Q.1) As most of the states in India have breached the 50?iling set up in the Indra Sawney case, there is the need to reconsider the ceiling itself. Comment (15 marks - 250 words)
Why this question? - While hearing a challenge to the Maratha reservation law, the Supreme Court was urged by the senior advocates to set up a 11-judge Bench to reconsider its 50?p on reservation.
Intro - About Indra Sawney case.
- Developments since 1992 that expanded the scope of reservation in jobs in India - discuss various constitutional amendments and SC judgements.
- Need for reconsidering Indra Sawney.
Way ahead - Empowerment and employment should go hand-in-hand and reservation should not become part and parcel of vote bank politics in India.
Conclusion - Summarize based on above discussion.
Q.2) India's crippled services industry, contracted sharply in June as an extended lockdown imposed to stop the spread of the coronavirus stalled business activity. Analyze the reasons behind the service sector’s downfall and suggest the way forward. (15M, 250 Words)
Why this question?
- IHS Markit India Services Index reports that the services sector has been contracting for five consecutive months since March, with an index of 34.2. It should cross the 50-mark level to show expansion. Thus the question.
- Mention the relevant data showing the downfall of the service sector.
Body: Discuss the following points
- Reasons for the slowdown: Falling demand & job lossesExport policy issues, Global slowdown
- Significance of service sector
Conclusion: Summarize the above points and suggest a way forward:
- Short term measures:
- Making cuts in VAT, which ranges from 0-30 per cent on aviation fuel
- Provisions for GST holidays
- Compensating for wages of workers under distress
- providing working capital credit at relaxed terms
- Long term measures:
- Changing Foreign Trade Policy (FTP): There should be schemes-based export incentives and interim relief by continuing with the existing export subsidy schemes in the short run.
Q.3) The recent reforms in agricultural marketing have brought a sea change in policy.However, there are several difficulties that need to be addressed before the full benefits of these policies are realised. Analyse. (15 M, 250 Words)
Why this question?
The recent removal of restrictions under the Essential Commodities Act (ECA) should help attract private investment in agriculture. Thus the question.
- Mention in brief the significance of agricultural marketing in doubling farmers income.
- Agri reforms: Changes in Essential Commodities Act (ECA), e-NAM, Model Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) Act
- Flip-flops in farm policy — from a market-based e-NAM to a public funded PM-AASHA
- Issues with public procurement: PM-AASHA, confined to pulses and oilseeds to limit the fiscal costs.
- Centre-State and State-State relations
- inter-linkage of rural markets.
Conclusion: Reforms in the output market alone are not sufficient and must be supplemented and complemented with liberalisation of the lease market and better access to credit and insurance markets.