Q.1) The Sustainable Development Goals are too many in number and too vague in substance to warrant any concrete ground results. Comment.
The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Praneeth
Ans) SDGs have replaced MDGs are to be achieved by 2030. They are more extensive than the MDGs which had 8 goals. However there have been criticisms that they are too many in number and too vague to bring about any substantial change:
17 goals, 169 targets and 304 indicators are indeed huge numbers.
Some reports put the goals as too vague.
— SDGs are too many in number because of inclusion of environmental goals&targets in addition to socio-economic targets.
— Some means have been included recognizing their critical role. E.g.: Means which resulted in achievement of MDGs such as inclusive growth, employment creation, etc.
— Too many goals and targets increase complexities. A precise set of goals evokes enthusiasm and simplifies implementation.
— Vague goals complicate monitoring and affect accountability.
— Inclusion of means: Though they can guide policies, it has to be realized that countries have different problems and capabilities and ‘One Size fits all approach’ may not work.
— Complicates funding: Funding agencies can cite non-performance on certain vague goals to block aid. For e.g. rich countries can use non-performance on environment goals to block aid in general.
— Poor countries lack resources to implement all goals and thus, need to prioritize, but the SDGs don’t
provide any such flexibility.
— Many countries lack information or mechanisms to capture information on large number of indicators.
The means included should have been merely mentioned rather than inclusion as goals. Also, prioritizing mechanisms, flexibility and clear funding commitments&mechanisms should be provided for success.
Q.2) Entrepreneurs were planted in backward resource rich areas, thinking that the growth done by them will trickle down to the local community. On contrary it led to drain of resources. Again investors are being invited to invest money in backward regions under “Make in India” initiative. Do you think it will give the similar results or will it lead to growth and development. Analyse.
The Top Answer for this Question is written by – The Rock
Ans) To achieve balanced regional development , policies like Industrial Policy Resolution , 1956 and Backward Region Grant Fund were introduced to induce entrepreneurs towards backward areas . However , inspite of being resource rich and governmental support , these areas has lagged in socio-economic development leading to inequalities in income , health and education accentuated by the drain of resources like skilled labour , capital and raw materials .
In this regard ” Make in India ” initiative will promote further investment in backward areas in following ways
The initiative promotes skill development to enhance employability especially in backward regions , which provides required labour for entrepreneurs
It focusses on employment intensive industries like textiles , food processing , MSMEs , etc which are mainly situated in backward areas
promote infrastructural and industrial development in backward regions by DMIC , BCIC and freight corridors
setting up of National Manufacturing Investment Zones in backward areas
However , factors that deters such investments are
Delay in land and environmental clearances impedes investment
complex business procedures and approval in backward areas
Poor market and backward linkages
Thus , Make in India will promote development in backward regions , provided rationalisation and simplification of regulations , fiscal incentives and institutional support is extended . This will help achieve faster , inclusive and sustainable growth.
Q.3) “Socio-cultural reasons play an important role in deciding the economic growth of a country. ” Comment. Compare India’s growth with the West based on the above statement.
The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Adityaka
Ans) The Household sector in any economy plays a crucial role generating growth by creating demand as well as creating investment cycles by saving. Socio-cultural factors play an important role in the growth of an economy this regard;
– Curtailment in economic participation of women due to the patriarchal inclination of Indian society adversely impacts the Indian growth story.
– Social issue of Child labour prevents primary enrolment and promotes school dropouts. This impacts realisation of a promising demographic dividend.
– The social and cultural value of gold makes it a viable houysehold investment, thereby freezing a sizeable amount of money from being circulated in the economy. The gold monetisation scheme is trying to combat this phenomena.
– Cultural festivals see a temporary spike in growth of fast moving consumer goods.
In relation to the western countries;
– India being a tropical country sees productivity levels lower than those of the temperate countries.
– However, India has a large middle class section that is aspirational and places value on knowledge.
– Economic growth in the west is devoid of social factors such as a mobility based on caste system. The same restriction on mobility hampers economic job prospects in India, in turn affecting the economy.
– Western countries enjoy a very high dignity of labor.
Labour reforms in favour of economic participation of women, increasing the depth of financial markets to give a viable alternative to gold as an investment instrument is the way forward.
Q.4) JAM trinity is said to be an important cog in the growth wheel of India. How do you think it is essential for the development of the rural areas?
The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Adityaka
Ans) The convergence of Jan Dhan accounts, Aadhar and Mobile is a novel idea to involve the rural areas and make them an active cog in the wheel of Indian economic development.
