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[Insights Secure – 2020] Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 15 July 2020

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INSIGHTS NEW SECURE – 2020: YEARLONG TIMETABLE

 


General Studies – 1


 

Topic: Salient features of world’s physical geography.

1. Explain the mechanism of the monsoon rains in India. Discuss in detail its effect and significance on the economy. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question:

The article talks about Monsoon rains in India.

Key Demand of the question:

The question is from the geography perspective of the Monsoons; its mechanism and the effect and significance of it on the economy.

Directive:

Explain – Clarify the topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the particular context. You must be defining key terms where ever appropriate, and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Explain briefly the background of the question.

Body:

The monsoon sets in India in the month of June and that process can sometimes be delayed by as much as a week.

One branch of the monsoon winds starts its journey northwards from Kerala and the other wing, called the Bay of Bengal branch, enters India from the southeast. Both branches eventually converge in the north and usually, this merging and strengthening of the monsoon currents over the mainland take at least until July 15.

Explain with suitable diagrams the entire mechanism.

Define the advantages of it on the economy of the country; given the fact that a large portion of Indian agriculture is still dependent on rainfall for irrigation needs; a good rainfall would encourage higher sowing in the Kharif season and higher production.

A good produce could entail higher disposable income in the hands of the rural people and hence provide an impetus to the whole Indian economy.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance.

 

Topic : The Freedom Struggle —  its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country.

2. Discuss the successes and failures of the moderate phase of the Indian National movement. (250 words)

Reference: Modern Indian history by Bipin Chandra

Why the question:

The question is from the static portions of GS paper I.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain in detail the successes and failures of the moderate phase of the Indian National movement.

Directive:

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:

Briefly introduce with the moderate phase of the Indian National movement, its duration, important leaders, demands, methods, etc.

Body:

Start by explaining that the moderate phase of the Indian National movement refers to the first two decades of the formation of the Indian National Congress (1885-1905). It was guided by the moderate ideologies/methods of leaders of INC such as Dadabhai Nairoji, G. K. Gokhale, W. C. Banerjee,Ferozshah Mehta and others, who came to be known as Moderates.

Their key demands were administrative and legislative reforms of the country, reduction of military expenditures, and introduction of representative institutions, etc. Their methods included peaceful and constitutional methods to demand reforms using prayers, petitions, protests, meetings, resolutions, pamphlets, memoranda and delegations. They had faith in the British justice system.

Highlight the successes as well as failures/limitations of the moderates

Conclusion:

Conclude briefly with their overall contribution to the Indian National movement

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.

3. Debate upon the arguments in favour of a decentralized form of governance. Also examine the challenges in the implementation of such a governance model in the Indian setting. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

The author Arun Maira, a former member of the Planning Commission, in the article  argues for a more decentralized form of governance model in India.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss and present arguments in favor of a decentralized form of governance. Also examine the challenges in the implementation of such a governance model in the Indian setting.

Directive:

Debate – Weigh up to what extent something is true. Persuade the reader of your argument by citing relevant research but also remember to point out any flaws and counter- arguments as well. Conclude by stating clearly how far you agree with the original proposition.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Explain about decentralisation in short.

Body:

The author argues that the existing institutional structure which has been put through a stress test by the current global health and economic crises has failed to live up to the expectations. The pandemic has brought to light the existing flaws in current governance institutions.

Breakdowns in subsystems during the pandemic such as health care, logistics, business, finance, and administration had to be managed at the same time. The complexity of handling so many subsystems at the same time has overwhelmed governance.

Discuss what could be the possible solutions.

Present Arguments in favour of decentralization and conclude with solutions.

Conclusion:

Conclude that local system of governance is the only way humanity will be able to meet the new ecological and humanitarian challenges looming over it in the 21st century.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic : Major crops-cropping patterns in various parts of the country, – different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers. Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.

4. Discuss the factors that create a requirement for “Crop Insurance” in India. (250 words)

Reference: pib.gov.in 

Why the question:

The article brings to us review on the progress and implementation of revamped PMFBY.

Key Demand of the question:

One must elucidate upon the factors that create a requirement for “Crop Insurance” in India.

Directive:

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:

Start by explaining the importance of “Crop insurance” to the Indian system of agriculture.

