saints emerged as a reaction to the growing orthodoxy and superstition in the Hindu religion, and decried the degrading situation of the social order

Body

  • Highlight that analysis of the impact of these saints reveal that they failed to mark a significant change in the social order. Discuss the reasons behind it
    • The Sufi and other saints generally propagated their ideas by singing and preaching to the local populace. While their message was received by a good number of audience, the memory of the same could not last long due to the nomadic nature of these saints.
    • no institutional structure formed by these groups. Thus, the message propagated failed to mark a long-term change. Also, without any organised structure of followers, the lineage of the saints could not continue.
    • The sufi and bhakti saints failed to offer a proper alternative to the social customs that they attacked. Thus, the absence of an alternative to the social customs left the status of the traditions unaffected.
    • Most of the followers of the sufi and bhakti movement came from the lower strata of the society. It was much difficult for such sections to break the shackles of the religious and social customs and form a new cult of their own.

Conclusion – Give your view on the the advancement made by these saints.


General Studies – 2


Topic-Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

2) Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill 2018 fails to comprehend the multifaceted nature of trafficking and, presumes guilt rather than innocence. Examine.(250 words)

Indian express

Reference

Why this question

The bill which was already approved by Lok Sabha has triggered widespread protests from various section including NGOs and transgenders demanding its withdrawal fearing that it would adversely affect them. It is therefore important to analyze the bill in detail.

Directive word

Examine- here we have to probe deeper into the topic,  get into details, and find out the causes or implications if any.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to dig deep into the provisions of the bill in detail and bring out how the bill fails to comprehend the multifaceted nature of trafficking and how it presumes guilt rather than innocence.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  passage of the bill in the lok sabha recently and highlight the aims of the bill.

Body-

Discuss about the salient provisions of the bill which highlight that the bill has not recognised the multifaceted nature of trafficking and presumes guilt rather than innocence. E.g The Bill creates a law for investigation of all types of trafficking, and rescue, protection and rehabilitation of trafficked victims; The Bill provides for the establishment of investigation and rehabilitation authorities at the district, state and national level. Anti-Trafficking Units will be established to rescue victims and investigate cases of trafficking.  Rehabilitation Committees will provide care and rehabilitation to the rescued victims; In India, socio-economic inequalities are more acute, as 37 million people have been dispossessed by the agrarian crisis leading them to migrate, thus becoming vulnerable to trafficking and forced labour. Increased criminalisation is only likely to strengthen the hands of corrupt police officers leading to the persecution of vulnerable sections of society; The Bill is a draconian criminal law with offences unrelated to trafficking (distribution of material on sexual exploitation), vaguely worded offences (publicising obscene materials that may lead to trafficking), offences where only the act has to be proved and minimum, mandatory punishments with no clear sentencing policy;

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


Topic– Role of civil services in a democracy

3) Critically analyze the role played by bureaucracy in facilitating ease of doing business in India?(250 words)

Indianexpress

Why this question

The article analyses the role played by civil servants in facilitating ease of doing business, one of the major policy aims of the current government. This question would help you in preparing for aforementioned topic in GS2.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to bring out the positive and not so positive role played by civil servants in facilitating reforms led to ease of doing business. Finally, we need to provide a fair and balanced opinion on the role played by civil servants and discuss the way forward.

Directive word

Critically 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. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, all you need to do is look at the good and bad of something and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Highlight the improvement made in EODB rankings, and explain that apart from political commitment at the top, the role of bureaucracy has also been critical.

Body

  • Discuss the positive role played by bureaucracy in facilitating EODB
    • Secretary, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), who started a system of ranking states, leading to intense competition amongst them.
    • Further, DIPP did a detailed analysis and gave a list of as many as 340 parameters of reform.
    • At the state level, they worked as a team to issue government orders, take policy decisions and monitor implementation etc
  • Discuss the limitations in the role played by civil servants
    • Despite having a common application form and online clearances in a time-bound manner, there remained a tendency to raise unnecessary issues and force the entrepreneur to visit the concerned government office.
    • Rent seeking behaviour etc also created issues
  • Discuss how the reforms can be made to percolate down to the smaller cities and towns across India.

Conclusion – Give your view on the role played by civil servants and discuss way forward.


Topic- Indian polity issues.

