Table of Contents
- General Studies 1 | GS1
- General Studies 2 | GS2
- General Studies 3 | GS 3
- General Studies 4 | GS 4
General Studies 1 | GS1
GS 1: ANCIENT HISTORY + ART & CULTURE
- Evaluate the nature of the Bhakti Literature and its contribution to Indian culture
- Persian literary sources of medieval India reflect the spirit of the age. Comment. (Answer in 250 words)
- Highlight the Central Asian and Greco-Bactrian elements in Gandhara art.
- Assess the importance of the accounts of the Chinese and Arab travellers in the reconstruction of the history of India.
- Safeguarding the Indian art heritage is the need of the moment. Discuss.
- The Bhakti movement received a remarkable re-orientation with the advent of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Discuss.
- How do you justify the view that the level of excellence of the Gupta numismatic art is not at all noticeable in later times?
- Krishnadeva Raya, the King of Vijayanagar, was not only an accomplished scholar himself but was also a great patron of learning and literature. Discuss.
- Early Buddhist Stupa-art, while depicting folk motifs and narratives successfully expounds Buddhist ideals. Elucidate.
- Mesolithic rock cut architecture of India not only reflects the cultural life of the times but also a fine aesthetic sense comparable to modern painting. Critically evaluate this comment.
- The ancient civilization in Indian sub-continent differed from those of Egypt, Mesopotamia and Greece in that its culture and traditions have been preserved without a breakdown to the present day. Comment.
- Taxila university was one of the oldest universities of the world with which were associated a number of renowned learned personalities of different disciplines. Its strategic location caused its fame to flourish, but unlike Nalanda, it is not considered as a university in the modern sense. Discuss.
- Sufis and medieval mystic saints failed to modify either the religious ideas and practices or the outward structure of Hindu / Muslim societies to any appreciable extent. Comment.
- To what extent has the urban planning and culture of the Indus Valley Civilization provided inputs to the present-day urbanization? Discuss.
- Gandhara sculpture owed as much to the Romans as to the Greeks. Explain.
- (a) Discuss the ‘Tandava’ dance as recorded in early Indian inscriptions. (b) Chola architecture represents a high watermark in the evolution of temple architecture. Discuss.
- Though not very useful from the point of view of a connected political history of South India, the Sangam literature portrays the social and economic conditions of its time with remarkable vividness. Comment.
GS 1: MODERN HISTORY OF INDIA
- Trace the rise and growth of socio-religious reform movements with special reference to Young Bengal and Brahmo Samaj.
- To what extinct did the role of moderates prepare a base for the wider freedom movement? comment
- Bring out the constructive programmes of Mahatma Gandhi during Non-Cooperation Movement and Civil Disobedience Movement.
- Evaluate the policies of Lord Curzon and their long term implications on the national movement. (Answer in 150 words).
- Since the decade of the 1920s, the national movement acquired various ideological strands and thereby expanded its social base. Discuss. (Answer in 250 words).
- Assess the role of British imperial power in complicating the process of transfer of power during the 1940s.
- The 1857 Uprising was the culmination of the recurrent big and small local rebellions that had occurred in the preceding hundred years of British rule. Elucidate.
- Examine the linkages between the nineteenth century's 'Indian Renaissance' and the emergence of national identity
- Many voices had strengthened and enriched the nationalist movement during the Gandhian phase. Elaborate
- Why indentured labour was taken by British from India to other colonies? Have they been able to preserve their cultural identity over there?
- Throw light on the significance of thoughts of Mahatma Gandhi in the present times.
- Highlight the importance of new objective that got added to the vision of Indian independence since the twenties of the last century.
- The women’s questions arose in modern India as a part of the 19th century social reform movement.What were the major issues and debates concerning women in that period?
- Clarify how mid-eighteenth century India was beset with the spectre of a fragmented polity?
- Why did the ‘Moderates’ fail to carry conviction with the nation about their proclaimed ideology and political goals by the end of the nineteenth century?
- Examine how the decline of traditional artisanal industry in colonial India crippled the rural economy.
- Highlight the difference in the approach of Subhash Chandra Bose and Mahatma Gandhi in the struggle for freedom.
- Explain how the upraising of 1857 constitutes an important watershed in the evolution of British policies towards colonial India.
- Discuss the role of women in the freedom struggle especially during the Gandhian phase
- It would have been difficult for the Constituent Assembly to complete its historic task of drafting the Constitution for Independent India in just three years but for the experience gained with the Government of India Act, 1935. Discuss
- How different would have been the achievement of Indian independence without Mahatma Gandhi? Discuss
- Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, despite having divergent approaches and strategies, had a common goal of amelioration of the downtrodden. Elucidate
- In what ways did the naval mutiny prove to be the last nail in the coffin of British colonial aspirations in India?
- What were the major political, economic and social developments in the world which motivated the anti-colonial struggle in India?
- The third battle of Panipat was fought in 1761. Why were so many empire-shaking battles fought at Panipat?
- Examine critically the various facets of economic policies of the British in India from mid-eighteenth century till independence.
- “In many ways, Lord Dalhousie was the founder of modern India.” Elaborate
- Critically discuss the objectives of Bhoodan and Gramdan Movements initiated by Acharya Vinoba Bhave and their success.
- Defying the barriers of age, gender and religion, the Indian women became the torch-bearer during the struggle for freedom in India. Discuss.
- Several foreigners made India their homeland and participated in various movements. Analyze their role in the Indian struggle for freedom.
GS1: POST-INDEPENDENT INDIA
- Discuss whether formation of new states in recent times is beneficial or not for the economy of India?
- Has the formation of linguistic states strengthened the cause of Indian unity?
- Analyze the circumstances that led to the Tashkent Agreement in 1966. Discuss the highlights of the Agreement.
- Critically examine the compulsions which prompted India to play a decisive role in the emergence of Bangladesh.
- Write a critical note on the evolution and significance of the slogan, ‘Jai Jawan Jai Kisan’
- Discuss the contributions of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad to pre- and post-independent India.
GS 1: WORLD HISTORY
- There arose a serious challenge to the Democratic State System between the two World Wars.” Evaluate the statement.
- Explain how the foundations of the modern world were laid by the American and French Revolutions
- What problems were germane to the decolonization process in the Malay Peninsula?
- The anti-colonial struggles in West Africa were led by the new elite of Western educated Africans.Examine.
- To what extent can Germany be held responsible for causing the two World Wars? Discuss critically
- Why did the industrial revolution first occur in England? Discuss the quality of life of the people there during the industrialization. How does it compare with that in India at present?
- The New Economic Policy – 1921 of Lenin had influenced the policies adopted by India soon after independence. Evaluate.
- What were the events that led to the Suez Crisis in 1956? How did it deal a final blow to Britain’s selfimage as a world power?
- “American Revolution was an economic revolt against mercantilism.” Substantiate.
- What policy instruments were deployed to contain the Great Economic Depression?
- “‘Latecomer’ Industrial Revolution in Japan involved certain factors that were markedly different from what West had experienced.” Analyze.
- “Africa was chopped into States artificially created by accidents of European competition.” Analyze
GS 1: SOCIETY
- Are we losing our local identity for the global identity? Discuss
- Empowering women is the key to control population growth”. Discuss
- What are the continued challenges for women in India against time and space?.
- What makes Indian society unique in sustaining its culture? Discuss
- What are the challenges to our cultural practices in the name of secularism?
- Do we have cultural pockets of small India all over the nation? Elaborate with examples.
- ‘Women’s movement in India has not addressed the issues of women of lower social strata.’ Substantiate your view.
- ‘Globalization is generally said to promote cultural homogenization but due to this cultural specificities appear to be strengthened in the Indian Society.’ Elucidate.
- ‘Communalism arises either due to power struggle or relative deprivation’. Argue by giving suitable illustrations.
- “Caste system is assuming new identities and associational forms. Hence the caste system cannot be eradicated in India.” Comment.
- ‘Despite the implementation of various programmes for eradication of poverty by the government in India, poverty is still existing’. Explain by giving reasons.
- How the Indian concept of secularism is different from the western model of secularism? Discuss.
- The spirit of tolerance and love is not only an interesting feature of Indian society from very early times, but it is also playing an important part at the present. Elaborate.
- Distinguish between religiousness/religiosity and communalism giving one example of how the former has got transformed into the latter in independent India.
- In the context of the diversity of India, can it be said that the regions form cultural units rather than the States? Give reasons with examples for your viewpoint.
- What are the two major legal initiatives by the State since Independence addressing discrimination against Scheduled Tribes (STs)?
- What is the basis of regionalism? Is it that unequal distribution of benefits of development on regional basis eventually promotes regionalism? Substantiate your answer.
- To what extent globalisation has influenced the core of cultural diversity in India? Explain.
- “An essential condition to eradicate poverty is to liberate the poor from the process of deprivation.” Substantiate this statement with suitable examples.
- Why are the tribals in India referred to as ‘the Scheduled Tribes’? Indicate the major provisions enshrined in the Constitution of India for their upliftment.
- Discuss the changes in the trends of labour migration within and outside India in the last four decades.
- Discuss the positive and negative effects of globalization on women in India.
- Debate the issue of whether and how contemporary movements for assertion of Dalit identity work towards annihilation of caste
- Describe any four cultural elements of diversity in India and rate their relative significance in building a national identity.
- Critically examine whether growing population is the cause of poverty OR poverty is the main cause of population increase in India.
- How do you explain the statistics that show that the sex ratio in Tribes in India is more favourable to women than the sex ratio among Scheduled Castes?
- Discuss the various economic and socio-cultural forces that are driving increasing feminization of agriculture in India.
- How do the Indian debates on secularism differ from the debates in the West?
- How does patriarchy impact the position of a middle class working woman in India?
- Why do some of the most prosperous regions of India have an adverse sex ratio for women? Give your arguments.
- The life cycle of a joint family depends on economic factors rather than social values. Discuss.
- Critically examine the effect of globalization on the aged population in India.
- Growing feeling of regionalism is an important factor in generation of demand for a separate State.Discuss
- Discuss the various social problems which originated out of the speedy process of urbanization in India
- “Male membership needs to be encouraged in order to make women’s organization free from gender bias.” Comment
GS 1: GEOGRAPHY
- Differentiate the causes of landslides in the Himalayan region and Western Ghats
- Despite India being one of the countries of the Gondwanaland, its mining industry contributes much less to its Gross Domestic Product(GDP) in percentage. Discuss
- What are the environmental implications of the reclamation of the water bodies into urban land use? Explain with examples
- Mention the global occurrence of volcanic eruptions in 2021 and their impact on regional environment.
- Why is India considered as a sub-continent? Elaborate your answer.
- Briefly mention the alignment of major mountain ranges of the world and explain their impact on local weather conditions, with examples.
- How do the melting of the Arctic ice and glaciers of the Antarctic differently affect the weather patterns and human activities on the Earth? Explain.
- Discuss the multi-dimensional implications of uneven distribution of mineral oil in the world.
- What are the main socio-economic implications arising out of the development of IT industries in major cities of India?
- Discuss the geophysical characteristics of Circum-Pacific Zone. (Answer in 150 words)
- The process of desertification does not have climatic boundaries. Justify with examples. (Answer in 150 words)
- How will the melting of Himalayan glaciers have a far-reaching impact on the water resources of India? (Answer in 150 words
- Account for the present location of iron and steel industries away from the source of raw material, by giving examples. (Answer in 150 words)
- The interlinking of rivers can provide viable solutions to the multi-dimensional inter-related problems of droughts, floods and interrupted navigation. Critically examine. (Answer in 250 words)
- Account for the huge flooding of million cities in India including the smart ones like Hyderabad and Pune. Suggest lasting remedial measures. (Answer in 250 words)
- India has immense potential of solar energy though there are regional variations in its development. Elaborate. (Answer in 250 words)
- Examine the status of forest resources of India and its resultant impact on climate change. (Answer in 250 words)
- How can the mountain ecosystem be restored from the negative impact of development initiatives and tourism?
- How is efficient and affordable urban mass transport key to the rapid economic development of India?
- How do ocean currents and water masses differ in their impacts on marine life and coastal environment?
- Can the strategy of regional resource-based manufacturing help in promoting employment in India?
- Discuss the factors for localisation of agro-based food processing industries of North-West India
- Empowering women is the key to control population growth.” Discuss
- What is water stress? How and why does it differ regionally in India?
- Assess the impact of global warming on the coral life system with examples
- Discuss the causes of depletion of mangroves and explain their importance in maintaining coastal ecology.
- “The ideal solution of depleting ground water resources in India is water harvesting system”. How can it be made effective in urban areas?
- Defining blue revolution, explain the problems and strategies for pisciculture development in India
- What is the significance of Industrial Corridors in India? Identifying industrial corridors, explain their main characteristics.
- Mention core strategies for the transformation of aspirational districts in India & explain the nature of convergence, collaboration & Competition for its success
- Why is Indian Regional Navigational Satellite System (IRNSS) needed? How does it help in navigation?
- Why is India taking keen interest in resources of Arctic region?
- Define mantle plume and explain its role in plate tectonics.
- What are the consequences of spreading of ‘Dead Zones’ on marine ecosystems?
- Petroleum refineries are not necessarily located nearer to crude oil producing areas, particularly in many of the developing countries. Explain its implications.
- In what way can floods be converted into a sustainable source of irrigation and all-weather inland navigation in India?
- What characteristics can be assigned to monsoon climate that succeeds in feeding more than 50 percent of the world population residing in Monsoon Asia?
- “The growth of cities as I.T. hubs has opened up new avenues of employment, but has also created new problems”. Substantiate this statement with examples
- Account for variations in oceanic salinity and discuss its multidimensional effects
- How does the Juno Mission of NASA help to understand the origin and evolution of the Earth?
- “In spite of adverse environmental impact, coal mining is still inevitable for development”. Discuss
- Mention the advantages of the cultivation of pulses because of which the year 2016 was declared as the International Year of Pulses by United Nations.
- How does the cryosphere affect global climate?
- South China Sea has assumed great geopolitical significance in the present context. Comment.
- Major cities of India are becoming vulnerable to flood conditions. Discuss.
- Present an account of the Indus Water Treaty and examine its ecological, economic and political implications in the context of changing bilateral relations.
- Enumerate the problems and prospects of inland water transport in India.
- In what way micro-watershed development projects help in water conservation in drought-prone and semi-arid regions of India?
- With a brief background of quality of urban life in India, introduce the objectives and strategy of the ‘Smart City Programme.
General Studies 2 | GS2
GS 2: POLITY
- On what grounds a people’s representative can be disqualified under the Representation of People Act, 1951? Also mention the remedies available to such person against his disqualification.
- “Parliament’s power to amend the Constitution is a limited power and it cannot be enlarged into absolute power.” In the light of this statement explain whether Parliament under Article 368 of the Constitution can destroy the Basic Structure of the Constitution by expanding its amending power?
- “The reservation of seats for women in the institutions of local self- government has had a limited impact on the patriarchal character of the Indian Political Process.” Comment.
- “The Attorney-General is the chief legal adviser and lawyer of the Government of India.” Discuss
- Do you think that constitution of India does not accept principle of strict separation of powers rather it is based on the principle of ‘checks and balance’?
