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SECURE SYNOPSIS: 20 FEBRUARY 2019


SECURE SYNOPSIS: 20 FEBRUARY 2019


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: social empowerment

1) The status of Indian women will see an upswing with more reservation for women in Indian parliament. Discuss.(250 words)

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Why this question

Ensuring proportional representation to women in parliament is seen by policy makers as a panacea to the issues surrounding women empowerment. On this parameter, while the debate in India has lingered on for a long time, no concrete action has been taken. The article examines these issues and is useful from a GS1 perspective.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to bring out the significance of enhancing participation of women in parliament, highlight how India stands in comparison to other countries. Thereafter we need to debate whether proportional representation to women in parliament will enhance the social status of women and finally discuss the way forward.

Directive word

Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Highlight that election to the 17th Lok Sabha is going to be held soon and the participation of women in parliament remains on shaky ground.

Body

  • Discuss the status quo of India in ensuring adequate representation to women in parliament – India ranks 153 out of 190 nations in the percentage of women in the lower house of world parliaments. According to a list compiled by the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Rwanda ranks first with 61% of its lower house representatives being women. As a region, Nordic countries are leaders with an average of about 40%. The UK and the US are relative laggards with 32% and 23%, respectively. The United States’ current tally, though still moderate, is bolstered by a very strong showing by women in the recent congressional elections. Even Pakistan with 20% participation from women is ahead of India. India had 65 women out of 545 members of Parliament (MPs) elected to the 16th Lok Sabha in May 2014, for a 12% representation.
  • Give your views in favour of the view that e enhancing women participation in parliament would ensure the upliftment of status of women. We can talk about the experiences of having reservation for women in local bodies and how it has ensured in bringing more power to the women
  • Also debate that merely enhancing participation of women is not enough, needs to be supported by a holistic range of steps
  • Highlight what can India do in this regard

Conclusion – Give your view and discuss way forward.

Introduction:

The Economic Survey 2018 called for more representation of women in decision making process in the country, saying their political participation has been low despite them accounting for 49 per cent of the population. An Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and UN Women report — Women in Politics 2017, revealed that 16th Lok Sabha had 65 (12 percent of 545 MPs) and Rajya Sabha 27 (11 per cent of 245 MPs) women MPs. 22 years since the initial proposal, the Women’s Reservation Bill remains out of reach.

Body:

 

Present situation of women’s political representation in India:

  • India ranks 153 out of 190 nations in the percentage of women in the lower house of world parliaments.
  • The Economic Survey 2018 said there are developing countries like Rwanda which has more than 60 per cent women representatives in Parliament in 2017.
  • In India, between 2010 and 2017 women’s share rose 1 percentage point in its Lower House (Lok Sabha).
  • As on October 2016, out of the total 4,118 MLAs across the country, only 9 per cent were women.
  • The highest percentage of women legislators come from Bihar, Haryana and Rajasthan (14%), followed by Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal (13%) and Punjab (12%).
  • The factors such as domestic responsibilities, prevailing cultural attitudes regarding roles of women in society and lack of support from family were among main reasons that prevented them from entering politics.
  • Lack of confidence and finance were the other major deterring factors that prevented women from entering politics.
  • Ahead of any election campaign in the country, sexist and derogatory remarks start doing the rounds against women contestants, in some cases forcing them to withdraw their nomination.
  • The introduction of the Women’s Reservation Bill in 1996 that would reserve 33 percent of seats in Lok Sabha and the state legislative assemblies for women on a rotational basis, lapsed in 2014 with the dissolution of the 15th Lok Sabha.
  • The constitution allocates total seats to states by population, the resultant women’s representation at 12% is far below the actual population of women. So, on grounds of fairness, this is an anomaly.

