Academy | Blog | Start Here

Mission Mains 2020: GS 1

This is for those of you who are planning to write Mains 2020. Primarily, the agenda of this thread would be 

1. Answer Writing Practice

2. Sharing examples - anecdotes from Current affairs relevant for Answer writing

3. Any doubts wrt. Paper 1!

Feel free to pool in your suggestions!

jack_Sparrow , Rise from Ashes and 24 others like this
14.6k views

79 comments

GS 1: Effects of Lockdown on Women

1.

EconomyWomen’s economic resources are being hit hardest. Economic crises hit women harder. Why?

  • Women tend to earn less.
  • Women have fewer savings.
  • Women are disproportionately more in the informal economy.
  • Women have less access to social protections.
  • Women make up the majority of single-parent household

Oxfam India estimates the economic loss from women losing their jobs during the pandemic at about $216 billion, knocking off 8% from the country’s gross domestic product. World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index 2020 ranks India 112th of 153 countries in offering equal opportunities to women and men, and women often don’t have the same access to health care and education as their male counterparts.

2. Psychological Impact: Emotional impact of the pandemic is disproportionately falling on women’s shoulders in most countries. Increases in unpaid care and domestic work, job and income loss, and the effects of the lockdown on gender-based violence are among the factors that may be contributing to higher rates of stress and anxiety among women.

3. Increased the unpaid care and domestic workload, and women are bearing the heaviest burden. Factors such as double shifts for working women, the absence of assistance of house-help, and the increased need for cooking, cleaning, caring and hygiene is further increasing and tipping our skewed balance of domestic work today.

4. Public transit was interrupted across regions, limiting many women’s mobility as they are less likely than men to own a vehicle. 

5. Civil society organizations (CSOs) who provide services to women victims of violence have seen increases in the number of victims reaching out for help. More than 40 per cent of those CSOs saw increases in cases of violence perpetrated by family members. National Commission for Women has recorded a two-fold increase in gender-based violence across the country, with the body receiving 257 calls in the final week of March as opposed to 116 calls in the first week.

6. There are 11.8 million women with disabilities in India who experience considerable difficulties in the everyday lives. With high poverty levels, poor health conditions, lower incomes, lower education and a patriarchal system they face further dangers in COVID-19. Information to the deaf and those with intellectual disabilities was not available. Personal assistants and health care were not available. It was also seen that the policy of social distancing was excluding them as they were dependent on personal assistants.

7. Education: girls’ education was disadvantaged — as only 29% of Internet users in India are female, and there’s  tendency for families with limited means to give preference to boys for schooling.

8. Women were at higher risk of contracting the virus because they are overrepresented in the health-care sector.

9. Provision of family planning and other sexual health commodities including menstrual health items were impacted as supply chains were under strains from the pandemic. Unplanned pregnancies due to lack of abortion facilities.

10. Small and growing businesses (SGBs) have been hit during the pandemic esp. women entrepreneurs. Gender-lens investing was becoming a part of mainstream conversations but that took a setback.

11. A positive effect of the pandemic, could be that employers start offering more flexible and work-at-home options to their employees. This would help educated women enter and stay in the labour force and not be forced to drop out after child-birth, though the long-term implications for career progression will be unclear in this option.

Since public health emergencies are not gender-neutral, it’s time to devise a gender-balanced response to fight them. Post Covid-19 situation may bring more and more behavioural and mental changes among women with huge post-traumatic stress. Policy decisions need to articulate gendered concerns during public health emergencies because gender-sensitive pandemic planning may substantially mitigate these concerns.

 

@rashiv

Naadan_Parinda, Dhertez and 7 others like this
1.1k views

How would you have answered this question?