- From the resolution of contentious issues regarding distribution of legislative powers by the courts,‘Principle of Federal Supremacy’ and ‘Harmonious Construction’ have emerged. Explain.
- What can France learn from the Indian Constitution’s approach to secularism?
- How far do you agree with the view that tribunals curtail the jurisdiction of ordinary courts? In view of the above, discuss the constitutional validity and competency of the tribunals in India?
- India and USA are the two large democracies. Examine the basic tenets on which the two political systems are based.
- How is the Finance Commission of India constituted? What do you know about the terms of reference of the recently constituted Finance Commission? Discuss.
- Assess the importance of the Panchayat system in India as a part of local government. Apart from government grants, what sources the Panchayats can look out for financing development projects?
- Multiplicity of various commissions for the vulnerable sections of the society leads to problems of overlapping jurisdiction & duplication of functions. Is it better to merge all commissions into an umbrella human rights commission? Argue your case.
- In the light of recent controversy regarding the use of Electronic Voting Machine (EVM), what are the challenges before the Election Commission of India to ensure the trustworthiness of elections in India?
- Whether National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) can enforce the implementation of constitutional reservation for the Scheduled Castes in the religious minority institutions? Examine.
- Under what circumstances can the Financial Emergency be proclaimed by the President of India? What consequences follow when such a declaration remain in force?
- Why do you think the committees are considered to be useful for parliamentary work? Discuss, in this context, the role of the Estimates Committee.
- The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has a very vital role to play.” Explain how this is reflected in the method and terms of his appointment as well as the range of powers he can exercise.
- Whether the Supreme Court Judgment (July 2018) can settle the political tussle between the Lt.Governor and elected government of Delhi? Examine.
- Explain the salient features of the constitution (One Hundred and First Amendment) Act, 2016. Do you think it is efficacious enough ‘to remove cascading effect of taxes and provide for common national market for goods and services’?
- Examine the scope of Fundamental Rights in the light of the latest judgement of the Supreme Court on Right to Privacy.
- The Indian Constitution has provisions for holding a joint session of the two houses of the Parliament.Enumerate the occasions when this would normally happen and also the occasions when it cannot, with reasons thereof
- To enhance the quality of democracy in India the Election Commission of India has proposed electoral reforms in 2016. What are the suggested reforms and how far are they significant to make democracy successful?
- “The local self government system in India has not proved to be effective instrument of governance”.Critically examine the statement and give your views to improve the situation.
- Critically examine the Supreme Court’s judgement on ‘National Judicial Appointments Commission Act, 2014’ with reference to appointment of judges of higher judiciary in India
- ‘Simultaneous election to the Lok Sabha and the State Assemblies will limit the amount of time and money spent in electioneering but it will reduce the government’s accountability to the people’ Discuss.
- How do pressure groups influence Indian political process? Do you agree with this view that informal pressure groups have emerged as powerful as formal pressure groups in recent years?
- Exercise of CAG’s powers in relation to the accounts of the Union and the States is derived from Article 149 of the Indian Constitution. Discuss whether audit of the Government’s policy implementation could amount to overstepping its own (CAG) jurisdiction
- Discuss each adjective attached to the word ‘Republic’ in the ‘Preamble’. Are they defendable in the present circumstances?
- What was held in the Coelho case? In this context, can you say that judicial review is of key importance amongst the basic features of the Constitution
- Did the Government of India Act, 1935 lay down a federal constitution? Discuss.
- What is quasi judicial body? Explain with the help of concrete examples.
- Discuss the essentials of the 69th Constitutional Amendment Act and anomalies, if any, that have led to recent reported conflicts between the elected representatives and institution of Lieutenant Governor in the administration of Delhi. Do you think that this will give rise to a new trend in the functioning of the Indian Federal Politics?
- To what extent is Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, bearing marginal note “Temporary provision with respect to the State of Jammu and Kashmir”, temporary? Discuss the future prospects of this provision in the context of Indian polity.
- “The Indian party system is passing through a phase of transition which looks to be full of contradictions and paradoxes.” Discuss.
- Khap panchayats have been in the news for functioning as extra–constitutional authorities, often delivering pronouncements amounting to human rights violations. Discuss critically the actions taken by the legislative, executive and the judiciary to set the things right in this regard.
- Resorting to ordinances has always raised concern on violation of the spirit of separation of powers doctrine. While noting the rationales justifying the power to promulgate ordinances, analyse whether the decisions of the Supreme Court on the issue have further facilitated resorting to this power. Should the power to promulgate the ordinances be repealed?
- What are the major changes brought in the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 through the recent Ordinance promulgated by the President? How far will it improve India’s dispute resolution mechanism? Discuss.
- Does the right to clean environment entail legal regulation on burning crackers during Diwali? Discuss in the light of Article 21 of Indian Constitution and Judgement(s) of the Apex court in this regard
- Discuss the possible factors that inhibit India from enacting for its citizen a uniform civil code as provided for in the Directive Principles of State Policy.
- The concept of cooperative federalism has been increasingly emphasised in recent years. Highlight the drawbacks in the existing structure and the extent to which cooperative federalism would answer the shortcomings.
- In absence of well–educated and organised local level government system, ‘Panchayats’ and ‘Samitis’ have remained mainly political institutions and not effective instruments of governance. Critically discuss.
- What do you understand by the concept “freedom of speech and expression”? Does it cover hate speech also? Why do the films in India stand on a slightly different plane from other forms of expression? Discuss
- Instances of President’s delay in commuting death sentences has come under public debate as denial of justice. Should there be a time limit specified for the President to accept/reject such petitions? Analyse.
- National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) in India can be most effective when its tasks are adequately supported by other mechanisms that ensure the accountability of a government. In light of theabove observation assess the role of NHRC as an effective complement to the judiciary and other institutions in promoting and protecting human rights standards.
- Starting from inventing the ‘basic structure’ doctrine, the judiciary has played a highly proactive role in ensuring that India develops into a thriving democracy. In light of the statement, evaluate the role played by judicial activism in achieving the ideals of democracy.
- Though the federal principle is dominant in our Constitution and that principle is one of its basic features, but it is equally true that federalism under the Indian Constitution leans in favour of a strong Centre, a feature that militates against the concept of strong federalism. Discuss.
- The ‘Powers, Privileges and Immunities of Parliament and its Members’ as envisaged in Article 105 of the Constitution leave room for a large number of un-codified and un-enumerated privileges to continue.Assess the reasons for the absence of legal codification of the ‘parliamentary privileges’. How can this problem be addressed?
- The role of individual MPs (Members of Parliament) has diminished over the years and as a result healthy constructive debates on policy issues are not usually witnessed. How far can this be attributed to the anti-defection law which was legislated but with a different intention?
- Discuss Section 66A of IT Act, with reference to its alleged violation of Article 19 of the Constitution
- Recent directives from Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas are perceived by the ‘Nagas’ as a threat to override the exceptional status enjoyed by the State. Discuss in light of Article 371A of the Indian Constitution
- 'The Supreme Court of India keeps a check on arbitrary power of the Parliament in amending the Constitution.’ Discuss critically.
GS 2: GOVERNANCE
- Individual Parliamentarian’s role as the national lawmaker is on a decline, which in turn, has adversely impacted the quality of debates and their outcome. Discuss.
- Indian Government has recently strengthened the anti-terrorism laws by amending the unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), 1967 and the NIA act. Analyze the changes in the context of the prevailing security environment while discussing the scope and reasons for opposing the UAPA by human rights organizations.
- The Central Administration Tribunal which was established for redressal of grievances and complaints by or against central government employees, nowadays is exercising its powers as an independent judicial authority.
- What are the methods used by the Farmers organizations to influence the policy- makers in India and how effective are these methods?
- The Citizens’ Charter is an ideal instrument of organizational transparency and accountability, but it has its own limitations. Identify the limitations and suggest measures for greater effectiveness of the Citizens’ Charter.
- E-governance is not only about utilization of the power of new technology, but also much about critical importance of the ‘use value’ of information. Explain.
- “Policy Contradictions among various competing sectors and stakeholders have resulted in inadequate ‘protection and prevention of degradation’ to environment.” Comment with relevant illustrations.
- “Poverty Alleviation programs in India remain mere showpieces until and unless they are backed up by political will.” Discuss with reference to the performance of the major poverty alleviation program in India.
- Initially Civil Services in India were designed to achieve the goals of neutrality and effectiveness, which seems to be lacking in the present context. Do you agree with the view that drastic reforms are required in Civil Services. Comment.
- Discuss the role of Public Accounts Committee in establishing accountability of the government to the people.
- Is the National Commission for Women able to strategise and tackle the problems that women face at both public and private spheres? Give reasons in support of your answer.
- ‘The emergence of Self Help Groups (SHGs) in contemporary times points to the slow but steady withdrawal of the state from developmental activities’. Examine the role of the SHGs in developmental activities and the measures taken by the Government of India to promote the SHGs.
- In the integrity index of Transparency International, India stands very low. Discuss briefly the legal, political, social and cultural factors that have caused the decline of public morality in India.
- Has the Indian governmental system responded adequately to the demands of Liberalization, Privatization and Globalization started in 1991? What can the government do to be responsive to this important change?
- “Traditional bureaucratic structure and culture have hampered the process of socio-economic development in India.” Comment.
- “In the Indian governance system, the role of non-state actors has been only marginal.” Critically examine this statement.
- “Demographic Dividend in India will remain only theoretical unless our manpower becomes more educated, aware, skilled and creative.” What measures have been taken by the government to enhance the capacity of our population to be more productive and employable?
- “Effectiveness of the government system at various levels and people’s participation in the governance system are interdependent” Discuss their relationship in the context of India.
- In the light of Satyam Scandal (2009), discuss the changes brought in corporate governance to ensure transparency, accountability.
- “If amendment bill to the Whistleblowers Protection Act, 2011 tabled in the Parliament is passed, there may be no one left to protect.” Critically evaluate.
- “For achieving the desired objectives, it is necessary to ensure that the regulatory institutions remain independent and autonomous.” Discuss in the light of experiences in recent past.
- Examine critically the recent changes in the rules governing foreign funding of NGOs under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA), 1976.
- The Self Help Group (SHG) Bank Linkage Programme (SBLP), which is India’s own innovation has proved to be one of the most effective poverty alleviation and women empowerment programmes.Elucidate
- How can the role of NGOs be strengthened in India for development works relating to protection of the environment? Discuss throwing light on the major constraints.
- An athlete participates in Olympics for personal triumph and nation’s glory; victors are showered with cash incentives by various agencies, on their return. Discuss the merit of state sponsored talent hunt and its cultivation as against the rationale of a reward mechanism as encouragement.
- Should the premier institutes like IITs/IIMs be allowed to retain premier status, allowed more academic independence in designing courses and also decide mode/criteria of selection of students. Discuss in light of the growing challenges
- Has the Cadre based Civil Services Organization been the cause of slow change in India ? Critically examine
- Two parallel run schemes of the Government, viz. the Adhaar Card and NPR, one as voluntary and the other as compulsory, have led to debates at national levels and also litigations. On merits, discuss whether or not both schemes need run concurrently. Analyse the potential of the schemes to achieve developmental benefits and equitable growth.
- The size of the cabinet should be as big as governmental work justifies and as big as the Prime Minister can manage as a team. How far is the efficacy of a government then inversely related to the size of the cabinet? Discuss.
- Though 100 percent FDI is already allowed in non-news media like a trade publication and general entertainment channel, the Government is mulling over the proposal for incr>eased FDI in news media for quite some time. What difference would an increase in FDI make? Critically evaluate the pros and cons
- The setting up of a Rail Tariff Authority to regulate fares will subject the cash strapped Indian Railways to demand subsidy for obligation to operate non-profitable routes and services. Taking into account the experience in the power sector, discuss if the proposed reform is expected to benefit the consumers, the Indian Railways or the private container operators.
- The penetration of Self Help Groups (SHGs) in rural areas in promoting participation in development programmes is facing socio-cultural hurdles. Examine.
- Electronic cash transfer system for the welfare schemes is an ambitious project to minimize corruption, eliminate wastage and facilitate reforms. Comment.
- The basis of providing urban amenities in rural areas (PURA) is rooted in establishing connectivity.Comment.
- Though Citizens’ charters have been formulated by many public service delivery organizations, there is no corresponding improvement in the level of citizens’ satisfaction and quality of services being provided. Analyse.
- ‘A national Lokpal, however strong it may be, cannot resolve the problems of immorality in public affairs.’ Discuss
- Many State Governments further bifurcate geographical administrative areas like Districts and Talukas for better governance. In light of the above, can it also be justified that more number of smaller States would bring in effective governance at State level? Discuss.
- Discuss the recommendations of the 13th Finance Commission which have been a departure from the previous commissions for strengthening the local government finances.
- The product diversification of financial institutions and insurance companies, resulting in overlapping of products and services strengthens the case for the merger of the two regulatory agencies namely SEBI and IRDA. Justify.
- The legitimacy and accountability of Self Help Groups (SHGs) and their patrons, the micro-finance outfits, need systematic assessment and scrutiny for the sustained success of the concept. Discuss.
- The Central Government frequently complains on the poor performance of the State Governments in eradicating suffering of the vulnerable sections of the society. Restructuring of Centrally sponsored schemes across the sectors for ameliorating the cause of vulnerable sections of population aims at providing flexibility to the States in better implementation. Critically evaluate.
GS2: SOCIAL JUSTICE
- The need for cooperation among various service sector has been an inherent component of development discourse. Partnership bridges bring the gap among the sectors. It also sets in motion a culture of ‘Collaboration’ and ‘team spirit’. In the light of statements above examine India’s Development process.
- Performance of welfare schemes that are implemented for vulnerable sections is not so effective due to the absence of their awareness and active involvement at all stages of policy process – Discuss
- How is the Government of India protecting traditional knowledge of medicine from patenting by pharmaceutical companies?
- Despite Consistent experience of High growth, India still goes with the lowest indicators of human development. Examine the issues that make balanced and inclusive development elusive
- There is a growing divergence in the relationship between poverty and hunger in India. The shrinking of social expenditure by the government is forcing the poor to spend more on Non- Food essential items squeezing their food – budget.- Elucidate
- Implementation of information and Communication Technology (ICT) based Projects / Programmes usually suffers in terms of certain vital factors. Identify these factors, and suggest measures for their effective implementation
- ‘In the context of the neo-liberal paradigm of development planning, multi-level planning is expected to make operations cost-effective and remove many implementation blockages.’-Discuss
- How far do you agree with the view that the focus on lack of availability of food as the main cause of hunger takes the attention away from ineffective human development policies in India?
- Appropriate local community-level healthcare intervention is a prerequisite to achieve ‘Health for All’ in India. Explain
- Does the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 ensure effective mechanism for empowerment and inclusion of the intended beneficiaries in the society? Discuss.
- ‘To ensure effective implementation of policies addressing water, sanitation and hygiene needs, the identification of beneficiary segments is to be synchronized with the anticipated outcomes’. Examine the statement in the context of the WASH scheme.
- Hunger and Poverty are the biggest challenges for good governance in India still today. Evaluate how far successive governments have progressed in dealing with these humongous problems. Suggest measures for improvement.
- Examine the main provisions of the National Child Policy and throw light on the status of its implementation.
- Professor Amartya Sen has advocated important reforms in the realms of primary education and primary health care. What are your suggestions to improve their status and performance?