Enhancing women participation in parliament would ensure the upliftment of status of women:

  • In 1994, India ratified the 73rd and the 74th amendments to the Indian Constitution, granting women 1/3 reservation in rural and urban democratic bodies.
  • There are 13.72 lakh elected women representatives (EWRs) in PRIs (Panchayati Raj Institutions) which constitute 44.2 per cent of total elected representatives (ERs) as on December, 2017.
  • Women sarpanchs accounted for 43 per cent of total gram panchayats (GPs) across the country, exhibiting active leadership of women in local government.
  • There is documented evidence both at the international level and at the gram panchayat (village) level to suggest that a greater representation of women in elected office balances the process and prioritizations that elected bodies focus on.
  • In terms of policy styles, for instance, the inclusion of women adds behind the scenes discussion rather than direct confrontation on the floor of the House.
  • In terms of agenda (as measured in Rwanda), a wider range of family issues get tackled.
  • Esther Duflo and Raghabendra Chattopadhyay (NBER Working Paper 8615) showed that in a randomised trial in West Bengal, women pradhans (heads of village panchayats) focus on infrastructure that is relevant to the needs of rural women, suggesting that at least at the local level outcomes can be different.
  • The role model effect also erases the gender disparity in educational attainment of young girls.
  • A study by IndiaSpend reported women panchayat leaders in Tamil Nadu invested 48 percent more money than their male counterparts in building roads and improving access.
  • Another study by the United Nations found that women-led panchayats delivered 62 percent higher drinking water projects than those led by men.

However, the cons of quota are:

  • Reservation as per the Women’s Reservation Bill needs a Constitutional Amendment which is a tedious process.
  • Quotas are unethical as it is against the Equality promised by the Constitution.
  • Intra-party tussles and splits in parties may increase.
  • The tokenism or Panchayat-Pati system as seen in Panchayats where women are mere token representatives controlled by men.
  • Party politics, coalition arrangements, seat sharing mechanisms can lead to reduced choice for a voter.

Way forward:

  • India should have an Election Commission-led effort to push for reservation for women in political parties.
  • Reservation for women in political parties – a more viable option.
  • Quotas for women in Parliament as envisaged in the Women’s Reservation Bill.
  • Awareness, education and role modelling that encourage women towards politics and wipe out Gender stereotypes which perceive women as weak representatives.
  • Inclusive economic institutions and growth—both necessary for and dependent on social empowerment—require inclusive political institutions.
  • Women’s leadership and communication skills need to be enhanced by increasing female literacy especially in rural areas. They should be empowered in order to break socio-cultural barriers and improve their status in the society.

Conclusion:

B.R. Ambedkar once said that “political power is the key to all social progress”. Ensuring proportional representation to women in parliament is seen by policy makers as a panacea to the issues surrounding women empowerment. Recognising the significance of roles of women in decision making process in the society is critical to strengthen women’s agencies for building a progressive society with equality of opportunities among all citizens.


Topic – Social empowerment,

2) Quotas based on ethnicity cannot be welcomed, but their motivations need to be understood. Critically Examine.(250 words)

The hindubuisnessline

Why this question

With generating  employment proving to be big headache for the government, the demand of quotas by different communities is in news often. Such demands have entertained by government without the government giving a thought to dealing with the root cause of the problem. The article discusses these issues and suggest way forward.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to highlight the plethora of such demands made based on ethnicity and how state governments have responded. Thereafter, we need to do a critical analysis of the issue and discuss the root cause of the issue and what needs to be done about it.

Directive word

Critically 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 . 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 recent Gujjar strike in Rajasthan and how it is symptomatic of a larger problem.

Body

  • Bring out the plethora of such demands and how government has responded – States such as Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh have mooted quotas for ‘locals’ in blue-collar private sector jobs. In 2008, Maharashtra announced reservations for locals in industries that avail themselves of government incentives
  • Discuss the rationale with which reservation has been introduced and whether it is right for the government to entertain such demands
  • Discuss what is the root cause of the problem and what needs to be done in this regard

Conclusion – Give your view and discuss way forward.

Introduction:

                Gujjar Arakshan Sangharsh Samiti (GASS) has threatened to call a strike in the state if the Gujjar community and four other castes are not provided five per cent reservation in government jobs and education. Gujjars had initially demanded a shift from Other Backward Category (OBC) to Scheduled Tribe (ST) category. However, they settled down for a special OBC category with five per cent reservation.

Body:

With poor development and lack of opportunities, there have been plethora of such demands for reservations

  • States such as Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh have mooted quotas for ‘locals’ in blue-collar private sector jobs
  • In 2008, Maharashtra announced reservations for locals in industries that avail themselves of government incentives.
  • The Tamil Nadu Industries Minister said that it would consider reserving skilled jobs in the private sector for domiciles.

