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[Mission 2022] Insights SECURE SYNOPSIS: 6 June 2022

 

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.


General Studies – 1


 

Topic: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

1. Mughal architecture represents the pluralistic architectural traditions employed by them by adopting elements from various Indian and foreign entities. Discuss. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

After a thunderstorm recently damaged the finial of the 17th century Jama Masjid dome in Delhi, the Delhi Wakf Board, which manages the mosque, wrote to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) requesting removal of the dangling part of the crown and repair of the ornamental structure that has topped the grand mosque since its construction.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the pluralistic traditions of Mughal architecture in India and various elements of it borrowed by them.

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: 

Begin the answer by writing about the grandeur of Mughal architecture.

Body:

First, write about the plurality that is present in Mughal architecture and how it has taken shape under various Mughal rulers.

Next, write about the elements that were borrowed by the Mughal architecture from various indigenous styles of art as well as foreign entities. Substantiate with examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

Introduction

India is often referred to as the land of cultural plurality and diversity where two contrasting worldviews – that of the traditional and continuous and the formal and official (inherited from the British) thrive. Mughal architecture is a construction style that thrived in northern and central India from the mid-16th to late-17th centuries under the patronage of Mughal rulers. Famous buildings such as Agra Fort, Taj Mahal, etc were built under them..

Body

Features of Mughal architecture

  • It’s the blend of Indian, Islamic and Persian elements that makes Mughal architecture so unique.
  • Typical features include huge, onion-shaped domes crowning commemorative monuments, with smaller domed buildings and minarets standing symmetrically on either side.
  • There are impressive entrances and gateways, within tall turreted walls, and water features and quadrilateral gardens.
  • White marble, red sandstone and, less commonly, limestone, are typical construction materials as well as semi-precious stones and coloured marble which are inlaid as decorations.
  • Understated lattice work appears throughout as well as verses from the Qur’an inscribed on interior and exterior walls in Persian and Arabic.
  • Royal palaces are often surrounded by symmetrical gardens featuring walkways and water channels.
  • These stand in contrast to the stark courtyards within the mosques, which can hold enormous congregations.
  • Indo-Muslim architecture got striking improvement with the arrival of Mughals, as had been declined significantly during the Lodi’s period.
  • Unlike Delhi Sultanate Sultans, Mughals mixed and mingled with the local population & Rajput provinces.

Conclusion

Mughal architecture is a unique Indo-Islamic architectural style that flourished in northern and central India from the 16th to the 18th centuries under the patronage of Mughal monarchs. It’s a stunningly symmetrical and ornate blend of Persian, Turkish, and Indian architecture.

 

Topic: Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location-changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

2. The highly diversified hydrogeologic settings and variations in the availability of ground water resources from one part of the country to other call for a holistic approach in evolving suitable management strategies. Analyse.  (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1.

Key Demand of the question:

To write importance of ground water, the limitations in the present approach of its utilisation and changes required to it.

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: 

Begin the answer by writing about the importance of groundwater.

Body:

First, write about the issues in the present approach towards utilisation of ground water – Overexploitation of groundwater and intensive irrigation in major canal commands has posed serious problems for groundwater managers in India. Depletion of water tables, saltwater encroachment, drying of aquifers, groundwater pollution, water logging and salinity, etc. are major consequences of overexploitation and intensive irrigation.

Next, write about the changes that are needed to be taken in the new approach in order to ensure sustainable use of groundwater.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.

Introduction

With an annual groundwater extraction of 248.69 billion cubic meters (2017), India is among the largest users of groundwater in the world. Almost 89% of the groundwater extracted is used for irrigation and the rest for domestic and industrial use (9% and 2%). India is on the threshold of a very serious groundwater crisis, which needs mitigation both in the fields and at the policy corridors of the country.

Body

 

Importance of Groundwater

  • Groundwater helps reduce the risk of temporary water shortage and caters to the needs of arid and semiarid regions.
  • Due to its high storage capacity, groundwater is more resilient to the effects of climate change than surface water.
  • More than 90 percent of groundwater in India is used for irrigated agriculture.
  • The remainder — 24 billion cubic meters — supplies 85 percent of the country’s drinking water.
  • Roughly 80 percent of India’s 1.35 billion residents depend on groundwater for both drinking and irrigation.
  • Current statistics also show that nearly 50% of urban water supply comes from groundwater.