- Public health system has limitations in providing universal health coverage. Do you think that private sector could help in bridging the gap? What other viable alternatives would you suggest?
- The quality of higher education in India requires major improvements to make it internationally competitive. Do you think that the entry of foreign educational institutions would help improve the quality of technical and higher education in the country? Discuss.
- Though there have been several different estimates of poverty in India, all indicate reduction in poverty levels over time. Do you agree? Critically examine with reference to urban and rural poverty indicators.
- Do government’s schemes for up-lifting vulnerable and backward communities by protecting required social resources for them, lead to their exclusion in establishing businesses in urban economies?
- The concept of Mid Day Meal (MDM) scheme is almost a century old in India with early beginnings in Madras Presidency in pre-independent India. The scheme has again been given impetus in most states in the last two decades. Critically examine its twin objectives, latest mandates and success
- Identify the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that are related to health. Discuss the success of the actions taken by the Government for achieving the same.
GS2: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
- “What introduces friction into the ties between India and the United States is that Washington is still unable to find for India a position in its global strategy, which would satisfy India’s National self- esteem and ambitions” Explain with suitable examples
- The time has come for India and Japan to build a strong contemporary relationship, one involving global and strategic partnership that will have a great significance for Asia and the world as a whole.’ Comment
- ‘Too little cash, too much politics, leaves UNESCO fighting for life.’ Discuss the statement in the light of US’ withdrawal and its accusation of the cultural body as being ‘anti-Israel bias
- The long-sustained image of India as a leader of the oppressed and marginalised Nations has disappeared on account of its new found role in the emerging global order” Elaborate (15)
- What are the key areas of reform if the WTO has to survive in the present context of ‘Trade War’, especially keeping in mind the interest of India?
- In what ways would the ongoing U.S-Iran Nuclear Pact Controversy affect the national interest of India? How should India respond to this situation?
- “India’s relations with Israel have, of late, acquired a depth and diversity, which cannot be rolled back.”Discuss.
- A number of outside powers have entrenched themselves in Central Asia, which is a zone of interest to India. Discuss the implications, in this context, of India’s joining the Ashgabat Agreement, 2018.
- Indian Diaspora has an important role to play in South East Asian countries' economy and society. Appraise the role of Indian Diaspora in South-East Asia in this context.
- The question of India’s Energy Security Constitutes the most important part of India’s economic progress. Analyse India’s energy policy cooperation with West Asian countries.
- ‘China is using its economic relations and positive trade surplus as tools to develop potential military power status in Asia’. In the light of this statement, discuss its impact on India as her neighbour.
- What are the main functions of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)? Explain different functional commissions attached to it.
- What are the aims and objectives of the McBride Commission of the UNESCO? What is India’s position on these?
- “The broader aims and objectives of WTO are to manage and promote international trade in the era of globalization. But the Doha round of negotiations seem doomed due to differences between the developed and the developing countries.” Discuss in the Indian perspective.
- Evaluate the economic and strategic dimensions of India’s Look East Policy in the context of the post Cold War international scenario.
- “Increasing crossborder terrorist attacks in India and growing interference in the internal affairs of several memberstates by Pakistan are not conducive for the future of SAARC (South Asian Associationfor Regional Cooperation).” Explain with suitable examples.
- Terrorist activities and mutual distrust have clouded India – Pakistan relations. To what extent the use of soft power like sports and cultural exchanges could help generate goodwill between the two countries? Discuss with suitable examples.
- Increasing interest of India in Africa has its pro and cons. Critically examine
- Discuss the impediments India is facing in its pursuit of a permanent seat in UN Security Council.
- Project ‘Mausam’ is considered a unique foreign policy initiative of Indian Government to improve relationship with its neighbours. Does the project have a strategic dimension? Discuss.
- India has recently signed to become founding member of New Development Bank (NDB) and also the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). How will the role of the two Banks be different? Discuss the strategic significance of these two Banks for India.
- WTO is an important international institution where decisions taken affect countries in a profound manner. What is the mandate of WTO and how binding are their decisions? Critically analyse India’s stand on the latest round of talks on Food security.
- With respect to the South China sea, maritime territorial disputes and rising tension affirm the need for safeguarding maritime security to ensure freedom of navigation and over flight throughout the region. In this context, discuss the bilateral issues between India and China.
- The aim of Information Technology Agreements (ITAs) is to lower all taxes and tariffs on information technology products by signatories to zero. What impact would such agreements have on India’s interests?
- Some of the International funding agencies have special terms for economic participation stipulating a substantial component of the aid to be used for sourcing equipment from the leading countries. Discuss on merits of such terms and if, there exists a strong case not to accept such conditions in the Indian context
- What is meant by Gujral doctrine? Does it have any relevance today? Discuss.
- The World Bank and the IMF, collectively known as the Bretton Woods Institutions, are the two intergovernmental pillars supporting the structure of the world’s economic and financial order. Superficially,the World Bank and the IMF exhibit many common characteristics, yet their role, functions and mandate are distinctly different. Elucidate.
- Economic ties between India and Japan while growing in the recent years are still far below their potential. Elucidate the policy constraints which are inhibiting this growth.
- The protests in Shahbag Square in Dhaka in Bangladesh reveal a fundamental split in society between the nationalists and Islamic forces. What is its significance for India?
- Discuss the political developments in Maldives in the last two years. Should they be of any cause of concern to India?
- In respect of India-Sri Lanka relations, discuss how domestic factors influence foreign policy
- The proposed withdrawal of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) from Afghanistan in 2014 is fraught with major security implications for the countries of the region. Examine in light of the fact that India is faced with a plethora of challenges and needs to safeguard its own strategic interests
- What do you understand by ‘The String of Pearls’? How does it impact India? Briefly outline the steps taken by India to counter this.
General Studies 3 | GS 3
GS 3: ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
- Explain the difference between computing methodology of Inda's Gross Domestic Product(GDP) before the year 2015 and after the year 2015.
- Distinguish between Capital Budget and Revenue Budget. Explain the components of both these Budgets.
- How did land reforms in some parts of the country help to improve the socio-economic conditions of marginal and small farmers?
- How and to what extent would micro-irrigation help in solving India's water crisis?
- Discuss how emerging technologies and globalisation contribute to money laundering. Elaborate measures to tackle the problem of money laundering both at national and international levels.
- Do you agree that the Indian economy has recently experienced V-shaped recovery? Give reasons in support of your answer.
- Investment in infrastructure is essential for more rapid and inclusive economic growth”. Discussin the light of India's experience.
- What are the salient features of the National Food Security Act, 2013 ? How as the Food Security Bill helped in eliminating hunger and malnutrition in India?
- What are the present challenges before crop diversification ? How do emerging technologies provide an opportunity for crop diversification?
- Explain intra-generational and inter-generational issues of equity from the perspective of inclusive growth and sustainable development.
- Define potential GDP and explain its determinants. What are the factors that have been inhibiting India from realizing its potential GDP?
- What are the main constraints in transport and marketing of agricultural produce in India?
- What are the challenges and opportunities in food processing sector in the country? How can income of the farmers be substantially increased by encouraging food processing?
- What are the salient features of the Jal Shakti Abhiyan launched by the Government of India for water conservation and water security?
- Explain the meaning of investment in an economy in terms of capital formation. Discuss the factors to be considered while designing a concession agreement between a public entity and a private entity.
- Explain the rationale behind the Goods and Services Tax (Compensation to states) act of 2017. How has COVID-19 impacted the GST compensation fund and created new federal tensions?
- What are the major factors responsible for making rice-wheat system a success? In spite of this success how has this system become bane in India?
- Describe the benefits of deriving electric energy from sunlight in contrast to the conventional energy generation. What are the initiatives offered by our government for this purpose?
- It is argued that the strategy of inclusive growth is intended to meet the objectives of inclusiveness and sustainability together. Comment on this statement
- The public expenditure management is a challenge to the Government of India in context of budget making during the post-liberalization period. Clarify it.
- What are the reformative steps taken by the Government to make food grain distribution system more effective?
- Elaborate the policy taken by the Government of India to meet the challenges of the food processing sector.
- Enumerate the indirect taxes which have been subsumed in the goods and services tax (GST) in India. Also, comment on the revenue implications of the GST introduced in India since July 2017.
- Do you agree with the view that steady GDP growth and low inflation have left the Indian economy in good shape? Give reasons in support of your arguments.
- How would the recent phenomena of protectionism and currency manipulations in world trade affect macroeconomic stability of India?
- “Access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy is the sine qua non to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).” Comment on the progress made in India in this regard.
- How are principles followed by the NITI Aayog different from those followed by erstwhile Planning Commission in India?
- Comment on the important changes introduced in respect of the Long Term Capital Gains Tax (LTCGT) and Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT) in the Union Budget for 2018-2019.
- Account for the failure of manufacturing sector in achieving the goal of labour-intensive exports. Suggest measures for more labour-intensive rather than capital-intensive exports.
- “Industrial growth rate has lagged behind in the overall growth of Gross-Domestic-Product (GDP) in the post-reform period” Give reasons. How far the recent changes in Industrial Policy are capable of increasing the industrial growth rate?
- What are the salient features of ‘inclusive growth’? Has India been experiencing such a growth process? Analyse and suggest measures for inclusive growth.
- Among several factors for India’s potential growth, savings rate is the most effective one. Do you agree? What are the other factors available for growth potential.
- Examine the development of Airports in India through joint ventures under Public – Private Partnership (PPP) model. What are the challenges faced by the authorities in this regard.
- What are the reasons for poor acceptance of cost-effective small processing unit? How the food processing unit will be helpful to uplift the socio-economic status of poor farmers?
- One of the intended objectives of Union-Budget 2017-18 is to ‘transform, energize and clean India’. Analyze the measures proposed in the Budget 2017-18 to achieve the objective.
- Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) is necessary for bringing unbanked to the institutional finance fold. Do you agree with this for financial inclusion of the poor section of the Indian society? Give arguments to justify your opinion.
- Justify the need for FDI for the development of the Indian economy. Why there is gap between MoUs signed and actual FDIs? Suggest remedial steps to be taken for increasing actual FDIs in India.
- Comment on the challenges for inclusive growth which include careless and useless manpower in the Indian context. Suggest measures to be taken for facing these challenges.
- Give an account of the current status and the targets to be achieved pertaining to renewable energy sources in the country. Discuss in brief the importance of National Programme on Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs).
- How globalization has led to the reduction of employment in the formal sector of the Indian economy? Is increased informalization detrimental to the development of the country?
- Women empowerment in India needs gender budgeting. What are the requirements and status of gender budgeting in the Indian context?
- What are ‘Smart Cities’? Examine their relevance for urban development in India. Will it increase rural-urban differences? Give arguments for ’Smart Villages’ in the light of PURA and RURBAN Mission.
- How can the ‘Digital India’ programme help farmers to improve farm productivity and income? What steps has the Government taken in this regard?
- “Success of ‘Make in India’ programme depends on the success of ‘Skill India’ programme and radical labour reforms.” Discuss with logical arguments.
- To what factors can the recent dramatic fall in equipment costs and tariff of solar energy be attributed? What implications does the trend have for the thermal power producers and the related industry?
- There is a clear acknowledgement that Special Economic Zones (SEZs) are a tool of industrial development, manufacturing and exports. Recognising this potential, the whole instrumentality of SEZs require augmentation. Discuss the issues plaguing the success of SEZs with respect to taxation, governing laws and administration.
- The nature of economic growth in India in recent times is often described as jobless growth. Do you agree with this view? Give arguments in favour of your answer
- In what way could replacement of price subsidy with Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) change the scenario of subsidies in India? Discuss
- What are the impediments in marketing and supply chain management in developing the food processing industry in India? Can e-commerce help in overcoming these bottlenecks?
- Craze for gold in Indians has led to a surge in import of gold in recent years and put pressure on balance of payments and external value of rupee. In view of this, examine the merits of Gold Monetization Scheme.
- The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 has come into effect from 1st January, 2014. What are the key issues which would get addressed with the Act in place? What implications would it have on industrialization and agriculture in India?
- National Urban Transport Policy emphasises on ‘moving people’ instead of ‘moving vehicles’. Discuss critically the success of the various strategies of the Government in this regard.
- Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the defence sector is now set to be liberalized. What influence this is expected to have on Indian defence and economy in the short and long run?
- Should the pursuit of carbon credits and clean development mechanisms set up under UNFCCC-be maintained even though there has been a massive slide in the value of a carbon credit? Discuss with respect to India’s energy needs for economic growth.
- Normally countries shift from agriculture to industry and then later to services, but India shifted directly from agriculture to services. What are the reasons for the huge growth of services vis-à-vis industry in the country? Can India become a developed country without a strong industrial base?
- “While we flaunt India’s demographic dividend, we ignore the dropping rates of employability.” What are we missing while doing so? Where will the jobs that India desperately needs come from? Explain.
- Capitalism has guided the world economy to unprecedented prosperity. However, it often encourages short-sightedness and contributes to wide disparities between the rich and the poor. In this light, would it be correct to believe and adopt capitalism for bringing inclusive growth in India? Discuss.
- Explain how Private Public Partnership arrangements, in long gestation infrastructure projects, can transfer unsustainable liabilities to the future. What arrangements need to be put in place to ensure that successive generations’ capacities are not compromised?
- (a) Discuss the impact of FDI entry into Multi-trade retail sector on supply chain management in commodity trade pattern of the economy. (b) Though India allowed Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in what is called multi-brand retail through the joint venture route in September 2012, the FDI, even after a year, has not picked up. Discuss the reasons.
- With a consideration towards the strategy of inclusive growth, the new Companies Bill, 2013 has indirectly made CSR a mandatory obligation. Discuss the challenges expected in its implementation in right earnest. Also discuss other provisions in the Bill and their implications.
- What were the reasons for the introduction of Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act, 2003? Discuss critically its salient features and their effectiveness.
- Food Security Bill is expected to eliminate hunger and malnutrition in India. Critically discuss various apprehensions in its effective implementation along with the concerns it has generated in WTO
- Examine the impact of liberalization on companies owned by Indians. Are they competing with theMNCs satisfactorily? Discuss
- Discuss the rationale for introducing Goods and Services Tax (GST) in India. Bring out critically the reasons for the delay in roll out for its regime
GS 3: AGRICULTURE
- How far is Integrated Farming System (IFS) helpful in sustaining agricultural production
- Elaborate the impact of the National Watershed Project in increasing agricultural production from water-stressed areas.
- How was India benefited from the contributions of Sir M. Visvesvaraya and Dr. M. S. Swaminathan in the fields of water engineering and agricultural science respectively?.
- How has the emphasis on certain crops brought about changes in cropping patterns in recent past? Elaborate the emphasis on millets production and consumption.
- What do you mean by Minimum Support Price (MSP)? How will MSP rescue the farmers from the low income trap?
- Assess the role of National Horticulture Mission (NHM) in boosting the production, productivity and income of horticulture farms. How far has it succeeded in increasing the income of farmers?.
- Examine the role of supermarkets in supply chain management of fruits, vegetables, and food items.How do they eliminate number of intermediaries?
- How do subsidies affect the cropping pattern, crop diversity and economy of farmers? What is the significance of crop insurance, minimum support price and food processing for small and marginal farmers?
