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UPSC Essentials — Mains answer practice : GS 3 (Week 16)

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UPSC Essentials brings to you its initiative for the practice of Mains answer writing. Mains Answer Writing covers essential topics of static and dynamic parts of the UPSC Civil Services syllabus covered under various GS papers. This answer-writing practice is designed to help you as a value addition to your UPSC CSE Mains. Attempt today’s answer writing on questions related to topics of GS-3 to check your progress.

QUESTION 1

What is the dual control structure of the Assam Rifles? Discuss the roles and responsibilities carried out by the Assam Rifles.

QUESTION 2

Earthquakes are by far the most unpredictable and highly destructive of all the natural disasters. Discuss the factor that causes earthquakes and highlight some recent earthquakes.

General points on the structure of the answers

Introduction

— The introduction of the answer is essential and should be restricted to 3-5 lines. Remember, a one-liner is not a standard introduction.

— It may consist of basic information by giving some definitions from the trusted source and authentic facts.

Body

— It is the central part of the answer and one should understand the demand of the question to provide rich content.

— The answer must be preferably written as a mix of points and short paragraphs rather than using long paragraphs or just points.

— Using facts from authentic government sources makes your answer more comprehensive. Analysis is important based on the demand of the question, but do not over analyse.

— Underlining keywords gives you an edge over other candidates and enhances presentation of the answer.

— Using flowcharts/tree-diagram in the answers saves much time and boosts your score. However, it should be used logically and only where it is required.

Way forward/ Conclusion

— The ending of the answer should be on a positive note and it should have a forward-looking approach. However, if you feel that an important problem must be highlighted, you may add it in your conclusion. Try not to repeat any point from body or introduction.

— You may use the findings of reports or surveys conducted at national and international levels, quotes etc. in your answers.

Self Evaluation

— It is the most important part of our Mains answer writing practice. UPSC Essentials will provide some guiding points or ideas as a thought process that will help you to evaluate your answers.

THOUGHT PROCESS

You may enrich your answers by some of the following points

QUESTION 1: What is the dual control structure of the Assam Rifles? Discuss the roles and responsibilities carried out by the Assam Rifles.

Introduction:

A simple introduction to this answer can revolve around a general statement about Assam Rifles.

— Assam Rifles is one of the six central armed police forces (CAPFs) under the administrative control of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). The other forces being the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), the Border Security Force (BSF), the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB).

— Assam Rifles is tasked with the maintenance of law and order in the North East along with the Indian Army and also guards the Indo-Myanmar border in the region.

(Source: Assam Rifles’ dual control structure, and its role by Deeptiman Tiwary)

Body:

You may incorporate some of the following points in the body of your answer:

Dual control structure of the Assam Rifles

— It is the only paramilitary force with a dual control structure. While the administrative control of the force is with the MHA, its operational control is with the Indian Army, which is under the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

— It means that salaries and infrastructure for the force is provided by the MHA, but the deployment, posting, transfer and deputation of the personnel is decided by the Army.

— All its senior ranks, from DG to IG and sector headquarters are manned by officers from the Army. The force is commanded by Lieutenant General from the Indian Army.

— Its recruitment, perks, promotion of its personnel and retirement policies are governed according to the rules framed by the MHA for CAPFs.

— This has created two sets of demands from both within the Assam Rifles and by MoD and MHA for singular control over the force by one ministry.

Role and Contribution

— Assam Rifles is the oldest paramilitary force raised way back in 1835 in British India with just 750 men. Since then, it has gone on to fight in two World Wars, the Sino-Indian war of 1962 and used as an anti-insurgency force against militant groups in the North East.

— It was reorganised later as Assam Frontier Force as its role was expanded to conduct punitive operations beyond Assam borders.

— The Post-Independence role of the Assam Rifles continued to evolve ranging from conventional combat role during Sino-India War 1962, operating in foreign land as part of the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) to Sri Lanka in 1987 (Op Pawan) to peacekeeping role in the North-Eastern areas of India.

