Print Friendly, PDF & Email

[Mission 2024] Insights SECURE SYNOPSIS: 25 July 2023

 

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


General Studies – 1


 

Topic: History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the society.

1. The outbreak of World War I can be attributed to a combination of long-term structural factors, including militarism, alliances, imperialism, and nationalism, along with the immediate trigger of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. 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 – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2024 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the reasons for the outbreak for the first world war.

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 the context of assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand that started the great war of 1914.

Body:

First, write about the geo-political Tensions had been brewing throughout Europe—especially in the troubled Balkan region of southeast Europe, the alliances involving European powers, the Ottoman Empire, Russia and other parties had existed for years, The political instability in the Balkans etc, Hyper nationalism leading to mutual distrust. Mention other factors such as economic and military causes.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

Introduction

World War I occurred between July 1914 and November 11, 1918. By the end of the war, over 17 million people would be killed including over 100,000 American troops. The reason why war erupted is actually much more complicated than a simple list of causes. While there was a chain of events that directly led to the fighting, the actual root causes are much deeper and part of continued debate and discussion.

Body

Causes that led to outbreak of World War I

  • Mutual Defense Alliances: Over time, countries throughout Europe made mutual defense agreements that would pull them into battle. These treaties meant that if one country was attacked, allied countries were bound to defend them. Before World War 1, the following alliances existed:
    • Russia and Serbia
    • Germany and Austria-Hungary
    • France and Russia
    • Britain and France and Belgium
    • Japan and Britain
  • Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia, Russia got involved to defend Serbia. Germany seeing Russia mobilizing, declared war on Russia.
    • France was then drawn in against Germany and Austria-Hungary. Germany attacked France through Belgium pulling Britain into war.
    • Then Japan entered the war. Later, Italy and the United States would enter on the side of the allies.
  • Imperialism: Before World War I, Africa and parts of Asia were points of contention among the European countries. This was especially true because of the raw materials these areas could provide.
    • The increasing competition and desire for greater empires led to an increase in confrontation that helped push the world into WW I.
  • Militarism: As the world entered the 20th century, an arms race had begun. By 1914, Germany had the greatest increase in military buildup.
    • Great Britain and Germany both greatly increased their navies in this time period. Further, in Germany and Russia particularly, the military establishment began to have a greater influence on public policy.
    • This increase in militarism helped push the countries involved into war.
  • Nationalism: Much of the origin of the war was based on the desire of the Slavic peoples in Bosnia and Herzegovinato no longer be part of Austria Hungary but instead be part of Serbia.
    • In this way, nationalism led directly to the War. But in a more general way, the nationalism of the various countries throughout Europe contributed not only to the beginning but the extension of the war in Europe. Each country tried to prove their dominance and power
  • Assassination of arch-duke: The immediate cause of World War I that made the aforementioned items come into play (alliances, imperialism, militarism, nationalism) was theassassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary.
    • This assassination led to Austria-Hungary declaring war on Serbia.
    • When Russia began to mobilize due to its alliance with Serbia, Germany declared war on Russia.
    • Thus began the expansion of the war to include all those involved in the mutual defense alliances.

Germany’s role in causing world war-I

  • Germany played an important role. After the end of the Franco-Prussian War in 1871, Germany became a unified state.
    • It quickly became thelargest industrial power in Europe.
    • Thischanged the balance of power and many of German’s neighbours became nervous.
  • Because of this tension, Kaiser Wilhelm I of Germany decided to form alliances in order to protect Germany and avoid a war on two fronts.
  • After several default alliances, the Triple Alliance, consisting of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy, was formed in 1882.
  • In 1907, afterGermany challenged the naval supremacy of Great Britain, the Triple Entente was formed, comprising Britain, France, and Russia.
  • The emergence of alliances was a major cause of the First World War, because it divides the European powers, making them rivals, and countries forced to participate in war if one of his allies were involved in the war, which could turn a small war into a large one.
  • In 1890, William II of Germany adopted Weltpolitik foreign policyto meet the colonial aspirations of Germany and created a strong navy and empire abroad.
  • This imperialist policy had a great impact on relations between Germany and other countries and led Germany into conflict with Britain because of colonial conflicts.

Conclusion

The two world wars were caused by several different factors and many countries participated in it. Several arguments exist as to who should be held responsible for the wars. World War I moved into full force from 1914 through 1918, ending when peace was brokered between the German and Central Forces and the Allied Powers with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles. However, this treaty forced punitive measures on Germany that further destabilized Europe and laid the groundwork for the start of World War II. By understanding the causes of World War I, historians can develop a keen comprehension of how and why this devastating conflict began.

 

Topic: History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the society.