Problems with groundwater depletion

  • Lowering of the water table
  • Reduction of water in streams and lakes
  • Land subsidence: A lack of groundwater limits biodiversity and dangerous sinkholes result from depleted aquifers.
  • Increased costs for the user
  • Deterioration of water quality
  • Saltwater contamination can occur.
  • Crop production decrease from lack of water availability (40% of global food production relies on groundwater).
  • Groundwater depletion interrupts the ‘natural’ water cycle putting disproportionately more water into the sea.
  • As large aquifers are depleted, food supply and people will suffer.

Measures needed

  • The government should develop policies to determine which crops should be grown in which region according to the water availability, which “has not been the focus.” For instance, Punjab has a semi-arid climate but it grows rice, which depletes groundwater and is “highly unsustainable.”
  • The traditional flood irrigation in India accounts for huge water loss through evapotranspiration. Drip irrigation and sprinkler irrigation must be used for efficient utilisation of water.
  • There should be restrictions to cut off the access to groundwater in areas identified as “critical” and “dark zones”, where the water table is overused or very low.
  • There is a need to treat water as common resource rather than private property to prevent its overexploitation
  • Problems and issues such as water logging, salinity, agricultural toxins, and industrial effluents, all need to be properly looked into.
  • Government has initiated schemes like DRIP programme, more drop per crop, Krishi Sinchai Yojana to ensure economical water use practices in agriculture.
  • Bottom-up approach by empowering the local community to become active participants in managing groundwater.
  • Creating regulatory options at the community level such as panchayat is also one among the feasible solutions.
  • Traditional methods of water conservation should be encouraged to minimize the depletion of water resources.
  • Artificial recharge of tube wells, water reuse, afforestation, scientific methods of agriculture should also be done.

Conclusion

Sustainable management of groundwater in India is vital for tackling growing challenges related to water availability. The effective answer to the groundwater crisis is to integrate conservation and development activities, from water extraction to water management, at the local level; making communities aware and involving them fully is therefore critical for success.

 

 


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. What do you understand by digital democracy? Examine its relations with various aspects of governance. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

A country with size & complexity of India can showcase not only how tech can be used but also how to effectively curb its adverse impact & misuse. Therefore, this is one area where it is natural leader among digital democracies.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about digital democracy and its relation with various aspects of governance.

Directive word: 

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must investigate 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: 

Begin the answer by defining digital democracy.

Body:

First, write about the various components of digital democracy – information and communications technology to promote democracy; such technologies include civic technology and government technology. Social, economic and cultural conditions that enable the free and equal practice of political self-determination.

Next, write about the relation of digital democracy with various governance parameters. Substantiate with examples

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising the importance of digital democracy.

Introduction

Digital democracy is, in a sense, the next phase of democracy as it encompasses all the opportunities and challenges of asserting sovereignty for nation states. It is important to understand that countries must now cooperate not only in politics, trade and humanitarian issues, but a vital aspect of cooperation is transborder technological cooperation to assert sovereignty, including to multinational tech giants.

The most important task in such an era is the construction of technological architecture as a public good—which is owned not by any one private entity. In building and deploying such architecture at scale (for more than a billion people), India has shown unique innovation skills and achieved unprecedented success.

Body

India and digital democracy

  • According to recent independent research reports, digital transactions in India could rise to $10 trillion in value by 2026.
  • Two out of five transactions in India are estimated to be using digital tools, and it is set to rise exponentially in the next few years.
  • Whether in financial technology or identity architecture, India is today building bigger and better digital public infrastructure at scale than any other democracy in the world.
  • It, therefore, is the natural leader of the world of digital or digitising democracies.
  • India is not only building such technologies and infrastructure at home, but is also pitching to deploy it around the world.
  •  The India pitch is mass-use digital technology that can be utilised as public infrastructure by countries to digitise their governance processes and public goods delivery mechanisms.

Digital democracy and aspects of governance

  • Public diplomacy: The use of digital technology among democracies is one of the most important platforms for public diplomacy today and this will become more necessary in the near future.
    • A country with the size and complexity of India can showcase not only how technology can be used but also how to effectively curb its adverse impact and misuse. Therefore, this is one area where India is a natural leader.
  • Innovation and service delivery: It can bring to the table the full weight of its enormous expertise in running programmes like Aadhaar, direct-benefit transfer, and ongoing efforts to improve digital health and education.
  • Financial technology: Apart from this, India has innovations like the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) (which powers fintech and has created a unique level playing field) and is working towards creating a unified digital platform for commerce.
  • Soft power: There is an underlying logic to this—democracies must cooperate both non-digitally and digitally to take on the challenges of the so-called decentralised Web3 world of blockchain and artificial intelligence that is emerging.
    • India can and should lead such cooperation. It has both the size and the cutting-edge technology and can offer both expertise and scale.

