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SYNOPSIS [1st February,2022] Day 2: IASbaba’s TLP (Phase 1): UPSC Mains Answer Writing (General Studies)
1. With the help of suitable examples, discuss the key features of Buddhist literature. (10 Marks)
Candidates need to write about the Buddhist literature, highlighting its key features with suitable example is the demand of question.
The earliest Buddhist texts were passed down orally in Middle Indo-Aryan languages called Prakrits, including Gāndhārī language, the early Magadhan language and Pāli through the use of repetition, communal recitation and mnemonic devices. These texts were later compiled into canons and written down in manuscripts.
Key features of Buddhist literature:
- Vernacular: During his lifetime the Buddha taught not in Vedic Sanskrit, which had become tough to the people, but in his own Indian dialect, he also encouraged his monks to propagate his teachings in the vernacular. For example language of Pali and other local languages developed through the teachings of Buddhism.
- Folklore: Jatakas are very much close to folklore literature and they contain the tales of previous births of Buddha in poems. The Jataka have also been mentioned in the Khuddaka Nikaya.
- Based on discipline and rules: The subject matter of Vinay Pitaka is the monastic rules for monks and nuns. It can also be called as Book of Discipline. Its three books are Suttavibhanga, Khandaka and Parivara.
- Biographical: In Sanskrit Lalit is a Lotus. Lalitvistara is a Sanskrit text that deals with the biography of Buddha. Buddha Charita is an epic style Sanskrit work by Ashavaghosa. It mainly deals with Buddha’s Life.
- Discourse and dialogue: Milinda Panha literal meaning is Questions of Milinda contains the dialogue between the Indo-Greek King Menander I or Milinda of Bactria, and the sage Nagasena. It is in the question answer format related to Buddhism.
- Adoption of different technologies: Asian Buddhist institutions were at the forefront of the adoption of technologies related to bookmaking, including paper, and block printing which were often deployed on a large scale. First surviving example of a printed text Diamond Sutra (c. 868).
- Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit (BHS): Sanskrit Buddhist literature refers to Buddhist texts composed either in classical Sanskrit, in a register that has been called “Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit” or a mixture of the two. Most prominent among which was the Sarvāstivāda.
Buddhism literature arose to suit the needs of a changing society, patronized by an emerging class and left an indelible mark on India’s culture, philosophy and way of living. These literature also found their influence in neighboring countries and helped India expand its footprint in these regions, paving way for a cultural connect to this day.
2. In India, music is deeply integrated into the lives of common people – their traditions and the nature that they inhabit. Elucidate. (10 Marks)
Candidates need to directly address Indian music relevance in daily life of the common people with explaining there tradition and nature. Try to give some suitable example for better substantiation.
Indian music has developed over centuries into a nuanced, glorious art Form. Indian music, through a variety of melodic entities (ragas), Ornamentation of notes and rhythmic patterns, tries to unite the performer and listener in the experience of emotions or bhava.
Relevance of Indian music:
- Expressing emotions: Music plays a more important role in our life than just being a source of entertainment as it can express our feelings as well as emotions which is of course connected to our daily life. Indian classical music is rich in terms of ragas which contain different rasas or bhaavas or emotions.
- For example Rasiya Geet closely woven into the very fabric of daily life and day to day chores of its people.
- Increasing the concentration: There are plenty of people who swear that listening to music helps them concentrate on what they are doing and help them focus in a much better way in everyday life.
- Weddings, birth of a child, festivals: Later on, folk songs were extensively used for recreational purposes and to celebrate special events.
- Information generation to generation: Folk songs were also used to pass on prominent information from one generation to another. Since people did not have a solid material to preserve ancient information, passing down important information in the form of songs became utmost important.
- Socio-religious reforms: Religious leaders like Adi Shankaracharya used many such songs to spread his message throughout the country. Rabindra sangeet topics dealt in these songs include modernism, humanism, structuralism, reflection, romance, introspection, psychology, nostalgia, yearning, etc. Mando of Goa dealing with love, tragedy and both social injustice and political resistance during Portuguese presence in Goa.