The rationale behind demand for such reservation is

  • The repeated agitations reveal the shortfall in adequate, gainful and secure job opportunities in States such as Rajasthan.
  • The reason for the rise in son-of-the-soil sort of politics in the relatively developed regions is the perception that they do not get their due share in central transfers.
  • With successive Finance Commissions according a high weightage to poverty and population vis-a-vis development, the northern States end up receiving a generous share of the resources pie.
  • This would seem to deprive the income-generating South of the resources needed to manage a growing migrant population, while not incentivising the poorer States to get their act together — a point repeatedly flagged by the southern States.
  • Even as State after State unfurls incentives to attract investment at ‘global investors’ meets’, it is clear that investors prefer to stick to States where a governance ecosystem (which includes a level of social infrastructure such as education and health) is already in place.

However, the cons of reservations are:

  • There can be no denying that such quotas take away the freedom of businesses to employ a workforce of their choice.
  • They do not address structural issues plaguing job creation all over the country, particularly in the northern and eastern States which account for a large share of inter-State migration to the southern and western States.
  • Whether the demand for quotas for locals merely panders to narrow, sectarian political forces, which have been on the rise in the more developed western and southern States, is a moot point.
  • Quota system supersedes merit in certain circumstances, when meritorious candidates are deprived of the jobs or admissions so that candidates of backward classes can be accommodated as per the reservation system.
  • the system is confined to government institutions and firms, while those in the private sector are still beyond the reach of people belonging to the backward classes, either because they lack the skills needed to enter these firms or institutions or they are not financially sound enough to afford them.
  • Caste Based Reservation only perpetuates the notion of caste in society, rather than weakening it as a factor of social consideration, as envisaged by the constitution.
  • The benefits of reservation policy have largely been appropriated by the dominant class within the backward castes, thereby the most marginalised within the backward castes have remained marginalised.

Way forward:

  • Industry, too, must recognise that social inclusion cannot be overlooked.
  • While quotas might seem like a restrictive idea, there is no reason why, like some of the corporations in the developed world, affirmative action policies cannot be implemented.
  • An industry set up in a region where the State acquires the land should do its utmost to productively employ, or even provide a stake, to the local population.
  • It is important that migrants be trained by their employers, as Japanese firms do, to be acquainted with the language and cultural nuances of the new place.

Conclusion:

Quotas detract from the fact that the problem of jobless, geographically skewed growth needs to be fixed. The need of the hour is to try to uplift oneself on the basis of merit and performance rather than taking caste based shortcuts in education as well as employment. Ultimately, it is the merit that matters.


Topic– salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

3) With progressing of time and constant cultural exchanges the ceramics in India was enriched and evolved to many great art forms. Discuss.(250 words)

Reference

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 ceramic art of India- its history, how it evolved and into what art forms it got translated.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  Ancient Indian art. E.g mention the antiquity of ancient Indian art dating as far back as the neolithic age when first traces of it have been found and the kinds of arts practised then.

Body-

Discuss about the ancient Indian ceramic and pottery arts and its evolution through time.

  • Mention about the Indus Valley civilisation and that period have been found utensils made in materials such as quartzite and Flint which have been carved to adapt them better to more manageable and useful ways.
  • Draw attention from this period the black and Red pottery in Adichanallur and also in the Brahmagiri area; – Red ceramic, area of the Rajasthan Banas (Hematite);Grey pottery from the basin of the Ganges; Polished black pottery found in the area of Jariana and Delhi.
  • Several containers to hold grain and small seed in unglazed ceramic clay with little or no decoration have been found as well.
  • The Indo Valley ceramic’s style was extended by the whole area of South Asia and as the time was by influenced also the style of the entire region.
  • Ceramics in the form of cups, dishes for serving food and also some vessels with inscriptions in Indian writing (as the one of Ras al – Junayz) clearly show how important the ceramic and pottery was in the everyday life of this ancient civilization.
  • Mention about the glazed and unglazed kinds of ceramics.
  • Briefly discuss about the terracotta.
  • Mention paper mache art etc.