2. The Industrial Revolution brought numerous technological advancements and economic growth, it also had significant negative consequences. Critically Examine. (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 positive and negative impact of Industrial revolution.

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: 

Start the answer by mentioning the manifold of major changes brought on Industrial revolution.

Body:

In the first part mention the positive impact of Industrial revolution – Growth of modern Industry, emergence of cities, new capitalistic class, improvement in lifestyle, technological innovations etc.

Next, mention the negative impact of IR – poor working conditions, poor living conditions, low wages, child labor, Luddite movement and pollution. 

Next, in detail, write about how IR in Britain impact the Indian colony.

Conclusion:

Summarise the overall impact of Industrial revolution.

Introduction

The Industrial Revolution refers to a series of significant shifts in traditional practices of agriculture, manufacturing, and transportation, as well as the development of new mechanical technologies that took place during the late 18th and 19th centuries in much of the Western world. During this time, the United Kingdom, as well as the rest of Europe and the United States soon after, underwent drastic socio-economic and cultural changes.

Body

Effects of Industrialization

Positives:

  • The Industrial Revolution brought about sweeping changes in economic and social organization.
  • These changes included a wider distribution of wealth and increased international trade.
  • Managerial hierarchies also developed to oversee the division of labor.
  • By the late 1700s many people could no longer earn their living in the countryside. Increasingly, people moved from farms and villages into bigger towns and cities to find work in factories.
  • The Industrial Revolution marked a dramatic change for women as many of them entered the workforce for the first time. Women had to compete with men for jobs. Female factory workers often made only one-third as much as men.
  • Machines greatly increased production. This meant that products were cheaper to make and also cheaper to buy. Many factory owners became rich.
  • The middle class began opening up new factories for which they required financing and therefore, the banking and finance system began developing.
  • Better transport, communications and mechanized goods made life comfortable for man.

Negatives:

  • Advancement in technology and better agricultural production led to better medical facilities and greater employment which led to population explosion.
  • Although the machines made work easier in some ways, factory work created many problems for the laborers. Factory employees did not earn much, and the work was often dangerous. Many worked 14 to 16 hours per day six days per week.
  • Women and child labour was badly exploited.
  • Workers sought to win improved conditions and wages through labor unions. These organizations helped establish laws to protect workers. Such laws, for instance, limited the number of work hours for employees and guaranteed they would be paid a certain amount.
  • Cities grew larger, but they were often dirty, crowded, and unhealthy.
  • Industrial Revolution made the production of goods easy and ready in much less time. Therefore, more and more goods began to be produced which led to the exploitation of resources.
  • The process of industrialization continues around the world, as do struggles against many of its negative effects, such as industrial pollution and urban crowding.
  • It led to wars of imperialism and colonization.

Impact of Industrial revolution on India:

  • The Industrial Revolution in England impacted the nature of trade of the British in India.
  • The Industrial  Revolution  transformed  India  into  a  country  that  supplied  raw-materials  to  the industrial houses of Britain.
  • Prior to the Industrial Revolution British traders purchased cotton piece- goods and other handicraft items from India and used to net huge profit by selling those in the European markets.
  • With the Industrial Revolution Britain started manufacturing various articles in a short time. For the manufacture of such articles huge raw-materials were needed.
  • Thus they procured raw-materials from India at a cheap price.
  • At the same time Britain flooded the Indian markets with the machine-made products produced in British factories.

Conclusion:

Industrialization changed our world for the better in many ways. It is up to us to clean up the pollution that comes about as a side effect to these efforts. If we’re unwilling to approach our environment in the same way that we look at our economies, then this planet we have may not be around much longer.

 

Topic: 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.

3. Floodplains are fertile areas with nutrient-rich soils, making them ideal for agriculture and supporting diverse plant and animal species. Rapid urbanization and unauthorized construction on floodplains reduce their natural flood storage capacity and disrupt their ecological balance. Analyse. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The Hindu

Why the question: 

Rampant construction has besieged the flood pathway on the floodplain of the river Yamuna, which should have otherwise been reserved for the river to expand.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the floodplain ecosystem, its benefits, threat it faces and ways to restore 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: 

Begin by defining floodplain ecosystem.

Body:

First, write the benefits offered by floodplain ecosystem – support rich ecosystems and provide critically important benefits to people, including the largest freshwater fisheries in the world. Cite examples

Next, write about the various threats faced by them.

Next, write about ways to protect and restore the flood plain ecosystem of India.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.

Introduction

A floodplain is a generally flat area of land next to a river or stream. It stretches from the banks of the river to the outer edges of the valley. A floodplain consists of two parts. The first is the main channel of the river itself, called the floodway. Beyond the floodway is the flood fringe. The flood fringe extends from the outer banks of the floodway to the bluff lines of a river valley.

