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[MISSION 2024] Insights SECURE : Daily UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice: 19 July 2023

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General Studies – 1


 

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

1. While the Battle of Plassey was crucial in the initial establishment of British influence in Bengal, it was the Battle of Buxar that confirmed and consolidated their power over the region. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2024 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the importance of Battle of Buxar and in what way it paved way to expansion and consolidation of British Empire 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 in a summary.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start the answer by mentioning the context and the participants in the Battle of Buxar.

Body:

In the first part of the body, elaborate the consequences of the battle to show how it paved way for expansion and consolidation of the British Empire in India. Explain that the Battle of Buxar had far-reaching implications in the consolidation of the British Empire in India. It influenced the politico-economic conditions of Bengal in particular and of India in general.

In the next part, mention as to how Buxar confirmed the gains of Plassey.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

 

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

2. Despite its shortcomings, the Ryotwari settlement remained one of the significant revenue systems employed by the British in India during their colonial rule. Examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: 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-2024 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the shortcomings and significance of Ryotwari settlement.

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 by mentioning the nature of Ryotwari settlement.

Body:

First, write about the reasons for the introduction of the Ryotwari settlement – rejection of the Permanent Settlement, elimination of intermediaries, assessment of the tax on land actually cultivated, paternal approach of British and absence of traditional zamindars.

Next, write about the impact of the introduction of Ryotwari settlement – system facilitated land surveys, improved administrative efficiency, and provided a more stable revenue source.

Next, write about its limitations – challenges in uniform application, vulnerability to fluctuations, and limited focus on social welfare.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic: Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.

3. The first-past-the-post (FPTP) system can lead to disproportionate outcomes, lack of proportional representation, and limited political diversity. Critically examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

The discusses the phenomenon of unnatural political alliances in the Indian context and proposes ways to prevent them.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the limitation of the FPTP system and suggest alternatives.

Directive word:

Critically examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we have to 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. 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 judgment.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

In the introduction, write why India’s needs electoral reforms.

Body:

Write about the FPTP system, its merits and demerits. Argue as to why FPTP is considered not truly democratic and inclusive. Back up your arguments with relevant stats and data.

Next, write about the alternatives such as Proportional Representation and German Model etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude by commenting on the path India should adopt going forward.

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Technology missions;

4. It is essential to strike a balance by ensuring rigorous scientific evaluations, transparent regulatory processes, and addressing concerns about environmental and food safety to responsibly harness the benefits of GM technology for India’s agricultural sector. Critically analyse the above statement in the context of Indian government’s approach to approving GM mustard. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Why the question:

The article discusses the contentious issue of introducing genetically modified (GM) mustard in India.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the impact of clearance granted for the cultivation of GM-Mustard and need for a more balanced and transparent approach.

Directive word: 

Critically analyze – 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 balanced judgment on the topic.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving context.

Body:

First, in brief, write about the needed for GM crops in the country to meet the challenges of food security and make farming commercially viable and tackle challenges posed by climate change.

Next, write about the positive aspect of the lifting the ban on GM Mustard and its impact on the farmers as well as scientific community in the country.

Next, write about the concerns associated with the above with respect to regulatory processes and transparency and how can they be addressed.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.

 

Topic: Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

5. By promoting the domestic production and consumption of biofuels, India can take advantage of its abundant agricultural resources, while reducing its dependence on imported petroleum products. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Down to Earth

Why the question:

The upcoming 14th Clean Energy Ministerial and Eighth Mission Innovation (CEM14/MI-8) conference, scheduled to take place in Goa from July 19-22, 2023, is likely to establish the Global Biofuel Alliance (GBA).

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the importance of biofuels in energy security of the country and ways to achieve it.

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: 

Start by defining biofuels.

Body:

First, write about the various advantages associated with biofuels

Next, write about the importance of promoting the domestic production and consumption of biofuels – boosts manufacturing, reduces trade imbalances, and enhances energy security.

Next, write about the limitations of the above.

Next, write about the steps that are required for scaling up biofuels in general.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a forward.

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Human Values – lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators.

6. What does this quote means to you? (150 words)

“The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.” – Winston Churchill


Difficulty level: Easy

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4 and part of ‘Quotes Wednesdays’ in Mission-2024 Secure.

Directive word: 

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by explaining the quote in your word.

Body:

The sun sets, but we all know it will rise again in the morning. The moon rises when the sun sets and sets when the sun reappears. In other words, something that exists can be hidden for a certain period of time, but it will always reappear and the truth is the same. You can manipulate, distort the truth, hide it, but at some point, the truth will be known. Substantiate with examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude by emphasising on the importance of leading a truthful life.

 

Topic: Human Values – lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators;

7. What does this quote means to you? (150 words)

“The price of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.” – Plato

Difficulty level: Moderate

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4 and part of ‘Quotes Wednesdays’ in Mission-2024 Secure.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin the answer by defining in quote in the context of democratic politics.

Body:

Explain the issues of non-participation in public affairs such as Corruption, maladministration, lack of accountability, misappropriation of funds and inefficient governance etc with suitable illustrations for India and across the world. You can talk about criminalisation of politics. The impact of the above on our country and the world.

Conclusion:

Write how participation is the key and need for the participation of the competitive and ethical people is a necessary precursor in good governance.


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