1. What makes the Indian society unique in sustaining its culture? Discuss.

  1. Its Consntitutional backing of idea of secularism  for e.g.  preamble, FRs(A25 to 28),etc.
  2. Its historic/ancient Ideas and beliefs like Athithi devo bhava, vasudhaivakutumbakam
  3. Its concept of Unity in diversity e.g.- inter-religious harmony(Muslims celebrating Diwali, Hindus enjoying sewayi on Eid)
  4. Its phenomena of Social service-Religious practices nexus, example, langar in gurudwara or temple, donations during relief work like Uttarakhand floods 
  5. Its historical background- e.g. being a slave of a foreing land for more than 200 years,(The pain and sorrow that a golden bird faces after being chained). A reason why India is strictly against imperialism/colonialism.
  6. It’s openness to various faiths and people from all over the world. For example, India-Japan cultural ties, India-Tibet ties(Buddhism).Foreigners visiting holy places like Rishikesh.
  7. Its cultural proximity with neighbouring nations. Example- cuisines it share with its neighbouring countries like Biryani and Korma famous in 3 countries of south asia(India, Afghanistan and Pakistan).

All these incidents and factors have culminated/resulted into present India which is Tolerant, Diverse, Open,Strong and Vibrant in nature.

You’ve got good diverse points and plenty of examples, so that’s good. But some lacuna in meeting demand of the question.

1. So you’ve pinpointed the unique aspect of our society. But what’s lacking is showing how that uniqueness helps in sustaining our cultures 

2. Some fodder points 

Introduction- Talk about how india has sustained its core culture since the time of Rig Veda. Eg Naturalism, respecting elders etc 

Body- what helps India in sustaining its culture is few unique features 

A. Central role of family- helps in passing on culture and tradition to children, more effective in joint family. Eg celebrating auspicious days 

B. Diversity- India is diverse in its language, religion, ethnicity etc 

 - Diversity helps be a natural barrier to homogenisation attempts because of differing sense and sensibilities 

C. Traditionalism- Indian society is yet very much traditional and rigid which attempts to ward off attempts at change. Eg Patriarchy/ homely remedies for illness 

D. Spirituality as a central theme- being attached to religion, spiritualism and its associated scriptures ensures that there remains a standard belief and practise of certain values and behaviour. Eg Food eating habit 

E. Constitution- Indian constitution is a living document which ensures that Indian values are relevant via contemporary times. Eg Adopting principled distance model of secularism, clean environment as key to right to life

Despite such uniqueness there remains challenges in sustaining our culture from the forces of globalisation, rise of social media and modernisation attempts at many fronts. 

Conclusion- To ensure that India remains true to its spirit of rich culture and heritage but also is open to genuine modernisation, focus should be on value education in school and village led development model to prevent impact of unwanted values associated with urbanisation. 

(There can be much better points in conclusion too)

Naadan_Parinda, Dora-the_Explorer and 5 others like this
7.1k views
CAN WE REVIVE THIS PLEASE 
Just_restless, AlexanderSupertramp and 5 others like this
2.2k views

How would you have answered this question?

1. What makes the Indian society unique in sustaining its culture? Discuss.

  1. Its Consntitutional backing of idea of secularism  for e.g.  preamble, FRs(A25 to 28),etc.
  2. Its historic/ancient Ideas and beliefs like Athithi devo bhava, vasudhaivakutumbakam
  3. Its concept of Unity in diversity e.g.- inter-religious harmony(Muslims celebrating Diwali, Hindus enjoying sewayi on Eid)
  4. Its phenomena of Social service-Religious practices nexus, example, langar in gurudwara or temple, donations during relief work like Uttarakhand floods 
  5. Its historical background- e.g. being a slave of a foreing land for more than 200 years,(The pain and sorrow that a golden bird faces after being chained). A reason why India is strictly against imperialism/colonialism.
  6. It’s openness to various faiths and people from all over the world. For example, India-Japan cultural ties, India-Tibet ties(Buddhism).Foreigners visiting holy places like Rishikesh.
  7. Its cultural proximity with neighbouring nations. Example- cuisines it share with its neighbouring countries like Biryani and Korma famous in 3 countries of south asia(India, Afghanistan and Pakistan).

All these incidents and factors have culminated/resulted into present India which is Tolerant, Diverse, Open,Strong and Vibrant in nature.

Naadan_Parinda, Dora-the_Explorer and 3 others like this
7.1k views

GS 1: Effects of Lockdown on Women

1.

