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1) Freedom of speech and expression is the most essential ingredient of Democracy. Elucidate.

Ans: Democracy is defined as the rule of people which means the ultimate power and sovereignty lies in
the people. The elected governments are meant to serve the people. If people are to perform their role
as masters and instruct the government, they would require access to all forms of information, ideas
and points of view. At the same time, people should be able to express their opinions, views and beliefs
and criticize the functioning of the government freely. Thus, freedom of speech and expression becomes
the basic foundation of a democracy. It enables the society to establish control on the state authorities
and check the government in determination and implementation of policy. The implication is that truly
democratic governments should not and will not control the exercise of freedom of speech unless
subject to reasonable situations. The fact that freedom of speech and expression is enshrined in the
constitutions of democratic countries highlights the indispensability of this fundamental right in
democracy.

2) Without a free flow of information, there can be no serious democracy or democratic
functioning in the country. Comment.
Ans: Freedom of speech and expression is a fundamental right under Article 19 of the Constitution. This
fundamental right, which is at the core of democracy, includes the right to information as people cannot
speak or express themselves freely without access to all information. The information includes
information about government functioning, schemes, programs and measures. Without this
information, people will not be able to judge how well the governments, that are meant to serve them,
perform. However, the flow of information should not be interfered with or restricted to project a
favorable image of the government. To facilitate such free flow of information, government has enacted
the RTI Act. Through the RTI act, many government scams and scandals like 2G scam and CWG scam
have been exposed. The drain on exchequer is also being closely monitored through RTI. Thus, free flow
of information is necessary for a serious democracy as ultimately people are the masters and it is their
tax payer money.
3) BRICS is young and full of promise. Comment
Ans: The present world order is dominated by the West through its strong influence on multilateral
institutions like WTO, World Bank and IMF. In recent times, developed countries have however
stagnated in economic growth. So, the future growth of global economy will be driven by emerging
economies.
BRICS is an association of five major emerging national economies. This grouping which was actually
based on economic perspective started having a significant influence on regional and global geo-politics
as observed during the Syrian Crisis. BRICS, which started formally in 2009, has posed challenges to the
existing world order dominated by the West by pushing for IMF voting reforms and establishing a BRICS
Forum. It is also contemplating a new development bank exclusively for the developing world.
BRICS formation can therefore, be seen as the rise of the developing world. Its ability to accommodate
newer emerging economies like South Africa, Indonesia can significantly raise its potential.
4) Accountability of the political class through the RTI is at the root of breaking the nexus of
criminalization of politics and black money. Comment.
Ans: Criminalization of politics is the participation or influence of criminals in the electoral process,
whereas black money is the presence of unaccounted and untaxed money in the economic system.
Although both these aspects are quite unrelated, they have been merged into a nexus by politicians and
political parties. It has been observed that the political class has been using black money increasingly in
elections and black money is being used by criminals to back their candidature in the elections. It is
therefore, important to make the political class accountable to break this nexus by bringing them under
RTI Act. Although, politicians’ criminal antecedents and wealth records filed during elections can be
accessed by RTI, political parties are outside the purview of RTI Act. The recent ruling by Central
Information Commissioner to get political parties covered under RTI is a step in the right direction.
5) Though India has dual polity, the very existence of states in India is in the hands of the Centre.
Comment.
Ans: The Constitution has provided for a federal polity with a strong Centre, which has direct
implications for the existence of states.
Constitutional Provisions
1) Parliament has the exclusive power of admitting or establishing new States, increasing or
diminishing the area of existing States or altering their boundaries. The relevant provisions are
mentioned in Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution.
2) Article 3 also stipulates that the relevant reorganization bill should be referred to the concerned
state legislature(s) for expressing its views
Issues
1) The Parliament is not bound by the views expressed by the concerned state legislatures. This
means that Parliament is the sole authority to form new states and redraw the political map of
India according to its will
2) Laws made under article 2 and article 3 are not considered as amendments to the Constitution
and therefore, a simple majority and ordinary legislative process is required to pass such laws.
Hence, the territorial integrity or continued existence of any state is not guaranteed by the Constitution.
It is thus clear, that the Constitution authorizes the Parliament to form new states or alter existing states
without their consent.

6) Bureaucracy that can carry on its duties free of interference is essential for the very foundation
of rule of law. Comment.
Ans: Rule of law is the principle that law alone should govern a nation. It implies that any government
action should have legal backing and procedural fairness. In modern political systems, bureaucracy is the
upholder of rule of law as it is the bureaucracy which implements government’s actions and plans. Rule
of law places constraints on the arbitrary behavior of individual government officials. In democratic
polity, bureaucracy is answerable to the political executive, which means that politicians have control
over it. Politically motivated appointments, transfers and postings in the bureaucracy have an influence
on the behavior of government officials. This causes bureaucracy to abandon procedural fairness and
adopt arbitrary conduct. Therefore, a strong, honest and independent bureaucracy free from political
interference is necessary for maintaining rule of law.
7) Bring out the salient features and significance of the S & T policy of 2013
Ans: The new Science, Technology & Innovation (STI) Policy of 2013 envisions placing India among the
top five global scientific powers by 2020. It proposes to use STI for faster, sustainable and inclusive
growth.
Salient Features are:
1) It includes Innovation as a component thereby expanding the scope of policy to the application
level of S&T
2) It has placed increased emphasis on Research & Development from spending, personnel and
private sector participation perspectives
3) Leverage PPP route for investments in S&T projects and large scale R&D projects
Significance
1) STI policy starts a new paradigm in which Indian society is the major stakeholder because India’s
global competitiveness will be determined by the extent to which STI contributes to social good
and economic wealth
2) The policy proposes to use innovation for inclusive growth by ensuring its availability,
accessibility & affordability especially for women, differently-abled and disadvantaged sections
of the society. It seeks to make innovations inclusive
3) The policy intends to drive STI towards areas of socio-economic importance like agriculture,
energy, health, climate change and education