Body:

Define crop insurance first; Crop insurance is a means of protecting farmers against the variations in yield resulting from uncertainty of practically all natural factors beyond their control such as rainfall (drought or excess rainfall), flood, hails, other weather variables (temperature, sunlight, wind), pest infestation, etc.

What are the possible factors that necessitate crop insurance in the Indian agriculture system? Explain – Due to high dependency on weather, Indian farmers are highly exposed   to   risk   arising   from   deviation   in   rainfall,   fluctuation   of   temperature,   hailstorms, cyclones, drought, flood, cold waves   etc.  This   risk is aggravated by poor rural   infrastructure, imperfect   markets   and   lack   of   financial   services   including   limited   span of   risk   mitigation instruments such as   credit   and insurance. All   these factors heavily affect farm production and income and they are beyond the control of   farmers.

Conclusion:

Conclude with efforts of the government in this direction.

 

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

5. Write a short note on the idea of “Transformation of Indian Railways as Net Zero Carbon Network by 2030”. (250 words)

Reference: Times Now News 

Why the question:

The article talks about Transformation of Indian Railways as Net Zero Carbon Network by 2030.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the idea of Transformation of Indian Railways as Net Zero Carbon Network by 2030.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Talk about the steps of Indian Railways towards Net Zero Carbon Emissions and transformation of Indian Railways into Green Railways.

Body:

Discuss the steps in this direction in detail – Railway Electrification, Improving energy efficiency of locomotives and fixed installations, Green certification for stations, Bio Toilets etc.  

India, initially tried to reduce dependency on coal, have turned to large scale electrification of railway lines. The thermal power being the chief source of electricity in India has again raised the eyebrows. Therefore, the transformation to RE Projects like, Solar, Wind Energy has become inevitable. Switching to renewable energy resources etc.

Explain how does all they steps contribute to the Environment? What Does It Mean to Reach Net-Zero Emissions?

Conclusion:

Conclude with advantages of the idea and way ahead.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world

6. In context of current declining political condition of the nation states across the world, deliberate upon the need for Plato’s “Philosopher King”.  (250 words)

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by G Subba Rao and P N Chowdhary

Why the question:

The question is amidst the declining political conditions of the Nation States across the world.

Key Demand of the question:

One has to explain in detail the relevance and significance of Plato’s concept of “Philosopher King”. 

Directive:

Deliberate – Weigh up to what extent something is true. Persuade the reader of your argument by citing relevant research but also remember to point out any flaws and counter- arguments as well. Conclude by stating clearly how far you agree with the original proposition.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Briefly explain the concept of Philosopher King as propounded by Plato.

Body:

Explain that the good political conditions of a nation are stability and equilibrium in political scenario, proper dialogue among political leaders, transparency in government functioning and accountability of leaders towards the citizens. In recent time, issues like lack of internal party democracy, criminalisation in politics, corrupt practices in public life, lack of responsibility on the parts of world’s leaders, lack of answerability for the people, rise of ultra-nationalism, right wing tendencies, horse trading, lack of deliberations in the Parliament, use of money and muscle power have changed the political conditions to disadvantages.

Discuss the significance of Plato’s concept in current political crises.

Conclusion:

Conclude on the lines that if today’s leaders adopt these qualities, political conditions can improve a lot.

 

Topic : Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and nonpartisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.

7. Examine the relevance of the following in the context of civil services:

(a) Integrity

(b) Principle of Legality (250 words)

Reference:  Ethics by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is straightforward and aims to throw light on the concepts of ‘Integrity’ and ‘Principle of Legality’.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain the two concepts in detail; highlight their key features, their importance in application of ethics in the context of civil services.

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by explaining the meaning of each term.

Body:

Integrity is an uncompromising and consistent commitment to honour moral, ethical, spiritual and artistic values and principles. Integrity compels us to be socially conscious and to welcome both personal and professional responsibility. It encourage us to be honest in all our dealings and committed to a lifelong search for truth and justice.

The principle of legality is a rule of statutory interpretation. According to A. V. Dicey, it is part of the rule of law that “every official, from the Prime Minister down to a constable or a collector of taxes, is under the same responsibility for every act done without legal justification as any other citizen.”

Then move onto discuss the advantages of the two concepts in the context of civil services, give examples wherever possible to explain and justify better.

Conclusion:

Conclude with importance of such virtues in the context of the civil services.


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