EconomyWomen’s economic resources are being hit hardest. Economic crises hit women harder. Why?

  • Women tend to earn less.
  • Women have fewer savings.
  • Women are disproportionately more in the informal economy.
  • Women have less access to social protections.
  • Women make up the majority of single-parent household

Oxfam India estimates the economic loss from women losing their jobs during the pandemic at about $216 billion, knocking off 8% from the country’s gross domestic product. World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index 2020 ranks India 112th of 153 countries in offering equal opportunities to women and men, and women often don’t have the same access to health care and education as their male counterparts.

2. Psychological Impact: Emotional impact of the pandemic is disproportionately falling on women’s shoulders in most countries. Increases in unpaid care and domestic work, job and income loss, and the effects of the lockdown on gender-based violence are among the factors that may be contributing to higher rates of stress and anxiety among women.

3. Increased the unpaid care and domestic workload, and women are bearing the heaviest burden. Factors such as double shifts for working women, the absence of assistance of house-help, and the increased need for cooking, cleaning, caring and hygiene is further increasing and tipping our skewed balance of domestic work today.

4. Public transit was interrupted across regions, limiting many women’s mobility as they are less likely than men to own a vehicle. 

5. Civil society organizations (CSOs) who provide services to women victims of violence have seen increases in the number of victims reaching out for help. More than 40 per cent of those CSOs saw increases in cases of violence perpetrated by family members. National Commission for Women has recorded a two-fold increase in gender-based violence across the country, with the body receiving 257 calls in the final week of March as opposed to 116 calls in the first week.

6. There are 11.8 million women with disabilities in India who experience considerable difficulties in the everyday lives. With high poverty levels, poor health conditions, lower incomes, lower education and a patriarchal system they face further dangers in COVID-19. Information to the deaf and those with intellectual disabilities was not available. Personal assistants and health care were not available. It was also seen that the policy of social distancing was excluding them as they were dependent on personal assistants.

7. Education: girls’ education was disadvantaged — as only 29% of Internet users in India are female, and there’s  tendency for families with limited means to give preference to boys for schooling.

8. Women were at higher risk of contracting the virus because they are overrepresented in the health-care sector.

9. Provision of family planning and other sexual health commodities including menstrual health items were impacted as supply chains were under strains from the pandemic. Unplanned pregnancies due to lack of abortion facilities.

10. Small and growing businesses (SGBs) have been hit during the pandemic esp. women entrepreneurs. Gender-lens investing was becoming a part of mainstream conversations but that took a setback.

11. A positive effect of the pandemic, could be that employers start offering more flexible and work-at-home options to their employees. This would help educated women enter and stay in the labour force and not be forced to drop out after child-birth, though the long-term implications for career progression will be unclear in this option.

Since public health emergencies are not gender-neutral, it’s time to devise a gender-balanced response to fight them. Post Covid-19 situation may bring more and more behavioural and mental changes among women with huge post-traumatic stress. Policy decisions need to articulate gendered concerns during public health emergencies because gender-sensitive pandemic planning may substantially mitigate these concerns.

 

@rashiv

My notes had a lot of similarity in points (except the first part where you noted the vulnerability of women). Below mentioned are the points from my notes which would be in addition to your notes 

    Data 

    1. 20% increase in violence against women worldwide (UN)

    Impact 

    1. UN Women- 1.5 trillion $ loss due to violence on women 
    2. Women impact-> impacts child-> demographic dividend 
    3. Failure of protection of HR 
    4. Reduces gains achieved in past years 
    5. Suicides

    Way forward 

    1. Gender auditing and perspective during crisis 
    2. UN Women- strengthen services like helpline, digital counsellor, online reporting

     - message from law enforcement officers to reassure women and against men. Eg Mumbai police on Twitter 

     - women part of decision making process to have inclusive outcomes 

    Naadan_Parinda, GaryVee and 3 others like this
    1k views
    How reverse migeration affected the condition of  female labour population of India. What approach govt and other sectors should have  taken to mitigate the situation?

