SYNOPSIS: IASbaba’s TLP – 2018: UPSC Mains General Studies Questions [15th December 2017]- Day 20

  • IASbaba
  • December 16, 2017
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TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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SYNOPSIS: IASbaba’s TLP – 2018: UPSC Mains General Studies Questions [15th December 2017]- Day 20


1. Differentiate between the terms ‘impartiality’, ‘non-partisanship’ and ‘objectivity’. Why these attributes are necessary for a civil servant.


  • Introduction- Defining the three attributes.
  • Necessity of each attribute. Substantiate your points with proper examples.
  • Conclusion


  • Impartiality is treating everyone equal.
  • Non-partisanship is not being biased towards any particular ideology or political group.
  • Objectivity is decision making based on merit, facts and figures rather than personal opinion, affinities or emotions.

The attributes are necessary for a civil servant:

  • Impartiality – With control of resources at one’s dispensation, a Civil servant need to be impartial to plural group identities – religion, caste, creed, gender, social standing etc. They ought to be weighed equally much in light of “Right to Equality” enshrined in our Constitution.
  • Non-partisanship – A civil servant should be apolitical as it’s the bureaucracy which is the permanent executive. The government in power, irrespective of political party, must be provided the bureaucratic services in same spirit without any biasness and functioning of government stays effective.
  • These values become more so important where laws or guidelines are absent or not defined clearly. It helps uphold public faith & trust.
  • The huge diversity in India along with the challenges demands civil servants to have above values. Only then justice would be done during service delivery.


The civil servant should maintain- Non- partisanship and distribute flood relief materials without subscribing to any political party’s banner.

He/ She has to remain impartial and treat poor and rich alike in distributing the relief materials.
Further he/she has to remain objective and compensate only according to the rules of the office rather than his own wishes.


Civil servants being the steel frame of the nation, need not just maintain law and order but carry a varied, multifaceted socio-economic development in the assigned area of responsibility. It is in discharge of her duties that values of Impartiality, non-partisanship and objectivity comes in handy.

Best answer: akg



2. Laws alone cannot secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. Discuss.

Background: “A country shouldn’t be divided on sectarian lines and that is something I have told Prime Minister Modi in person as well as to people in America … People see the differences between each other much too vividly and miss the commonalities,” Barack Obama told an audience at a conference organized very recently. Similar Reports, articles and views are being shared nationally and at International level.


  • You can start by defining Law, Tolerance or writing on Freedom of Expression
  • Write why laws cannot secure freedom of expression
  • Write examples
  • Write why spirit of tolerance is indispensible for entire population


Tolerance is the ability of being able to recognise and respect others’ opinions, beliefs and practices, even if we don’t like it. It is accepting other’s right to free speech, freedom of expression etc.

Freedom of Speech is accumulation of essential rights ranging from academic, social, psychological learning’s peaceful representation to other forms of expression; it is coded under Article 19 of Indian constitution. Though it is not sacrosanct and can be liable to some restrictions but essential to very functioning of democracy as enshrine in “Preamble” of Constitution”.


Freedom of Speech can’t be ensured by law alone rather it need “Social Learning” and “Cognitive Acceptance” both in context and content, A Law can only enforce the mechanism but to follow it, depends on “Sole power of nation” that is “People” or “Citizens”.

Tolerance on the other hand is “eternal acceptance” of “cognitive and logical comparison” of something’s, and someone in terms of thoughts, idea, belief, caste, creed, race etc. It is vital for social and adaptive learning.

Limitations of laws in guaranteeing free expression are –

  1. Laws enforce inclusiveness of expression by restricting majoritarian stronghold. It has very little role to do with propagation of expression.
  2. Expression basically has three stages – creation of opinion, expression of dialogue and moderation of opinion. All three should be equally emphasised
  3. Modes of expression are very subjective and hence cannot be strictly confined to the existing codes of conduct. What is a taboo for today can be an acceptable norm for tomorrow.
  4. Negative reinforcement cannot mend the existing differences. Besides, such approach demands robust enforcement which can create further barriers.

In the recent controversy of Screening of film “Padmavati”, “Right to creativity” was overridden by Customary rights or Pride, and undocumented History and also in other case i.e. deaths of Gauri Lankesh, Murder of RTI activist in Maharashtra and cow-vigilantism, People show “missing” of tolerance which was one of characteristic feature of guiding tenets of “Panchsheel” and “Sarva jan Hitay, Sarva jan Sukhay” that is peaceful co-existence.

“I disapprove of what you say, but will defend to death your right to say it.”.-Voltaire

As Swami Dayanand advocated for “Return to Vedas”,that was not back to conservatism, rather it was return to reformative and adaptive positive change. We need same return towards tolerance for

  1. Social cohesiveness and healthy spirits of brotherhood
  2. Foster a new wave of holistic and sustainable development of nation and better recognition on international forums
  3. Better target welfarism, curbing the corruption and effective implementation of policies and
    4. Gender sensitization

An opinionated society doesn’t necessarily mean a conscious society. What definitely means is liberation of thought and expression, supported with open channels of communication.


Hence, regulation becomes necessary but it can’t be said to be essential

  1. In this regard instilling a sense of moral obligations on citizens is necessary. Awareness generation programs and Internet campaigns can create responsibilities towards fundamental duties
  2. An inclusive approach of growth should be adopted so as to not create social tensions due to economic disparity.

Recently Nobel laureate Amartya Sen While lecturing at the Presidency University said “Tolerance is a very great virtue and right now in India we need it badly.”

Best Answer: Shivani


3. It is very important to understand that emotional intelligence is not the opposite of intelligence, it is not the triumph of heart over head–it is the unique intersection of both. Elucidate.


