1. What is secularism? Discuss the concept of communalism as a threat to secularism.
Secularism is a concept of equality between religions and within religion. Western concept of secularism defines mutual exclusivity between state and religion. Indian concept of secularism believes in equality of all religions and respect for all religions by state.
Communalism as threat to secularism:
Communalism breeds a sense of belonging to a religious identity which alienates people from secular ideologies.
Communalism often leads to riots and violence which creates a social discord and shakes the fabric of secularism.
Elections are influenced based on communalism and not on merit. This leads to further alienation of secularism in the public sphere.
Secularism believes in giving equal opportunity to all-encompassing universal uniform civil code, but communalism tries to establish its own policies over everyone.
Communalism often leads to economic inequalities in the society where one community corners all the benefits of developmental activities at the expense of others, which leads to further alienation and distrust.
Apprehensions of security and continuance suspect of threat as against peaceful accommodation of secularism Tamil minority in SL, travel ban on seven Islamic countries in US and radical Islamism.
Write a brief conclusion.
Best answer: Vivek
Secularism is an ideology which rejects the religious beliefs as the basis of reason.By itself secularism promotes open mindedness, rationalism, equality, tolerance, brotherhood and unity. Politically, secularism has evolved into many facets. In US, secularism means an ideal separation between affairs of State and Church or any religious institution. In India, the concept is practiced in it’s positive sense, as equal protection and equal freedom and rights for all religious entities.
Communalism represents an opposite ideology which accepts religious or community beliefs as the basis of reason and law. It facilitates an integral interdependence in between communes and state. Political evolution of communalism is explicitly visible in countries like Pakistan and Nepal, where there is a state religion and one of the main directives of state is to establish religious ideologies. This pocesses a serious threat to secularism as well as humanity because:
1. Threaten peaceful co-existence of people’s with diverse beliefs: In country like India with innumerable diversity, the rise of communal elements breakdown the national unity and integrity. Eg: Indian National Movement: Communal elements in a nationalist movement lead to partition of country on religious basis.
2. Intolerance: It is the unwillingness to accept views, beliefs, or behaviour that differ from one’s own. Often leads to continuous communal tensions and violence threatening law and order situation. Eg: Killing in the name of keeping beef at home in India.
3. Extremism: It can be religious or regional or ethnic. Threat to unity as well as day to day peace. Can easily diverts to violence and terrorism. Eg: Jihadi terrorist groups, ISIS etc.
4. Suppression and Exploitation: Communal views are always one-sided and unscientific. It completely neglects the rights and worries of minorities and weaker sections of society. Eg: Racism and slavery in 18th and 19th century, Case of non Muslim entity in Baluchistan etc.
5. Communal Politics polarization: Communal politics refers to occupying political power with communal ideologies. It weakens democracy and all constitutional values. The recent SC judgment refraining use of any kind of communal canvasing in elections is a positive step towards stopping deepening of communal politics.
Thus communalism is a direct threat to secularism as well as humanity. And as a responsible citizen, it is duty of each and everyone of us to resist the fall back of society into cobweb of narrow minded communism.
2. Regionalism has various strands in India. Do you agree? Substantiate by giving suitable examples.
Regionalism refers to the ideology where primacy is given to particular region, identity. India is a diverse nation which is home to different languages, religion, castes. Which converge in multiple ways to give rise to different types of regionalism.
Strands of regionalism:
Linguistic identity- The creation of states post-independence was due to demand for a separate linguistic identity. The first state to protest for consolidation of Telugu language areas was Andhra Pradesh.
Development issues- Intra states disparity is wide even in developed states in India. Maharashtra, though being a developed states suffers from intra state disparity and thus the demand for separate Vidarbha region has been there.
Historical claims- History plays an important role in recognition of regions. The demand for greater Nagalim by Nagas is due to the historical claims.
Fear of loss of identity- Single Indian citizenship allows free movement of people from one state to another. Tripura, once dominated by Tripuris now stand a minority in the state due to migration of Bengalis, thus the demand for Tripuraland.