- What are the major reasons for declining rice and wheat yield in the cropping system? How crop diversification is helpful to stabilise the yield of the crops in the system?.
- Explain various types of revolutions, took place in Agriculture after Independence in India. How these revolutions have helped in poverty alleviation and food security in India?
- Livestock rearing has a big potential for providing non-farm employment and income in rural areas. Discuss suggesting suitable measures to promote this sector in India
- In view of the declining average size of land holdings in India which has made agriculture non–viable for a majority of farmers, should contract farming and land leasing be promoted in agriculture? Critically evaluate the pros and cons.
- What is allelopathy? Discuss its role in major cropping systems of irrigated agriculture.
- Discuss the role of land reforms in agricultural development Identify the factors that were responsible for the success of land reforms in India.
- Given the vulnerability of Indian agriculture to vagaries of nature, discuss the need for crop insurance and bring out the salient features of the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY).
- What is water-use efficiency? Describe the role of micro-irrigation in increasing the water-use efficiency
- “In the villages itself no form of credit organization will be suitable except the cooperative society.” — All India Rural Credit Survey. Discuss this statement in the background of agricultural finance in India. What constraints and challenges do financial institutions supplying agricultural finance face? How can technology be used to better reach and serve rural clients?
- There is also a point of view that Agricultural Produce Market Committees (APMCs) set up under the State Acts have not only impeded the development of agriculture but also have been the cause of food inflation in India. Critically examine..
- Establish relationship between land reforms, agriculture productivity and elimination of poverty in the Indian economy. Discuss the difficulties in designing and implementation of agriculture friendly land reforms in India.
- India needs to strengthen measures to promote the pink revolution in food industry for ensuring better nutrition and health. Critically elucidate the statement.
- What are the different types of agriculture subsidies given to farmers at the national and at state levels? Critically analyse the agricultural subsidy regime with reference to the distortions created by it.
GS 3: INTERNAL SECURITY
- Discuss how emerging technologies and globalisation contribute to money laundering. Elaborate measures to tackle the problem of money laundering both at national and international levels.
- Keeping in view India's internal security, analyses the impact of cross-border cyber-attacks. Also discuss defensive measures against these sophisticated attacks.
- Analyse the multidimensional challenges posed by external state and non-state actors, to the internal security of India. Also discuss measures required to be taken to combat these threats
- Analyse the complexity and intensity of terrorism, its causes, linkages and obnoxious nexus. Also suggest measures required to be taken to eradicate the menace of terrorism. 15 (Answer in 250 words)
- Discuss different types of Cyber crimes and measures required to be taken to fight the menace. (Answer in 150 words)
- What are the determinants of left-wing extremism in the Eastern part of India? What strategy should the Government of India, civil administration and security forces adopt to counter the threat in the affected areas? (Answer in 250 words)
- Analyze internal security threats and transborder crimes along Myanmar, Bangladesh and Pakistan borders including Line of Control (LoC). Also, discuss the role played by various security forces in this regard. (Answer in 250 words)
- Cross-Border movement of insurgents is only one of the several security challenges facing the policing of the border in North-East India. Examine the various challenges currently emanating across the India-Myanmar border. Also, discuss the steps to counter the challenges.
- The banning of ‘Jammat-e-Islami’ in Jammu and Kashmir brought into focus the role of over-ground workers (OGWs) in assisting terrorist organizations. Examine the role played by OGWs in assisting terrorist organizations in insurgency-affected areas. Discuss measures to neutralize the influence of OGWs.
- What is the CyberDome Project? Explain how it can be useful in controlling internet crimes in India.
- Data security has assumed significant importance in the digitized world due to rising cyber crimes. The Justice B.N. Srikrishna Committee Report addresses issues related to data security. What, in your view, are the strengths and weaknesses of the Report relating to protection of personal data in cyber space?
- India’s proximity to the two of the world’s biggest illicit opium growing states has enhanced her internal security concerns. Explain the linkages between drug trafficking and other illicit activities such as gunrunning, money laundering and human trafficking. What counter measures should be taken to prevent the same?
- The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is viewed as a cardinal subset of China’s larger ‘One Belt One Road’ initiative. Give a brief description of CPEC and enumerate the reasons why India has distanced itself from the same.
- Left Wing Extremism (LWE) is showing a downward trend, but still affects many parts of the country. Briefly explain the Government of India’s approach to counter the challenges posed by LWE.
- The scourge of terrorism is a grave challenge to national security. What solutions do you suggest to curb this growing menace? What are the major sources of terrorist funding?
- Discuss the potential threats of Cyber attack and the security framework to prevent it.
- The North-Eastern region of India has been infested with insurgency for a very long time. Analyze the major reasons for the survival of armed insurgency in this region.
- Mob violence is emerging as a serious law and order problem in India. By giving suitable examples, analyze the causes and consequences of such violence.
- Use of internet and social media by non-state actors for subversive activities is a major security concern. How have these been misused in the recent past? Suggest effective guidelines to curb the above threat.
- Border management is a complex task due to difficult terrain and hostile relations with some countries. Elucidate the challenges and strategies for effective border management
- The terms ‘Hot Pursuit’ and ‘Surgical Strikes’ are often used in connection with armed action against terrorist attacks. Discuss the strategic impact of such actions.
- ‘Terrorism is emerging as a competitive industry over the last few decades.” Analyse the above statement.
- Religious indoctrination via digital media has resulted in Indian youth joining the
- The persisting drives of the Government for development of large industries in backward areas have resulted in isolating the tribal population and the farmers who face multiple displacements. With Malkangiri and Naxalbari foci, discuss the corrective strategies needed to win the Left Wing Extremism (LWE) doctrine affected citizens back into the mainstream of social and economic growth.
- Considering the threats cyberspace poses for the country, India needs a “Digital Armed Forces” to prevent crimes. Critically evaluate the National Cyber Security Policy, 2013 outlining the challenges perceived in its effective implementation.
- Discuss the advantages and security implications of cloud hosting of servers vis-a-vis in-house machine-based hosting for government businesses.
- Human right activists constantly highlight the view that the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA) is a draconian act leading to cases of human rights abuses by the security forces. What sections of AFSPA are opposed by the activists? Critically evaluate the requirement with reference to the view held by the Apex Court.
- In 2012, the longitudinal marking for high-risk areas for piracy was moved from 65 degrees east to 78 degrees east in the Arabian Sea by the International Maritime Organization. What impact does this have on India’s maritime security concerns?
- China and Pakistan have entered into an agreement for development of an economic corridor. What threat does this pose for India’s security? Critically examine.
- “The diverse nature of India as a multi-religious and multi-ethnic society is not immune to the impact of radicalism which is seen in her neighbourhood.” Discuss along with strategies to be adopted to counter this environment.
- International civil aviation laws provide all countries complete and exclusive sovereignty over the airspace above their territory. What do you understand by ‘airspace? What are the implications of these laws on the space above this airspace? Discuss the challenges which this poses and suggest ways to contain the threat.
- How does illegal transborder migration pose a threat to India’s security? Discuss the strategies to curb this, bringing out the factors which give impetus to such migration
- Article 244 of the Indian Constitution relates to the administration of scheduled areas and tribal areas. Analyse the impact of non-implementation of the provisions of the Fifth schedule on the growth of Left Wing extremism.
- How far are India’s internal security challenges linked with border management, particularly in view of the long porous borders with most countries of South Asia and Myanmar?
- Money laundering poses a serious security threat to a country’s economic sovereignty. What is its significance for India and what steps are required to be taken to control this menace?
- What are social networking sites and what security implications do these sites present?
- Cyber warfare is considered by some defense analysts to be a larger threat than even Al Qaeda or terrorism. What do you understand by Cyberwarfare? Outline the cyber threats which India is vulnerable to and bring out the state of the country’s preparedness to deal with the same.
GS 3: SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
- How is S-400 air defence system technically superior to any other system presently available in the world?
- What are the research and developmental achievements in applied biotechnology? How will these achievements help to uplift the poorer sections of the society?
- The Nobel Prize in Physics of 2014 was jointly awarded to Akasaki, Amano and Nakamura for the invention of Blue LEDs in 1990s. How has this invents impacted the everyday life of human beings?
- What do you understand by nanotechnology and how is it helping in health sector? (Answer in 150 words)
- How is science interwoven deeply with our lives? What are the striking changes in agriculture triggered off by science-based technologies? (Answer in 150 words)
- COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented devastation worldwide. However, technological advancements are being availed readily to win over the crises. Give an account of how technology was sought to aid management of the Pandemic. (Answer in 250 words)
- Describe the benefits of deriving electric energy from sunlight in contrast to the conventional energy generation. What are the initiatives offered by our government for this purpose? (Answer in 250 words)
- How can biotechnology help to improve the living standards of farmers?
- What is India’s plan to have its own space station and how will it benefit our space programme?
- With growing energy needs should India keep on expanding its nuclear energy programme? Discuss the facts and fears associated with nuclear energy?
- Discuss the work of ‘Bose-Einstein Statistics’ done by Prof. Satyendra Nath Bose and show how it revolutionized the field of Physics.
- Why is there so much activity in the field of biotechnology in our country? How has this activity benefitted the field of biopharma?
- India has achieved remarkable successes in unmanned space missions including the Chandrayaan and Mars Orbiter Mission, but has not ventured into manned space mission. What are the main obstacles to launching a manned space mission, both in terms of technology and logistics? Examine critically.
- Give an account of the growth and development of nuclear science and technology in India. What is the advantage of fast breeder reactor programme in India?
- Stem cell therapy is gaining popularity in India to treat a wide variety of medical conditions including Leukaemia, Thalassemia, damaged cornea and several burns. Describe briefly what stem cell therapy is and what advantages it has over other treatments?
- Why is nanotechnology one of the key technologies of the 21st century? Describe the salient features of Indian Government’s Mission on Nanoscience and Technology and the scope of its application in the development process of the country
- Discuss India’s achievements in the field of Space Science and Technology. How the application of this technology has helped India in its socio-economic development?
- What are the areas of prohibitive labour that can be sustainably managed by robots? Discuss the initiatives that can propel research in premier research institutes for substantive and gainful innovation
- India’s Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL), which has a database containing formatted information on more than 2 million medicinal formulations is proving a powerful weapon in country’s fight against erroneous patents. Discuss the pros and cons of making this database publicly available under open-source licensing
- What do you understand by ‘Standard Positioning System’ and ‘Precision Positioning System’ in the GPS era? Discuss the advantages India perceives from its ambitious IRNSS programme employing just seven satellites.
- Can overuse and free availability of antibiotics without Doctor’s prescription, be contributors to the emergence of drug-resistant diseases in India? What are the available mechanisms for monitoring and control? Critically discuss the various issues involved.
- Scientific research in Indian universities is declining, because a career in science is not as attractive as are business professions, engineering or administration, and the universities are becoming consumeroriented. Critically comment
- In a globalized world, Intellectual Property Rights assume significance and are a source of litigation. Broadly distinguish between the terms—Copyrights, Patents and Trade Secrets
- What do you understand by Umpire Decision Review System in Cricket? Discuss its various components. Explain how silicone tape on the edge of a bat may fool the system?
- (a) What is a digital signature ? What does its authentication mean? Give various salient built-in features of a digital signature. (b) How does the 3D printing technology work? List out the advantages and disadvantages of the technology
- Bringing out the circumstances in 2005 which forced amendment to the section 3(d) in Indian Patent Law, 1970, discuss how it has been utilized by the Supreme Court in its judgement in rejecting Novratis’ patent application for ‘Glivec’. Discuss briefly the pros and cons of the decision.
- What do you understand by Fixed Dose Drug Combinations (FDCs)? Discuss their merits and demerits
- (a) What is an FRP composite material ? How are they manufactured? Discuss their applications in aviation and automobile industries. (b) What do you understand by Run-of-river hydroelectricity project? How is it different from any other hydroelectricity project?
GS 3: DISASTER MANAGEMENT
- Disaster preparedness is the first step in any disaster management process. Explain how hazard zonation mapping will help disaster mitigation in the case of landslides
- Vulnerability is an essential element for defining disaster impacts and its threat to people. How and in what ways can vulnerability to disasters be characterized? Discuss different types of vulnerability with reference to disasters.
- Describe various measures taken in India for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) before and after signing ‘Sendai Framework for DRR (2015-30)’. How is this framework different from ‘Hyogo Framework for Action, 2005’?
- On December 2004, tsunami brought havoc on fourteen countries including India. Discuss the factors responsible for occurrence of tsunami and its effects on life and economy. In the light of guidelines of NDMA (2010) describe the mechanisms for preparedness to reduce the risk during such events.
- With reference to National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) guidelines, discuss the measures to be adopted to mitigate the impact of recent incidents of cloudbursts in many places of Uttarakhand.
- The frequency of urban floods due to high intensity rainfall is increasing over the years. Discussing the reasons for urban floods, highlight the mechanisms for preparedness to reduce the risk during such events.
- The frequency of earthquakes appears to have increased in the Indian subcontinent. However, India’s preparedness for mitigating their impact has significant gaps. Discuss various aspects.
- Drought has been recognized as a disaster in view of its spatial expanse, temporal duration, slow onset and lasting effects on vulnerable sections. With a focus on the September 2010 guidelines from the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), discuss the mechanisms for preparedness to deal with likely El Niño and La Niña fallouts in India.
- How important are vulnerability and risk assessment for pre-disaster management? As an administrator, what are key areas that you would focus on in a Disaster Management System.
GS 3: ENVIRONMENT & ECOLOGY
- Define the concept of carrying capacity of an ecosystem as relevant to an environment. Explain how understanding this concept is vital while planning for sustainable development of a region.
- Coastal sand mining, whether legal or illegal, poses one of the biggest threats to our environment.Analyze the impact of sand mining along the Indians coasts, citing specific examples.
- Sikkim is the first ‘Organic State’ in India. What are the ecological and economical benefits of Organic State?
- How does biodiversity vary in India? How is the Biological Diversity Act, 2002 helpful in conservation of flora and fauna?
- What are the impediments disposing the huge quantities of discarded solid waste which are continuously being generated? How do we remove safely the toxic wastes that have been accumulated in our habitable environment?
- What is wetland? Explain the Ramsar concept of ‘wise use’ in the context of wetland conservation. Cite two examples of Ramsar sites from India.
- ‘Climate change’ is a global problem. How India will be affected by climate change? How Himalayan and coastal states of India will be affected by climate change?
- Not many years ago, river linking was a concept but it is becoming reality in the country. Discuss the advantages of river linking and its possible impact on the environment.
- Rehabilitation of human settlements is one of the important environmental impacts which always attracts controversy while planning major projects. Discuss the measures suggested for mitigation of this impact while proposing major developmental projects.
- Discuss the Namami Gange and National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) programmes and causes of mixed results from the previous schemes. What quantum leaps can help preserve the river Ganga better than incremental inputs?
- Environmental Impact Assessment studies are increasingly undertaken before a project is cleared by the Government. Discuss the environmental impacts of coal-fired thermal plants located at coal pitheads.
- Enumerate the National Water Policy of India. Taking river Ganges as an example, discuss the strategies which may be adopted for river water pollution control and management. What are the legal provisions of management and handling of hazardous wastes in India?
