Think Learn & Perform (TLP): GS Mains Synopsis [Day 70]

  • November 10, 2015
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Think and Learn-2015, TLP Mains 2015, UPSC, UPSC Mains- Think and Learn-2015
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TLP: GS Mains Synopsis [Day 70]


Q.1) What is soil texture? How is soil texture important for agriculture ?


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Draconian


Ans) Soil texture indicates the relative content of particles of various sizes in the soil. Texture influences the ease with which soil can be worked, the amount of water ,ease of cultivation ,bearing capacity, drainage capacity, fertility level and Air it holds, and the Rate at which water can enter and move through soil.

Every soil is a mixture of three main components: sand, clay and silt.

Clay soil is generally poor in Air circulation and drainage and the minuscule soil particles in clay cause water to get trapped, making the garden waterlogged and perpetually Bee Balm & Geranium

Sands Soil are soils with the coarsest texture usually are low fertile and drains fast, causing it to dry out rapidly. Nutrients, instead of getting trapped in the soil, wash through when watered. Sandy soil . eg. Wormwood & Carrot

Silty soil, which comes from river beds, is a fine particle soil similar to clay most fertile and high in nutrients also, composed minerals like Quartz eg. Swamp milkweed & Yellow iris

Loamy Soil is a blend of sandy, silty and clay soil mixed with nutrient rich organic matter like decomposed leaves.Also, drains well, retains moisture and provides a stable base for plants. eg. tomatoes, peppers and green beans sweet corn

Soil texture importance for agriculture 

— A sandy loam with clay content considered by farmers because of its Water-holding capacity and cultivation ease

— Draining in soils lead to good soil aeration in turn gives air to soil resulted in healthy crop growth

— soil texture differences has impacts on organic matter been vital for soil fertility and plant growth.

— Important in determining water retention and water transmission traits

— Permeability the ease with which air and water may pass through the soil.

— Role in nutrient management as it influences nutrient retention. For eg., finer textured soils tend to have greater ability to store soil nutrients.

— For grape growing, since it influences water holding capacity, root growth, and overall vine vigor.


Knowing what soil textures make up the fields on a farm is an important step toward using management practices that maximize productivity and minimize environmental harm. 

Q.2) Soil salinity has become a major problem in recent times.This has rendered a huge tract of soil unfit for use. What are the reasons for soil salinity in India? What steps can be taken to improve the soil quality?


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Nithin Kunneparambil


Ans) Various features of the soil influences the type of agricultural practices in those area. India having a variety of soils is indeed blessed to have variety of crops. Salinity is one such feature. The factors influening salinity


1. Water holding capacity of the soil : More the clay, more water holding capacity, hence lesser will be the salinity.

2. Temperature of the region : If temperature is high, the evaporation is high hence salinity will be more.

3. Capillary action : When water come to the above surface from the water table, the salinity of the soil reduces.

4. Sea water intrusion : In coastal regions, the salinity is due to this.

5. Faulty agricultural practices where we cultivate water intense crops in less watered area.

6. INFLUENCE OF CANAL : A canal or a water body near by seeps water into near by plot and the water evaporates leaving behind the salts and increasing the salinity


The various actions that can be used to treat salinity

1. WASHING THE SOIL : Stagnate water and flush it out, but if the water table is affected this might not yield result.

2. CHEMICAL TREATMENT : Use of Gypsum to counter salinity

3. Isolating the canal water by building side walls.

4. Proper choice of agricultural practices and crops.

5. Discourage borewell instead do rain water harvesting using pits.


If implemented properly, the benefits of these solution would increase our production and would help us meet our goal of FOOD SECURITY. Soon, we will be able to feed all the hungry citizen and the spillover effect of this would be MAXIMUM. The recent step of government SOIL HEALTH CARD is a right step in the right direction. 

Q.3) Air surveillance by some nations on the name of security has been in controversy for some time. Do you think there is a need for an International policy on Drones?


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Tom_dwan


Ans) Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or drones have reshaped global military strategies.US have used drone strikes in Afghanistan,Iraq,Yemen ,Syria for counter terrorism but it also contributed to human rights violation.


Controversy regarding air survelliance or drones


1. Drone strikes are approved by US even when their is no such imminent threat to their soldier’s life.

2. Those killed by strikes are considered an “enemy killed in action” even if they were not the intended target.ex-United States targeted airstrikes in Yemen have killed civilians in violation of international law.

3. There is no transparency regarding data on number of drone attacks.

4. Drone kills suspected terrorists, but does that killing materially contribute to reducing the growth

and threat posed by terrorist groups.