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

Introduction:

Ceramic Art in the Indian subcontinent has an ancient history and is one of the most tangible and iconic elements of Indian art. Evidence of pottery has been found in the early Neolithic settlements of Lahuradewa and later the Indus Valley Civilization. Today, it is a cultural art that is still practiced extensively in Indian subcontinent.

Body:

Traditional pottery in the subcontinent is usually made by specialized kumhar communities or castes. The ceramics and pottery reveal the creativity and technology of the time as well as the division of the society into classes. The rich and noble used the finest, baked, painted, polished and glazed ceramics while a layman used the most basic pottery.

 The ancient Indian ceramic and pottery arts and its evolution through time:

  • Neolithic age in India
    • Red ceramic, area of the Rajasthan Banas and Lothal (Hematite); Grey pottery from the basin of the Ganges; Polished black pottery found in the area of Jariana and Delhi.
    • Several containers to hold grain and small seed in unglazed ceramic clay with little or no decoration have been found as well.
    • Others vessels from the collection obtained have geometric patterns, animals and plants decorations that were apparently intended in some cases for rituals.
  • Harrappan period
    • There are ceramics whose form seems to intend more everyday use as a personal object like some ceramic toys from Mohenjo Daro and Harappa.
    • Red and black painted wares are found in this era.
    • Many artefacts are found which has clear influence from Mesopotamia and Babylon and Egyptians civilisations.
    • Ceramics in the form of cups, dishes for serving food and also some vessels with inscriptions in Indian writing (Eg: Ras al – Junayz) clearly show how important the ceramic and pottery was.
    • Figurines of terracotta depicting female figures appeared in the area of Harappa and were more stylized than the old and bulky goddesses of fertility.
    • Necklaces and inlays of precious metals were found in some of them.
  • Early Vedic Age:
    • Together with the Gandhara grave culture and the Ochre Coloured Pottery culture, the Cemetery H culture is considered by some scholars as a factor in the formation of the Vedic civilization.
    • Kushanas developed many styles in this period due to combination of Greeks and Persians and Mathura and Gandhara styles came into picture.
    • Black and red ware culture (BRW) is a late Bronze Age and early Iron Age archaeological culture of the northern and central Indian subcontinent, associated with the Vedic civilization.
  • Post Vedic period:
    • Northern Black polished ware is specialisation of this era.
    • The Painted Grey Ware (PWG) culture is an Iron Age culture of the western Gangetic plain and the Ghaggar-Hakra valley.
  • Gupta period:
    • Clay figurines were used both for religious and secular purposes. There are figurines of Vishnu, Kartikeya, Surya, Durga, Kubera, Nagas and other gods and goddesses.
    • Epitome of Indian art and many different styles and uniqueness where created. Eg: Krishna killing horse demon in a terracotta
    • The Rang Mahal culture is famed for the beautifully painted vases on red surface with floral, animal, bird and geometric designs painted in black.
    • The most distinctive class of pottery of this period is the red ware.
  • Turko-Mughal period:
    • The phase of glazed pottery started in the 12th century AD, when Turkic Muslim rulers encouraged potters from Persia, Central Asia and elsewhere to settle in present-day Northern India.
    • Glazed pottery of Persian models with Indian designs, dating back to the Sultanate period, has been found in Gujarat and Maharashtra.
    • Current era Blue Pottery of Jaipur is widely recognized as a traditional craft of Jaipur, though it is Turko-Persian in origin.

The various kinds of ceramics found in India are:

  • Unglazed ceramic:
    • It is the oldest form of ceramic practiced in India, many of the evidence of these vessels were found even from the early days of the development of ceramics. Liquid red and white ceramic along with intricate patterns are applied while the contour has incisions. The Black pottery is another form of unglazed ceramic which resembles the Harrappan ceramic style.
  • Glazed ceramic:
    • The time of glazed ceramics in India began in the 12th century, when Muslim rulers encouraged potters from the East to settle in. Examples of fine glazed ceramics of Persian models with Indian designs have a great beauty and detail in the finish. They also used figurative, geometric designs or combination of both.
  • Terracotta:
    • Terracotta is medium reddish clay used in pottery and construction of buildings. This is the most famous and common style of ceramic that has been practiced in the India since ancient times. Women are usually the one which prepare during the holidays the clay figures for the rituals to ask for favors’ of their gods and goddesses. Moela in Rajasthan area has its own distinctive style of pottery; here the local deities are created with clay molded on a flat surface, which is painted with bright colors after cooked.
  • Paper Mache:
    • Indian craftsmen carefully created numerous motifs and designs with Paper Mache, intricate and beautifully they made a variety of hand-crafted items for decoration and devotion using this technique. Although invented in China was also widely used in India since the time it was adopted in this country during the Mughal dynasty
  • Red sandstone sculptures in India:
    • Red sandstone is a sediment rock composed of grains of sand (quartz) cemented together with other materials such as: silica, iron oxide, clay and calcite. In India this sculpture reach mastery skills by the artisans in the Buddhist period, remarkable sculpture aimed to religious rituals and veneration crowd India’s regions and were exported to Asia as well.

Conclusion:

Ceramics is the most sensual of all arts. Pottery in India is considered as one of the most iconic elements of Indian regional art. Not just its history, but its exquisite beauty and chic features have made pottery and ceramics, a modern form of Indian decor.


Topic-  salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

4) To and Indian folk artist, art is a lifestyle, woven into his or her many festivals & rituals. Discuss with examples.(250 words)

Reference

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 discuss about folk art in India in detail and along with proper examples illustrate its connection with the festivals and rituals of the artist.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the  folk art in India. E.g mention the fields in which folk art is practised- paintings, music, dance, martial arts etc. and also the diversity of those arts across the country.

Body-

  1. Discuss the relationship of tribal and folk art with the festivals and rituals of the artist/ region. E.g mention their relationship with the agricultural seasons- sowing season, harvesting season; household ceremonies of marriage, birth; worship/ reverence for nature; religious occasions and sorships etc.
  2. Give examples of some prominent folk arts and illustrate your discussion held above. E.g
  3. Madhubani art of Bihar- predominantly reflects images from the epic story of the Ramayana. Prayer and meditation accompany the successful execution of a painting. Madhubani tattoos are a tradition of the Banjaras of Bihar, which began as a form of protection for the girls during the Mughal invasion.
  4. Warli artists are animists living in the rugged part of the isolated Sahyadri range. Their traditional art forms were in the past restricted to images of the mother-goddess and can be traced back to the Neolithic period. Their Tarpa dance reflects the cooperation of the villagers as they join hands and sway in quick circles to the steady bass drone of a wind instrument called the tarpa.
  5. Pattachitra style of painting is one of the oldest and most popular art forms of Odisha. Pattachitra is thus a painting done on canvas, and is manifested by rich colourful application, creative motifs and designs, and portrayal of simple themes, mostly mythological in depiction etc.

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

Introduction:

India had always been known as the land that portrayed cultural and traditional vibrancy through its conventional arts and crafts. The states and union territories sprawled across the country have their own distinct cultural and traditional identities, and are displayed through various forms of art prevalent there. Every region in India has its own style and pattern of art, which is known as folk art. It consists of paintings, music, dance, drama, martial arts etc.

Body:

The folk and tribal arts of India are very ethnic and simple, and yet colourful and vibrant enough to speak volumes about the country’s rich heritage. Folk art generally reflects the creative energy found in rural areas that acts as an undercurrent to the craftsmanship of the tribal people. They are intertwined with the lifestyle and activities of the people. Every social event of their lives is linked to one or the other folk art form, making it an imperative part of life.

