SYNOPSIS: IASbaba’s TLP – 2018: UPSC Mains General Studies Questions [12th February 2018]- Day 56

  • IASbaba
  • February 13, 2018
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TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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SYNOPSIS: IASbaba’s TLP – 2018: UPSC Mains General Studies Questions [12th February 2018]- Day 56


1. Much of India’s post-Independence conservation efforts have excluded forest dwellers, completely overlooking the important role they play. Naturally, the word “conservation” now comes to haunt the forest dwellers. Elucidate.

  • Introduction: Give small introduction about forest dwellers
  • Body: In body, mention how they conserved forests, how in name of conservation they are harassed and steps taken by government recently to protect them.
  • Conclusion: 2-3 line conclusion.


Forest dwellers were those communities who traditionally lived in and around forests from generations and depended wholly on the resources of forest and helped greatly in conservation.


Role played by forest dwellers in conversation since ancient times:

  • Sacred groves and nature worship: Trees, rivers, rain etc.
  • Protection of flora and fauna: In name of culture, for medicinal purpose etc. Ex: Bishnoi tribes etc.

How they are harassed in name of conservation:

  • British policies: Eviction, restriction felling of trees, cess on products.
  • Biosphere reserve: Gadgil report, Kasturirangan report. Western Ghats.
  • Forest Acts: Forest conservation act 1980, wildlife protection act 1972, National Tiger authority.
  • Reserve forests: Non entry to core area, rules for buffer zones etc.
  • Projects: Public and private.

After long struggle by environmentalists and forest dwellers government has come up with certain regulations to protect their interest like:

  • Recognition of Sacred groves.
  • Minor forest products.
  • Deregulating certain products: Bamboo, tendu leaves etc.
  • Gram sabha: Power to gram sabha to grant permission for mining etc.

Note: Explanation is needed for all points. Important points that are required in body are given. 8-10 points are enough.


It is high time government recognizes the efforts of forest dwellers in conservation from ancient times and provides them necessary protection and also more importantly involve them in all effort involving forests.

Connecting the dots:

  • Multipurpose projects.   
  • Narmada andolan.

Best Answer: Bagath



Q2. Why haven’t the efforts to clean the polluted rivers in India succeeded so far? Examine by taking the case study of the river Ganga. 


  • It is a one part question
  • Describe the reasons for past failure. Use bullet format
  • Although not explicitly asked, but do suggest solutions in your conclusion.


India has one of largest river networks. Indian rivers are the lifelines of their respective regions, providing water for agriculture, domestic use, industries etc. However, the same has left them extremely polluted. River Ganga is a case in point. Despite multiple initiatives taken by various governments over the years, starting from the Ganga Action Plan in 1985, they have failed to translate into clean rivers. Following are the reasons:

  • The policies so far lacked a multidimensional approach. It focused solely on cleaning of river water without making plans for rural development, making villages on the banks open defecation free, checking the discharge of pollutants such as fertilizers into the river, afforestation etc.
  • The policies did not address the source of pollution – for e.g. in urban centres like Kanpur, state governments failed to control pollution from industries like tanneries
  • Poor implementation and monitoring – lack of coordination between centre and state governments, rampant corruption, delays have rendered the efforts ineffective
  • Lack of participation from citizen group – policy makers failed to tap into the rich knowledge of local communities wrt river cleaning
  • Low political will – as the river Ganga is home to religiously important places such as Varanasi, Allahabad. The activities in these places result in polluting of river Ganga. However, politicians turn a blind eye for the fear of losing their vote bank.  

Conclusion / Way Forward

India’s march to economic development cannot come at the cost of environmental degradation such as polluting of its rivers. There is a need to take lessons from the past policy failure to design a more comprehensive and sustainable framework for river cleaning in India. It should include not just the cleaning part, but also supporting initiative like afforestation, industrial affluent management, and local participation.

Polluter pays Principle should be adopted in letter and spirit to deter various stakeholders from polluting our rivers in the future.  The Namami Gange Program holds much promise in this regard.

Best Answer: Lone Wolf



Q.3) Conservation efforts directed towards increasing the population without addressing the problem of habitat loss have led to increase in man-animal conflicts. Comment.


Animal habitats are disappearing at alarming rates, making habitat loss the biggest threat to animals’ existence. Deforestation and degradation from logging, animal agriculture, and the palm oil industry have leveled massive amounts of rainforests and other types of forest lands in India, forcing animals into ever-shrinking habitats and destroying villages.  

As the global human population grows, forests and grasslands around the world are cleared to build roads, housing, and shopping centers. Even rural areas are impacted as small towns and villages encroach on land that was once inhabited by wildlife. If we don’t address this problem of increasing population, the directions towards the conservation of efforts and the problem of habitat loss will lead to man-animal conflicts.