Rampant construction has besieged the flood pathway on the floodplain of the river Yamuna, which should have otherwise been reserved for the river to expand.

Body

Benefits offered by floodplains of India

  • When inundated with water, floodplains act as natural filters, removing excess sediment and nutrients, which can degrade water quality and increase treatment costs.
  • These sandy floodplains are exceptional aquifers and any withdrawal is compensated by gravity flow from a large surrounding area.
  • It can replenish underground water sources (or aquifers), which serve as a primary source of water for many communities and which are critical for irrigation that grows much of the world’s crops.
  • Floodplains are home to some of the most biologically rich habitats on Earth. They provide spawning grounds for fish and critical areas of rest and foraging for migrating waterfowl and birds.
  • Floodplains of rivers have immense potential for ensuring sustained water supplies for urban settlements if preserved.
  • Many outdoor recreational activities – like fishing, hunting, camping, hiking, wildlife watching and boating – are made possible by or greatly enhanced by the natural processes of rivers and healthy floodplains.

various threats to floodplains

  • Flood plains are among the most altered landscapes worldwide and they continue to disappear at an alarming rate, since the ‘reclamation’ rate is much higher than for most other landscape types
  • For river–floodplain ecosystems, expected impacts vary latitudinally.
  • In tropical ecosystems, land use is expected to have the greatest effect, with climate change being minimal.
  • In temperate systems, both land-use change and invasion of non-native species can be expected equally to affect biodiversity
  • In high latitude/altitude systems climate change is by far the most dominant driver, although region-specific differences exist.
  • Species invasion is one of the most important causes of the overall decline in aquatic biodiversity. The higher percentage of exotic plants and animals in flood plains compared to uplands demonstrates the vulnerability of the riparian zone to invasion
  • As the human footprint intensified on the floodplains, the landscape was increasingly “developed and engineered”.
  • The engineered and planned landscape has affected the floodplains in two ways: It has undermined their ability to store and absorb water and reduced their capacity to transport sediment.

Way forward and conclusion

  • Flood Plain Zoning has been recognized as an effective non-structural measure for flood management. Flood-plain zoning measures aim at demarcating zones or areas likely to be affected by floods of different magnitude or frequencies and probability levels, and specify the types of permissible developments in these zones, so that whenever floods actually occur, the damage can be minimised.
  • Rejuvenate flood-plain ecosystems
    • Floods cause disruption and damage but they also generate a bounty of fish and rejuvenate flood-plain ecosystems.
    • g: all along the Brahmaputra, including in the Kaziranga; this landscape has been shaped over millions of years with the help of an active monsoonal environment and mighty rivers that carry sediments weathered from the still-rising Himalaya.
  • Over millions of years, this depositing of sediment into the floodplains has produced at least two results: Raising the lowlands and regularly adjusting river beds. These ensure that impacts of flooding remained moderate.
  • Construction projects that impede the movement of water and sediment across the floodplain must be reconsidered.
  • Floodplain management and restoration strategies must also take into account climate change models that predict significant changes to flow regimes in most of the world’s rivers, especially in temperate and arid regions.
  • Flood plains are unique and dynamic ecosystems that link rivers with their catchments. They are highly productive environments, supporting a diverse biota, but are also intensively used by humans for agricultural and urban development, resulting in loss of biodiversity and ecological functioning.
  • The priority for flood plains is to conserve those that are still intact and to attempt to rehabilitate those that are degraded.
  • In both cases, protecting or restoring key components of the natural flow regime is essential, while maintaining sustainable use of floodplain resources by local communities, particularly in developing countries.
  • Finding this compromise between conservation and resource use requires a greater understanding of the role of flow relative to other stressors in driving ecological processes in flood plains.

 

 


General Studies – 2


 

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

4. While India and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have developed a multifaceted partnership in various areas, there are several obstacles that can impede the full realization of their potential collaboration. Examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Why the question:

The article highlights the need for ASEAN to maintain its unity and relevance in a rapidly changing geopolitical landscape, while continuing to prioritize dialogue as a means of resolving conflicts and building stronger ties among member states.

Key Demand of the question:

To understand the role of strategic partnership with ASEAN and its mutual benefits and limitations for both sides.

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 historic engagement of India-ASEAN relationship.

Body:

Bring out the importance of geographical proximity of the ASEAN countries and its strategic, security and economic implications to India. Also mention about the sociocultural dynamics, mobilisation of group level funds and promotion of domestic infrastructure projects based on few examples.

Next, write about the inter-link between India’s Indo-Pacific strategy works in tandem with its Act East Policy.

Next, write about various obstacles in their partnership and its implications of the above on India.