8) Government’s relationship with the media must be an essay in persuasion, not regulation.
Comment.
Ans: Media and Government are two institutions with a common goal – to serve the people. Media
functions as a communication channel between the government and the people. It also criticizes the
government in order to improve the government’s functioning. When media does not carry out its
functions properly or its criticisms become excessive or unnecessary, the government’s message to
people gets distorted. These kinds of situations encourage the government to regulate private media
sources. But, in democratic societies, the presence of a free media is essential. Therefore, trying to
establish government intervention in media regulation is not desirable. Instead, media should be
persuaded by government exercise media freedom with restrictions by subjecting itself to self-
regulatory mechanisms. In other words, since safeguarding the freedom of media is vital, the regulation
has to be driven from the media industry and not externally by the government.
9) Inclusive Growth and Egalitarian Society have never been excluded in our Constitution.
Elucidate.
Ans: Our Constitution contains the vision our founding fathers had for our nation. It also specifies the
principles on which that vision is based. Inclusive growth and egalitarian society are two of those
principles.
Constitutional Provisions
1) The principle of an egalitarian society is evident from the Preamble which secures civic, political
and economic equality
2) The five fundamental rights (Articles 14-18) placed under the broader Right to Equality also
ensure civic equality
3) The concept of universal adult suffrage with equal value for votes ensure political equality
4) Directive Principle under Article 39 ensures economic equality by guaranteeing equal
opportunities to work and equal pay for equal work
5) To ensure inclusive growth, the Constitution has also provided exceptions to the general rule of
non-discrimination, in the form of special provisions for socially and educationally backward
classes of citizens like OBCs, SCs, STs and women in public education and employment
6) To promote inclusive growth, the state is directed by Article 38 to minimize inequalities in
income, status, facilities and opportunities
It is therefore, evident that the principles of inclusive growth and egalitarian society are embedded in
our constitution.
10) Cyber security is critical for economic security and any failure to ensure cyber security will lead
to economic destabilization. Elucidate.
Ans: The advancements in Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and their associated
benefits have contributed to its spread in our economy. Large parts of banking & financial services,
airline & transportation services, energy, healthcare, IT technology and telecommunications services
have embraced ICT to fullest potential. Although, private sector owns major part of these sectors, the
information systems in these sectors form part of the nation’s Critical Information Infrastructure (CII).
Most cyber attacks are understandably directed toward these critical economic and financial
institutions. Cyber attacks that target CII can undermine the economic well-being of a nation by
reducing available state resources and weakening confidence in their supporting structures. In today’s
age, when cyber space and economic activity are intertwined, providing cyber security is important for
economic security and stability.
11) To achieve maximum development, changes at the bottom of the public service pyramid are
important. Comment.
Ans: Development is a change process of facilitating the elevation of people at the bottom of the
pyramid to higher levels of living. For this, change should necessarily begin at the bottom of the public
service delivery machinery, which is the site of frequent interaction between citizen and the
government. The quality of public service is determined by the conduct of the officials at this lower level
of the delivery pyramid. This ground level bureaucracy reduces the psychological distance between the
state and the citizen and his socio-cultural and economic environment. Maximum economic and human
developmental value is created when the ground level bureaucracy serves the disadvantaged sections of
the society. Ground-level bureaucracy can also initiate a reverse communication channel to convey the
needs and aspirations of citizens to policy planners. Therefore, any attempt to improve public service
performance would need to focus on the changes at the bottom of the public service pyramid for
creating maximum developmental impact and distortion-free implementation.
12) The challenge of Cyber Security lies in protecting people without entering their private space.
Comment.
Ans: Right to privacy is considered an integral part of Right to Life and Personal Liberty. This right is
logically applicable to cyber space also, where a major part of a person’s life is conducted today. Privacy
of transaction or transmission of information via internet, like conversations or business transactions,
needs to be protected. Cyber space is considered the fifth domain after land, sea, air and space, of
national security. Cases of cyber crimes, espionage, warfare and terrorism are on the rise due to the
anonymity and seamless connectivity offered on cyberspace. Cyber security, therefore starts with
surveillance of all its citizens and sometimes, foreigners. Mass surveillance systems become the basis for
scanning all personal online correspondence. The likelihood of cyber security in impinging on personal
freedoms is clear. Democratic governments should therefore have to balance national security
considerations with protecting personal cyberspace of its citizens.