Conclusion

This leadership role for India, already apparent, is set to expand considerably in the years to come as democracies that extensively use digital tools come together to boost ease of living for their citizens and tackle crises that require worldwide collaboration.

 

Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

4. The formation of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) holds good potential for India with respect to economic growth and integration but India must be careful of the pitfalls it may pose in the future. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question:

On May 23, the Joe Biden administration took a significant step to turn the clock back to the Obama Presidency by launching its own version of a “pivot to Asia” through the establishment of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) with other partner countries — Australia, Brunei, India, Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and the United States.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the potential of IPEF and pitfalls it can pose in the future for 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 in a summary.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving background regarding the formation of IPEF.

Body:

First, write about advantages IPEF can offer for India – cooperation on infrastructure and clean energy, apart from coordination over taxation, rule enforcement and its trade prospects etc.

Next, write about various potential pitfalls for India that could arise on the account of it joining IPEF.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward to address those pitfalls.

Introduction

In the presence of United States President Joe Biden in Tokyo, Indian  Prime Minister announced India’s partnership in the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF), the US-led economic initiative that has on board the four Quad partners apart from South Korea and New Zealand and seven of the 10 Southeast Asian nations.

The IPEF will focus on trade, supply chains, clean energy, taxation and anti-corruption measures. It is a declaration of the collective will to make the region an engine of global economic growth while pushing for “trust, transparency and timeliness” as the three main pillars of resilient supply chains.

 

Body

Background: IPEF

  • The move of these 13 nations to strengthen economic partnership to enhance resilience, sustainability, economic growth, fairness, and competitiveness in the Indo-Pacific is significant, given China’s economic and military assertiveness in the region.
  • The door has been left open for more nations in the region.
  • Apart from the Quad members US, India, Australia and Japan, the new grouping contains Australia, Brunei, Indonesia, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Potential of IPEF for India

  • Economy: The Indo-Pacific covers half the population of the world and more than 60% of the global GDP and the nations who will join this framework in the future, are signing up to work toward an economic vision that will deliver for all people.
  • Trade: It intends to build high-standard, inclusive, free, and fair-trade commitments and develop new and creative approaches in trade and technology policy that advance a broad set of objectives that fuels economic activity and investment, promotes sustainable and inclusive economic growth, and benefits workers and consumers.
  • Supply Chains: IPEF is committed to improving transparency, diversity, security, and sustainability in supply chains to make them more resilient and well-integrated.
    • To coordinate crisis response measures; expand cooperation to better prepare for and mitigate the effects of disruptions to better ensure business continuity; improve logistical efficiency and support; and ensure access to key raw and processed materials, semiconductors, critical minerals, and clean energy technology.
  • Clean Energy, Decarbonization, and Infrastructure: In line with the Paris Agreement goals and efforts to support the livelihood of peoples and workers, it plans to accelerate the development and deployment of clean energy technologies to decarbonize our economies and build resilience to climate impacts.
    • This also involves deepening cooperation on technologies, on mobilizing finance, including concessional finance, and on seeking ways to improve competitiveness and enhance connectivity by supporting the development of sustainable and durable infrastructure and by providing technical assistance.
  • Tax and Anti-Corruption: It is committed to promoting fair competition by enacting and enforcing effective and robust tax, anti-money laundering, and anti-bribery regimes in line with existing multilateral obligations, standards, and agreements to curb tax evasion and corruption in the Indo-Pacific region.
    • This involves sharing expertise and seeking ways to support the capacity building necessary to advance accountable and transparent systems.

Challenges and pitfalls of IPEF for India

  • Issue of IPRs: One notable exclusion from this list is intellectual property rights (IPRs) that have generally been at the heart of the U.S.’ economic engagements with its partner countries.
    • But this may soon change and IPRs could soon figure in the IPEF negotiations.
    • India has historically not been aligned with USA on the issue of IPR’s as it may prove costly to developing economies.
  • Labour rights: Enforcement of labour rights using trade rules is quite contentious, having been rejected by the members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on several occasions.
    • India should also be wary of the considerable emphasis that is being given to strengthening labour rights in the on-going discussions on the IPEF, both by corporate interests and members of the Congress.
  • Environment: As regards the environment, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) had cautioned that “measures taken to combat climate change, including unilateral ones, should not constitute a means of arbitrary or unjustifiable discrimination or a disguised restriction on international trade”.
    • The IPEF could threaten abrogation of these decisions at the WTO and the UNFCCC.
  • Data portability: A third set of issues, whose ramifications on the future of the digital economy and beyond can be far reaching, are those related to standards on cross-border data flows and data localisations.
    • On this issue of data localisation, the Government of India has not yet taken a clear position.
    • In 2019, its likely preference was revealed in the Draft National e-Commerce Policy, wherein it had backed restrictions on cross-border data flows.
    • The key challenge for India is to sustain this diametrically opposite view to an uncompromising position of the U.S. on data localisation.