In Introduction, define what Emotional Intelligence is. Then in body, give examples of how both emotional intelligence and intelligence intersect and go hand in hand for successful outcomes. 150 should be word limit as this is ethics question.

Introduction:  Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others. It is generally said to include three skills: emotional awareness; the ability to harness emotions and apply them to tasks like thinking and problem solving; and the ability to manage emotions, which includes regulating your own emotions and cheering up or calming down other people.


Points to be covered:

Below are two examples of situations where both intersect and results are favourable to both parties involved.

Example 1: As a District SP, you are sent to control violent and unruly mob. U can fire or use tear gas to control crowd and arrest OR talk to leader of mob, make them understand as per law there grievances will be heard and resolved. And send them back.

Example 2: As DC, you are to arrange relief materials for cyclone affected region. All are equally hurt but you provide first aid to vulnerable people first like Elders, Women, Children and then able bodied men who are also hurt but can withstand pain than the former.

Note: Minimum of 3-4 examples are need. Two examples are given above for your refer and idea of what type of examples can be used. Avoid bringing religious examples and other sensitive issues to take balanced and neutral approach. Try to include examples related to public services.


It is generally said Head and heart goes opposite to each other but in reality both can be synchronized and made to go hand in hand which results in successful outcomes as expected. In above examples you can see how both can be used at same time for win-win situation and for satisfaction of all involved.

Connecting the dots:

  • Emotional Intelligence.
  • Inter-personal skills.

Best Answer: Disha.



4. Compassion towards the weaker-sections is considered to be one of the most fundamental attributes for a civil servant. Why? Examine.


Your answer should focus on why compassion is a fundamental attribute. Most of you have written good points in this part but very few have given an example. In ethics example is of utmost importance and should not be skipped. only by an example an examiner can understand that you have understood the concept properly.

In introduction give proper definition of Compassion. Keywords should be defined precisely. A vague definition is not appreciated.


Dictionary definition of compassion: sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it.

A civil servant is bridge between the elected executive and the people. In a welfare state like India, the aim of the government is to reach every section of the society. But despite India being one of the fastest growing economies, it has largest population below poverty line.

Following points can be mentioned in the answer to prove why compassion is a fundamental attribute of a civil servant:

  • A compassionate and empathetic civil servant would understand the grievances of poor who approach him and take action accordingly.
  • Compassion enables a civil servant to bridge the gap between vulnerable, deprived and bureaucrats so that they understand needs and problems of common people.
  • A compassionate civil servant will be tolerant and will listen to grievances accordingly.
  • He/ she will be ethically and morally more strong and take all steps thinking about their effect on weaker sections.
  • Rather than being purely rational i.e. thinking about only profit and loss, a compassionate civil servant will be emotional too and think about the impact on society. You can also say that he will be using his heart and head together, rather than using just the head.
  • When such civil servants reach policy making stage, they frame more realistic policies which are according to the demand of public.
  • Expenditure of government will be in the right direction.
  • This will help in breaking the stereotype that bureaucrats are unapproachable and it will increase people’s confidence in the government.
  • A bureaucrat will not work with a superiority complex rather he will work with spirit on service.

Note: More points can be added to this list. Many people are using very flowery language in the answers and in order to articulate well they are unnecessarily complicating very simple things. Many a times, in ethics, people use some terms or keywords at places where they are not required. Try not to do that. Keep a very simple approach.

Give a real life example of compassion in the answer.

Connecting the Dots:

Another concept related to compassion is Tolerance. Usually a relationship between the two or difference between the two can be asked too.

Best Answer 1 : Maximus


Best answer 2: Aditi Dhaka



Q.5) Genius is nothing but a greater aptitude for patience. Comment.


An inspirational quote by Benjamin Disraeli says: “Patience is a necessary ingredient of genius.” Genius is not only a person of exceptional intelligence, he also has a quality of being patient. No skill or Virtue can be cultivated without Perseverance, no goal can be achieved without patience. Patience is waiting, working, thinking, perfecting. That is the key element of genius. It’s not a quick thing. It takes as long as it takes, and genius will take the time necessary to craft the finest results the world has seen. No short cuts, no slap-dash work. Hard work and patience.

How aptitude, patience plays a major role in making a person genius?

Thomas Alva Edison, Albert Einstein, A.P.J Abdul Kalam despite being from different fields are referred to as genius. People are inspired by them, try to emulate them. Despite this world do not see many geniuses, giving rise to a debate that geniuses are born. But, the truth is Genius is nothing but a greater aptitude for patience.

For instance: Sometimes, like Einstein’s E=mc² equation, the genius is in the simplicity. Other times, like the quote’s author’s famous Sistine Chapel ceiling, the genius is in the incredible level of detail. In each of these extremes, the patience to refine, test, adjust, observe and try again is what was made the respective projects the height of genius.

Importance of patience to become genius: 

“Most battles are won by hanging there a little bit longer than others who give up just at the right time”. Two of the biggest obstacles that prevent a man from becoming a genius is failure and fatigue. It is through patience that a person can overcome these challenges. Patience lies in being hopeful of good and success even in adverse conditions.

In the creative process, which is at the heart of the quote, patience is essential. You can only push things a little before the quality starts to drop. Patience is required both yours, and the patience of those wanting you do be done to get the best possible result.

Without patience, you may not be able to find the final detail that will change your work from good to great, or from great to genius. The trick is to recognise the difference between perfecting your work and procrastination. However, that’s a very subjective call, and not something I can help you with. If you have the patience, you will eventually figure that out as well.


To summarize about how the patience will help a person to raise the level of genius, we can quote the great leader of our times Mahatma Gandhi, “Sweet are the fruits of patience.” Thus, Genius are the fruits of patience.

Best Answer: No best Answer


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