- What are the consequences of Illegal mining? Discuss the Ministry of Environment and Forests’ concept of GO AND NO GO zones for coal mining sector
General Studies 4 | GS 4
GS 4: ETHICS THEORY
- (a) Identify five ethical traits on which one can plot the performance of a civil servant. Justify their inclusion in the matrix. (b) Identify ten essential values that are needed to be an effective public servant. Describe the /ways and means to prevent non-ethical behaviour in the public servants.
- (a) Impact of digital technology as reliable source of input for rational decision making is debatable issue. Critically evaluate with suitable example. (b) Besides domain knowledge, a public official needs innovativeness and creativity of a high order as well, while resolving ethical dilemmas. Discuss with suitable example.
- What does each of the following quotations mean to you?
(a) “Every work has got to pass through hundreds of difficulties before succeeding. Those that persevere will see the light, sooner or later. —Swami Vivekananda
(b) “We can never obtain peace in the outer world until and unless we obtain peace within ourselves.” – Dalai Lama
(c) Life doesn’t make any sense without interdependence. We need each other, and the sooner we learn that, it is better for us all.” -Erik Erikson
- (a) Attitude is an important component that goes as input in the elopement of human How to build a suitable needed for a public servant?
(b) In case of crisis of conscience does emotional intelligence help to overcome the same without compromising the ethical or moral stand that you are likely to follow? Critically examine.
- (a) “Refugees should not be turned back to the country where they would face persecution or human right violation.” Examine the statement with reference to ethical dimension being violated by the nation claiming to be democratic with open society.
(b) Should impartial and being non-partisan be considered as indispensable qualities to make a successful civil servant? Discuss with illustrations.
- (a) An independent and empowered social audit mechanism is an absolute must in every sphere of public service, including judiciary, to ensure performance, accountability and ethical conduct. Elaborate.
(b) “Integrity is a value that empowers the human being.” Justify with suitable illustration.
- (a) Discuss the role of ethics and values in enhancing the following three major components of Comprehensive National Power (CNP) viz. human capital, soft power (culture and policies) and social harmony. (150 words)
(b) “Education is not an injunction, it is an effective and pervasive tool for all round development of an individual and social transformation”. Examine the New Education Policy, 2020 (NEP, 2020) in light of the above statement. (150 words)
- (a) 'Hatred is destructive of a person's wisdom and conscience that can poison a nation's spirit. Do you agree with this view? Justify your answer. (150 words)
(b) What are the main components of emotional intelligence (EI) ? Can they be learned? Discuss.(150 words)
- (a )What teachings of Buddha are most relevant today and why? Discuss. (150 words)
(b) 'The will to power exits, but it can be tamed and be guided by rationality and principles of moral duty.' Examine this statement in the context of international relations. (150 words)
- (a) Distinguish between laws and rules. Discuss the role of ethics in formulating them. (150 words)
(b) A positive attitude is considered to be an essential characteristic of a civil servant who is often required to function under extreme stress. What contributes a positive attitude in person.? (150 words
- (a) What are the main factors responsible for gender inequality in India ? Discuss the contribution of Savitribai Phule in this regard. (150 words)
(b) 'The current internet expansion has instilled a different set of cultural values which are often in conflict with traditional values.' Discuss. (150 words)
- What do each of the following quotations mean to you?
(a) “Condemn none: if you can stretch out a helping hand do so. If not fold your hands, bless your brothers and let them go their own way.” – Swami Vivekanand (150 words)
(b)”The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in service of others .” Mahatma Gandhi(150 words)
(c) “A system of morality which is based on relative emotional values is a mere illusion, a thoroughly vulgar conception which has nothing sound in it and nothing true.” – Socrates. (150 words)
- (a) What are the basic principles of public life? Illustrate any three of these with suitable examples.
(b) What do you understand by the term ‘public servant’? Reflect on the expected role of public servant.
- (a) What is meant by the term ‘constitutional morality’? How does one uphold constitutional morality?
(b) What is meant by ‘crisis of conscience’? How does it manifest itself in the public domain?
- (a) Explain the basic principles of citizens charter movement and bring out its importance.
(b) There is a view that the Official Secrets Act is an obstacle to the implementation of Right to Information Act. Do you agree with the view? Discuss.
- (a) What do you understand by probity in governance? Based on your understanding of the term, suggest measures for ensuring probity in government.
(b) “Emotional Intelligence is the ability to make your emotions work for you instead of against you”. Do you agree with this view? Discuss
- What do each of the following quotations mean to you?
(a) “An unexamined life is not worth living”. – Socrates
(b) “A man is but a product of his thoughts. What he thinks he becomes.” – M.K. Gandhi
(c) “Where there is righteousness in the heart, there is beauty in the character. When there is beauty in the character, there is harmony in the home. When there is harmony in the home, there is order in the nation. When there is order in the nation, there is peace in the world” – A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
- (a) Effective utilization of public funds is crucial to meet development goals. Critically examine the reasons for under-utilization and mis-utilization of public funds and their implications.
(b) “Non-performance of duty by a public servant is a form of corruption”. Do you agree with this view? Justify your answer.
- (a) Suppose the Government of India is thinking of constructing a dam in a mountain valley bound by forests and inhabited by ethnic communities. What rational policy should it resort to in dealing with unforeseen contingencies?
(b) Explain the process of resolving ethical dilemmas in Public Administration
- What do each of the following quotations means to you in the present context?
(a) “The true rule, in determining to embrace, or reject any thing, is not whether it has any evil in it; but whether it has more evil than good. There are few things wholly evil or wholly good. Almost every thing, especially of government policy, is an inseparable compound of the two; so that our best judgment of the preponderance between them is continually demanded.” – Abraham Lincoln.
(b) “Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.” – Mahatma Gandhi.
(c) “Falsehood takes the place of truth when it results in unblemished common good.” – Tirukkural
- (a) State the three basic values, universal in nature, in the context of civil services and bring out their importance.
(b) Distinguish between “Code of ethics” and “Code of conduct” with suitable examples.
- (a) What is meant by conflict of interest? Illustrate with examples, the difference between the actual and potential conflicts of interest.
(b) “In looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence and energy. And if they do not have the first, the other two will kill you.” —Warren Buffet What do you understand by this statement in the present-day scenario? Explain.
- (a) “In doing a good thing, everything is permitted which is not prohibited expressly or by clear implication.” Examine the statement with suitable examples in the context of a public servant discharging his/her duties.
(b) With regard to morality of actions, one view is that means are of paramount importance and the other view is that the ends justify the means. Which view do you think is more appropriate? Justify your answer.
- (a) What is meant by public interest? What are the principles and procedures to be followed by civil servants in public interest?
(b) “The Right to Information Act is not all about citizens’ empowerment alone, it essentially redefines the concept of accountability.” Discuss
- (a) The crisis of ethical values in modern times is traced to a narrow perception of the good life.Discuss.
(b) Increased national wealth did not result in equitable distribution of its benefits. It has created only some “enclaves of modernity and prosperity for a small minority at the cost of the majority.” Justify.
- (a) Discipline generally implies following the order and subordination. However, it may be counterproductive for the organisation. Discuss.
(b) Without commonly shared and widely entrenched moral values and obligations, neither the law, nor democratic government, nor even the market economy will function properly. What do you understand by this statement? Explain with illustration in the contemporary times.
- Conflict of interest in the public sector arises when
(a) official duties,
(b) public interest, and
(c) personal interest are taking priority one above the other.
How can this conflict in administration be resolved? Describe with an example
- Young people with ethical conduct are not willing to come forward to join active politics. Suggest steps to motivate them to come forward.
- (a) One of the tests of integrity is complete refusal to be compromised. Explain with reference to a real life example.
(b) Corporate social responsibility makes companies more profitable and sustainable. Analyse.
- (a) “Great ambition is the passion of a great character. Those endowed with it may perform very good or very bad acts. All depends on the principles which direct them.” – Napoleon Bonaparte. Stating examples mention the rulers (i) who have harmed society and country, (ii) who worked for the development of society and country.
(b) “If a country is to be corruption free and become a nation of beautiful minds, I strongly feel there are three key societal members who can make a difference. They are the father, the mother and the teacher.” – A.P.J. Abdul Kalam. Analyse.
- (a) How will you apply emotional intelligence in administrative practices?
(b) Strength, peace and security are considered to be the pillars of international relations. Elucidate.
- Examine the relevance of the following in the context of civil service: (a) Transparency (b) Accountability (c) Fairness and Justice (d) Courage of Conviction (e) Spirit of service
- Our attitudes towards life, work, other people and society are generally shaped unconsciously by the family and the social surroundings in which we grow up. Some of these unconsciously acquired attitudes and values are often undesirable in the citizens of a modern democratic and egalitarian society.
(a) Discuss such undesirable values prevalent in today's educated Indians.
(b) How can such undesirable attitudes be changed and socioethical values considered necessary in public services be cultivated in the aspiring and serving civil servants?
- Anger is a harmful negative emotion. It is injurious to both personal life and work life.
(a) Discuss how it leads to negative emotions and undesirable behaviours.
(b) How can it be managed and controlled?
- “Max Weber said that it is not wise to apply to public administration the sort of moral and ethical norms we apply to matters of personal conscience. It is important to realize that the state bureaucracy might possess its own independent bureaucratic morality.” Critically analyse this statement.
- (a) Explain how ethics contributes to social and human well-being.
(b) Why should impartiality and non-partisanship be considered as foundational values in public services, especially in the present day socio-political context? Illustrate your answer with examples.
- (a) What do you understand by the terms ‘governance’, ‘good governance’ and ‘ethical governance’?
(b) Discuss Mahatma Gandhi’s Concept of seven sin.
- (a) Analyse John Rawls’s concept of social justice in the Indian context.
(b) Discuss the Public Services Code as recommended by the 2nd Administrative Reforms Commission
- (a) “Corruption causes misuse of government treasury, administrative inefficiency and obstruction in the path of national development.” Discuss Kautilya’s views.
(b) How could social influence and persuasion contribute to the success of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan?
- Law and Ethics are considered to be the two tools for controlling human conduct so as to make it conducive to civilized social existence.
(a) Discuss how they achieve this objective.
- (a) What is meant by ‘environmental ethics’? Why is it important to study? Discuss any one environmental issue from the viewpoint of environmental ethics.
(b) Differentiate between the following: Law and Ethics Ethical management and Management of ethics Discrimination and Preferential treatment Personal ethics and Professional ethics
- Given are two quotations of moral thinkers/philosophers. For each of these, bring out what it means to you in the present context:
(a) “The weak can never forgive; forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
(b) “We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light
- (a) “A mere compliance with law is not enough, the public servant also has to have a well-developed sensibility to ethical issues for effective discharge of duties.” Do you agree? Explain with the help of two examples, where (i) an act is ethically right, but not legally and (ii) an act is legally right, but not ethically.
(b) How do the virtues of trustworthiness and fortitude get manifested in public service? Explain with examples
- (a) “Social values are more important than economic values.” Discuss the above statement with examples in the context of inclusive growth of a nation.
(b) Some recent developments such as introduction of RTI Act, media and judicial activism, etc., are proving helpful in bringing about greater transparency and accountability in the functioning of the government. However, it is also being observed that at times the mechanisms are misused. Another negative effect is that the officers are now afraid to take prompt decisions. Analyze this situation in detail and suggest how this dichotomy can be resolved. Suggest how these negative impacts can be minimized
- Two different kinds of attitudes exhibited by public servants towards their work have been identified as the bureaucratic attitude and the democratic attitude.
(a) Distinguish between these two terms and write their merits and demerits,
(b) Is it possible to balance the two to create a better administration for the faster development of our country?
- Today we find that in spite of various measures like prescribing codes of conduct, setting up vigilence cells/commissions, RTI, active media and strengthening of legal mechanisms, corrupt practices are not coming under control.
(a) Evaluate the effectiveness of these measures with justifications.
(b) Suggest more effective strategies to tackle this menace.
- At the international level, the bilateral relations between most nations are governed on the policy of promoting one’s own national interest without any regard for the interest of other nations. This leads to conflicts and tensions between the nations. How can ethical consideration help resolve such tensions? Discuss with specific examples.
- Public servants are likely to confront with the issues of ‘Conflict of Interest’. What do you understand by the term ‘Conflict of Interest’ and how does it manifest in the decision making by public servants? If faced with the conflict of interest situation, how would you resolve it? Explain with the help of examples.
GS 4: ETHICS CASE STUDIES
- Sunil is a young civil servant and has a reputation for his competence, integrity, dedication and relentness pursuit of difficult and onerous jobs. Considering his profile, he was picked up by his bosses to handle a very challenging and sensitive assignment. He was posted in a tribal dominated district notorious for illegal sand mining. Excavating sand from river belt and transporting through trucks and selling them in black market was rampant. This illegal sand mining mafia was operating with the support of local functionaries and tribal musclemen who in turn were bribing selected poor tribals and had kept the tribals under fear and intimidation. Sunil being a sharp and energetic officer immediately grasped the ground realities and the modus operandi followed by the mafia through their devious and dubious mechanism. On making inquiries, he gathered that some of their own office employees are in hand and glove with them and have developed close unholy nexus. Sunil initiated stringent action against them and started conducting raids on their illegal operations of movement of trucks filled with sand. The mafia got rattled as not many officers in the past had taken such steps against the mafia. Some of the office employees who were allegedly close to mafia informed them that the officer is determined to clean up the mafia’s illegal sand mining operations in that the district and may cause them irrepairable damage. The mafia turned hostile and launched counter-offensive. The tribal musclemen and mafia started threatening him with dire consequences. His family (wife and old mother) were stalked and were under virtual surveillance and thus causing mental torture, agony and stress to all of them. The matter assumed serious proportions when a muscleman came to his office and threatened him to stop raids, etc., otherwise, his fate will not be different than some of his predecessors (ten years back one officer was killed by the mafia). Identify the different options available to Sunil in attending to this situation. Critically evaluate each of the options listed by you. Which of the above, do you think, would be the most appropriate for Sunil to adopt and why?
- You are Vice Principal of a degree college in one of the middle – class towns. Principal has recently retired and management is looking for his replacement. There are also feelers that the management may promote you as Principal. In the meantime, during annual examination the flying squad came from the university caught two students red-hande3d involving in unfair means. A senior lecturer of the college was personally helping these student in this act. This senior lecturer also happens to be close to the management. One of the students was son of a local politician who was responsible in getting college affiliated to the present reputed university. The second student was son of a local businessman who has donated maximum funds for running of the college. You immediately informed the management regarding this unfortunate incident. The management told you to resolve the issue with flying squad at any cost. They further said that such incident will not only tarnish the image of the college but also the politician and businessman are very important personalities for the functioning of the college. You were also given hint that your further promotion to Principal depends on your capability in resolving this issue with flying squad. In the meantime, you were intimated by your administrative officer that certain members of the student union are protesting outside the college gate against the senior lecturer and the students involved in this incident and demanding strict action against defaulters. Discuss the ethical issues involved in the case. Critically examine the options available with you as Vice Principal. What option will you adopt and why?