Conclusion and way forward

  • India needs to go beyond bilateral pacts and focus on broad competitiveness instead of two-way particulars.
  • On its part, the US would do well not to insist on caveats that could blunt any Indian advantage.
  • Our put-offs will have to be spelt out with clarity right at the onset of IPEF talks.
  • But then, just as the White House is seized of the need to keep Indo-Pacific sea-lanes free of a Chinese shadow, it must also be aware of how constraints on Indian export success could work against the Quad’s geopolitical goals.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Food processing and related industries in India- scope’ and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.

5. Food processing industry in India is poised for huge growth, increasing its contribution to world food trade every year. It has emerged as a high-growth and high-profit sector due to its immense potential for value addition. Elaborate. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Insights on India/

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 3.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the potential of food processing in driving the economy and linking it with consumer and industry.

Directive word: 

Elaborate – Give 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: 

Begin by giving statistic regarding the extend of food processing industry in India is

Body:

First, write about the scope of food processing in India – A well-developed food processing industry is expected to increase farm gate prices, reduce wastages, ensure value addition, promote crop diversification, generate employment opportunities as well as export earnings.

Next, write about various bottlenecks faced by the industry and the steps that are needed to ensure its growth.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

Introduction

Food processing generally includes the basic preparation of foods, the alteration of a food product (usually raw) into another form (as in making preserves from fruit), and preservation and packaging techniques. Food processing typically takes harvested crops or animal products and uses these to produce long shelf-life food products.

Body:

Significance of the food processing industries:

The Food Processing Industry (FPI) is of enormous significance as it provides vital linkages and synergies that it promotes between the two pillars of the economy, i.e. agriculture and industry.

  • Employment Opportunities: Food processing industries can absorb a major share of workers from the agriculture sector, who face disguised unemployment. It can lead to better productivity and GDP growth.
  • Doubling of farmers’ income: With contract farming, farmers can get better technological inputs from industries as well. There is income security and proportionate value for produce. They are also protected against price shocks.
  • Crop-diversification: Food processing will require different types of inputs thus creating an incentive for the farmer to grow and diversify crops.
  • Farmer Beneficiaries: The SAMPADA scheme is estimated to benefit about 37 lakh farmers and generate about 5.6 lakh direct/ indirect employment (ES 2020 data).
  • Curbing Distress Migration: Provides employment in rural areas, hence reduces migration from rural to urban. Resolves issues of urbanization.
  • Prevents Wastage: Nearly one-third of the food that is produced each year goes uneaten, costing the global economy over $940 billion as per report by World Resources Institute (WRI)
    • India is biggest producer of numerous fruits and vegetable. Most of these are perishable and have very low shelf life. This is the major reason for high percentage of wastage. Their shelf life can be increased through food processing.
  • Value Addition: Products such as tomato sauce, roasted nuts, de-hydrated fruits are in high demand.
  • Reduce malnutrition: Processed foods when fortified with vitamins and minerals can reduce the nutritional gap in the population.
  • Boosts Trade and Earns Foreign exchange: It is an important source of foreign exchange. For e.g. Indian Basmati rice is in great demand in Middle Eastern countries.
  • Make in India: Food processing is one of the six superstar sectors under the GoI’s, Make in India initiative and has the potential to transform India as a leading food processing destination of the World.
  • Curbing Food Inflation: Processing increases the shelf life of the food thus keeping supplies in tune with the demand thereby controlling food-inflation.
    • For e.g. Frozen peas/ corn are available throughout the year.
    • Similarly, canned onions under Operation Greens can achieve price stability.

