Q.1) In keeping with the current state of global disorder and an ideologically agnostic attitude, India-US ties are better suited to the prevailing circumstances. Critically analyze (15 Marks - 250 Words)
Why this question? - As the third India-U.S. 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue concluded recently, New Delhi’s diplomatic skills will be tested, as the country is now a part of the U.S.’s security architecture.
Intro - Recent developments in India-US ties.
- Need for strengthening ties with US
Way ahead - Maintaining close ties with Afghanistan, Balancing the opponents, Role of Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), Maintaining ties with Russia, Holding grounds in West Asia.
Conclusion - Summarize based on above discussion.
Q.2) Sardar Patel was a selfless leader, who placed the country’s interests above everything else and shaped India’s destiny with single-minded devotion. Comment. (15 Marks - 250 Words)
Why this question? - The President of India paid homage to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on his birth anniversary (October 31, 2020).
Intro - The legacy of merging over 560 princely states into the Union of India belongs to Sardar Patel. He is popularly known as the Iron Man of India and made many important contributions to Indian freedom struggle and modern India.
Contribution of Sardar Patel in Indian freedom struggle and modern India:
- Kheda Satyagraha: In 1918, Vallabhbhai took the responsibility of leading the farmers of Gujarat and demanded the suspension of the revenue collection from farmers as there was a drought.
- Non-cooperation movement: In 1920, Vallabhbhai gave up his practice and set up the Gujarat Vidyapeeth where children could study instead of attending Government schools.
- Bardoli satyagraha: In 1928 he successfully organized the landowners of Bardoli against British tax increases and it was after this that Vallabhbhai was given the title of Sardar (Leader).
- Karachi session: In 1931 he served as President of the Indian National Congress in its Karachi session which changed the nature of movement from a political struggle adding a new socio-economic dimension.
- Strategy to struggle: He was part of the No changers faction (within the Congress) and emphasised on the crucial role of constructive work in village regeneration and carrying the message of nationalism to the masses.
- Part of constituent assembly to frame the constitution of India: He was instrumental in collecting eminent people across the country and also persuaded Ambedkar to become a member of drafting committee.
- Chaired: Patel was the chairman of the committees responsible for minorities, tribal and excluded areas, fundamental rights, and provincial constitutions.
- Integrating India: In 1947 when India got freedom, he was in charge of Home Affairs, Information and Broadcasting and the Ministry of States.
- He was given the task of integrating the 562 Princely States into the union.
- He skilfully achieved this and took strong steps like sending the army to Junagadh and Hyderabad to force them to align with free India.
- It is because of these strong steps he is called Iron Man of India.
- Strengthened steel frame of India: He envisioned a strengthened Civil Service for India’s cohesion and national unity.
- He wanted a strong and vibrant federal administrative system in which the All India Services would play an important role.
Conclusion - The Statue of Unity, the world’s tallest statue, was dedicated to him on 31 October 2018 which is approximately 182 metres (597 ft) in height, as a recognition of building a modern India.
Q.3) Critically analyse the provisions of the Code on Social Security Act, 2020 related to gig workers. (150 words)
Introduction: Define gig workers.
- Provisions of the Social Security Code Act, 2020
- Social security funds for unorganised workers, gig workers and platform workers
- National Social Security for gig workers and platform workers
- Platform work
- Failing to delineate it from gig work and unorganised work
- Misclassification of platform workers as ‘independent contractors’ instead of employee status
- Given the temporary nature of workers in the gig economy, there are question marks over social security for them.
Flexibility of the platform
Conclusion: Summarize and suggest a way forward.