SYNOPSIS: IASbaba’s TLP GS Mains 2017 [13th July]: Day 4

  • July 14, 2017
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IASbaba's Think Learn and Perform 2017, UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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SYNOPSIS: IASbaba’s TLP GS Mains 2017 [13th July]: Day 4



1. What are thunderstorms and tornadoes? How do they form? Explain.

  • Thunder storm:

Thunderstorm are local weather phenomenon which is characterised by cumulonimbus cloud, heavy precipitation and is always accompanied by thunder and lightening

Three basic ingredients are required for a thunderstorm to form: moisture, rising unstable air (air that keeps rising when given a push), and a lifting mechanism to provide the upward push. Conditions favorable for the formation of thunderstorm are regions where cold and warm airmasses meet, or, where air is forced to move upwards off of an obstacle like mountains etc.

Thunderstorms have three stages in their life cycle: The developing stage, the mature stage, and the dissipating stage.



Developing stage: The developing stage of a thunderstorm is marked by a cumulus cloud that is being pushed upward by a rising column of air (updraft). The cumulus cloud soon looks like a tower (called towering cumulus) as the updraft continues to develop. There is little to no rain during this stage but occasional lightning.

  • Mature stage: The thunderstorm enters the mature stage when the updraft continues to feed the storm, but precipitation begins to fall out of the storm, creating a downdraft (a column of air pushing downward). When the downdraft and rain-cooled air spreads out along the ground it forms a gust front, or a line of gusty winds. The mature stage is the most likely time for hail, heavy rain, frequent lightning, strong winds, and tornadoes.
  • Dissipating Stage: a large amount of precipitation is produced and the updraft is overcome by the downdraft beginning the dissipating stage. At the ground, the gust front moves out a long distance from the storm and cuts off the warm moist air that was feeding the thunderstorm.
  • Tornado:


A tornado is a violently rotating column of air that extends from a thunderstorm to the ground. It is a vortex of rapidly moving air. A tornado forms when changes in wind speed and direction create a horizontal spinning effect within a storm cell. This effect is then tipped vertical by rising air moving up through the thunderclouds.

Winds within the tornado funnel may exceed 500 kilometers per hour. High velocity winds cause most of the damage associated with these weather events. Tornadoes also cause damage through air pressure reductions. The air pressure at the tornado center is approximately 800 millibars (average sea-level pressure is 1013 millibars) and many human made structures collapse outward when subject to pressure drops of this magnitude.

  • Formation: Tornado formation typically needs the four ingredients: shear, lift, instability, and moisture.

Wind shear is the most important factor that plays into the creation of tornadoes. When there is wind shear, sometimes these winds begin to roll into a horizontal column of air.

Once you get a strong updraft of air being transported from the ground to the atmosphere, that column of air becomes vertical. That is when a storm usually develops in this scenario.

As the storm develops, it turns into a supercell thunderstorm much of the time. These supercell thunderstorms are seperate, discrete cells that are not part of a line of storms. Also, supercells are storms that rotate and spin. With both the vertical, rotating column of air and the supercell thunderstorm together, that may bring down a tornado from the storm cloud.

Best Answer: PBN



2.Discuss the onset, progress and retreat of monsoon in India. Why there are breaks in monsoon? Why do they occur?

Monsoon is the seasonal variation of the wind. It results into rain in length and breadth of India.

Onset of monsoon:

During April and May when the sun shines vertically over the Tropic of Cancer, the large landmass in the north of Indian ocean gets intensely heated resulting into intense low pressure in the northwestern part of the subcontinent. Since the pressure in the Indian Ocean in the south of the landmass is high as water gets heated slowly, the low pressure cell attracts the southeast trades across the Equator. These conditions help in the northward shift in the position of the ITCZ. The southwest monsoon may thus, be seen as a continuation of the southeast trades deflected towards the Indian subcontinent after crossing the Equator.


The southwest monsoon sets in over the Kerala coast by 1st June and moves swiftly to reach Mumbai and Kolkata between 10th and 13th June. The monsoon may burst in the first week of June in the coastal areas of Kerala, Karnataka, Goa and Maharashtra while in the interior parts of the country, it may be delayed to the first week of July. As these winds approach the land, their southwesterly direction is modified by the relief and thermal low pressure over the northwest India. By mid-July, southwest monsoon engulfs the entire subcontinent

The triangular peninsula of India breaks the monsoon into two –

1) Arabian Sea branch -which led to rainfall in Western Ghats towards Bihar but move parallel to Aravali hence no rainfall in Rajasthan and

2) Bay of Bengal branch- brings rainfall to NE, SE and funneling towards Gangetic plains

Pic creditTaken from Aprajita Chandel’s answer.