Khalistan Movement: 1980s in Punjab for Sikh homeland, where regional identity converged with religious identity
Ethnic identity: tribal identity has always been a source of regional identity in India e.g.: the Jharkhand movement, Bodoland movement etc.
3. Discuss the impacts of globalization on popular art forms of India. Take suitable examples.
India is known for its soft power and this is because Indian Art and culture is ruling over the imagination of the Global population. This was possible only through globalization. As Indian art is having a deep impact on the global society, Globalisation also affected the Indian Arts in both positive and negative ways:
Performing Arts: Performing arts like Dance, music and Theatre is finding a large audience globally. But to make it more appealing, they are being fused with western styles. Fusion of Indian classical and folk music with western pop and Rock music is very common.
Musical Instruments are being improvised with technology and exposure.
Our Film industry is also getting inspired with world cinema and technique.
Folk and other local arts: globalization has opened the international market for Indian art forms. In order to make it marketable the artists are adapting to new methods. Madhubani paintings, Lucknow Chikankari, Warli paintings, Kalamkari are very famous. These designs are now made on bedsheets, carpets, wall hangings and even mugs and other articles to make them appealing.
With international community suffering with high stress levels and life style problems, Indian meditation techniques and Yoga is gaining a lot of ground. It is often mixed with international aerobics style.
Globalisation has also changed the taste of local consumers and in order to appeal the local customers as well, the artists are changing their styles.
It has been observed that once an art form gained international recognition, then the local public also started registering and praising it.
Some of the negative impacts are:
It is often argued that art forms are losing their originality.
The emphasis is more on the quantity rather than the quality.
Many local arts which could not make a foothold in the international market or the local market are at the extent of extinction because they don’t have patrons. The market is filled with cheaper goods which are easily available too.
Note: Since it is a direct question, more points can be added here. You need to remember that in this case don’t write a very long intro or conclusion. If you will do that, you will end up writing less number of points. Take a balanced approach.
Best Answer : Oolong ” D Philosopher” Slayer
India is a land of vast cultural diversity and also a hub of art forms. Since time immemorial India has been know for its art forms which encompasses the beauty of our ancient culture in its sphere. The UNESCO inscribes three Indian performing-art forms in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
– Mudiyettu, a ritual theatre of Kerala
– Chhau dance, a tradition from eastern India
– Kalbelia folk songs and dances of Rajasthan in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
Globalization is the process of international integration arising from the interchange of world views, products, ideas, and other aspects of culture. It has had a deep influence on Indian Art forms. Some of these are:-
Classical ragas are being fusion ed and remixed. Their have been numerous artists coming along with fusion-ed version of classic ragas like ” Nagumo”, ” Sada Paalaya” etc.
Earlier performances were mostly temple or occasion based. Nowadays classical performances have spread roots to theater performances played all over the world. Bharatanatyam, Kathakali are some example of the same.
India is fast imbibing English as its main language for communication. This has led to decline in the popularity of language based classical arts like Gazals and Shayaris.
Instruments traditionally used are being upgraded and western elements are being included. Flutes made of steel, Electronic violins and sound pads are some of these changes.
The demand of Indian performing arts as a mode of entertainment has also decreased the overall performance timing. Kathakali which was traditionally and all night dance drama, now has even 1 hr short skits to cater to demand.
The huge demand for Indian prints like kalamkari and murals have commercialized them and they are now available in printed and dyed machine versions of the same.
Globalization has definitely brought Indian art forms on a global scale and given it recognition like never before. This has led to the spread of the popular at forms. But the downside is that the real essence of these art forms are also being diluted and some art forms are being threatened to extinction as they are not being able to cater to global demand. There is an urgent needs to strike a balance between these two and use globalization for the betterment of our art forms.
4. The tightening of immigration norms in the US will have adverse effects on Indian economy. Analyse.
In introduction, you can discuss about the new legislation by the US which calls for more than doubling minimum salary of H-1B holders or about rollout plans of U.S.President Donald Trump’s directive to ban refugees into the country, raising concerns about a more restrictive immigration policy.