    - Rural India is incapable of absorbing the estimated migrant labour. Burden on scarce resources to increase, disguised employment in agriculture, reduced wages for labor in rural areas due to abundance of labor.

    - Rural households, particularly those with migrating family members, lose out on income due to reduction in remittances and limited employment opportunities in the short term. Women resort to distress sales of their assets, such as livestock, or are forced to take loans from informal moneylenders.

    - Single migrant women working as domestic helps, in salons, in restaurants, shop assistants will not find jobs matching their skill in rural areas. 

    - number of women trafficking for sexual exploitation increases. Women migrants generally have limited access to information about rules and regulations and very often fail to get the required help in cases of exploitation.

    -Women registered to claim access to benefits at one location lose access upon migration to a different location. This is especially true of access to entitlements under the PDS. 

    There is a need to develop a migration management system . An app for Laborers where they can register with their Names, Age, Skill, Gender, Address at the origin. It will help the state governments to manage the migration streams, help in getting employment, ensure the safety and security of the laborers and track them in the times of crisis. This intervention can be particularly useful for ensuring the safety of female migrant labourers. The success of Arogya Setu app to track COVID cases is an encouraging example of how people are willing to adopt such initiatives.

    Article 19(1)(e) of the Constitution, guarantees all Indian citizens the right to reside and settle in any part of the territory of India. Thus, it is incumbent upon the govts to provide for and protect for its populace. 


    GaryVee, AlexanderSupertramp and 3 others like this
    1k views

    rashiv said

    @rashiv Would you want to suggest topics for making brief pointers? 

    I think we can start with something easy like cyclone. Prepare notes for GS 1(geography) and also GS 3 (DM).

    As a second option we could do-> impact of lockdown on women (Society)

    Taking up -Impact of Lockdown on Women

    AlexanderSupertramp, rashiv and 2 others like this
    1.4k views

    9-10 minutes

    culture remains an intrinsic part of human existence,.according to James Taylor we are culturally defined and  without culture we  feels rootless ,liable to be uprooted .

    indian cuture is unique for it has sustained its basic elements by assimilating them with existing time and space.

    Uniqueness comes from-

    1.Way of life=major cultural elements were not rigid and were flexible enough to stay relevant as per its requirement

    2.Asian values=Lee kwan yew describes asian values as value of obedience culture and community life.This sort of life is also evident in our culture as well.it makes us easier to follow and relate with our ancient culture and tradition

    3.Another unique aspect of indian culture is that it  appeals easily to common sense and is not perceived as a threat to non-followers.eg yogic tradition is currently followed  by major religion around the globe

    4.Indian constitution itself is a harbinger of the indic way of life.various part of DPSP ,FR's promotes what our tradition teaches us,which further has sustained our cultural beliefs.

    5.Assimilation=various aspect of Indian system  have been incorporated from other culture .indian architecture, languages and modern dressing approach is not overwhelmed by other cultures rather is incorporated in a unique way.

    Finally, Indian culture has followed the Gandhian approach of letting the wind of a thousand culture blow above our home but not letting them uproot our own ideas.


    Naadan_Parinda, Dora-the_Explorer and 2 others like this
    7.1k views
    I've tried to summarise some points from the book "Discovery of India".

    Indian culture has been a striking record of continuous adaptations of old ideas to a changing environment. There was a reverence for the past and for traditional forms, i.e, rigid social forms, but there was also a freedom and flexibility of the mind and a tolerance of the spirit. So, while forms often remained, the inner content continued to change. 

    (We can compare Indian culture with other 2 extremes of cultural evolutions- European and Chinese)

    India had freedom of mind and certain rigid social forms, which ultimately culminated in practice in the form of continuous culture.

    In Europe, there was no freedom of mind and less rigidity in social forms. They had a long struggle for the freedom of mind and as a consequence, social forms also changed, resulting in a drastic change in the culture.

    In China, the flexibility in mind was even greater than in India. They built up a balance in society which survived through many changes for a long time. Their culture is based on ethics and morality, and less on religion.

    In India, because of the freedom of mind, new ideas were not shut out. The essential ideas of Indian culture are broad based and can be adapted to almost any environment.