Retreat of monsoon:

The months of October and November are known for retreating monsoons. By the end of September, the southwest monsoon becomes weak as the low pressure trough of the Ganga plain starts moving southward in response to the southward march of the sun. It is because of high pressure in Tibetan high (weakening ITCZ & snowfall in Tibet region) and creation of trough or LP in Indian Ocean (warmer) that the wind reverses its direction and starts flowing as north-eats trade wind bringing rain to Coromandel Coast area, WB, etc. This process is more gradual than on-set. It begins in NW states of India by early September and completely retreats by mid-October.

Break in the monsoon:

During the south-west monsoon period after having rains for a few days, if rain fails to occur for one or more weeks, it is known as break in the monsoon.

These breaks in the different regions are due to different reasons:

  • In northern India rains are likely to fail if the rain-bearing storms are not very frequent along the monsoon trough or the ITCZ over this region.
  • Over the west coast the dry spells are associated with days when winds blow parallel to the coast.

Thus monsoon as a phenomenon remains a complex one.

Best Answer: Palash Luthra



3. Vegetation of a region adapt to its climatic conditions. Illustrate with the help of suitable examples.

Vegetation of a region represents the sum total of the climatic condition, the below illustration shows the adaptability of the vegetation to the prevailing climatic condition.

  1. List of plant adaptations to tropical climates
  • large dark-green leaves (= lots of chlorophyll) to absorb sun light, especially in understory with lots of shade
  • leaf arrangement maximizes light capture
  • slick waxy cuticle to allow rain to run off
  • shallow roots (no need to go deep for nitrogen or water) and buttress or stilt roots (to help with stability)
  • epiphytic life style (orchids, bromeliads, ferns, cacti etc) allows to be near sun light; soil not that great anyway, aerial roots instead
  • many climbing plants (lianas, strangler figs, rattan, etc)
  • continuous growth (no year-rings in trees); trees can reach enormous hights.
  1. List of plant adaptations to desert climates
  • Sun avoidance and tolerance; small leaves or no leaves at all to minimize water loss •photosynthesis instead often in trunk
  • leaves frequently modied to spines which aid in defense but also can reflect excess light •“accordion trunk” to reduce sun exposure
  • special CO2capture mechanism (C4/CAM) to minimize water loss while absorbing CO2
  • highly reflective cuticle to reflect excess light
  • dense hair to generate isolating boundary layer
  • extremely seasonal growth and reproduction
  • succulence; storing of water in specialized tissues (fleshy leaves, trunks, underground etc) •also extensive and deep root system


III. List of plant adaptations to temperate climates

  • annual life cycle
  • deciduousness when perennial
  • if not deciduous then leafs are needles protected by thick cuticle to survive winter
  • thick bark to protect against cold winters


Best Answer: Aparajita Chandel



4. Discuss the advantages of GST. How does GST help in unifying the market in the country? Explain.


GST is a comprehensive, multi-stage, destination based tax levied on every value addition which is aimed at implementing a unified tax system throughout the country – One Nation One Market One Tax.

GST has been touted as the next revolution in Indian economy after the LPG reforms of 1991. It is an effort to unite the entire country under a single system of indirect taxation.

Main Body


  1. For Business/Industry

– Easier tax system: IT interface as easy as operating a facebook account, No direct interaction with tax officials==>Saves time, money and less corruption

– Uniformity in tax structure throughout the country

– Removal of cascading and hidden costs

– Allows free flow of goods – Reduced delay in checkpoints

  1. For Central/State Governments

– Easier and more accountable tax administration

– Better control on leakages ==> Higher tax compliance ==>Higher revenue

  1. For Consumers

– Simple and transparent tax regime

– Relief in overall tax burden

  1. Economic Impacts

– World Bank: Indian economy to grow by 7.2 % in FY 2018

– Ease of going business ==> Higher investments

– Higher tax compliance ==> Less fiscal deficit

  1. On Federalism

– Big leap of cooperative federalism <== Work culture of consensus in GST Council

How will it help in Unifying Market?

It will help in unifying Indian market since-

1) All the goods and services will be given at same price in all the states.

2) Defined treatment for e-commerce hence no hidden agenda unifying the market.

3) Online filing- simple online procedure to file return which can be done easily across the length the breath of India.

4) It is expected that the introduction of GST will increase the tax base but lowers down the tax rates and also removes the multiple point This, will lead to higher amount of revenue to both the states and the union.

5) Removing the trade barrier since no octroi tax, it will speed up the business and transportation.


Thus the uniformity in taxation across the country will help in unifying the market. Bringing petroleum under the ambit of GST in later stage will further consolidate this unification.

Best Answer: WicConman..!! 

GST is the amalgamation of various central and state indirect taxes to have one India one tax. This is believed to be a game changer as it will unify the Indian market.

Certain advantages-

1) Cascading effect- which is tax on tax, GST will remove this hence bringing down the cost.