Conclusion:

Conclude by stating that a good relation with ASEAN nations is crucial for India, in order for India to look beyond its neighbours, in its global diplomatic journey.

Introduction

India’s relationship with ASEAN has emerged as a key cornerstone of our foreign policy. The relationship has evolved from the ‘Look East Policy’ enunciated in early 1990s, to Strategic Partnership in 2012. Since 2014, India is espousing ‘Act East Policy’ that has enhanced the partnership further.

ASEAN-India Strategic Partnership stands on a strong foundation of shared geographical, historical and civilizational ties. ASEAN is central to our Act East Policy and our wider vision of the Indo-Pacific. India and ASEAN will observe 30 years of their Dialogue Partnership in 2022.

 

Body

India’s of strategic partnership with ASEAN

  • India’s relationship with ASEAN is a key pillar of her foreign policy and the foundation of Act East Policy. India and ASEAN already have 25 years of Dialogue Partnership, 15 years of Summit Level interaction and 5 years of Strategic Partnership with ASEAN.
  • Economic Cooperation: ASEAN is India’s fourth largest trading partner.India’s trade with ASEAN stands at approx. 10.6% of India’s overall trade.
    • India’s export to ASEAN stands at 11.28% of our total exports. The ASEAN-India Free Trade Area has been completed.
    • ASEAN India-Business Council (AIBC) was set up in 2003 to bring key private sector players from India and the ASEAN countries on a single platform.
  • Socio-Cultural Cooperation: Programmes to boost People-to-People Interaction with ASEAN, such as inviting ASEAN students to India, Special Training Course for ASEAN diplomats, Exchange of Parliamentarians, etc.
  • Delhi Declaration: To identify Cooperation in the Maritime Domain as the key area of cooperation under the ASEAN-India strategic partnership.
  • Delhi Dialogue: Annual Track 1.5 event for discussing politico-security and economic issues between ASEAN and India.
  • ASEAN-India Centre (AIC): To undertake policy research, advocacy and networking activities with organizations and think-tanks in India and ASEAN.

 

Obstacles in India – ASEAN ties

  • Chinese hegemony: The issue of ownership, control, use and exploitation of oil, gas, and mineral and fisheries resources in the South China Sea has emerged as a major dispute between China and several ASEAN nations like Vietnam, Philippines, Brunei and Malaysia.
    • This issue has divided ASEAN and there is no unanimity amongst them.
    • The South China Sea is of economic importance for India as more than 40% of trade is dependent on this region. Fossil fuel resources in this region are also being harnessed by India on a collaboration basis.
    • Maritime security is essential in this region for the protection of India’s national interest.
    • However, India’s effort in this regard is meagre when compared to China’s dominance in the region.
  • Indo-Pacific Rivalry: For a long time, the assumption of China as the primary economic partner and the US as the primary security guarantor has been at the heart of the ASEAN balance.
    • Today, that balance is falling apart and the Russia-Ukraine war has further aggravated this tension. This sharpening of major power rivalry in the Indo-Pacific region is threatening the underlying stability on which rested the regional growth and prosperity.
  • Economic challenges: India has an unfavourable balance of trade with the ASEAN nations. India has pulled out of the RCEP deal, as it would deepen its trade deficit with China and the ASEAN nations.
    • Improving economic competitiveness at the domestic level and ease of doing business and promoting investment inflows can address this problem.
    • The domestic economic growth can be guaranteed by providing assistance to the MSMEs and improving domestic market connectivity.
    • India should address the issue of land and labour laws so that there is an ease in doing business within the country.
    • Improving infrastructure and promoting technological growth can also solve this problem exponentially.
  • Unstable Geoeconomics: The geopolitical tension in the Indo-Pacific is producing geoeconomic consequences where issues of trade and technology cooperation as well as supply chain resilience is at peak.
    • And this is happening at a time when ASEAN remains a divided organisation internally on how to manage these challenges.
  • Ineffective Negotiations: Many bilateral deals with these nations are yet to be finalised, leading to the halting of various aspects of diplomatic ties.
    • Increasing the flexible bilateral interaction based on the principle of quid pro quo can assure the win-win situation for both India and ASEAN.