Challenges facing food processing industry in India

  • Demand of processed food is mainly restricted to urban areas of India.
  • Major problems are listed below:
    • Small and dispersed marketable surplus due to fragmented holdings
    • Low farm productivity due to lack of mechanization,
    • High seasonality of raw materials
    • Perishability and lack of proper intermediation (supply chain) result in lack of availability of raw material.
    • This in turn, impedes food processing and its exports.
  • More than 30% of the produce from farm gate is lost due to inadequate cold chain infrastructure.
  • The NITI Aayog cited a study that estimated annual post-harvest losses close to Rs 90,000 crore.
  • Lack of all-weather roads and connectivity make supply erratic.
  • The food processing industry has a high concentration of unorganised segments, representing almost 75% across all product categories. Thus, causes the inefficiencies in the existing production system.
  • Further, most processing in India can be classified as primary processing, which has lower value-addition compared to secondary processing.
  • Due to this, despite India being one of the largest producers of agricultural commodities in the world, agricultural exports as a share of GDP are fairly low in India relative to the rest of the world.

Solutions to address the challenges

  • The Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) is implementing PMKSY (Pradhan Mantri Kisan SAMPADA Yojana). The objective of PMKSY is to supplement agriculture, modernize processing and decrease agri-waste.
    • Mega Food Parks.
    • Integrated Cold Chain, Value Addition and Preservation Infrastructure.
    • Creation/Expansion of Food Processing/Preservation Capacities.
    • Infrastructure for Agro Processing Clusters.
    • Scheme for Creation of Backward and Forward Linkages.
  • Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) policy: FDI up to 100%, under the automatic route is allowed in food processing industries.
  • Agri Export Zones: To give thrust to export of agro products, new concept of Agri Export Zones was brought in 2001. APEDA has been nominated as the Nodal Agency to coordinate the efforts
    • cluster approach of identifying the potential products;
    • the geographical region in which these products are grown;
    • Adopting an end-to-end approach of integrating the entire process right from the stage of production till it reaches the market (farm to market).

Conclusion

Food processing has a promising future, provided adequate government support is there. Food is the biggest expense for an urban Indian household. About 35 % of the total consumption expenditure of households is generally spent on food. As mentioned, food processing has numerous advantages which are specific to Indian context. It has the capacity to lift millions out of undernutrition. Government has its work cut out to develop industry in a way which takes care of small scale industry along with attracting big ticket domestic and foreign investments.

 

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life

6. What is assistive technology? Discuss its role in lowering barriers faced by People with disabilities. What steps are required to ensure that this technology is available to the masses with minimal cost?  (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

A billion people globally are currently estimated to be in need of assistive technology (AT); this is projected to double by 2050. Drawing upon the World Report on Disability 2011, the 71st World Health Assembly resolved on May 26, 2018 to prepare a global report on effective access to assistive technology by 2021.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about assistive technology, its advantages and ways to make it affordable for the masses.

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: 

Start by defining assistive technology with examples.

Body:

First, write about how various assistive technology helps lower the barriers faced by the people with disabilities.

Next, write about the limitations that hinder use of assistive technology by the masses.

Next, write about the steps that are needed to ensure availability for affordable assistive technology for the masses.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.

Introduction

Assistive technology (AT) is any item, piece of equipment, software programme, or product system that is used to help people with disabilities increase, maintain, or improve their functional abilities. Examples: Prosthetics, braces, walkers, customised switches, special-purpose computers, screen readers, and specialist curricular software.

The 2011 Census puts the national estimate of the number of people with disabilities at 2.21% of the total population (26.8 million persons), including persons with visual, hearing, speech, locomotor and mental disabilities with the majority in the 19-59 age group. The country’s disabled population increased by 22.4% between 2001 and 2011 census periods; the total population increased by 17.6% however. 

Body:

disabled

 

Importance of Assistive technology

  • It is estimated that approximately one in every 10 children in the world has a disability and less than 10% of children with disabilities in low-income countries go to school.
  • Around the world, an estimated 93 million children under the age of 15 are living with some kind of disability.
  • Besides poverty and prejudice, the lack of access to assistive technology, as well as inaccessible transport and school environments are major barriers, which restrict children with disabilities to access education and to participate in the community.
  • Assistive technology is a life changer — it opens the door to education for children with impairments, employment and social interaction for adults living with disabilities, and an independent life of dignity for older persons

Measures needed to ensure that this technology is available to the masses with minimal cost:

  • The Assistance to Disabled persons for purchasing/fitting of aids/appliances (ADIP) scheme is being implemented by the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment.
  • It aims to assist the needy disabled persons in procuring durable, sophisticated and scientifically manufactured, modern, standard aids and appliances that can promote their physical, social and psychological rehabilitation, by reducing the effects of disabilities and enhance their economic potential.
  • People with disabilities need to be better integrated into society by overcoming stigma
  • State-wise strategies on education for children with special needs need to be devised.
  • There should be proper teacher training to address the needs of differently-abled children and facilitate their inclusion in regular schools
  • Further there should be more special schools and ensure educational material for differently-abled children
  • Safety measures like road safety, safety in residential areas, public transport system etc, should be taken up
  • Further, it should be made legally binding to make buildings disabled-friendly
  • More budgetary allocation for welfare of the disabled. There should be a disability budgeting on line of gender budget.
  • Proper implementation of schemes should be ensured. There should be proper monitoring mechanisms and accountability of public funds.