— It remains the most awarded paramilitary force in both pre- and post-independent India.

— Assam Rifle is responsible for the maintenance of law and order in the North East along with the Indian Army and also guards the Indo-Myanmar border in the region.

(Source: Explained: Assam Rifles’ dual control structure, and its role by Deeptiman Tiwary)

Conclusion:

Your conclusion should be short. You may include:

— Today the Force remains deployed in some of the most remote and under developed areas and provides security to locals. Assam Rifles has grown substantially over the years from 17 battalions in 1960 to 46 battalions at present.

— The Force also has a Training Centre and a number of Logistics Units. Through its long deployment in the tribal belt, the Assam Rifles has earned the complete confidence of the locals and has helped considerably in bringing the people of this region into the national main stream.

(Source: http://www.assamrifles.gov.in)

Points to Ponder

What is happening with the Assam Rifles in Manipur?

Why do both MHA and MoD want full control over Assam Rifles?

Related Previous Year Question

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. (2017)

QUESTION 2: Earthquakes are by far the most unpredictable and highly destructive of all the natural disasters. Discuss the factor that causes earthquakes and highlight some recent earthquakes.

Introduction:

A simple introduction to this answer can revolve around a general statement about Earthquake.

— Earthquakes may be defined as the shaking of the ground. It is a natural occurrence. It is caused due to release of energy, which generates waves that travel in all directions.

— Earthquakes that are of tectonic origin have proved to be the most devastating and their area of influence is also quite large.

— Some of the most vulnerable states are Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, and the Darjiling and subdivision of West Bengal and all the seven states of the northeast.

(Sources: Why the earthquake in Morocco has caused so much damage by Arjun Sengupta, ncert.nic.in)

Body:

You may incorporate some of the following points in the body of your answer:

What causes earthquakes?

— The surface of the Earth is divided into 7 major plates and several minor ones. They move a few centimetres a year, riding on semi-molten layers of rock underneath the crust. As the plates move, they pull apart or collide, unleashing the powerful movements known as earthquakes.

— Most earthquakes are caused by geological or tectonic causes, and are referred as tectonic earthquakes.

— The release of energy occurs along a fault. A fault is a fracture or zone of fractures between two blocks of rock. Faults allow the blocks to move relative to each other, causing earthquakes if the movement occurs rapidly.

— The point where the energy is released is called the focus of an earthquake,  it is also known as hypocentre.

— The energy waves travelling in different directions reach the surface. The point on the surface, nearest to the focus, is called epicentre. It experiences the waves first and the point lies directly above the focus.

Recent Earthquakes

— Turkey–Syria earthquake

— Marrakesh-Safi earthquake

— Badakhshan earthquake

(Sources: Understanding the earthquake by Amitabh Sinha, ncert.nic.in,)

Conclusion:

Your conclusion should be short. You may include:

— A rare, powerful earthquake struck Morocco killing hundreds of people and damaging buildings, including in the historic city of Marrakech. The epicentre of the quake was the town of Ighil, roughly 70 km south west of Marrakech.

— According to experts, such quakes are generally more dangerous as they carry more energy than when they emerge to the surface, when compared to quakes that occur deeper underneath the surface. While deeper quakes do indeed spread farther as seismic waves move radially upwards to the surface, they lose energy while travelling greater distances.

(Sources: Why the earthquake in Morocco has caused so much damage by Arjun Sengupta)

Points to Ponder

Types of plate boundary

Types of fault

P waves and S waves

Types of earthquakes

Related Previous Year Questions

Why are the world’s fold mountain systems located along the margins of continents? Bring out the association between the global distribution of fold mountains and the earthquakes and volcanoes. (2014)

Discuss about the vulnerability of India to earthquake related hazards. Give examples including the salient features of major disasters caused by earthquakes in different parts of India during the last three decades. (2021)

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Previous Mains Answer Practice

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