  • Folk Paintings:
    • The rural folk paintings of India bear distinctive colourful designs, which are treated with religious and mystical motifs.
    • Some of the most famous folk paintings of India are the Madhubani paintings of Bihar, Patachitra paintings from the state of Odisha, the Nirmal paintings of Andhra Pradesh, Kangra painting from Himachal Pradesh and Warli paintings from Maharashtra and other such folk art forms.
    • Each school has its distinct style of colour combinations or figures and its features.
    • Folk art is however not restricted only to paintings, but also stretches to other art forms such as pottery, home decorations, ornaments, cloths-making, and so on.
    • Folk paintings have a relationship with household ceremonies of marriage, birth; worship/ reverence for nature; religious occasions and worships etc.
    • Warli artists are animists living in the rugged part of the isolated Sahyadri range. Their traditional art forms were in the past restricted to images of the mother-goddess and can be traced back to the Neolithic period. Their Tarpa dance reflects the cooperation of the villagers as they join hands and sway in quick circles to the steady bass drone of a wind instrument called the tarpa.
  • Folk Dances:
    • The regional dances of India, such as the Bhangra dance of Punjab, the Dandiya of Gujarat, the Bihu dance of Assam, etc, which project the cultural heritage of those regions, are prominent contenders in the field of Indian folk art.
    • These folk dances are performed by people to express their exhilaration on every possible event or occasion, such as the arrival of seasons, the birth of a child, weddings, festivals, etc.
  • Folk Theatres:
    • India has a longest and richest tradition in theatre going back to at least 5000 years.
    • The origin of Indian theatre is closely related to ancient rituals and seasonal festivities of the country.
    • The actors of Bhand Pather in J&K are mainly from the farming community and the impact of their way of living, ideals and sensitivity in the drama is discernible. Swang in Haryana, where Religious stories and folk tales are enacted by a group of ten or twelve persons in an open area or an open air theatre surrounded by the audience.
    • Ramman: It is celebrated every year in Baisakh month (april) in the courtyard of the temple of Bhumiyal Devta situated in Chamoli district, Uttarakhand. Jatra in Bengal refers to the musical plays performed at fairs in honour of gods, or religious rituals and ceremonies. Mudiyettu is a traditional ritual theatre and folk dance drama from Kerala that enacts the mythological tale of a battle between the goddess Kali and the demon Darika. The ritual is a part of the Bhagavathi or bhadrakali cult.

Conclusion:

The folk and tribal arts of India speak volumes about the country’s rich heritage. Art forms in India have been exquisite and explicit. Local fairs, festivals, deities, heroes (warriors), myths and legends play a vital role in these art forms. The Governments, as well as other societies and associations, have therefore made all efforts to promote such art forms, which have become an intrinsic part of India’s cultural identity.


Topic-  salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

5) Discuss the contribution of Raja Ravi Verma towards Indian paintings. (250 words)

Reference

 

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 works of Raja Ravi Varma, his contribution towards

Indian paintings and his significance in the history of Indian art.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about Raja Ravi Verma. E.g Raja Ravi Varma was an Indian painter and artist, considered as one of the greatest painters in the history of Indian art.

Body-

Discuss in points, his works, significance and contribution. E.g

  • Raja Ravi Varma is known for his amazing paintings, which revolve mainly around the Puranas (ancient mythological stories) and thegreat Indian epics – Mahabharata and Ramayana.
  • Ravi Varma is one of the few painters who managed to accomplish a beautiful union of Indian traditionwith the techniques of European academic art.
  • This is one of the reasons why he is considered as one of the most, if not the most prominent Indian painters. Varma was also responsible in taking the Indian art all over the world with his impeccable technique.
  • While the Europeans and other art lovers admired his technique, the laymen of India enjoyed his work for its simplicity. More often than not, Varma’s paintings highlighted the beauty of South Indian women which were admired by all.
  • His portrayal of Hindu gods and goddesses went on to become worship material for many people belonging to the lower castes. Back then, these people were often forbidden from entering temples and thus they celebrated Varma’s works, for they gave them an idea of how the deities looked inside the temple.
  • He also managed to improve the artistic knowledge and spread the importance of art among Indian people. He achieved this by making affordable lithographs, which were accessible even to the poor.
  • Alternatively, this also made him a household name and Raja Ravi Varma soon captured the hearts of all.
  • Recognizing his feat, Viceroy Lord Curzon honored him with the Kaisar-i-Hind Gold Medal for his service in the furtherance of public interest
  • His paintings can be classified into three categories – portraits, portrait-based compositions and theatrical compositions based on myths and legends. It is the third category of paintings for which Raja Ravi Varma is most renowned etc.