 

Enhancing India-Asean relation further

  • The recent loss of US market by the ASEAN nations can be compensated with the domestic demand in India which has been increasing with the rise of middle class in the country.
  • In terms of security challenges, both ASEAN and India are faced with grave vulnerabilities with regard to terrorism and it is in their common interest to work together to build peace and security in the region.
  • With the withdrawal of US troops from strategic locations in the region, ASEAN countries justifiably perceive India, with the largest Naval forces in the Indian Ocean and nuclear capabilities, a strategic partner to balance China’s growing power in the region.
  • While East Asia is on the verge of entering a phase of lower share of working age population India is entering a phase with a higher share of working age population which can prove to be a human resource base for East Asia.
  • Along with East Asian specialization in manufactures, India’s strength in services could result in a formidable strategic combination which may be mutually beneficial for both the sides.
  • India has welcomed the Indo-Pacific document by ASEAN and is pushing for early conclusion of code of conduct on South China Sea by ASEAN and China.
  • Improving connectivity would mean improved business and tourism ties with the ASEAN nations.
  • Strong maritime connectivity between India and ASEAN nations can allow for the realisation of the full potential of India-ASEAN trade.
  • Enhancing maritime connectivity would provide cheaper logistics and motivate increased trade of goods and services between the nations.

 

Conclusion

The region has become strategically important for India due to its growing importance in the world politics. And for India to be a regional power as it claims to be, continuing to enhance its relations with ASEAN in all spheres must be a priority.

Value addition

India-ASEAN relations

  • Free Trade Agreement:India signed an FTA in goods in 2009 and an FTA in services and investments in 2014 with ASEAN.
  • Apart from this, India has a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) with various countries of the ASEAN region which has resulted in concessional trade and a rise in investments.
  • India’s investment in ASEAN during the same period has been more than $40 billion.
  • Trade between India and ASEANstood at $65.04 billion in 2015-16 and comprises 10.12 per cent of India’s total trade with the world.
  • Connectivity is another important issue of convergence, with India working toward formalizing its transit agreements and establishing better connectivity infrastructure with this region through land, water, and air, example- India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway and the Kaladan Multimodal Project.
  • Security: ASEAN platform allows India to discuss non-traditional security issues in Indian Ocean Region (IOR) like piracy, illegal migration, and trafficking of drugs, arms, and human, maritime terrorism, etc. which can only be resolved on a multilateral level.
  • India has also scored several diplomatic successes at ARF,including maintaining ties after its nuclear test of 1998, isolating Pakistan during the Kargil War, and lobbying against Pakistan’s entry in the forum till 2002.
  • The aggressive rise of China, both economically and militarily, has caused suspicion among the countries in the region. This provides an opportunity to India which seeks to balance China and gain cooperation in the region.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Disaster and disaster management

5. Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) involves proactively identifying and addressing the underlying risks and vulnerabilities that can lead to disasters. Analyse in the context of India’s adoption of the National Disaster Management Plan. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Why the question:

The article discusses India’s adoption of the National Disaster Management Plan (NDMP) and its significance in enhancing disaster risk reduction efforts.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the complementary nature of disaster prevention and emergency response during a disaster and role of National Disaster Management Plan in doing so.

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 defining Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR).

Body:

First, write about role of disaster prevention in mitigating the impact of disasters – identifying potential hazards, assessing the risk they pose, and taking steps to reduce the likelihood of a disaster occurring.

Next, write about the importance of emergency response – search and rescue, medical assistance, shelter and basic needs, communication and coordination, and damage assessment.

Next, write about National Disaster Management Plan, its components and how it will contribute to disaster risk reduction.

Conclusion:

Conclude by summarising.

Introduction

 

A disaster is a result of natural or man-made causes that leads to sudden disruption of normal life, causing severe damage to life and property to an extent that available social and economic protection mechanisms are inadequate to cope.

It is an undesirable occurrence resulting from forces that are largely outside human control. It strikes quickly with little or no warning and requires major efforts in providing statutory emergency service.

Body

India’s vulnerability profile

  • India is vulnerable, in varying degrees, to a large number of disasters. Around 59% of the landmass is prone to earthquakes of moderate to very high intensity.
  • About 12% (over 40 million hectares) of its land is prone to floods and river erosion.
  • Close to 5,700 kms, out of the 7,516 kms long coastline is prone to cyclones and tsunamis.
  • 68% of its cultivable area is vulnerable to droughts; and, the hilly areas are at risk from landslides and avalanches.
  • Moreover, India is also vulnerable to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) emergencies and other man-made disasters.
  • Disaster risks in India are further compounded by increasing vulnerabilities related to changing demographics and socio-economic conditions, unplanned urbanization, development within high-risk zones, environmental degradation, climate change, geological hazards, epidemics and pandemics.
  • Clearly, all these contribute to a situation where disasters seriously threaten India’s economy, its population and sustainable development.

 Impact of disaster

  • Disaster impacts individuals physically(through loss of life, injury, health, disability) as well as psychologically.
  • Disaster results in huge economic loss due to destruction of property, human settlements and infrastructure etc.
  • Disaster can alter the natural environment, loss of habitat to many plants and animals and cause ecological stress that can result in biodiversity loss.
  • After natural disasters, food and other natural resources like water often becomes scarce resulting into food and water scarcity.
  • The disaster results in displacement of people, and displaced population often face several challenges in new settlements, in this process poorer becomes more poor.
  • Disaster increases the level of vulnerability and hence multiply the effects of disaster.

