1.Explain the process of sea floor spreading. Discuss some evidences that support the theory. (GS Paper-1, Geography) (250 words)
Structure of the Answer
· Explain the sea floor spreading (SFS) process
· Draw diagram to explain
· Write evidences that support SFS
The longest chain of mountains in the world is the system of mid-ocean ridges. In the mid-1900s, scientists mapped the mid-ocean ridges using sonar. The mid-ocean ridges curve along the sea floor, extending into all of Earth’s oceans. Most of the mountains in the mid-ocean ridges lie hidden under hundreds of meters of water. A steep-sided valley splits the top of some mid-ocean ridges.
The concept of sea floor spreading was first propounded by Harry Hess in 1960. Earth’s ocean floors move like conveyor belts, carrying the continents along with them, as they move. This movement begins at a mid-ocean ridge. A ridge forms along a crack in the oceanic crust. At a mid-ocean ridge, molten material rises from the mantle and erupts. The molten material then spreads out, pushing older rock to both sides of the ridge. As the molten material cools, it forms a strip of solid rock in the center of the ridge. Then more molten material splits apart the strip of solid rock that formed before, pushing it aside. This process, called sea-floor spreading, continually adds new material to the ocean floor.
Evidence in support of sea floor spreading
- Scientists have found strange rocks shaped like pillows in the central valley of mid-ocean ridges. Such rocks can form only if molten material hardens quickly after erupting under water. The presence of these rocks supports the theory of sea-floor spreading.
- More support came when scientists discovered that the rock that makes up the ocean floor lies in a pattern of magnetized “stripes. The pattern is the same on both sides of the ridge. These stripes hold a record of reversals in Earth’s magnetic field.
- The final proof of sea-floor spreading came from rock samples obtained by drilling into the ocean floor. Scientists found that the farther from a ridge the rocks were taken, the older they were. The ocean floor does not just keep spreading. Instead, it sinks beneath deep underwater canyons called deep-ocean trenches. Where there are trenches, subduction takes place. At deep-ocean trenches, subduction allows part of the ocean floor to sink back into the mantle, over tens of millions of years.
The processes of subduction and sea-floor spreading can change the size and shape of the oceans. Because of these processes, the ocean floor is renewed about every 200 million years. The Pacific Ocean is shrinking. Its many trenches are swallowing more ocean crust than the mid-ocean ridge is producing. The Atlantic Ocean is expanding. In most places, the oceanic crust of the Atlantic Ocean is attached to continental crust. As the Atlantic’s floor spreads, the continents along its edges also move.
2.Zonal councils have a vital role in bringing North-eastern India into mainframe. Discuss. (GS Paper-2, Polity) (150 words)
Structure of the Answer
· Explain the importance of zonal council
North eastern council was set up in 1971 to deal with the problems of seven north east states of India. It was set up under the North Eastern Council Act, 1972. The State of Sikkim has also been included in the North Eastern Council since 2002.
North East faces several unique problems. It is located at one of the corners of India connected only through a narrow corridor called Siliguri Corridor. Thus, connection with other parts of India is very less. Rough terrain of the region has kept infrastructure in a very poor state. Insurgency has affected overall development of the region. Corruption in administration is also high. Most of the funds are diverted and do not reach the people.
In this context, North eastern council can play an important role in bringing North-eastern India into mainframe.
- An important objective of the council is to help enabling the Centre and the States to co-operate and exchange ideas and experiences. North Eastern states depend to a large extent on centre for finances, administrative help etc.
- Most of the problems of all North Eastern states are similar. Thus, it can establish a climate of co-operation amongst the States for successful and speedy execution of development projects.
- Most important objective of the Zonal Councils is to maintain national integration. Thus, North eastern council can also help in tackling the menace of insurgency.
- North eastern council has most important role in implementation of North–east region VISION 2020. The main objective of the VISION 2020 is to catch up with the rest of the country through focus on Major Road connectivity; Inland Waterways; Air connectivity; Railways; Power; Panchayati Raj and Local Self Government; Poverty Eradication; Human Resource Development; Industry; Rural Roads; Tourism; IT-enabled services and Cyber connectivity etc.
Focus of Act East Policy is on development of North Eastern Region. Along with it Motor Vehicle Agreement with SAARC nations of Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal and India; kaladan multimodal project, IMT (India-Myanmar-Thailand) highway and BCIM corridor under consideration, are signs of change.