4) Centre’s surveillance order challenges the supreme court’s verdict on privacy. Critically examine.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question

The December 20 order allowing 10 different Central agencies to snoop on people is seen as a challenge to the nine-judge Constitution Bench judgment of the Supreme Court, which directed the government to protect informational privacy of every individual. The above issue needs to be examined in detail.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to explain the order of the central government in detail and examine whether the order violated the spirit of the judgement given in puttaswamy case where supreme court upheld right to privacy and tried to balance the imperatives of individual rights versus national security. Finally, we need to provide our fair and balanced opinion on the order and discuss the way forward.

Directive word

Critically 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. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, all you need to do is look at the good and bad of something and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Explain the recent order and the controversy it creates.

Body

  • Highlight that the December 20 order allowing 10 different Central agencies to snoop on people is seen as a challenge to the nine-judge Constitution Bench judgment of the Supreme Court, which directed the government to protect informational privacy of every individual. The December 20 order allows central agencies — from the Intelligence Bureau to the Central Board of Direct Taxes to the Cabinet Secretariat (RAW) to the Commissioner of Delhi Police — to intercept, monitor and de-crypt “any information” generated, transmitted, received or stored in “any computer resource”. The government order is based on Section 69 (1) of the Information Technology Act, 2000, and Rule 4 of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Interception, Monitoring and Decryption of Information) Rules, 2009.
  • Discuss issues arising because of the order. Discuss the verdict of the SC in Puttaswamy judgmental where apex court had asked the government to always carefully and sensitively balance individual privacy and the legitimate concerns of the state.
  • Also highlight that order does not provide the procedure or the object for such an exercise or the quantum of period for which a person’s private data could be intercepted
  • Discuss what needs to be done in such cases where national security is pitted against individual privacy

Conclusion – Give a fair and balanced opinion and discuss way forward.


General Studies – 3


Topic – Indian economy and issues related to employment

5) As one of the youngest countries in the world, going forward employment is going to be a major problem for the state. Analyze the issue and suggest how can we create employment opportunities for so many additions to the Labour Force?(250 words)

Livemint

Why this question

The article discusses the challenges related to employment that India is likely to face on account of its demography in the years to come and how India can successfully deal with this challenge. Hence this question would help us in preparing issues related to employment.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to discuss how changing demography provides both opportunity and challenges with respect to employment and labour force participation. We need to bring out the issue and thereafter discuss how the challenges with respect to employment can be managed.

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 – highlight that India is a young country and unfortunately for India job creation is not keeping pace with new addition to the Labour Force.

Body

  • Discuss the issues arising out of the young demography of the country –
    • Social tensions are rising as “two Indias” emerge from a demographic perspective. The north and east have high fertility rates, low labour force participation and high marginal employment. In contrast, the west and south have low fertility rates and, in some instances, is showing shortage of manpower. This is resulting in interstate migration, creating social tensions.
    • The north and east are likely to experience increasing social strife when a digitally alive population fails to fulfil their aspiration.
    • Creating large-scale local employment will be essential for inclusive growth, and is a key agenda for the country over the coming decade.
  • Discuss the issues with our current strategy of generating employment and how the situation can be improved.
    • Challenges to job creation are automation, labour laws serving as an entry barrier, challenges faced by MSME sector etc
    • Employment generation requires district-level effort for job creation that link local entrepreneurs to markets, with solutions that use local resources.
  • Discuss the alternative in detail

Conclusion – Emphasize on the importance of the task at hand and discuss way forward.


Topic: conservation, environmental pollution and degradation

6) For coral colonies that have taken millions of years to form, climate change poses a great threat that would affect millions of islanders across the world. Comment. (250 words)

The hindu

The hindu

Why this question

Coral reefs are a sensitive ecosystem which have been put to huge stress in the face of climate change. The recent IPCC report highlights the danger posed by the climate change to the corals and it is essential to discuss the issue in detail because coral reefs play a huge role in the ecosystem as well as the society.

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 knowledge and understanding of the threats faced by the coral reefs from climate change and how it will impact the environment and the society.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  declining health of corals across the world. E.g The Global Warming of 1.5ºC report of the IPCC has predicted that coral reefs would suffer a mass die-off by as soon as 2040, just 22 years away etc.