 

National Disaster Management Plan

 

  • National Disaster Management Plan (NDMP) is the first ever national plan prepared to handle disasters in the country. The NDMP has been aligned broadly with the goals and priorities set out in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.
  • For each hazard, the approach used in this national plan incorporates the four priorities enunciated in the Sendai Framework into the planning framework for Disaster Risk Reduction under the five Thematic Areas for Actions:
    • Understanding Risk
    • Inter-Agency Coordination
    • Investing in DRR – Structural Measures
    • Investing in DRR – Non-Structural Measures
    • Capacity Development
  • The Response part of the Plan has identified eighteen broad activities which have been arranged into a matrix to be served as a ready reckoner:
    • Early Warning, Maps, Satellite inputs, Information Dissemination
    • Evacuation of People and Animals
    • Search and Rescue of People and Animals
    • Medical Care
    • Drinking Water/ Dewatering Pumps/ Sanitation Facilities/ Public Health
    • Food & Essential Supplies
    • Communication
    • Housing and Temporary Shelters
    • Power
    • Fuel
    • Transportation
    • Relief Logistics and Supply Chain Management
    • Disposal of Animal Carcasses
    • Fodder for livestock in scarcity-hit areas
    • Rehabilitation and Ensuring Safety of Livestock and other Animals, Veterinary Care
    • Data Collection and Management
    • Relief Employment
    • Media Relations
  • Governance: The Plan has also incorporated a Chapter on Strengthening Disaster Risk Governance. The generalized responsibility matrix given in this section summarizes the themes for strengthening Disaster Risk Governance and specifies agencies at the Centre and State with their respective roles. The matrix has six thematic areas in which Central and State Governments have to take actions to strengthen disaster risk governance:
    • Mainstream and integrate DRR and Institutional Strengthening
    • Capacity Development
    • Promote Participatory Approaches
    • Work with Elected Representatives
    • Grievance Redress Mechanism
    • Promote Quality Standards, Certifications, and Awards for Disaster Risk Management

 

 

 

 

 Prevention and preparedness

  • Disaster risk reduction is the concept and practice of reducing disaster risks through systematic efforts to analyse and reduce the causal factors of disasters.
  • Pre-Disaster risk reduction includes-
  • Mitigation: To eliminate or reduce the impacts and risks of hazards through proactive measures taken before an emergency or disaster occurs.
  • Preparedness: To take steps to prepare and reduce the effects of disasters.
  • Post-Disaster risk reduction includes-
  • Rescue: Providing warning, evacuation, search, rescue, providing immediate assistance.
  • Relife: To respond to communities who become victims of disaster, providing relief measures such as food packets, water, medicines, temporary accommodation, relief camps etc.
  • Recovery: This stage emphasises upon recovery of victims of disaster, recovery of damaged infrastructure and repair of the damages caused.

Conclusion

Disaster management must be implemented at all levels of society and must have a bottoms up approach. Every disaster can be mitigated if there is preparedness and risk reduction should be first step to reduce the impact of a disaster.

 

Topic: Security challenges and their management in border areas – linkages of organized crime with terrorism.

6. India’s position as a transit route makes it vulnerable to drug trafficking. Drug trafficking across porous borders presents significant challenges to India’s border security agencies in controlling illegal drug movements. Elaborate. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Why the question:

The Border Security Force (BSF) thwarted a major narcotic smuggling bid along the International Border (IB) as it shot dead a Pakistani intruder in Jammu and Kashmir’s Samba district, a BSF spokesperson said on July 25.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about increasing trend in drug trafficking, what way India’s location makes it more vulnerable and counter measures taken by India.

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 mention the presence of Golden Crescent and the Golden Triangle and draw a small map to represent the same.

Body:

First, India’s vulnerability to the trafficking of narcotics and drugs such as heroin, hashish, and synthetic drugs produced in these areas.

Increased production of opium in Afghanistan, greater domestic demand in India, and connivance of state government officials and border guarding forces together contributed towards this increase in heroin trafficking, especially in the Punjab sector. Then explain the trends in drug and narcotics trafficking; explain how it’s a threat to national security.

Discuss efforts of the government in this direction.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction

India is wedged between the world’s two largest areas of illicit opium production, the Golden Crescent and the Golden Triangle.  This proximity has traditionally been viewed as a source of vulnerability, since it has made India both a destination and a transit route for opiates produced in these regions.  the lockdown restrictions during Covid-19 have accelerated drug trafficking using the Internet. The drug trafficking scenario in India is largely attributed to various external and internal factors.