US government has proposed hike in minimum wages of foreign nationals working in US and to impose high taxes on the companies outsourcing work to other countries.
In body, first highlight the importance of service sector for India, which is the significant contributor to its GDP.
Also highlight the importance of India’s export of computer services and ITES/BPO services to the U.S. and Canada.
During 2014-15, India’s export of computer services and ITES/BPO services (excluding commercial presence) was around $82 billion, of which exports to the U.S. and Canada accounted for nearly 60 per cent.
Out of the total visas, 70 % is being consumed by top Indian MNC companies to cover the IT services.
Indian IT industry contributes to about 4 lakh direct and indirect jobs in the US, contributing for about USD 5 billion in taxes annually. Nearly 60 percent, or about 65,000, of the total H1B visas are issued to Indian contingent, mostly in the IT sector.
Now, discuss how the tightening of immigration norms in the US will have adverse effects on Indian economy.
It could impact Indian technology workers and outsourcing companies.
It will add more pressure on India’s software services industry in terms of profitability and revenue.
Majority of Indian service sector is related to Information Technology (IT). The hurdles in immigration will prompt companies to outsource less work to India. It will hamper employment in India.
This move may force IT giants to make fundamental changes in their strategies in terms of hiring, salaries, jobs etc., thus impacting the service sector.
It reduces the employment prospects of skilled Indians in the US.
Illegal Indian immigrants will lose their jobs once the government starts its crackdown on people who are in the U.S illegally.
Poor Indians will find it harder to pursue the American dream.
The proposed cracking down on visa systems means that less talent is going to be imported from India.
Remittances from US would decline hurting the balance of payment.
End your answer with an apt conclusion.
Best answer: Ghalib
United States under the leadership of President Trump has decided to tighten immigration norms in US. This will impact directly on many immigrants, who are working in US under various permits (like H1B, L1 and Green Card). US government has proposed hike in minimum wages of foreign nationals working in US and to impose high taxes on the companies outsourcing work to other countries. Few of the major impact on Indian economy are listed below:
Inward Remittances from the US: The policy might impact jobs of many Indians, which will eventually result in loss of inward remittances from these people and finally will reduce USD reserves too.
Less Outsourcing from the US and Less Employment in India: Majority of Indian service sector is related to Information Technology (IT). The hurdles in immigration will prompt companies to outsource less work to India. It will hamper employment in India. There are more than millions are working in US based software companies.
Impact on globalisation: In the period of globalisation, it is a reverse step towards closed economy. Many Indian businesses are competing with US companies and such attempt to give additional advantage to US companies will impact business of Indian companies and eventually to Indian economy.
The new immigration policy from the US administration will have adverse impact on many economies including the US economy. In the times of “flat world” ,the restriction on free movement of people will be a major blunder for world economy.
5. Indian people are normally tax non-compliant. Why? What can be done about it?
In India, hardly 3 per cent of the population pay income-tax. That means 97 per cent people are not having their Income Tax file. The Government is keen on widening the tax base and has made it mandatory for certain categories of persons to file their I.T. Returns.
The tax avoidance in India is done as much by the wealthy as the lower class. There is no difference in ethics and culture and morality, and no difference in tax-paying behaviour between various Indian classes, whether educated or not.
There are many reasons for this.
Part of it has to do with the fact that many Indians do not earn enough annual income to even qualify to pay income tax, but a larger factor has to do with lack of tax culture, as also India’s huge rural and underground economies.
The tax system in our country is ludicrously complicated, confounding, contradictory, wracked by inefficiency, incompetence and to some extent corruption.
People are apprehensive about the Income Tax Department. Taxpayers feel that they are being treated harshly and the punitive provisions in the tax laws are applied ruthlessly against them.
Most people feel that tax is a burden and should be avoided. Many of the India’s new wealthy do anything they can to minimize their taxes.
