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[MISSION 2022] Insights SECURE 2022 : Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 16 August 2021

 

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“Omnium rerum principia parva sunt” (The beginnings of all things are small) – Cicero

Today, for some of you marks a small beginning – the beginning of answer writing part of mission secure 2022. You start small, you improve day by day and within a year, it can make a massive difference in your preparation and in your life.

InsightsIAS is with you in this journey.

Good luck!


General Studies – 1


 

Topic: Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.

1. In the aftermath of the third Carnatic War, the English reigned supreme over India as all their European rivals had been decisively eliminated. Analyse the reasons for the victory of English. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy.

Reference: Page 53-55 – A Brief History of Modern India by Rajiv Ahir (Spectrum Publishers)

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2022 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To analyse the reasons for the victory of English over the European rivals in India.

Directive word: 

Analyse – When asked to analyse, you must 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: 

Begin by giving context, as to how the third Carnatic paved way for the emergence of British Indian empire.

Body:

Draw a small map of pre-independent India showing the major centres of European powers in India.

In the first part, elaborate upon as to how among the European powers in India, French were the strongest as well as historical adversary of the English and tussle between them was witnessed over the three Carnatic wars.

Next, analyse the reasons as how the British were able to get better of their European Counter parts. Keep in mind as not make your just about Anglo-French Rivalry. This question is about English against all the European powers such as Portuguese, Danes, Dutch and the French.

Conclusion:

Sum up the answer, with the elimination of their European adversaries, the British now turned their attention to Indian Kings.

 

Topic:  Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.

2. In eighteenth century there was an intricate power struggle between various groups of powers. It was not only a struggle between the colonial power and the Indian states but also there was struggle among the Indian powers themselves to establish political supremacy. Discuss. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Chapter 5 – A Brief History of Modern India by Rajiv Ahir (Spectrum Publishers)

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2022 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

Write about the power dynamics of the various regional rulers to establish supremacy among themselves in the backdrop of the advent of British rule in India

Directive word: 

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

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Give an account of major political powers in middle of Eighteenth Century India.

Body:

Draw a political map of India representing major Indian powers including establishments of British EIC.

Write about the major leaders such as Marathas, Nizams, Mysore Kingdom, Punjab, Mughals, Nawabs of Awadh and their motive for an expansionist policy (resources, trade etc), reasons for increasing insecurity of the local rulers against the EIC, and their journey to overthrow the British, the various alliances and counter alliances formed during this power struggle and desire establish political Supremacy. Mention important wars and battles fought thereof.

Also, mention the rising power of British in terms of their arsenal, their meddling with internal politics of the region, clearly overstepping their alleged mandate of trade related functions.

Conclusion:

Comment on the outcome of the power struggle.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.  

3. As India enters its 75th year of independence, it faces challenges to manage development, regional security, a balance of power, and the shaping of international consensus to be more amenable to Indian interests. Comment. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Tough.

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question:

Ever since Independence, India’s fate has been closely tied to the rest of the world. But a constantly evolving international environment presented India not just with opportunities but numerous challenges. This article captures the same in the past 75 years.

Key Demand of the question:

To trace India’s development and power dynamics – the opportunities and challenges – with respect to its neighbours as well as global powers.

Directive word: 

Comment– here we must express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving context as to how India’s global aspirations have evolved over the years.

Body:

In the first part, in brief, trace the historical developments India’s global dynamics since independence.

Next, write about how development, regional security, a balance of power, and the shaping of international consensus have been our cornerstones of foreign policy over the years. Substantiate with examples from the past and present.

In the final part, address the challenges it faces such as the ravages of COVID-19 and growing international competition etc also underscore the difficulties that India is facing currently.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic:  Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

4. With traditional mitigation strategies not yielding desired results to tackle climate change, radical strategies such as geo-engineering must be given a serious thought. Critically Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Live Mint , Chapter 21: Environment by Shankar IAS (6th Edition)

Why the question:

Intergovernmental panel’s latest report on the crisis served us a warning on how badly off target we are to keep our planet from going past its danger mark. This has given currency to explore radical measures.