- An elevated corridor is being constructed to reduce traffic congestion in the capital of a particular state. You have been selected as project manager of this prestigious project on your professional competence and experience. The deadline is to complete the project in next two years by 20 June, 2021, since this project is to be inaugurated by the Chief Minister before the elections are announced in the second week of July 2021. While carrying out the surprise inspection by inspecting team, a minor crack was noticed in one of the piers of the elevated corridor possibly due to poor material used. You immediately informed the chief engineer and stopped further work. It was assessed by you that minimum three piers of the elevated corridor have to be demolished demolished and reconstructed. But this process will delay the project minimum by four to six months. But the chief engineer overruled the observation of inspecting team on the ground that it was a minor crack which will not in any way impact the strength and durability of the bridge. He ordered you to overlook the observation of inspecting team and continue working with same speed and tempo. He informed you that the minister does not want any delay as he wants the chief Minister to inaugurate the elevated corridor before the elections are declared. Also informed you that the contractor is far relative of the minister and he wants him to finish the project. He also gave you hint that your further promotion as additional chief engineer is under consideration with the ministry. However, you strongly felt that the minor crack in the pier of the elevated corridor will adversely affect the health and life of the bridge and therefore it will be very dangerous not to repair the elevated corridor. Under the given conditions, what are the options available to you as a project manager? What are the ethical dilemmas being faced by the project manager? What are the professional challenges likely to be faced by the project manager and his response to overcome such challenges? What can be the consequences of overlooking the observation raised by the inspecting team?
- The Coronavirus Disease (CoVID-19) pandemic has quickly spread to various countries. As on May 8th, 2020, in India 56342 positive cases of corona had been reported. India with a population of more than 1-35 billion had difficulty in controlling the transmission of coronavirus among its population. Multiple strategies became necessary to handle this outbreak. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of India raised awareness about this outbreak and to take all necessary actions to control the spread of COVID-19. Indian Government implemented a 55-day lockdown throughout the country to reduce the transmission of the virus. Schools and colleges had shifted to alternative mode of teaching learning-evaluation and certification. Online mode became popular during these days. India was not prepared fora sudden onslaught of such a crisis due to limited infrastructure in terms of human resource, money and other facilities needed for taking care of this situation. This disease did not spare anybody irrespective of caste, creed, religion on the one hand and have and have not’ on the other. Deficiencies in hospital beds, oxygen cylinders, ambulances, hospital staff and crematorium were the most crucial aspects You are a hospital administrator in a public hospital at the time when coronavirus had attacked large number of people and patients were pouring into hospital day in and day out. What are your criteria and justification for putting your clinical and non-clinical staff to attend to the patients knowing fully well that it is highly infectious disease and resources and infrastructure are limited? If yours is a private hospital, whether your justification and decision would remain same as that of a public hospital?
- A Reputed food product company based in India developed a food product for international market and started exporting the same after getting necessary approvals. The company announced this achievement and also indicated that soon the product will be made available for the domestic consumers with almost sane quality and health benefits. Accordingly, the company got its product approved by the domestic competent authority and launched the product in Indian market. The company could increase its market share over a period of time and earned substantial profit both domestically and internationally. However, the random sample test conducted by inspecting team found the product being sold domestically in variance with the approval obtained from the competent authority. On further investigation, it was also discovered that the food company was not only selling products which were not meeting the health standard of the country but also selling the rejected export products in the domestic market. This episode adversely affected the reputation and profitability of the food company. What action do you visualize should be taken by the competent authority against the food company for violating the laid down domestic food standard and selling rejected export products in domestic market? What course of action is available with the food company to resolve the crisis and bring back its lost reputation? Examine the ethical dilemma involved in the case.
- Pawan is working as an officer in the State Government for the last ten years. As a part of routine transfer, he was posted to another department. He joined in a new office along with five other colleagues. The head of the office was a senior officer conversant with the functioning of the office. As a part of general inquiry, Pawan gathered that his senior officer carries the reputation of being difficult and insensitive person having his own disturbed family life. Initially, all seem to go well. However, after some time Pawan felt that the senior officer was belittling him and at times unreasonable. Whatever suggestions given or views expressed by Pawan in the meetings were summarily rejected and the senior officer would express displeasure in the presence of others. It became a pattern of boss’s style of functioning to show him in bad light highlighting his shortcomings and humiliating publically. It became apparent that though there are no serious work-related problems/shortcomings, the senior officer was always on one pretext or the other and would scold and shout at him. The continuous harassment and public criticism of Pawan resulted in loss of confidence, self esteem and equanimity. Pawan realized that his relations with his senior officer are becoming more toxic and due to this, he felt perpetually tensed, anxious and stressed. His mind was occupied with negativity and caused him mental torture, anguish and agony. Eventually, it badly affected his personal and family life. He was no longer joyous, happy and contented event home. Rather without any reason he would loose his temper with his wife and other family members. The family environment was no longer pleasant and congenial. His wife who was always supportive to him also became a victim of his negativity and hostile behaviour. Due to harassment and humiliation suffering by him in the office, comfort and happiness virtually vanished from his life. Thus it damaged his physical and mental health. What are the options available with Pawan to cope with the situation? What approach Pawan should adopt for bringing peace, tranquillity and congenial environment in the office and home? As an outsider, what are your Suggestions for both boss and subordinate to overcome this situation and for improving the work performance, mental and emotional hygiene? In the above scenario, what type of training would you suggest for at various levels in the government offices?
- Rajesh Kumar is a senior public servant, with a reputation of honesty and forthrightness, currently posted in the Finance Ministry as the Head of the Budget Division. His department is presently busy in organizing the budgetary support to the states, four of which are due to go to the polls within the financial year.
This year’s annual budget had allotted Rs 8300 crores for the National Housing Scheme (NHS), a centrally sponsored social housing scheme for the weaker sections of society. Rs 775 crores have been drawn for NHS till June.
The Ministry of Commerce had long been pursuing a case for setting up a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in a southern state to boost exports. After two years of detailed discussion between the center and state, the Union Cabinet approved the project in August. Process was initiated to acquire the necessary land.
Eighteen months ago a leading Public Sector Unit (PSU) had projected the need for setting up a large natural gas processing plant in a northern state for the regional gas grid. The land is already in possession of the PSU. The gas grid is an essential component of the national energy security strategy. After three rounds of global bidding, the project was allotted to an MNC, M/s XYZ Hydrocarbons. The first tranche of payment to the MNC is scheduled to be made in December.
Finance Ministry was asked for a timely allocation of an additional Rs 6000 crores for these two developmental projects. It was decided to recommend re-appropriation of this entire amount from NHS allocation. The file was forwarded to Budget Department for their comments and further processing. On studying the case file, Rajesh Kumar realized that this re-appropriation may cause inordinate delay in the execution of NHS, a project much publicized in the rallies of senior politicians. Correspondingly, the non-availability of finances would cause a financial loss in the SEZ and national embarrassment due to delayed payment in an international project.
Rajesh Kumar discussed the matter with his seniors. He was conveyed that this politically sensitive situation needs to be processed immediately. Rajesh Kumar realized that diversion of funds from NHS could raise difficult questions for the government in the Parliament.
Discuss the following with reference to this case:
(a) Ethical issues involved in re-appropriation of funds from a welfare project to the development projects.
(b) Given the need for proper utilization of public funds, discuss the options available to Rajesh Kumar. Is resigning a worthy option? (250 words)
- The Chairman of Bharat Missiles Ltd (BML) was watching a program on TV wherein the Prime Minister was addressing the nation on the necessity of developing a self-reliant India. He subconsciously nodded in agreement and smiled to himself as he mentally reviewed BML’s journey in the past two decades. BML had admirably progressed from producing first generation anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) to designing and producing state of the art ATGM weapon systems that would be the envy of any army. He sighed in reconciliation with his assumptions that the government would probably not alter the status quo of a ban on export of military weaponry.
To his surprise, the very next day he got a telephone call from the Director General, Ministry of Defence, asking him to discuss the modalities of increasing BML production of ATGMs as there is a probability of exporting the same to a friendly foreign country. The Director General wanted the Chairman to discuss the details with his staff at Delhi next week.
Two days later, at a press conference, the Defence Minister stated that he aims to double the current weapons export levels within five years. This would give an impetus to financing the development and manufacturing of indigenous weapons in the country. He also stated that all indigenous arms manufacturing nations have a very good record of the international arms trade.
As the Chairman of BML, what are your views on the following points?
(a) As an arms exporter of a responsible nation like India, what are the ethical issues involved in arms trade?
(b) List five ethical factors that would influence the decision to sell arms to foreign governments.(250 words)
- Rampura, a remote district inhabited by a tribal population, is marked by extreme backwardness and abject poverty. Agriculture is the mainstay of the local population, though it is primarilty subsistence due to the very small landholdings. There is insignificant industrial or mining activity. Even the targeted welfare programs have inadequately benefited the tribal population. In this restrictive scenario, the youth has begun to migrate to other states to supplement the family income. Plight of minor girls is that their parents are persuaded by labour contractors to send them to work in the Bt Cotton farms of a nearby state. The soft fingers of the minor girls are well suited for plucking the cotton. The inadequate living and working conditions in these farms have caused serious health issues for the minor girls. NGOs in the districts of domicile and the cotton farms appear to be compromised and have not effectively espoused the twin issues of child labour and development of the area.
You are appointed as the District Collector of Rampura. Identify the ethical issues involved. Which specific steps will you initiate to ameliorate the conditions of minor girls of your district and to improve the over-all economic scenario in the district? (250 words)
You are a municipal commissioner of a large city, having the reputation of a very honest and upright officer. A huge multipurpose mall is under construction in your city in which a large number of daily wage earners are employed. One night, during monsoons, a big chunk of the roof collapsed causing instant death of four labourers including two minors. Many more were seriously injured requiring immediate medical attention. The mishap resulted in a big hue and cry, forcing the government to institute an enquiry.
Your preliminary enquiry has revealed a series of anomalies. The material used for the construction was of poor quality. Despite the approved building plans permitting only one basement, an additional basement has been constructed. This was overlooked during the periodic inspections by the building inspector of the municipal corporation. In your enquiry, you noticed that the construction of the mall was given the green signal despite encroaching on areas earmarked for a green belt and a slip road in the Zonal Master Plan of the city. The permission to construct the mall was accorded by the previous Municipal Commissioner who is not only your senior and well known to you professionally, but also a good friend.
Prima facie, the case appears to be of a widespread nexus between officials of the Municipal Corporation and the builders. Your colleagues are putting pressure on you to go slow in the enquiry. The builder, who is rich and influential, happens to be a close relative of a powerful minister in the state cabinet. The builder is persuading you to hush up the matter, promising you a fortune to do so. He also hinted that if this matter is not resolved at the earliest in his favour there is somebody in his office who is waiting to file a case against you under the POSH act.
Discuss the ethical issues involved in the case. What are the options available to you in this situation? Explain your selected course of action.(250 words)
- Parmal is a small but underdeveloped district. It has rocky terrain that is not suitable for agriculture, though some subsistence agriculture is being done on small plots of land. The area receives adequate rainfall and has an irrigation canal flowing through it. Amria, its administrative centre, is a medium sized town. It houses a large district hospital, an Industrial Training Institute and some privately owned skill training centres. It has all the facilities of a district headquarters. A trunk railway line passes approximately 50 kilometers from Amria. Its poor connectivity is a major reason for the absence of any major industry therein. The state government offers a 10 years tax holiday as an incentive to new industry.
In 2010 Anil, an industrialist decided to take benefits to set up Amria Plastic Works (APW) in Noora village, about 20 km from Amria. While the factory was being built, Anil hired the required key labour and got them trained at the skill training centres at Amria. This act of his made the key personnel very loyal to APW.
APW started production in 2011 with the labour drawn fully from Noora village. The villagers were very happy to get employment near their homes and were motivated by the key personnel to meet the production targets with high quality. APW started making large profits, a sizeable portion of which was used to improve the quality of life in Noora. By 2016, Noora could boast of a greener village and a renovated village temple. Anil liaised with the local MLA to increase the frequency of the bus services to Amria. The government also opened a primary health care centre and primary school at Noora in buildings constructed by APW. APW used its CSR funds to set up women’s self-help groups, subsidize primary education to the village children and procure an ambulance for use by its employeed and the needy.
In 2019, there was a minor fire in APW. It was quickly extinguished as fire safety protocols were in place in the factory. Investigations revealed that the factory had been using electricity in excess of its authorized capacity. This was soon rectified. The next year, due to nationwide lockdown, the requirement of production fell for four months. Anil decided that all employees would be paid regularly. He employed them to plant trees and improve the village habitat.
APW had developed a reputation of high-quality production and a motivated workforce.
Critically analyse the story of APW and state the ethical issues involved. Do you consider APW as a role model for the development of backward areas? Give reasons.(250 words)
- Migrant workers have always remained at the socio-economic margins of our society, silently serving as the instrumental labour force of urban economics. The pandemic has brought them into national focus.
On announcement of a countrywide lockdown, a very large number of migrant workers decided to move back from their places of employment to their native villages. The non-availability of transport created its own problems. Added to this was the fear of starvation and inconvenience to their families. This caused, the migrant workers to demand wages and transport facilities for returning to their villages. Their mental agony was accentuated by multiple factors such as a sudden loss of livelihood, possibility of lack of food and inability to assist in harvesting their rabi crop due to not being able to reach home in time. Reports of inadequate response of some districts in providing the essential boarding and lodging arrangements along the way multiplied their fears.
You have learnt many lessons from this situation when you were tasked to oversee the functioning of the District Disaster Relief Force in your district. In your opinion what ethical issues arose in the current migrant crisis? What do you understand by an ethical care giving state? What assistance can the civil society render to mitigate the sufferings of migrants in similar situations?(250 words)
- An apparel manufacturing company having a large number of women employees was losing sales due to various factors. The company hired a reputed marketing executive, who increased the volume of sales within a short span of time. However, some unconfirmed reports came up regarding his indulgence in sexual harassment at the workplace. After sometime a woman employee launched a formal complaint to the management against the marketing executive about sexually harassing her. Faced with the companies’ indifference, in not taking cognizance of her grievances, she lodged an FIR with the police. Realizing the sensitivity and gravity of the situation, the company called the woman employee to negotiate. In that she was offered a hefty sum of money to withdraw the complaint and the FIR and also give in writing that the marketing executive is not involved in the case. Identify the ethical issues involved in this case. What options are available to the woman employee?
- In a modern democratic polity, there is a concept of the political executive and permanent executive. Elected people’s representatives form the political executive and bureaucracy forms the permanent executive. Ministers frame policy decisions and bureaucrats execute these. In the initial decades after independence, the relationship between the permanent executive and the political executive were characterized by mutual understanding, respect and cooperation, without encroaching upon each other’s domain. However, in the subsequent decades, the situation has changed. There are instances of the political executive insisting upon the permanent executive to follow its agenda. Respect for an appreciation of upright bureaucrats has declined. There is an increasing tendency among the political executive to get involved in routine administrative matters such as transfers, posting etc. Under this scenario, there is a difinitive trend towards ‘politicization of bureaucracy’. The rising materialism and acquisitiveness in social life has also adversely impacted upon the ethical values of both the permanent executive and the political executive. What are the consequences of this ‘politicization of bureaucracy’? Discuss.
- In one of the districts of a frontier state, narcotics menace has been rampant. This has resulted in money laundering, mushrooming of poppy farming, arms smuggling and near stalling of education. The system is on the verge of collapse. The situation has been further worsened by unconfirmed reports that local politicians as well as some senior police officers are providing surreptitious patronage to the drug mafia. At that point of time a woman police officer, known for her skills in handling such situations is appointed as superintendent of police to bring the situation to normalcy. If you are the same police officer, identify the various dimensions of the crisis. Based on your understanding, suggest measures to deal with the crisis.