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance

7. A person’s moral decision of what is right and wrong is not the sheer application of a mathematical principle. Many variables come into play when examining how to conduct a person’s life. Discuss. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

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:

To write about the ways to strengthen moral character among civil servants.

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: 

Begin by mentioning about moral relativism.

Body:

Write about the various determinants that are involved in deciding whether an action is moral right or wrong. Write about the variation or relativity of moral actions across time and space. Substantiate wit examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

Introduction

Moral decisions are made in dilemmas where the well-being of both self and others are at stake, and are guided by their ethics, principles, and convictions. A person experiences reality inside their head and we premise our personal version of reality upon the accumulation of knowledge. Decision-making entails the identification and application of personal knowledge in a just and virtuous manner. The only measure of personal integrity is whether a person derives their own judgment in a rational manner and then determinedly implements the moral judgment regardless of the possibility of encountering the derision and scorn of other people

Body

While making a decision, there are several factors that come into play. They may be a person’s own beliefs influenced by family, friends and religion. Decisions may be influenced by the context that may change once the context is changed.

Over the years, philosophers have recognized five different frameworks for approaching moral issues. These approaches developed over many years, ranging from Ancient Greek times to the 19th century. Each of them is designed to deliver the most virtuous and just resolution to a moral dilemma. The five approaches are:

  • The Utilitarian Approach: The Utilitarian Approach addresses a decision by determining what is the most beneficial or causes the least amount of harm. The ethical action in this approach is the one that causes the most amount of good for the largest amount of people.
  • The Rights Approach: This approach stipulates that the best ethical action is that which protects the ethical rights of those who are affected by the action. It emphasizes the belief that all humans have a right to dignity. This is based on a formulation of Kant’s categorical imperative that says: “Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of another, always at the same time as an end and never simply as a means to an end.”
  • The Fairness Approach: The most influential version of this approach today is found in the work of American philosopher John Rawls, who argued, along Kantian lines, that just ethical principles are those that would be chosen by free and rational people in an initial situation of equality. This hypothetical contract is considered fair or just because it provides a procedure for what counts as a fair action, and does not concern itself with the consequences of those actions.
  • The Common-Good Approach: This approach to ethics underscores the networked aspects of society and emphasizes respect and compassion for others, especially those who are more vulnerable.
  • The Virtue Approach: One long-standing ethical principle argues that ethical actions should be consistent with ideal human virtues. Aristotle, for example, argued that ethics should be concerned with the whole of a person’s life, not with the individual discrete actions a person may perform in any given situation.

Making good ethical decisions requires a trained sensitivity to ethical issues and a practiced method for exploring the ethical aspects of a decision and weighing the considerations that should impact our choice of a course of action. Having a method for ethical decision making is essential. When practiced regularly, the method becomes so familiar that we work through it automatically without consulting the specific steps. This is one reason why we can sometimes say that we have a “moral intuition” about a certain situation, even when we have not consciously thought through the issue. We are practiced at making ethical judgments, just as we can be practiced at playing the piano, and can sit and play well “without thinking.” Nevertheless, it is not always advisable to follow our immediate intuitions, especially in particularly complicated or unfamiliar situations.

One of the most important things to do at the beginning of ethical deliberation is to locate, to the extent possible, the specifically ethical aspects of the issue at hand. Sometimes what appears to be an ethical dispute is really a dispute about facts or concepts.

For example, some Utilitarians might argue that the death penalty is ethical because it deters crime and thus produces the greatest amount of good with the least harm. Other Utilitarians, however, might argue that the death penalty does not deter crime, and thus produces more harm than good. The argument here is over which facts argue for the morality of a particular action, not simply over the morality of particular principles.

Conclusion

Making ethical decisions requires sensitivity to the ethical implications of problems and situations.  It also requires practice. Having a framework for ethical decision making is essential. Also, in the field of administration it helps to have a right set of Code of Ethics and conduct to remove dilemmas in decision making and also to remove discretionary powers to maximum possible extent.


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