Body-

Discuss the issue in detail and bring out how the coral damage will impact millions of islanders across the world. E.g Corals, and the atolls and lagoons they form, are now in grave danger from global warming; Coral reefs would decline by 70-90% with global warming of 1.5°C, whereas virtually all (more than 99%) would be lost with a rise of 2°C compared with pre industrial times- IPCC report; A quarter of all marine life depends on coral reefs, and over 500 million people worldwide rely on coral reefs for food security, economic well-being and cultural identity; A combination of rising ocean temperatures due to global warming and localised threats has resulted in the loss of 50% of reef-building corals in the past 30 years etc.

Conclusion– based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue. E.g there is an imperative to swiftly and drastically lowering greenhouse gas emissions, and effectively reducing local stresses to reefs and atolls.


Topic– Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation

7) What do you understand by a responsible supply chain. Discuss. Also discuss what steps can be taken to make a supply chain responsible. (250 words)

Reference

Why this question

In the face of rapidly growing consumerism and climate change coupled with environmental degradation, it is imperative for us to make our supply chains sustainable. Therefore it is essential to under the concept of responsible supply chain in depth.

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 meaning and relevance of responsible supply chain management and also write in detail as to how a supply chain can be made responsible.

Structure of the answer

Introduction- write a few introductory lines about the growing size and importance of businesses etc.

Body-

  1. Discuss about the concept and its relevance in detail. E.g Over the years, businesses have evolved beyond purely profit making ventures and job creators to take on wider responsibilities around societal and environmental impact. It is now common for leading organizations to have robust corporate social responsibility policies in place covering a variety of themes from greenhouse gas emissions of their operations to treatment of their staff. There is also an expectation that this responsibility extends into the supply chain;
  2. Discuss how to make supply chains responsible etc E.g For a supply chain program to be truly sustainable it needs to be based around a sound business case; Expectations should be developed for the company’s suppliers. These should be based off existing respected standards, such as the UN’s Global Compact. This will help suppliers to put in place systems that can meet requirements; knowing who suppliers are, who supplies them, and so on. Knowing who suppliers are provides a better understanding of where efforts can have the greatest impact, where there is the most need, and where there is the most risk; ambitious but achievable targets need to be set and clearly communicated to suppliers. Posting targets and reporting supplier performance against them, helps to ensure there is momentum and buy-in; provide resources, guidance and training etc.

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


General Studies – 4


Topic– part of the case studies series for ethics.

8) You’re a manager of a nonprofit organisation. Your supervisee has been a planned-giving fundraiser there for five years. Four years ago, his performance was poor because he was undergoing chemotherapy. Since then, it’s improved to average but, in the past few months has declined severely again—He’s raised only half as much money as before. He explains that his cancer has recurred and has spread to his lymph nodes, so he’s in the middle of a six-month round of chemotherapy and his prognosis is not good. He says he prefers to keep working but if you terminate him, he won’t file a claim under the Americans with Disabilities Act. He is his family’s sole source of income and his non-profit salary is modest and so he has little in savings. He’s just getting by.

 

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 possible options available to us in the given circumstances and the ethical implications of those options. It also wants us to discuss as to what should be our response in such situation.

Structure of the answer

  1. Discuss the issue in detail and what are the options available. E.g
  1. a) retaining him: Most organizations but especially nonprofits espouse putting people above profits. To let him go when he’s been an acceptable performer and now has to endure treatment for recurred cancer would be hypocritical, especially since you know he is his family’s sole support and he’s saved little because he’s worked for nonprofits. From a pragmatic standpoint, letting him go would hurt the organization’s morale. Besides, with his cancer having recurred and in his lymph nodes, it’s unlikely he’d want or be able to stay employed for very long. Retaining him would be an appropriate “cost of doing business.”
    b) Firing him: Less money raised means less services to the many needy people the nonprofit services. He’s only one person. Yes he’s an employee but the wise person makes decisions mainly based on what will do the most good, not giving extra consideration to the person in front of you. You can mitigate the toll to staff morale by telling the employees the ethical basis for letting him go and giving them ample opportunity to process it. To help him financially, you might give a generous severance package. That would still save much money compared with keeping him on.
     
  1. Discuss your response along with the reason for such a response.


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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