- Entertainment of workers: Bhatiali was sung by the fishermen of ancient Bengal. It is said that this musical form was used by the oarsmen and fishermen of Bengal to keep themselves entertained when they didn’t have to row their boats with all their might.
- Religious worshipping reverence: The religious and philosophical unity embodied through musical practice, therefore, has deep historical roots, which has meant that music and religion share many aspects of a common ontology.
- For example Pandavani is a folk singing style involving narration of tales from the ancient Indian epic Mahabharata.
Indian Music has various benefits in our daily lives, it takes us away from our daily life stress and calms our minds. It provides us with a feeling of deep relaxation and creates an aura of positivity around us. Helps improve the mind vigorously and makes one more artistic as well as ingenious.
3. We often hear instances of police brutality. Do you think empathy is the most scarce virtue in the police forces? What measures would you suggest to impart the virtue of empathy? Discuss. (15 Marks)
Candidates need to start with intro about brief of police brutality. The candidate needs to then give his views on empathy being the most scarce virtue in the police forces. Finally, candidate needs to discuss measures to impart the virtue of empathy.
Police brutality represent the use of uncontrolled and redundant force on the part of a police officer. Police brutality in any form results in violation of citizens’ civil rights. It is not only projected through physical means but also through verbal abuse, arbitrary arrests, etc.
Empathy is the ability to understand and share someone else’s feelings—to know what it’s like to be in somebody else’s shoes. It allows for a deeper appreciation of what other individuals are experiencing. In turn, this leads to more positive interactions and communication between police officers and the people they encounter.
Empathy being the most scarce virtue in the police forces
- The objectives of the criminal justice include penalizing, reforming, and rehabilitating the offender. Reformation is its ultimate goal, as the system professes to be more rehabilitative than retributive. However, the system still fails offenders on many aspects with empathy being absent in the police force.
- Police brutality in India is executed in various forms including extortion, forcing the detainee to lie naked on ice, amputating different body parts of the victim, immersing the face in water until the individual is out of breath, burning the body parts, giving electric shocks, arbitrary arrest, verbally assaulting the victims, accused, witnesses, etc.
- Abuse of power and maltreatment is apparent on face in all the above cases. Sexual Harassment, racial discrimination, wrongful search and seizure by police officials also come under the purview of police brutality.
- Despite the harsh demands of the occupation, police personnel are not provided mental health support.
- Consequently, abuse of power and custodial torture is not uncommon, sustained by systemic impunity.
- Police personnel lack adequate training and have a limited understanding of the Constitution and human rights.
Measures to impart the virtue of empathy
- Reformation is its ultimate goal, as the system professes to be more rehabilitative than retributive.
- We need to surgically work on stress points in the police, courts and prisons to make the process less painful for all stakeholders
- Curricula for the training and retraining of police can provide officers with ways to be more effective and improve community reactions to their efforts.
- Training can include steps to help officers learn about and show empathy for the concerns of the specific communities and neighbourhoods where they work.
- Likewise, training can show new officers how to display their understanding of community values and needs when they interact with citizens.
- Showing such empathy, we know, increases trust and confidence in the police.
- And when citizens have greater trust in the police during daily interactions, officers get more cooperation and find it easier to protect themselves along with the communities they serve.
- Take for instance, a woman, X, who traffics teenage girls for a living. Counselling reveals that X is a victim of internalised misogyny and deprived of education and economic resources. To be reformative, the system should gender sensitise X and provide her access to employment to prevent recidivism.
- A reformative criminal justice system must locate all factors, internal and external to the offender that led to the commission of a crime.
- The objective should be to identify the causes through reformation-oriented guidance and counselling in prison and remedy the circumstances in which it occurs.
This increased demand for empathic policing is not surprising: officers can adequately address the needs of a community only when they can identify and understand what those needs are. When community members believe that the police are addressing such issues, their confidence, trust, and general attitude toward the police improve.