- In recent times, there has been an increasing concern in India to develop effective civil service ethics, code of conduct, transparency measures, ethics and integrity systems and anti-corruption agencies. In view of this, there is a need being felt to focus on three specific areas, which are directly relevant to the problems of internalizing integrity and ethics in the civil services. These are as follows: Anticipating specific threats to ethical standards and integrity in the civil services, Strengthening the ethical competence of civil servants and Developing administrative processes and practices which promote ethical values and integrity in civil services. Suggest institutional measures to address the above three issues.
- You are heading the rescue operations in an area affected by severe natural calamity. Thousands of people are rendered homeless and deprived of food, drinking water and other basic amenities. Rescue work has been disrupted by heavy rainfall and damage to supply routes. The local people are seething with anger against the delayed limited rescue operations. When your team reaches the affected area, the people there heckle and even assault some of the team members . One of your team members is even severely injured. Faced with this crisis, some team members plead with you to call off the operations fearing threats to their life. In such trying circumstances, what will be your response? Examine the qualities of a public servant which will be required to manage the situation.
- Honesty and uprightness are the hallmarks of a civil servant. Civil servants possessing these qualities are considered as the backbone of any strong organization. In line of duty, they take various decisions, at times some become bonafide mistakes. As long as such decisions are not taken intentionally and do not benefit personally, the officer cannot be said to be guilty. Though such decisions may, at times, lead to unforeseen adverse consequences in the long-term. In the recent past, a few instances have surfaced wherein civil servants have been implicated for bonafide mistakes. They have often been prosecuted and even imprisoned. The instances have greatly rattled the moral fibre of the civil servants. How does this trend affect the functioning of the civil services? What measures can be taken to ensure the honest civil servants are not implicated for the bonafide mistakes on their part? Justify your answer.
- Edward Snowden, a computer expert and former CIA administrator, released confidential Government documents to the press about the existence of Government surveillance programmes. According to many legal experts and the US Government, his action violated the Espionage act of 1971, which identified the leak of State secret as an act of treason. Yet, despite the fact that he broke the law, Snowden argued that he had a moral obligation to act. He gave a justification for his “whistle blowing” by stating that he had a duty “to inform the public as to that which is done in there name and that which is done against them.” According to Snowden, the Government’s violation of privacy had to be exposed regardless of legality since more substantive issues of social action and public morality were involved here. Many agreed with Snowden. Few argued that he broke the law and compromised national security, for which he should be held accountable. Do you agree that Snowden’s actions were ethically justified even if legally prohibited? Why or why not? Make an argument by weighing the competing values in this case. (250 words)
- Rakesh is a responsible district level officer, who enjoys the trust of his higher officials. Knowing his honesty, the government entrusted him with the responsibility of identifying the beneficiaries under a health care scheme meant for senior citizens. The criteria to be a beneficiary are the following:
(a) 60 years of age or above.
(b) Belonging to a reserved community.
(c) Family income of less than 1 Lakh rupees per annum.
(d) Post-treatment prognosis is likely to be high to make a positive difference to the quality of life of the beneficiary.
One day, an old couple visited Rakesh’s office with their application. They have been the residents of a village in his district since their birth. The old man is diagnosed with a rare condition that causes obstruction in the large intestine. As a consequence, he has severe abdominal pain frequently that prevents him from doing any physical labour. The couple has no children to support them. The expert surgeon whom they contacted is willing to do the surgery without charging any fee. However, the couple will have to bear the cost of incidental charges, such as medicines, hospitalization, etc., to the tune of rupees one lakh. The couple fulfils all the criteria except criterion ‘b’. However, any financial aid would certainly make a significant difference in their quality of life. How should Rakesh respond to the situation? (250 words)
- It is a State where prohibition is in force. You are recently appointed as the Super-intendent of Police of a district notorious for illicit distillation of liquor. The illicit liquor leads to many death, reported and unreported, and causes a major problem for the district authorities. The approach till now had been to view it as a law and order problem and tackle it accordingly. Raids, arrest, police cases, and criminal trials – all these had only limited impact. The problem remains as serious as ever. Your inspections show that the parts of the district where the distillation flourishes are economically, industrially and educationally backward. Agriculture is badly affected by poor irrigation facilities. Frequent clashes among communities gave boost to illicit distillation. No major initiatives had taken place in the past either from the government’s side or from social organizations to improve the lot of the people. Which new approach will you adopt to bring the problem under control? (250 words)
- A big corporate house is engaged in manufacturing industrial chemicals on a large scale. It proposes to set up an additional unit. Many states rejected its proposal due to the detrimental effect on the environment. But one state government acceded to the request and permitted the unit close to a city, brushing aside all opposition. The unit was set up 10 years ago and was in full swing till recently. The pollution caused by the industrial effluents was affecting the land, water and crops in the area. It was also causing serious health problems to human beings and animals. This gave rise to a series of agitations demanding the closure of the plant. In a recent agitation thousands of people took part, creating a law and order problem necessitating stern police action. Following the public outcry, the State government ordered the closure of the factory. The closure of the factory resulted in the unemployment of not only those workers who were engaged in the factory but also those who were working in the ancillary units. It also very badly affected those industry which depended on the chemicals manufactured by it. As a senior officer entrusted with the responsibility of handling this issues, how are you going to address it? (250 words)
- Dr X is a leading medical practitioner in a city. He has set up a charitable trust through which he plans to establish a super-speciality hospital in the city to cater to the medical needs of all sections of the society. Incidentally, that part of the State had been neglected over the years. The proposed hospital would be a boon for the region. You are heading the tax investigation agency of that region. During an inspection of the doctor’s clinic, your officers have found out some major irregularities. A few of them are substantial which had resulted in considerable withholding of tax that should be paid by him now. The doctor is cooperative. He undertakes to pay the tax immediately. However, there are certain other deficiencies in his tax compliance which are purely technical in nature. If these technical defaults are pursued by the agency, considerable time and energy of the doctor will be diverted to issues which are not so serious, urgent or even helpful to the tax collection process. Further, in all probability, it will hamper the prospects of the hospital coming up. There are two options before you: Taking a broader view, ensure substantial tax compliance and ignore defaults that are merely technical in nature. Pursue the matter strictly and proceed on all fronts, whether substantial or merely technical. As the head of the tax agency, which course of action will you opt and why? (250 words)
- As a senior officer in the Ministry, you have access to important policy decisions and upcoming big announcements such as road construction projects before they are notified in the public domain. The Ministry is about to announce a mega road project for which the drawings are already in place. Sufficient care was taken by the planners to make use of the government land with the minimum land acquisition from private parties. Compensation rate for private parties was also finalized as per government rules. Care was also taken to minimize deforestation. Once the project is announced, it is expected that there will be a huge spurt in real estate prices in and around that area. Meanwhile, the Minister concerned insists that you realign the road in such a way that it comes closer to his 20 acres farmhouse. He also suggests that he would facilitate the purchase of a big plot of land in your wife name at the prevailing rate which is very nominal, in and around the proposed mega road project. He also tries to convince you by saying that there is no harm in it as he is buying the land legally. He even promises to supplement your savings in case you do not have sufficient funds to buy the land. However, by the act of realignment, a lot of agricultural lands has to be acquired, thereby causing a considerable financial burden on the government, and also the displacement of the farmers. As if this is not enough, it will involve cutting down of a large number of trees denuding the area of its green cover. Faced with this situation, what will you do? Critically examine various conflicts of interest and explain what your responsibilities are as a public servant. (250 words)
- A building permitted for three floors, while being extended illegally to 6 floors by a builder, collapses. As a consequence, a number of innocent labourers including women and children died. These labourers are migrants of different places. The government immediately announced cash relief to the aggrieved families and arrested the builder. Give reasons for such incidents taking place across the country. Suggest measures to prevent their occurrence.
- You are an honest and responsible civil servant. You often observe the following:
(a) There is a general perception that adhering to ethical conduct one may face difficulties to oneself and cause problems for the family, whereas unfair practices may help to reach the career goals.
(b) When the number of people adopting unfair means is large, a small minority having a penchant towards ethical means makes no difference.
(c) Sticking to ethical means is detrimental to the larger developmental goals
(d) While one may not involve oneself in large unethical practices, but giving and accepting small gifts makes the system more efficient.
Examine the above statements with their merits and demerits.
- You are aspiring to become an IAS officer and you have cleared various stages and now you have been selected for the personal interview. On the day of the interview, on the way to the venue you saw an accident where a mother and child who happen to be your relatives were badly injured. They needed immediate help. What would you have done in such a situation? Justify your action.
- You are a Public Information Officer (PIO) in a government department. You are aware that the RTI Act 2005 envisages transparency and accountability in administration. The act has functioned as a check on the supposedly arbitrarily administrative behaviour and actions. However, as a PIO you have observed that there are citizens who filed RTI applications not for themselves but on behalf of such stakeholders who purportedly want to have access to information to further their own interests. At the same time there are these RTI activists who routinely file RTI applications and attempt to extort money from the decision makers. This type of RTI activism has affected the functioning of the administration adversely and also possibly jeopardises the genuineness of the applications which are essentially aimed at getting justice. What measures would you suggest to separate genuine and non-genuine applications? Give merits and demerits of your suggestions.
- You are the head of the Human Resources department of an organization. One day one of the workers died on duty. His family was demanding compensation. However, the company denied compensation because it was revealed in investigation that he was drunk at the time of the accident. The workers of the company went on to strike demanding compensation for the family of the deceased. The Chairman of the management board has asked for your recommendation. What recommendation would you provide to the management? Discuss the merits and demerits of each of the recommendation.
- You are the manager of a spare parts company A and you have to negotiate a deal with the manager of a large manufacturing company B. The deal is highly competitive and sealing the deal is critical for your company. The deal is being worked out over a dinner. After dinner the manager of manufacturing company B offered to drop you to the hotel in his car. On the way to hotel he happens to hit motorcycle injuring the motorcyclist badly. You know the manager was driving fast and thus lost control. The law enforcement officer comes to investigate the issue and you are the sole eyewitness to it. Knowing the strict laws pertaining to road accidents you are aware that your honest account of the incident would lead to the prosecution of the manager and as a consequence the deal is likely to bejeopardised, which is of immense importance to your company. What are the dilemmas you face? What will be your response to the situation?
- ABC Ltd. is a large transnational company having diversified business activities with a huge shareholder base. The company is continuously expanding the generating employment. The company, in its expansion and diversification programme, decides to establish a new plant at Vikaspuri, an area which is underdeveloped. The new plant is designed to use energy efficient technology that will help the company to save production cost by 20%. The company’s decision goes well with the Government policy of attracting investment to develop such underdeveloped regions. The government has also announced tax holiday for five years for the companies that invest in underdeveloped areas. However, the new plant may bring chaos for the inhabitants of Vikaspuri region, which is otherwise tranquil. The new plant may result in increased cost of living, aliens migrating to the region, disturbing the social and economic order. The company sensing the possible protest tried to educate the people of Vikaspuri region and public in general that how its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policy would help overcome the likely difficulties of the residents of Vikaspuri region. In spite of this the protests begin and some of the residents decided to approach the judiciary as their plea before the Government did not yield any result.
(a) Identify the issues involved in the case.
(b) What can be suggested to satisfy the company’s goal and to address the residents’ concern?
- Saraswati was a successful IT professional in USA. Moved by patriotic sense of doing something for the country she returned to India. Together with some other like-minded friends, she formed an NGO to build a school for a poor rural community. The objective of the school was to provide the best quality modern education at a nominal cost. She soon discovered that she has to seek permission from a number of Government agencies. The rules and procedures were quite confusing and cumbersome. What frustrated her most were delays, callous attitude of officials and constant demand for bribes. Her experience and the experience of many others like her have deterred people from taking up social service projects. A measure of Government control over voluntary social work is necessary. But it should not be exercised in a coercive a corrupt manner. What measures can you suggest to ensure that due control is exercised but well meaning, honest NGO efforts are not thwarted?
- A fresh engineering graduate gets a job in a prestigious chemical industry. She likes the work. The salary is also good. However, after a few months she accidentally discovers that a highly toxic waste is being secretly discharged into a river nearby. This is causing health problems to the villagers downstream who depend on the river for their water needs. She is perturbed and mentions her concern to her colleagues who have been with the company for longer periods. They advise her to keep quite as anyone who mentions the topic is summarily dismissed. She cannot risk losing her job as she is the sole beard-winner for her family and has to support her ailing parents and siblings. At first, she thinks that if her seniors are keeping quiet, why should she stick out her neck. But her conscience pricks her to do something to save the river and the people who depend upon it. At heart she feels that the advice of silence given by her friends is not correct though she cannot give reasons for it. She thinks you are a wise person and seeks your advice.
(a) What arguments can you advance to show her that keeping quiet is not morally right?
(b) What course of action would you advice her to adopt and why?
- Land needed for mining, dams and other largescale projects is acquired mostly from Adivasis, hill dwellers and rural communities. The displaced persons are paid monetary compensation as per the legal provisions. However, the payment is often tardy. In any case, it cannot sustain the displaced families for long. These people do not possess marketable skills to engage in some other accusation. They end up as low paid migrant laborers. Moreover, the development goes to industries, industrialists and urban communities whereas the costs are passed on to these poor helpless people. This unjust distribution of costs and benefits is unethical. Suppose you have been entrusted with the task of drafting a better compensation-cum-rehabilitation policy for such displaced persons, how would you approach the problem and what would be the main elements of your suggested policy?
- Suppose you are an officer in charge of implementing a social service scheme to provide support to old and destitute women. An old and illiterate woman comes to you to avail the benefits of the scheme. However, she has no documents to show that she fulfils the eligibility criteria. But after meeting her and listening to her you feel that she certainly needs support. Your enquiries also show that she is really destitute and living in a pitiable condition. You are in a dilemma as to what to do. Putting her under the scheme without necessary documents would clearly be violation of rules. But denying her the support would be cruel and inhuman.
(a) Can you think of a rational way to resolve this dilemma?
(b) Give your reasons for it.
- You are a young, aspiring and sincere employee in a Government office working as an assistant to the director of your department. Since you have joined recently, you need to lean and progress. Luckily your superior is very kind and ready to train you for your job. He is a very intelligent and well-informed person having knowledge of various departments. In short, you respect your boss and are looking forward to lean a lot from him. Since you have good tuning with the boss, he started depending on you. One day due to ill health he invited you at his place for finishing some urgent work. You reached his house and before you could ring the bell you heard shouting noises. You waited for a while. After entering the house the boss greeted you and explained the work. But you were constantly disturbed by the crying of a woman. At last, you inquired with the boss but his answer did not satisfy you. Next day, you were compelled to inquire further in the office and found out that his behavior is very bad at home with his wife. He also beats up bit wife. His wife is not well educated and is a simple woman in comparison to her husband. you see that though your boss is a nice person in the office, he is engaged in domestic violence at home. In such a situation, you are left with the following options. Analyse each option with its consequences.
(a) Just ignore thinking about it because it is their personal matter.
(b) Repost the case to the appropriate authority.