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

Introduction:

Raja Ravi Varma is considered as one of the greatest painters in the history of Indian art. He is known for his amazing paintings which revolve mainly around the Puranas (ancient mythological stories) and the great Indian epics – Mahabharata and Ramayana. He is one of the few painters who managed to accomplish a beautiful union of Indian tradition with the techniques of European academic art.              

Body:

Significance of Varma’s art:

  • Varma was also responsible in taking the Indian art all over the world with his impeccable technique.
  • While the Europeans and other art lovers admired his technique, the laymen of India enjoyed his work for its simplicity.
  • His paintings highlighted the beauty of South Indian women which were admired by all.
  • His portrayal of Hindu gods and goddesses went on to become worship material for many people belonging to the lower castes who weren’t allowed in temples.
  • He also managed to improve the artistic knowledge and spread the importance of art among Indian people.
  • He achieved this by making affordable lithographs, which were accessible even to the poor.
  • Recognizing his feat, Viceroy Lord Curzon honoured him with the Kaisar-i-Hind Gold Medal for his service in the furtherance of public interest.
  • His paintings can be classified into three categories – portraits, portrait-based compositions and theatrical compositions based on myths and legends. It is the third category of paintings for which Raja Ravi Varma is most renowned.
  • Ravi Varma first started a press in Mumbai and later shifted it to a place near Lonavala. The press came up with tons of oleographs, depicting Hindu gods and goddesses

Raja Ravi Varma produced many masterpieces of art during his life. Some of the most prominent works of Raja Ravi Varma:

  • A Family of Beggars – This painting represented the sorry state of Indian economics.
  • A Lady Playing Swarbat – Just like many of his paintings, this too, was modelled after a South Indian woman.
  • Arjuna and Subhadra – This painting narrates a story from the Hindu epic Mahabharata.
  • Damayanti Talking to a Swan – This too is a scene straight out of Mahabharata.
  • Jatayu (a bird devotee of Lord Rama) – This is perhaps one of the most commonly featured work of Raja Ravi Varma. The picture narrates the story of Jatayu who gives up its life after fighting the mighty villain Ravana from Ramayanam.
  • Lady Lost in Thought – Once again this painting was modelled after a South Indian woman.
  • Nair Woman – As the name suggests, this painting portrays a Malayali woman in all her glory.
  • Shakuntala – This painting depicts the legendary woman Shakuntala who marries Dushyanta. The couple later gave birth to Bharata after whom ancient India was named.
  • Romancing Couple – This painting goes on to show that Raja Ravi Varma was not a painter who limited himself to depicting only gods and goddesses

However, Varma is often criticized for being too showy in his paintings. His paintings are also condemned for overshadowing traditional Indian art forms, especially the ones depicting Hindu gods and goddesses. His approach is said to lack the dynamism of expression seen in the traditional paintings. Critics have also criticized him for modelling goddesses after prostitutes, saying that his representation of deities have reduced them to the level of mortals.

Conclusion:

He was one of the first Indian artists to use oil paints and to master the art of lithographic reproduction of his work. In addition to incidents in Hindu mythology, Varma painted many portraits of both Indians and British in India. He adapted Western realism to pioneer a new movement in Indian art.


Topic – Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges

6) Like Europe did with personal data, India will lead the way in reining in social media misinformation. Discuss. (250 words)

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Why this question

The article analyzes the necessity of recognising threat to the security and society as a result of social media and how India is taking the lead in reining in misinformation and fake news on social media. The issue deserves importance because social media poses a significant threat to national security in recent times and regulations are in the formative stage for this sector.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to bring out the issues involved with the rise of social media and lack of clear cut policies in this space. Thereafter , we need to highlight the policy advancements made in this regard and how India has been taking the lead in preventing spread of misinformation and fake news and threats emanating from the same. Finally we need to highlight the way forward.

Directive word

Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Explain about the recent threats emerging as a result of social media.