  • As two worlds continue to collide, the sharing of habitats creates a dangerous situation for animals as well as humans.
  • Animals viewed as a nuisance or threat are placed in danger of being trapped or killed, threatening the existence of many species that are already vulnerable as a result of poaching and the illegal wildlife trade.
  • In India, a growing human population is causing conflict with elephants and tigers, with one person being killed each day — leading to over 1,000 deaths over the past three years, according to an article by The Washington Post.
  • The deaths often occur as people are attempting to scare the animals away from villages, or as villagers enter animal territories while searching for land and resources.

Human lives are also placed at risk when they encounter elephants, tigers, bears, or other large species that feel threatened and attack in an effort to protect their territory or their young. It’s an issue that’s present around the world, and with massive human population growth placing further strain on limited land resources, it’s a problem that will only continue to get worse.

Working to Reduce Conflict and Protect Wildlife by addressing habitat loss:

Habitat destruction is the first casualty of development.  All across India, hundreds of projects are being cleared every year in and around protected areas for mining, dams, hydroelectric projects, highways, engineering colleges, ashrams and a plethora of other purposes.

Wildlife organizations are working to protect animals and their habitats, but in addition to prevention, we also need to work on resolutions for existing issues. Many have turned to hunting or culling populations, but there are more humane alternatives that, with some extra work, can be effective.

Some ranchers and farmers in Africa and India have tried to resolve the issue by installing electric fencing, while others are using creative methods like planting chili plants, burning chili pepper bricks, or having beehives along the perimeter of their crops to deter wild animals. Organizations are also providing farmers with compensation for lost crops or livestock and helping them grow elephant-resistant crops that are less prone to damage. Training and assistance programs to protect farms and ranches can also help reduce tensions by relieving the burden of financial loss.


Rising population of both animals and humans have created stress on existing land resources and in such case National Parks and Sanctuary may not be enough for their habitats. Therefore a cooperative approach of Politicians, policy makers, civil society, media and mind set for sustainable development by addressing habitat loss would we warranted in long run.

Best Answer: gargantuan


4. Critically evaluate the emerging trends in global climate change negotiations. Is the world heading in the right direction in its fight against climate change? Critically examine.


Negotiations at global level regarding climate change seems to remain ambiguous despite multiple rounds of negotiations since 1970s. The recent trend, the direction in which these talks are moving has raised concerns. Also, certain developments seems to be steps in positive direction.

Emerging trends in global climate change negotiations:

Positive trends:

  • Focus on renewable energy-
  • Other forms of energy generation like nuclear fusion.
  • Formation of groupings like International Solar Alliance.

Negative trends:

  • US’s ambiguity- Withdrawal of US from Paris agreement has but the effectiveness of the agreement into question.
  • Focus on mitigation. Neglect of adaptation.
  • With most of the technological developments related to green energy are taking place in the developed world, its affordability and accessibility by developing nations is in question.
  • Funds like GCF have been created. But the contribution towards it remains meagre. Also many of such funds remains inoperational.
  • Despite countries deciding on Nationally Determined Contributions in a bottom-up approach, analyst says as things are moving it is going to be impossible to meet the target of limiting the temperature rise to 2 degree celsius from pre-industrial levels.

Way forward:

  • Focusing on mitigation. As many LDCs are already facing the impact of climate change resulting into climate refugees. Example- Sudan.
  • Making green energy accessible to all. Developed countries like US, European countries etc must share their technological developments with countries like India on mutual basis.
  • Operationalising funds like Green Climate Fund.


Overall, the global divide on climate change related issues needs to be narrowed. Also, any healthy negotiations must be followed by adequate steps to enforce what is decided. It is time global leaders rise above politics and see that both adaptation and mitigation efforts are strengthened.

Best answer: Ali



5. Air pollution in the NCR region reached dangerous levels last year. Why? Examine the causative factors. What long term solutions are required to address this problem? Discuss.

  • Introduction: Give a small intro about Delhi pollution.
  • Body: In body, give causative factors and long term solution.
  • Conclusion: 2-3 line conclusion.


Air pollution occurs due to presence of toxic particles and biological molecules in air. With approach of winters, pollution in National Capital Region including surrounding areas reaches dangerous levels accompanied with smog. There are several factors which lead to such dangerous level.



  1. Natural:
  • Geographic location.
  • Trade winds.
  • Air circulation.
  • Presence of Himalayas to north east.
  • Pressure.
  1. Anthropogenic:
  • Stubble burning.
  • Vehicular emission.
  • Construction.
  • Deforestation.
  • Thermal plants in vicinity.

Long term solution:

  • Prevent stubble burning.
  • Productive use of stubble: Biomass plant, Recycling, paper industries etc.
  • Infrastructures: More public vehicles, Enlarged road space, parking fee, congestion tax etc.
  • Vehicle: Hybrid and electric vehicle, increased road tax, Expiry period for vehicles etc.
  • Green cover.

Note: Explanation is needed for all points. 8-10 points in total are enough.


Government has taken efforts by preponing BS-VI stage, reduction of vehicular movements during day time, odd-even etc. But more efforts are needed, vehicular emission is more due to congestion on roads, so widening of roads should be undertaken among others measures as suggested above.

Connecting the dots:

  • South west monsoon winds over north India.
  • Western disturbances

Best Answer: Maximus



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