Lack of penetration of financial services as well as lack of insurance is a critical aspect of rural economy. The Jan Dhan and Aadhar linkage will revolutize savings in rural areas and mobilize low quantity high volume resources.
Second Green Revolution:
This is said to increase land productivity and yield by using adequate amounts of fertilisers in accordance with soil quality. Dissemination of such information will be undertaken using mobile phones.
Various schemes such as Pahal for LPG gas, Demand driven employment guarantee under MGNREGA and TPDS need efficient targeting. The linkage between Bank accounts, Aadhar and mobile will ensure that the poorest of the poor are targeted.
Pluggage in leakages:
In concomitance to the previous point, government resource will be streamlined and diverted for other socia sector schemes in education and health such as Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and National Rural Health Mission.
However there are certain aspersions cast on the JAM trinity;
– The legal status of the UIDAI
– Requirement of giving up certain important rights to avail such services. It was in this light that the SC judgement asked the government to not make Aashar compulsory.
Addressing these issues and implementing the JAM trinity in its right spirit is the way forward.
High Order Thinking
Q.1) Recently, Rajasthan enacted a law that significantly transformed the provisions related to labour in the state. Also, there is a view that state governments should be given free hand in framing their own land acquisition laws. In your opinion, do these changes indicate towards a paradigm shift in federalism in India? Critically analyse.
The Top Answer for this Question is written by – SBT57
Q.2) India’s relations with Central Asia has been more symbolic than of substance. More than two decades of stagnation and cosmetic ties have diminished India’s prospects in the region vis-a-vis China. Do you agree with this assessment? Critically comment. What course corrections would you suggest to give boost to the ties?
The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Anish
Ans) China’s trade with Central Asia (CA) is $50 billion whereas India’s is only paltry $ 1 billion. This stark difference shows the extent of difference between depth of relation with Central Asia vis-a-vis India and China.
The major reason for this is geography. India traditionally accessed CA through Afghanistan that access was gone after partition and bitter India-Pakistan ties.
The engagement has by and large very limited and cosmetic. Most of it has been in terms of cultural engagement, MoUs in education, healthcare field etc. The only positives are Uranium deal with Kazakhstan, ONGC Videsh got a 25% stake in Satpayev oil field. TAPI pipeline now has progressed with TukmenGaz becoming Consortium leader.
Further steps to enhance engagement:
1) INSTC- International North South Transport corridor has progressed at snail pace. Though dry runs have begun there is much to be done. India needs to push this through
2) Chahbahar Port- India has got the contract to develop the port in Iran. India needs to finish the project very soon
3) Iran Nuclear Deal- With signing of the deal Iran is improving its relations with west especially US. The previous opposition to projects such as TAPI will not be there and India can further engage with Iran to ensure connectivity to Central Asia going even beyond Chahbahar port.
4) SCO- Now that India has been accepted as member of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, this provided greater opportunity to engage with Central Asia.
5) Promote Indian Corporate Investment- Indias private sectors engagement with Central Asia has been minimal there is lot of scope to enhance investment sin CA.
Geography is seen as India’s impediment, but lack of boundaries means CA countries do not see India as hegemonic unlike China or Russia. India needs to convert this opportunity into its advantage.
Q.3) The lack of a legal architecture for the intelligence and investigation agencies of India is repugnant to the ideas of democracy, rule of law and accountability. Do you agree? Is parliamentary oversight needed in the functioning of these agencies? Analyse.
The Top Answer for this Question is written by – Debasmita Nayak
Ans) The investigation and intelligence agencies play a major role in ensuring India’s security and sovereignty. While being major institutions in the democracy, their own democratic functioning needs serious review, especially in the backdrop of lack of any legal framework governing them:
Hurting Rule of Law-
– Uncontrolled rights over people’s privacy in the name of national security. Non-compliance with equality before law.
– Need for secrecy in intelligence network is undisputed.
– However, no legislation guiding their actions implies no transparency which in turn means no accountability.
– Also, they do not come under the ambit of RTI.
– No law governing them implies no regulation over them by the elected law-makers and thus, the people.
– Taking power onto itself would anyway make an institution absolutist and undemocratic.
All these along with initiatives by Government like Adhar and digital India demand for parliamentary oversight. With people constantly being monitored digitally, a proper e-surveillance policy needs to be in place.
Besides, proper legislation would ensure coordination among the agencies at various levels in a federal setup like India. Working out the NCTC system needs expeditious reconsideration.