Body

  • Explain what the issue is all about
    • social media organizations such as Twitter can choose to either throttle or promote specific content on their apps. The ability to do so would place these organizations on par with media houses that are involved in news promotion. Without this ability, they can claim to be solely platforms for social interaction and little else, with no responsibility for content. If, however, they are media houses, the rules of the game change significantly and they can be held accountable for the content their sites carry.
    • Discuss the spread of misinformation and fake news through social media and how it hampers security
  • Discuss the steps taken by Europe in this regard
    • Firms such as Facebook and Google have been subjected to scrutiny in the US, with their top brass being summoned by the US legislatures for hearings about their role in the spread of misinformation during the 2016 US presidential elections.
    • They have also been scrutinised in another realm: the use of personal data. Google has, just a couple of weeks ago, been fined $57 million by France’s data protection watchdog, known as the CNIL.
  • Discuss how India is taking the lead in preventing spread of misinformation. Thereafter explain about the parliamentary panel summoning twitter chief

 

Conclusion – highlight the sensitivity of the issue and discuss way forward.

Introduction:

Information and communication technology and Social media is omnipresent in our lives and has a huge bearing on society and individuals. Both information and opinion need mediums and platforms. The internet is the medium; Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp are the platforms. The issues of legitimate vis-à-vis fake information, Economic loss due to data security threats, Data privacy issues are some of the threats posed by Social media.       

Body:

The issue of social media misinformation is

  • The heart of the issue is whether social media organizations such as Twitter can choose to either throttle or promote specific content on their apps.
  • The ability to do so would place these organizations on par with media houses that are involved in news promotion.
  • Without this ability, they can claim to be solely platforms for social interaction and little else, with no responsibility for content.
  • If, however, they are media houses, the rules of the game change significantly and they can be held accountable for the content their sites carry.
  • Social media companies exploit the social environment. This is particularly nefarious, because these companies influence how people think and behave without them even being aware of it. This interferes with the functioning of democracy and the integrity of elections Targeted advertising is at the heart of the business model for firms such as Facebook and Google
  • Challenge is how you permit what is considered legitimate content and information, and at the same time disallow the plethora of fake information as well as threats and abuse conveyed through these platforms.
  • Fake information and rumours have triggered lynchings and riots, data snooping etc.
  • Data of millions are taken and used when only a few people knowingly or unknowingly gave consent.
  • Individuals often share their data without being aware of it or understanding the implications of privacy terms and conditions.
  • Individuals do not have much rights over the data they shared and personal data is considered as the new oil.
  • A new study from Pew Research claims that 62 percent of people get their news from social media, with 18 percent doing so very often. Social media’s influence in political campaigns has increased tremendously.
  • People are getting trapped in narrower world views that are seeping into not only voter behaviour but everyday personal interactions.

The steps taken by Europe and USA in this regard are:

  • Targeted advertising is at the heart of the business model for firms such as Facebook and Google, Europe is setting a precedent to the reining in of Big Tech’s suspected misuse of private data.
  • Firms such as Facebook and Google have been subjected to scrutiny in the US, with their top brass being summoned by the US legislatures for hearings about their role in the spread of misinformation during the 2016 US presidential elections.
  • Companies were levied multibillion-dollar fines in the past for alleged antitrust (monopoly) behaviour.
  • Europe came out with its revised General Data Protection Regulation last year.
  • Google has, just a couple of weeks ago, been fined $57 million by France’s data protection watchdog, known as the CNIL. The fine was levied for the lack of user consent for targeted advertising.
  • The companies are also scrutinized for the use of personal data.
  • Europe has taken the lead in privacy regulation.

India’s steps towards preventing spread of misinformation

  • It appears that India will lead the way for the rest of the world with respect to checking the spread of misinformation on social interaction platforms.
  • India’s action last year to rein in the spread of “viral” videos and other content on WhatsApp, a messaging platform owned by Facebook, led WhatsApp to make significant changes in the way users could spread information on the app.
  • WhatsApp CEO made trips to India last year to meet the minister for information technology.
  • WhatsApp made India specific changes to limit forwarding that will apply to everyone using the app to lower limit of 5 chats at once and removed the quick forward button next to media messages.
  • The India-based limit of five forwards has been now applied to all WhatsApp users across the globe.
  • A parliamentary panel in India summoned Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, to appear before it by february end

Conclusion:

Like Europe did with personal data, India will lead the way in reining in social media misinformation, whether through forced suo moto action by these companies or through executive action.