The Border Security Force (BSF) thwarted a major narcotic smuggling bid along the International Border (IB) as it shot dead a Pakistani intruder in Jammu and Kashmir’s Samba district, a BSF spokesperson said on July 25.

Body

Background

  • According to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), opium production in Afghanistan has crossed 6,000 tonnes for the fifth consecutive year.
  • The reported rise in global opium prices has resulted in the exponential production of opiates increasing by 8%.
  • The Taliban, cash-strapped and still looking to establish a semblance of order in the country they captured in August 2021, could indeed be looking to generate revenue from the illegal cash crop, as cases of smuggling and seizures of large consignments of drugs in India have started increasing, indicating a turn towards this trend.

 

Implications of Drug trafficking in India

  • Challenges in the Northeast
    • Indo-Myanmar border encounters non-conventional security challenges as it provides a secure channel for the movement of insurgents, narcotics trafficking, gunrunning, smuggling of wildlife etc.
  • Proxy-wars: In the context of the proxy war in J&K, Pakistan’s ISI has been using the narcotics trade to
    • Generate funds to sustain militancy.
    • Erode the vitality of the populace in the border belt.
    • Win over the local youth, as informers.
    • Increase the level of criminal activity.
  • Narco-terrorism: Terrorism and militancy in India, especially in Jammu and Kashmir, waged by Islamist extremist groups based in and supported by Pakistan. This is mainly funded by trading narcotics illegally.
  • Drug Abuse on rise: The easy availability of drugs in Indian market is increasing drug abuse cases, particularly amongst the youth.
    • According to a report by Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, around 2.1% of Indians use opioids like opium, heroin, and non-medical sedatives.
    • Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, and Mizoram have the highest prevalence of this opioid use.
    • Drug-peddling is taking place over the Dark Web eluding the scrutiny of enforcement officers.
  • Endangering lives: The illicit drug cultivation causes environmental damage in the form of river pollution.
    • Toxic chemical wastes generated are stealthily dumped into rivers flowing in the region.
  • Militancy: The nexus between Pakistan ISI and Pakistan Army with the drug mafia is a well-documented and established fact.
    • This brought in a lot of easy money to the Pakistan’s ISI.
    • With time, this money had been increasingly diverted towards fomenting, sustaining and exalting militancy in the peaceful paradise state of J&K in India.
  • Funds Naxalism: The region is near the Naxal affected areas who exploit the corridor for expanding their revenues and arms smuggling.
    • Due to lack of infrastructural development, they illicitly grow opium and cannabis providing them ready money.
  • Socio Economic impact:
    • The Covid-19 crisis has pushed more than 100 million people into extreme poverty, and has greatly exacerbated unemployment and inequalities, as the world lost 255 million jobs in 2020.
    • Mental health conditions are also on the rise worldwide. Such socioeconomic stressors have likely accelerated demand for the drugs.

Measures taken by the government

Government of India has devised a well laid out strategy to ensure inter agency coordination and revamp the prosecution mechanism to end the menace of drug trafficking.

  • There is zero tolerance policy followed by Government of India against narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances trade.
  • Strong Legislation: Accordingly, the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS) was enacted in 1985.
    • Under this act, cultivation, manufacturing, transportation, export and import of all narcotics drugs and psychotropic substances is prohibited except for medicinal and scientific purposes and as authorised by the government.
    • The Act provides for rigorous punishment for any person violating this act and if a person is caught peddling drugs for the second time, death penalty could be awarded to the offender.
    • In addition, the government of India has also enacted the Prevention of Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act in 1988, which allows detention of persons suspected to be involved in illicit trafficking of drugs.
  • The Government has taken several policy and other initiatives to deal with drug trafficking problem.
  • It constituted Narco-Coordination Centre (NCORD) in November, 2016 and revived the scheme of “Financial Assistance to States for Narcotics Control”.
  • In 2017, the government approved new Reward Guidelines with increased quantum of reward for interdiction or seizure of different illicit drugs.
  • Global Cooperation: For effective coordination with foreign countries, India has signed 37 Bilateral Agreements/Memoranda of Understanding.
  • Narcotics Control Bureau has been provided funds for developing a new software i.e. Seizure Information Management System (SIMS) which will create a complete online database of drug offences and offenders.
  • The government has constituted a fund called “National Fund for Control of Drug Abuse” to meet the expenditure incurred in connection with combating illicit traffic in Narcotic Drugs; rehabilitating addicts, and educating public against drug abuse, etc.
  • The government is also conducting National Drug Abuse Survey to measure trends of drug abuse in India through Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment with the help of National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre of AIIMS.
  • Pro-active border patrol: For instances, in 2009, the BSF seized 23 kg of heroin along with 12 pistols and several rounds of ammunition in Punjab. In the same year, consignments of 58 kg of heroin, 10 kg of hashish as well as pistols and RDX were seized by the BSF along Rajasthan border.
  • Cooperation with neighbours: India is a signatory to the SAARC Convention on Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic substances, 1993.
    • India is also a party to the Pentalateral Cooperation on Drug Control, which focuses on the prevention of illicit trade of precursor and other chemicals used for the manufacture of heroin.