5. Their presence in domestic skies has also raised understandable privacy concerns.


Need for international policy on drones


1. The international government like US refuses to provide even basic information on particular strikes, including the reasons for carrying them out.

2. To pevent extrajudicial executions by drone strikes.

3. To provide victims of violations with compensation and meaningful access to full reparation and guarantees of non-repetition of irresponsible attacks.

4. To remove secrecy surrounding drone strikes and restrictions on access to drone-affected areas.


Way ahead- Drones should be used


1. To protect civilians and peacekeeping troops.

2. To monitor armed groups and trafficking of arms.

3. To assess the movements of displaced refugees like now in Syrian refugees.

4. To evaluate environmental challenges, including assessing damages from natural disaster. 

Q.4) What can be the implications of US-China cyber security agreement on India? Do you think we are lagging behind in cyber security measures even though we claim that we are an IT power.


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Tom_Dwan


Ans) China and the United States reached a number of agreements on cyber security, cyber espionage and cyber crime .Both committed not to conduct a cyber first strike against the other country’s critical infrastructure.


Implications of agreement on India

1. It will encourage India to engage in similar bilateral agreements.

2. This agreement will provide the common minimum principles to be incorporated by India as norms of behaviour in cyberspace.

3. It may lead to further evolution of cyber security jurisprudence in India.


India has already brought e –governance in sectors like income tax, passports visa ,banking ,stock exchange.To create heavoc in India these are lucrative targets to paralyze the economic and financial institutions.

Existing Counter Cyber Security Initiatives in India

1. National Informatics Centre (NIC)- provides e-governance support to the Central and state Government.

2. Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (Cert-In)- national agency for cyber incidents.

3. India has got National Cyber Security Policy since 2013 to build a secure and resilient cyberspace.



1. Lack of awareness and the culture of cyber security at individual as well as institutional level.

2. Lack of expert manpower to implement the counter measures.

3. Recently Cyber attacks have come from neighboring countries inimical to our national interests.

4. Cyber security tools used in India are imported which can contain hidden malwares, Trojans.


We are still not super power in cyber security but the time has come to prioritize cyber security in India’s counter terrorism strategy

1. To sensitize the common citizens about the dangers of cyber terrorism and safe use of smartphones.

2. Cert-in should engage academic institutions.

3. Industries should upgrade the skills of their cyber security specialists and also collaborate with govt.

4. Carrying out periodic cyber security mock.

5. To carry out innovative R&D in cyber security. 

Q.5) India- Nepal relations: A self created problem. Comment.


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – SBT57



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 Q.6) A political party getting almost thirty percent of votes is not able to secure a single seat in parliament. On contrary, a party having secured almost same number of votes gets majority of seats. Do you think this system of election is justified. Discuss.


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Amruth Kumar



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Q.7) What can be the social implications of banning the cultural performances by prominent artists from Pakistan in India ? What implications can this have on Indo-Pak relations ?


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – SDT57



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Q.8) Our approach to Disaster Management has always been reactive and never proactive. Critically analyse.


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Amruth Kumar



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Q.9) The mother of all contemporary arts are the folk arts. However, they are being suffocated to a slow demise. What steps can be taken to protect and rejuvenate these precious treasures ?


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Sravan


Ans) Folk arts have the history of ages in the lives of people. But due to rapid changes in the society they are not able to elicit the sufficient interest from the people so many of these arts are in the verge of extinction and if the necessary steps are not taken then we will lose great traditional element of the society.

The steps that can be taken are to be multi dimensional.

Both government and civil society need to work for their revival.

People need to be educated about the folk arts through various measures like exhibitions, establishing museums based on those themes, introducing the art related subjects in the curriculum.

Government can arrange special programs and drives to provide much needed expose of the arts through competitions and celebrating our traditional arts.

Support the artists through various grants and endorsing celebrities for the encouragement and developing enthusiasm in the people especially youth.

State goverments can give tax breaks or grants to various media print , visual and movies which show case the folk arts through their programs and articles.

State governments can identify the folk arts of the state in the regionwise and advertise their unique features through tourism ministry.

Along with classical arts the folk arts can also be introduced in international cultural festivals by the government.

Also history and uniqueness of each art can be recorded and digitalized for wider public awareness. 

Q.10) Mughal architecture was not unique, but it was an amalgamation of old and new, foreign and Indian styles of architecture giving it a unique character. Elucidate with examples.


The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Nithin Kunneparambil


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