    The bitter conflict between science and religion in Europe would have no reality in India. Indian minds, instead of combating or rejecting the changes brought about by application of science, would rationalize them from its own ideological point of view and fit them into its mental framework. It is probable that many vital changes may be introduced in the old outlook, but will not be super-imposed, rather will seem to grow naturally from the cultural background of the people.

    We might become, in Plato's words, 'spectators of all time and all being', drawing sustenance from the rich treasures that humanity has accumulated, adding to them, and applying them in building for the future.

    We have to get rid of the narrow religious outlook. We must lessen our religiosity and turn to science. We must get rid of the exclusiveness in thought and social habit which is stunting our spirit and preventing growth. The narrow outlook has erected barriers against social intercourse and narrowed the sphere of social action.


    HueyFreeman, upsc2020 and 2 others like this
    7k views

    “Juvenile delinquency is an outcome of the upheaval that has affected the traditional ways of life in the congenial socio-cultural milieu” Analyse (150 words) (10 marks)

    Pointers: -

    With the evolution of change in structure of families, life has become freer for individuals but more unstable for families. It is a better and freer life for adults but worse for children. From big, interconnected, and extended families, which helped protect the vulnerable to smaller, detached nuclear families has led to a familial system that has led to a degeneration of values and responsibility of family members towards each other. 

    In families and traditional social structures, children through socialization acquired and absorbed the accumulated knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, and values of their culture; and learnt the social and interpersonal skills they needed to function effectively in society. Through this process of socialization, children learnt to be responsible and peaceful individuals. Growing up under the joint care of several adults made them feel responsible for all the extended members of the family, besides their own parents. 

    With the diminished role of family as an agent of socialization, juvenile delinquency is on the increase. Children are under great stress to be able to meet the ever-increasing challenges of fiercely competitive world of education and employment. They are pushed to drugs and subsequently crimes.

    Family factors and parental personal habits like smoking, alcohol intake and substance abuse, involvement in crime, family disharmony, single, separated parents tend to expose children to crime-promoting influences like alcoholism etc. 

    In rural setups, usually the male members migrate to cities for job prospects. Lack of attention from both parents, company etc. push kids to crimes. Children are also compelled to work as bonded laborers. They are trapped to grow in a hostage like condition for years. They are insinuated to resort to crimes to obtain freedom from such conditions.

    Apart from the above, with less family members to monitor and teach kids the right things, they have unhindered access to all trash on Internet etc. 

    The solution cannot be moving back towards a joint family system as the nature of jobs today prevent such a setup. It is the responsibility of the parents to ensure that their kids are exposed to warm family relationships as it has historically proven to reduce the risk of delinquency in a variety of cultures.



    Gochi, Agog and 2 others like this
    2.7k views

    Conquer said

    @upsc2020 Took a lot more time than what is required : 14 min, Please review it.


    The introduction is good. 

    The points you've covered are relevant, however, I feel you've consumed a lot of word limit explaining one point. As a result of which, you are not having many points. 

    Other points can be:

    1. Accommodative nature and inclusive character - different races have assimilated 

    2. Social structures enforced to ensure continuity - Resonancewith the Indian society's politico-economic ethos

    3. Heritage continued through literature, paintings, knowledge passed on through Vedas (Shruti/Smriti), epics, folklore, regional literature, music etc. 

    Just a suggestion, you can avoid this mindmap style for answer writing. Consumes too much space and reduces clarity. 

    Hope this helps. 

    Conquer, yummy and 1 others like this
    1.5k views
    Q. Women's leadership and representation in the technology sector remains low. What according to you are the reasons? Explain. 


    Dora-the_Explorer, upsc2020
    6.8k views

    Agog said

    @upsc2020 @TheNotorious @rashiv plz suggest smthing

    Good answer, covered basic points well. Suggestions:-

    1. It’ll be convenient if you uploaded picture after rotating it

    2. Introduction- enrich your introduction by adding background of the act. In the backdrop of swadeshi movement and mounting pressure on britishers, the Morley Minto reforms occurred. 