Way Forward:

  • Combating misinformation on the impact of the use of cannabis products is crucial.
  • Awareness-raising and communication efforts that disseminate scientific information without stigmatizing people.
  • Increasing the capacity of law enforcement agencies to address drug trafficking over the darknet remains a priority.
  • Joint responses by Governments and the private sector can involve controlling and removing advertisements and listings of illegal drugs on the Internet.
  • Continuously update scientific standards to keep abreast of the acceleration of Internet-based services.
  • Prevention and solid support are the ways in which drug abuse can be dealt with.
  • Prevention programmes involving families, schools and the immediate communities are important in this regard.
  • Government must notify minimum standards for running de-addiction centres.
  • Fast track courts.
  • Integrating drug de-addiction centre’s with rehabilitation centres.
  • Unlicensed centres and those committing human rights violations must be liable to closure.
  • A chapter on the impact of drug abuse should be included in school curriculum so that children understand how addiction destroys lives of people.
  • Focused sensitisation programmes on drug abuse in schools and a substance abuse policy could go a long way in curbing the menace.
  • Parents must consult specialists in case there is change in behaviour of their children as it could be signs of drug abuse.

Conclusion

Prevention of drug trafficking has to be accorded greater priority. At present it forms part of the larger mandate of the border guarding forces to ‘prevent smuggling and any other illegal activity’. Special measures need to be formulated to check trafficking of drugs through the borders. Various domestic laws enacted for the control of drug trafficking should be implemented stringently and severe punishments should be accorded to drug stockists.

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and the world to the concepts of morality;

7. As societies continue to face post-pandemic challenges and beyond, the lessons learned about the power of care and community during the pandemic are likely to leave a lasting impact, inspiring a more compassionate and supportive world. Discuss. (150 Words)

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the coming together of communities by act of compassion during the pandemic.

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 giving context regarding the tough times during the pandemic.

Body:

Write about how compassion led to solidarity among communities locally, nationally as well as internationally during the pandemic. Substantiate with examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude by mentioning that key lessons learnt during the pandemic should be replicated even in the normal times.

Introduction

In March 2020, when the pandemic first hit, the world saw kindness spread all over the world. People came together to sing on balconies in Italy and others set up mutual aid groups to offer support to the elderly or vulnerable. In India there was lighting of lamps to show solidarity with health care workers and those affected by covid-19 to boost their morale.

We learned that amid the fear, there was also community, support and hope.

Body

Performing a selfless act increases one’s sense of gratitude, as one is in a position to do something generous for another person Doing a kind act for another person can increase the sense of feeling connected to another person, which in turn helps people see the worth and value in their own lives.

It had become clear that dealing with the pandemic situation required the entire country to come together, especially to support the poor and the vulnerable. To a large extent, this actually happened. In fact, within hours of the lockdown being announced, there were enthusiastic groups on the streets, distributing food packets to the poor and needy.

Compassion and acts of kindness during pandemic

  • India and many European nations sent masks, vaccines and essential medicines to a lot of African nations thereby showing solidarity in the crisis. India even helped USA with essential medicines.
  • During second wave, medical aid poured in for India when there was severe oxygen shortage.
  • People helping those in need, older giving away their beds to younger people, cremation of the dead by strangers transcending community barriers showed the kindness and compassion of human beings in times to distress to help out fellow humans.
  • Health care workers worked tirelessly, round the clock to ensure the best medical care was given to patients suffering from the disease.
  • Free food to the needy and poor were given by many to hosting Langars in Gurudwaras and mobile food distribution etc.

Conclusion

The commitment shown by volunteers and people was admirable and there is great value in what they did during those times. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that our ability to overcome such crisis comes from this very spirit that our people possess — the ability to reach out to the needy and help. Kindness, empathy, compassion and selflessness were displayed all over the world when the world tumbled against the force of an unknown biological danger that engulfed everyone.


Join our Official Telegram Channel HERE

Please subscribe to Our podcast channel HERE

Subscribe to our YouTube ChannelHERE

Follow our Twitter Account HERE

Follow our Instagram ID HERE

Follow us on LinkedIn : HERE