Agricultural sector: India’s largest industrial sector by far, agriculture, which employs literally hundreds of millions of people, is completely exempt from paying income tax. But even in farming, there are a lot of very rich people. However, Constitutional amendment is needed for levy of income tax.
Government must take adequate and sustained efforts for developing tax culture and also take sincere steps for minimizing harassment of tax-payers as well as develop sense of accountability to ensure hassle –free service, just and fair dealing with the taxpayers.
The Central Government can make a beginning by charging tax on farmers earning more than Rs.10 Lakhs a year.
A proper tax culture can develop only when taxpayers and tax collectors discharge their obligations equally well.
It is advisable to seek suggestions from Chambers of Commerce, economists, academic personalities, taxpayers as well as officials as to how to develop tax culture in our country.
Tax education and awareness creation.
(You can provide other recent initiatives by the government)
Best answer 1: Ghalib
As per one report, only 3% of Indians are paying income tax. Majority of Indian population tries to avoid giving tax on income and also to buy things without tax invoice. The major reasons of non-compliant tax attitude is as follows:
Low Income: The average income of middle class and lower class is much lesser than the average lifestyle they aim to. Hence, they try to save tax money to fulfil their requirements.
Huge Corruption: Tax is a contribution of a citizen to his country for development and facilities. When an average citizen sees high level of corruption by political leaders and officials, he does not want to give his hard earned money for the misuse or wealth creation for the corrupt people.
No Understanding of “Tax Laws”: Average Indian does not understand about various tax laws, declaration and return methods. Hiring a CA does not look feasible for him too. Hence he prefers to hide his income instead of getting into these complexities.
The Fear of “Income Tax” Officials: The people do not want to come into ambit of Income tax department as IT department will keep monitoring their affairs.
Government needs to take various measures for making citizen tax-compliant.
Reduce Tax Rates: A small contribution of tax might be fine for middle class. As the budget for 2017-18 decided to cut down income tax upto Rs 5 lac to 5% from 10% is a welcome step.
Accountability: People should have the confidence that the collected tax is being used for the betterment of nation without any corruption. This will involve common citizen in contributing voluntarily. Eg- Give up of LPG subsidy.
Simpler Tax Laws: Tax laws should be simple and easy to understand for common people. Banks can help in deducting taxes directly.
Vigilant Tax Departments: The tax officials should be more vigilant towards tax-thefts. The time in taking action against any tax invader should be shortened. Better co-ordination is required between different departments.
Indians are generally tax non-compliant due to the complexity of tax system (multiple taxes) and corruption. Better monitoring, lesser corruption and coordination between various tax departments & banking institutions will help in making more people tax compliant.
Best answer 2: Archit Gupta
According to recent data, about 3% of India’s population pays their income tax. This does not take into account evasion of indirect taxes by various organisations. All this leads to a low tax to GDP ratio and impact the financial situation of our country-
Social Factors– Many believe that hoarding of wealth is a status symbol and they would get more respect if they have more wealth. Since very few comes under income tax bracket and many are exempted from paying taxes, rich believe that they are unfairly being taxed and tries to find way to evade taxes.
Administrative Factors– The difficulty in filling taxes, filling multiple forms and complicated legal regime have led to evasion of taxes through collusion of taxpayers and corrupt officials.
Economic Factors– Since 86% of transactions is done through cash, it is is easy to generate black money in our country and launder them. This is especially true for real estate and gold sector.
Many measures like demonetization, single tax code,introducing GST, computerization of filling procedure, lowering of tax rates and online detection of evaders(SWIFT) have been initiated. Apart from conducting regular tax raids and punishing corrupt tax officials, the ambit of taxation should also be extended to those who are in a position to pay. The Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana has also helped in bringing in non taxed income and proposal to confiscate properties of tax evaders should be implemented at the earliest.
IASbaba imparts 360-degree IAS preparation solutions with their exhaustive Prelims and Mains preparation courses, supported by the latest UPSC preparation material. Avail our expert help by enrolling with us to keep your knowledge updated and stay ahead of your competition.
Most Trending and Trusted Programmes by UPSC Toppers :