    3. Body- just add a point of provisioning of 1 Indian in executive council (Satyendra Sinha)-> was to confuse moderates by giving illusion of representation 

    4. Conclusion- add a good point of the reform too. It was a step towards increasing representation of Indians and their powers to keep a check on the legislators. 

    upsc2020, Agog
    1.3k views

    Your handwriting is so pleasing, soothing to the eyes that I honestly first just admired that. 

    Arguments For : Better governance in terms of mobilization of resources, govt interaction, Higher economic growth, improvement in the social parameters like per capita income, literacy rate.

    + Studies have shown that there is marked increase in economic activity immediately across the border in the new states. School enrolment also increases, suggesting greater investment in human capital. 

    + Public Affairs Index 2018 reveals that all the four states divided fare better than their mother states.

    In arguments against , you can quote examples 

    Bihar Jharkhand - you have a new state but now JH doesn't know how to deal with the natural resources. 

    There is a need to balance two factors when thinking about the viability of smaller states: economies of scale and social heterogeneity. When the diversity effect becomes greater than the scale effect, there is an economic case for a smaller state.

    yummy, Villanelle
    1k views

    Agog said

    @upsc2020 @TheNotorious @rashiv plz suggest smthing

    Good answer. 

    You met the demand of the question as the question asks about negative areas, you mentioned the negative areas. 

    You could have also used one line or two to highlight the positives of the 1909 act like it gave powers to ask supplementary questions, inclusion of Satyendra Prasad Sinha and likewise.

    Also, under how this reform affected national unity, you can mention that this reform led to legalisation of communalism, a reason why Minto came to be known as Father of Communal Electorate.

    P.S.- I’m seriously pleased to see you writing in full and complete sentences/words rather than typing in a style of fuckin’ Orkut era.😭😆


    upsc2020, Agog
    1.3k views

    Agog said

    Whch countries/regions r amongst the largest producers of pharmaceuticals and why?Why s India unable 2 do the same?

    World’s Largest Pharmaceutical Exporters

    1. Germany: $84.7 billion

    2. Switzerland: $71.7 billion

    3. United States: $49.7 billion

    4. Belgium: $45.7 billion

    5. Ireland: $40 billion

    India is at 11th position.

    Source: https://www.dennybros.com/biggest-pharmaceutical-markets-in-the-world-by-country

    __

    India is on a positive trajectory. India accounts for 60 percent of global vaccine production. Estimates suggest that one in every three pills consumed in the United States is produced by an Indian generics manufacturer. 

    Challenges impacting the industry are:

    1. Dependence on intermediary substances and  active Pharmaceutical Ingredients on China - any policy change, price escalations etc have negative impact on Indian Pharmaceutical industry. Close to 85% APIs sourced from China.

    2. Lack of SEZs, favorable tax incentives, capital subsidies, innovation, regulations on clinical trials have prevented India from growing her own API industry. Number of students involved in innovation and R&D for pharma is very low in India compared to USA.

    3. Indian drugs face high scrutiny by USFDA - difficult to maintain quality complaince while supplying to international markets. 

    Government constituted the Katoch committee to make recommendations on reducing the dependence of Indian industry on imported APIs. Mandaviya committee was also formed for the same in 2018. Subsequently, the government plans to establish three bulk drug parks at Punjab, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh through PPP.

    Indian government had also begun “Pharma Vision 2020” with the goal of systematising processes, so that India could become the world leader in end-to-end production of pharmaceutical products.


    Agog, TheNotorious
    1.3k views
    Hi, is there any common books or reports that aspirants are referring while studying for GS Mains 1 2 3? Can you please guide me to it?

    No common book that I referred to. I prepared my own notes for some handy data like indices etc. 


    Gochi, Agog
    2.7k views
    @Patootie yes surely. :)


    AlexanderSupertramp,
    2.1k views

    @rashiv Would you want to suggest topics for making brief pointers? 

    I think we can start with something easy like cyclone. Prepare notes for GS 1(geography) and also GS 3 (DM).

    As a second option we could do-> impact of lockdown on women (Society)

    upsc2020,
    1.5k views
    Write your comment…