Key Demand of the question:

To analyse if Geo-engineering could be a viable option to overcome the climate crisis.

Directive word: 

Critically analyse – When asked to analyse, you must examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts and present them in a summary. When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, one needs to look at the good and bad of the topic and give a fair judgement.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin the answer by defining geo-engineering.

Body:

You can use a bubble diagram to show the various modes of geo-engineering such as Shoot Mirrors into Space (Solar Sunscreen), Copy a Volcano, Build Fake Trees etc.

In the first part of the body, write about how the above strategies work and will be beneficial for the planet above and over existing mitigation strategies to tide over the climate crisis. Clearly outline as to why it may be needed.

In the next part, mention about the major drawbacks, impediments and concerns regarding the implementation of the above strategies

Conclusion:

End your answer that existing strategies should be implemented on a war footing, but alternative ideas must also be considered, planned and studied about just in case of a climate emergency.

 

Topic: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

5. The restructuring of the Indian armed forces into integrated theatre commands is a necessary reform as actors, threats and the environment will change in uncertain ways, but its structure must be simple, flexible and adaptable. Substantiate. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Live Mint

Why the question:

The Narendra Modi government’s 2019 decision to appoint a chief of defence staff (CDS) and assign to him the task of restructuring India’s armed forces into integrated theatre commands is the most significant defence reform in decades. But its implementation has stirred up a controversy.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the benefits of integrated theatre commands and how it should be achieved whilst maximising its efficacy and minimising conflicts.

Directive word: 

Substantiate – When you are asked to Substantiate, you must pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidence.  You must appraise the worth of the statement in question using suitable case studies or/ and examples.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start by writing about integrated theatre commands and how it is different from the existing structure of the armed forces.

Body:

In the first part, address the need of the integrated theatre commands with old threats such as Pakistan, Rapid rise of China, recent turmoil in Afghanistan as well as unconventional threats like Cyberthreats.

Write about the structuring of the integrated theatre command and theatres where it will be operationalised. Mention about Chain of command, joint war-fighting doctrine, Modernization, Joint-Operability among the various forces.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward and that this reform that was long overdue as it was suggested by Kargil Review committee way back in 2000.

 


General Studies – 4


 

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

6. Explain the moral philosophy of Eudaimonism with examples. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate.

Reference: newworldencyclopedia.org

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4 and part of ‘Philosophical Mondays’ in Mission-2022 Secure.

Key Demand of the question:

Detailed description of the concept of Eudaimonism, its proponents, few examples and its applicability.

Directive word: 

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

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start by defining Eudaimonism

Body:

Detailed description of the association of the concept with Virtue ethics, Egoism and ethical Individualism. Contrast this concept to hedonism and give examples such as Volunteering for community action etc, which gives personal satisfaction as well as fulfils man’s potential. Explain with examples.

Conclusion:

Give criticism of Eudaimonism by Kant for a balanced view on the topic.

 

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

7. What do you understand by Aristotle’s doctrine of mean? Based on your understanding of the doctrine, comment on its relevance in the present day. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Tough.

Reference: plato.stanford.edu

Why the question:

Key Demand of the question:  Description of Aristotle’s Golden mean between virtues and vices and how this concept is still applicable to the present society.

Directive word: 

Comment– here we must express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start with a brief of Aristotelian Mean theory.

Body:

Illustrate with examples, few Ethical virtues when mean but that are vices when they are excess/deficient. Mention few examples of these and illustrate them a flow chart showing virtues and vices.

Mention that this mean is situational and is dependent on the individual and their ethical backdrop and it is vital to finding a moderate position between two extremes leading to a moral behaviour.

State whether this concept is applicable in the current times by stating few scenarios.

Conclusion:

Highlight the importance of moderation being preached by Aristotle’s Mean theory, Buddha’s middle path etc.


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