(c) Your own innovative approach towards situation.
- One of the scientists working in the R & D laboratory of a major pharmaceutical company discovers that one of the company’s best selling veterinary drugs, B has the potential to cure a currently incurable liver disease that is prevalent in tribal areas. However, developing a variant of the drug suitable for human beings entailed a lot of research and development having a huge expenditure to the extent of f 50 crores. It was unlikely that the company would recover the costs as the disease was rampant only in poverty-stricken area having very little market otherwise. If you were the CEO, then— (a) identify the various actions that you could take; (b) evaluate the pros and cons of each of your actions.
- There is a disaster-prone State having frequent landslides, forest fires, cloudbursts, flash floods and earthquakes, etc. Some of these are seasonal and often unpredictable. The magnitude of the disaster is always unanticipated. During one of the seasons, a cloudburst caused devastating floods and landslides leading to high casualties. There was major damage to infrastructure like roads, bridges and power generating units. This led to more than 100000 pilgrims, tourists and other locals trapped across different routes and locations. The people trapped in your area of responsibility included senior citizens, patients in hospitals, women and children, hikers, tourists, ruling party’s regional president along with his family, additional chief secretary of the neighbouring State and prisoners in jail. As a civil services officer of the State, what would be the order in which you would rescue these people and why? Give justifications.
- You are heading a district administration in a particular department. Your senior officer calls you from the State Headquarters and tells you that a plot in Rampur village is to have a building constructed on it for a school. A visit is scheduled during which he will visit the site along with the chief engineer and the senior architect. He wants you to check out all the papers relating to it and to ensure that the visit is properly arranged. You examine the file which relates to the period before you joined the department. The land was acquired from the local Panchayat at a nominal cost and the papers show that clearance certificates are available from the two of the three authorities who have to certify the site’s suitability. There is no certification by the architect available on file. You decide to visit Rampur to ensure that all is in order as stated on file. When you visit Rampur, you find that the plot under reference is part of Thakurgarh Fort and that the walls, ramparts, etc., are running across it. The fort is well away from the main village, therefore a school here will be a serious inconvenience for the children. However, the area near the village has potential to expand into a larger residential area. The development charges on the existing plot, at the fort, will be very high and the question of heritage site has not been addressed. Moreover, the Sarpanch, at the time of acquisition of the land, was a relative of your predecessor. The whole transaction appears to have been done with some vested interest.
(a) List the likely vested interests of the concerned parties.
(b) Some of the options for action available to you are listed below. Discuss the merits and demerits of each of the options: You can await the visit of the superior officer and let him take a decision. You can seek his advice in writing or on phone. You can consult your predecessor/colleagues, etc., and then decide what to do. You can find out if any alternate plot can be got in exchange and then send a comprehensive written report. Can you suggest any other option with proper justification?
- You are recently posted as district development officer of a district. Shortly thereafter you found that there is considerable tension in the rural areas of your district on the issue of sending girls to schools. The elders of the village feel that many problems have come up because girls are being educated and they are stepping out of the safe environment of the household. They are of the view that the girls should be quickly married off with minimum education. The girls are also competing for jobs after education, which have traditionally remained in boys’ exclusive domain, adding to unemployment amongst male population. The younger generation feels that in the present era, girls should have equal opportunities for education and employment, and other means of livelihood. The entire locality is divided between the elders and the younger lot and further sub-divided between sexes in both generations. You come to know that in Panchayat or in other local bodies or even in busy crossroads, the issue is being acrimoniously debated. One day you are informed that an unpleasant incident has taken place. Some girls were molested, when they were en route to schools. The incident led to clashes between several groups and a law and order problem has arisen. The elders after heated discussion have taken a joint decision not to allow girls to go to school and to socially boycott all such families, which do not follow their dictate.
(a) What steps would you take to ensure girls’ safety without disrupting their education?
(b) How would you manage and mould patriarchic attitude of the village elders to ensure harmony in the intergenerational relations?
- A private company is known for its efficiency, transparency and employee welfare. The company though owned by a private individual has a cooperative character where employees feel a sense of ownership. The company employs nearly 700 personnel and they have voluntarily decided not to form a union. One day suddenly in the morning, about 40 men belonging to a political party gatecrashed into the factory demanding jobs in the factory. They threatened the management and employees, and also used foul language. The employees feel demoralized. It was clear that those people who gate-crashed wanted to be on the payroll of the company as well as continue as the volunteers/members of the party The company maintains high standards in integrity and does not extend favours to civil administration that also includes law enforcement agency. Such incidents occur in public sector also.
(a) Assume you are the CEO of the company. What would you do to diffuse the volatile situation on the date of gate-crashing with the violent mob sitting inside the company premises?
(b) What could be the long-term solution to the issue discussed in the case?
(c) Every solution/action that you suggest will have a positive and a negative impact on you (as CEO), the employees and the performance of the employees. Analyze the consequences of each of your suggested actions.
- You are the Sarpanch of a Panchayat. There is a primary school run by the government in your area. Midday meals are provided to the children attending the school. The Headmaster has now appointed a new cook in the school to prepare the meals. However, when it is found that the cook is from Dalit community, almost half of the children belonging to higher castes are not allowed to take meals by their parents. Consequently the attendance in the school falls sharply. This could result in the possibility of discontinuation of midday meal scheme, thereafter of teaching staff and subsequent closing down the school.
(a) Discuss some feasible strategies to overcome the conflict and to create right ambience.
(b) What should be the responsibilities of different social segments and agencies to create positive social ambience for accepting such changes?
- (i) Suppose you are the CEO of a company that manufactures specialized electronic equipment used by a government department. You have submitted your bid for the supply of this equipment to the department. Both the quality and cost of your offer are better than those of the competitors. Yet the concerned officer is demanding a hefty bribe for approving the tender. Getting the order is important both for you and for your company. Not getting the order would mean closing a production line. It may ay also affect your own career. However, as a valueconscious person, you do not want to give bribe.
(ii) Valid arguments can be advanced both for giving the bribe and getting the order, and for refusing to pay the bribe and risking the loss of the order. What those arguments could be? Could there be any better way to get out of this dilemma? If so, outline the main elements of this third way, pointing out its merits.
- Rameshwar successfully cleared the prestigious civil services examination and was excited about the opportunity that he would get through the civil services to serve the country. However, soon after joining the services, he realized that things are not as rosy as he had imagined. He found a number of malpractices prevailing in the department assigned to him. For example, funds under various schemes and grants were being misapproved. The official facilities were frequently being used for personal needs by the officers and staff. After sometime, he noticed that the process of recruiting the staff was also not up to the mark. Prospective candidates were required to write an examination in which a lot of cheating was going on. Some candidates were provided external help in the examination. Rameshwar brought these incidents to the notice of his seniors. However, he was advised to keep his eyes, ears and mouth shut and ignore all these things which were taking place with the connivance of the higher-ups. Rameshwar felt highly disillusioned and uncomfortable. He comes to you seeking your advice. Indicate various options that you think are available in this situation. How would you help him to evaluate these options and choose the most appropriate path to be adopted?
- In our country, the migration of rural people to towns and cities is increasing drastically. This is causing serious problems both in the rural as well as in the urban areas. In fact, things are becoming really unmanageable. Can you analyze this problem in detail and indicate not only the socio-economic but also the emotional and attitudinal factors responsible for this problem? Also, distinctly bring out why: (a) Educated rural youth are trying to shift to urban areas; (b) Landless poor peiople are migrating to urban slums; (c) Even some farmers are selling off their land and trying to settle in urban areas taking up petty jobs. What feasible steps can you suggest which will be effective in controlling this serious problem of our country?
- Now-a-days, there is an increasing thrust on economic development all around the globe. At the same time, there is also an increasing concern about environmental degradation caused by development. Many a time, we face a direct conflict between developmental activity and environmental quality. It is neither feasible to stop or curtail the developmental process, nor it is advisable to keep degrading the environment, as it threatens our very survival. Discuss some feasible strategies which could be adopted to eliminate this conflict and which could lead to sustainable development.
- Suppose one of your close friends, who is also aspiring for civil services, comes to you for discussing some of the issues related to ethical conduct in public service. He raises the following points: In the present times, when unethical environment is quite prevalent, individual attempts to stick to ethical principles may cause a lot of problems in one's career. It may also cause hardship to the family members as well as risk to one's life. Why should we not be pragmatic and follow the path of least resistance, and be happy with doing whatever good we can? When so many people are adopting wrong means and are grossly harming the system, what difference would it make if only a small minority tries to be ethical? They are going to be rather ineffective and are bound to get frustrated. If we become fussy about ethical considerations, will it not hamper the economic progress of our country? After all, in the present age of high competition, we cannot afford to be left behind in the race of development. It is understandable that we should not get involved in grossly unethical practices, but giving and accepting small gratifications and doing small favours increases everybody's motivation. It also makes the system more efficient. What is wrong in adopting such practices? Critically analyze the above viewpoints. On the basis of this analysis, what will be your advice to your friend?
- You are a no-nonsense, honest officer. You have been transferred to a remote district to head a department that is notorious for its inefficiency and callousness. You find that the main cause of the poor state of affairs is the indiscipline of a section of employees. They do not work themselves and also disrupt the working of others. You first warned the troublemakers to mend their ways or else face disciplinary action. When the warning had little effect, you issued a show cause notice to the ringleaders. As a retaliatory measure, these troublemakers instigated a woman employee amongst them to file a complaint of sexual harassment against you with the Women's Commission. The Commission promptly seeks your explanation. The matter is also publicized in the' media to embarrass you further. Some of the options to handle this situation could be as follows: Give your explanation to the Commission and go soft on the disciplinary action. Ignore the Commission and proceed firmly with the disciplinary action. Brief your higher-ups seek directions from them and act accordingly. Suggest any other possible option(s). Evaluate all of them and suggest the best course of action, giving your reasons
- So far as child labor norms for hazardous industries like firecrackers industry are concerned, International Labour Organization (ILO) has set the minimum age as 18 years. In India, however, this age is 14 years. The units in industrial clusters of firecrackers can be classified into registered and non-registered entities. One typical unit is household based work Though the law is clear on the use of child labour employment norms in registered/ non-registered units, it does not include household based works. Household based work means children working under the supervision of their parents/relative. To evade child labor norms, several units project themselves as household-based works but employ children from outside. Needless to say that employing children saves the costs for these units leading to higher profits to the owner. On your visit to one of the units at Sivakasi, the owner takes you around the unit which has about 10-15 children below 14 years of age. The owner tells you that in his household-based unit, the children are all his relatives. You notice that several children smirk, when the owner tells you this. On deeper enquiry, you figure out that neither the owner nor the children are able to satisfactorily establish their relationship with each other.
(a) bring out and discuss the ethical issues involved in the above case.
(b) What would be your reaction after your above visit?
- You are heading a leading technical institute of the country. The institute is planning to convene an interview panel shortly under your chairmanship for selection of the post of professors. A few days before the interview, you get a call from the Personal Secretary (PS) of a senior government functionary seeking your intervention in favor of the selection of a close relative of the functionary for this post. The PS also informs you that he is aware of the long pending and urgent proposal of our institute for grant of funds for modernization, which are awaiting the functionary’s approval. He assures you that he would get these proposals cleared.
(a) What are the options available to you?
(b) Evaluate each of these options and choose the option which you would adopt, giving reasons.
- As a senior officer in the Finance Ministry, you have access to some confidential and crucial information about policy decisions that the Government is about to announce. These decisions are likely to have farreaching impact on the housing and construction industry. If the builders have access to this information beforehand, they can make huge profits. One of the builders has done a lot of quality work for the Government and is known to be close to your immediate superior, who asks you to disclose this information to the said builder.
(a) What are the options available to you?
(b) Evaluate each of these options and choose the options which you would adopt, giving reasons.
- You are the Executive Director of an upcoming Infotech Company which is making a name for itself in the market. Mr. A, who is a star performer, is heading the marketing team. In a short period of one year, he has helped in doubling the revenues as well as creating a high brand equity for the company so much so that you are thinking of promoting him. However, you have been receiving information from many corners about his attitude towards the female colleagues; particularly his habit of making loose comments on women. In addition, he regularly sends indecent SMS’ to all the team members including his female colleagues. One day, late in the evening, Mrs. X, who is one of Mr. A’s Team members, comes you visibly disturbed. She complains against the continued misconduct of Mr. A, who has been making undesirable advances towards her and has even tried to touch her inappropriately in his cabin. She tenders her resignation and leaves your office.
(a) What are the options available to you?
(b) Evaluate each of these options and choose the options you would adopt, giving reasons.
- A Public Information Officer has received an application under RTI Act. Having gathered the information, the PIO discovers that the information pertains to some of the decisions taken by him, which were found to be not altogether right. There were other employees also who were party to these decisions. Disclosure of the information is likely to lead to disciplinary action with possibility of punishment against him as well as some of his colleagues. Non-disclosure or part disclosure or camouflaged disclosure of information will result into lesser punishment or no punishment. The PIO is otherwise an honest and conscientious person but this particular decision, on which the RTI application has been filed, turned out to be wrong. He comes to you for advice. The following are some suggested options. Please evaluate the merits and demerits of each of the options: The PIO could refer the matter to his superior officer and seek his advice and act strictly in accordance with the advice, even though he is not completely in agreement with the advice of the superior. The PIO could proceed on leave and leave the matter to be dealt by his successor in office or request for transfer of the application to another PIO. The PIO could weigh the consequences of disclosing the information truthfully, including the effect on his career, and reply in a manner that would not place him or his career in jeopardy, but at the same time a little compromise can be made on the contents of the information. The PIO could consult his other colleagues who are party to the decision and take action as per their advice. Also please indicate (without necessarily restricting to the above options) what you would like to advise, giving proper reasons.
- You are working as an Executive Engineer in the construction cell of a Municipal Corporation and are presently in-charge of the construction of a flyover. There are two Junior Engineers under you who have the responsibility of day-to-day inspection of the site and are reporting to you, while you are finally reporting to the Chief Engineer who heads the cell. While the construction is heading towards completion, the Junior Engineer have been regularly reporting that all construction is taking place as per design specifications. However, in one of your surprise inspections, you have noticed some serious deviations and lacunae which, in your opinion, are likely to affect the safety of the flyover. Rectification of these lacunae at this stage would require a substantial amount of demolition and rework which will cause a tangible loss to the contractor and will also delay completion. There is a lot of public pressure on the Corporation to get this construction completed because of heavy traffic congestion in the area. When you brought this matter to the notice of the Chief Engineer, he advised you that in his opinion it is not a very serious lapse and may be ignored. He advised for further expediting the project for completion in time. However, you are convinced that this was a serious matter which might affect public safety and should not be left unaddressed. What will you do in such a situation? Some of the options are given below. Evaluate the merits and demerits of each of these options and finally suggest what course of action you would like to take, giving reasons. Follow the advice of the Chief Engineer and go ahead. Make exhaustive report of the situation bringing out all facts and analysis along with your own viewpoints stated clearly and seek for written orders from the Chief Engineer. Call for explanation from the Junior Engineers and issue orders to the contractor for necessary correction within targeted time. Highlight the issue so that it reaches superiors above the Chief Engineer. Considering the rigid attitude of the Chief Engineer, seek transfer from the project or report sick.