3.Highlight reasons for India’s vulnerability to Tsunamis. Discuss some measures to mitigate the impact of Tsunamis. (GS Paper-3, Environment) (150 words)
Structure of the Answer
· Brief introduction on Tsunami
· Then point out India’s vulnerability to Tsunamis
· Then discuss mitigation measures
Tsunami is a series of waves in a water body caused by the displacement of a large volume of water, generally in an ocean or a large lake. Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and other underwater explosions (including detonations, landslides, glacier calvings, meteorite impacts and other disturbances) above or below water all have the potential to generate a tsunami.
India’s vulnerability to Tsunamis
- The Indian-Australian plate is breaking and frequent violent movements near the Indonesian archipelago cause massive earthquakes and Tsunamis (E.g. in 2004)
- Long coastline and high population density along the coasts
- Poor disaster-proof infrastructure which abets vulnerability
- Disaster Risk Reduction system still in its nascent stage
- Mapping the vulnerable areas for level of risk upto village level.
- Development of Disaster Information Management System (DIMS) in all the coastal states.
- Advance warning about tsunamis like the Indian Ocean Advance Warning System, which involves number of vulnerable Indian Ocean littoral countries.
- Mangrove forests on coasts act as an efficient barrier.
- Structural protection such as sea walls, break-waters, bio-shields.
- Control of sea mining: E.g. Mining of sand and other minerals from the sea, as is done in Kanyakumari, makes the concerned area highly vulnerable to tsunamis. The sand deposited on the sea floor absorbs much energy of the waves.
- Awareness generation and training among the fishermen, coast guards, officials from fisheries department and port authorities and local district officials etc., in connection with evacuation and post tsunami storm surge management activities. Regular drills should be conducted to test the efficacy of the DM plans.
4.Gandhi’s ethics are much relevant even today and by adapting to his teachings, humans can bring positive changes in personal, National and Global fronts. Discuss the ethics of Gandhi. (GS Paper-4, Ethics) (250 words)
Structure of the Answer
· Discuss the Gandhian ethics like communal harmony, cleanliness, truth and non- violence etc.
· Also mention 7 sins described by Gandhi
Reference: Lexicon’s Ethics
Mahatma Gandhi lit the imagination of the entire world. The waste of human ability energy and money on armament will continue unabated, and diversion of world resources to development will remain a pipe dream, so long as human does not learn the great lesson which Gandhi preached so convincingly in our own times that non-violence is the law of our species. Today Gandhian values have special significance for national integration.
ETHICS OF MAHATMA GANDHI
- Communal harmony: Communal harmony has become essential for national integration and hence Gandhi gave it the highest priority. In the religious context Gandhi emphasized that communal harmony has to be based on equal respect for all religions.
- He regarded education as the light of life and the very source from which was created an awareness of oneness. Gandhi believed that the universality of ethics can best be realized through the universalization of education, and that such universalization was the spring board for national integration.
- Cleanliness: Gandhi said, “Cleanliness is next to Godliness”. He laid stress on not just external cleanliness but inner cleanliness as well, that is, cleanliness of mind and soul, purity of heart with no vices for others.
- Gandhi advocated the process of patience, persuasion and perseverance for attainment of peace and love for harmony and was firmly convinced of the worth of gentleness as panacea for all evils.
- Gandhi also held that bridging the gulf between the well off and the rest was as essential for national integration as inter-religious record. He said that we must work for economic equality and social justice, which would remove the ills caused by distress and bitterness. He stressed that the foundation of equality, the core of harmony will have to be laid here now and built up brick by brick through ethical and economic satisfaction of the masses.
- Gandhi successfully demonstrated to a world, weary with wars and continuing destruction that adherence to Truth and Non-violence is not meant for individual behaviour alone but can be applied in global affairs too.
- Gandhi described seven social sins: Politics without principles; Wealth without work; commerce without morality; education without character; pleasure without conscience; science without humanity; and worship without sacrifice.
- Equality of religions is one of Gandhi’s cardinal beliefs. It is based first on the unfathomable and unknowable character of the one God who is over us all; secondly, on the never-ending forms of divine revelation and human religious responses to them; thirdly on the centrality of the law of non-violence enjoined by all the religions; fourthly, on the existence of errors and imperfections in all religious and fifthly, on the conviction that all religions are in evolution towards fuller realization of truth.
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