2) Lesser compliances- since only 4 slabs i.e. 5%, 12&, 18%, 28% so easy to understand and lesser paper work.

3) Higher threshold-above 20 lakh business turnover to pay thus help in expansion of business.

4) Regulating the unorganized sector since online compliance, thereby bringing accountability and regulation to industries like construction, textile etc.

5) It will make the Indian market more competitive than before and create a level playing field between large & small enterprises and ease of doing business.

6) GST will ensure boost to exports. When the cost of Production falls in the domestic market, Indian Goods and services will be more prices competitive in foreign markets.

It will help in unifying Indian market since-

1) All the goods and services will be given at same price in all the states.

2) Defined treatment for e-commerce hence no hidden agenda unifying the market.
3) Online filing- simple online procedure to file return which can be done easily across the length the breath of India.

4) It is expected that the introduction of GST will increase the tax base but lowers down the tax rates and also removes the multiple point This, will lead to higher amount of revenue to both the states and the union.

5) Removing the trade barrier since no octroi tax, it will speed up the business and transportation.

GST is the biggest fiscal reform of the decade curtailing it shortcoming like centre state consensus, min no. of slabs etc will boost India’s growth.

Q.5 Youth radicalization in Kashmir valley is a serious national security threat. Comment




Radicalization is a process by which an individual or group adopts extreme political, social or religious ideals that reject or undermines the status quo.

Radicalization in J&K has three dimensions regional, ethnic and religious.


Main causes for raising radicalization is Sufism being replaced by Salafism, growth of Saudi petro money sponsored jihadi outfits, ISI sponsored proxy wars, free flow of wahabi literature, uncontrolled growth of falsified news and propaganda on social media.


  1. Youth disenchanted with Indian state are a potential threat to spark Separatist tendencies.
  2. Threat to Idea of sovereign Indian state with continued support to cross border outfits which can cause frequent border skirmishes.
  3. Glorification of deaths of terrorist leaders like Burhan Wani can incense a relatively isolated outfit limited movement into a mass movement with active participation of youth
  4. Recent mob lynching of a police officer have given fears about citizenry esp. youth turning against the own state mechanism.
  5. Disenchanted youth are highly susceptible to become active agents for cross border terrorist Organisations to help in activities like drugs, arms trafficking and money laundering
  6. Recent IB report has broken the myth that only poor youth devoid of employment join terror organization’s instead highly educated youth and technocrats are increasingly being recruited which has caused fear of proxy war via new threats like cyber attacks, espionage etc.


There is a urgent need for de radicalization with new approach with sustained efforts on multiple fronts

  1. Active monitoring of social media and print media for potential threats
  2. Bodies like IB, CBEC, Border security forces have to be strengthened to counter money, drugs and arms laundering.
  3. There is a urgent need to bridge trust deficit between army and people (SUPER 40 initiative of army needs to be lauded, gradual withdrawal of AFSPA)


There is no greater medicine to overcome distrust and distress than development urgent need to implement initiatives like NAI ROSHINI, improve employability of youth by skills training, provide jobs so that the spirit of KASHMIRIYAT (peaceful co-existence) can be restored in the valley.


While militancy in Kashmir has been a problem since the 1980’s, the current round of tensions has seen disturbing new trends: This radicalization of the youth in particular jeopardizes the national security as:

  1. Militant activism displayed by the youth leaves little scope for negotiations, forcing use of hard power (further alienation).
  2. The youth tends to view such militants as martyrs, as evidenced by mass attendance at funerals. This acts as a fertile recruitment ground. (more militancy)
  3. Increased govt efforts to create employment and skill (Army recruitment, HIMAYAT, etc) minus adequate checks and balances, risks recruiting some radicalized youth into govt machinery, where their ability to cause damage, or erode public confidence, increases disproportionately (Recent Army desertion, and calls by some extremist groups to join govt services)
  4. The youth radicalization may turn the till now leadership centric separatist movement into a mass movement (Challenge multiplied)
  5. Increase communal undertones, and calls for Islamization of Kashmir (espoused by some groups) may undermine national integrity by having negative spillovers.
  6. Increasing radicalization has severely affected intelligence gathering mechanisms of the forces. this has led to attacks with little information beforehand.
  7. State reprisal often evokes overt and covert response from Pakistan and may fuel militancy further (Risks international intervention and chances of secession or bifurcation).
  8. The youth are technologically savvy and the spread of fake news, post-truth and doctored videos may cause radicalization in geographically displaced pockets. (Videos being circulated online)
  9. Lastly, the youth are confrontational, which requires greater force deployment and resources. This may weaken India’s ability to man other fronts, and tackle other security challenges (like LWE)

While a permanent solution to Kashmir may take some time, efforts are needed to ensure inter alia counter messaging, and employment opportunities, to wean the youth away from militancy.


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