1.Discuss the Nagara styles of temple architecture and its subtypes depending upon the shape of Shikhara. (GS Paper-1, Art & Culture) (250 words)
|Structure of the Answer
· Start your answer with introduction of Nagara styles of temple architecture
· Then explain Variations in Nagara Style of architecture.
· Give examples
The Nagara or North Indian temple style
- The style of temple architecture that became popular in northern India is known as nagara. In North India it is common for an entire temple to be built on a stone platform with steps leading up to it.
- Further, unlike in South India it does not usually have elaborate boundary walls or gateways. While the earliest temples had just one tower, or shikhara, later temples had several.
- The garbhagriha is always located directly under the tallest tower.
Types of Nagara style
- There are many subdivisions of nagara temples depending on the shape of the shikhara. There are different names for the various parts of the temple in different parts of India; however, the most common name for the simple shikhara which is square at the base and whose walls curve or slope inward to a point on top is called the ‘latina’ or the rekha-prasada type of shikara.
- The second major type of architectural form in the nagara order is the phamsana. Phamsana buildings tend to be broader and shorter than latina ones. Their roofs are composed of several slabs that gently rise to a single point over the centre of the building, unlike the latina ones which look like sharply rising tall towers. Phamsana roofs do not curve inward; instead they slope upwards on a straight incline.
In many North Indian temples phamsana design is used for the mandapas while the main garbhagriha is housed in a latina building.
- The third main sub-type of the nagara building is what is generally called the valabhi These are rectangular buildings with a roof that rises into a vaulted chamber. The edge of this vaulted chamber is rounded, like the bamboo or wooden wagons that would have been drawn by bullocks in ancient times. They are usually called ‘wagon vaulted buildings’.
Some of the best examples of the north Indian style (Nagara style) of temple architecture are the Khajuraho Group of temples, Sun temple, Konark, Sun temple at Modhera, Gujarat and Ossian temple, Gujarat.
2. Why the Fundamental Rights in our Constitution has been criticized? (GS Paper-2, Polity) (250 words)
Structure of the Answer
· Discuss the criticism of Fundamental Rights
The Fundamental Rights are guaranteed by the Constitution to all persons without any discrimination. They uphold the equality of all individuals, the dignity of the individual, the larger public interest and unity of the nation. The Fundamental Rights enshrined in Part III of the Constitution have met with a wide and varied criticism. The arguments of the critics are:
- Excessive Limitations
They are subjected to innumerable exceptions, restrictions, qualifications and explanations. Hence, the critics remarked that the Constitution grants Fundamental Rights with one hand and takes them away with the other.
- No Social and Economic Rights
The list is not comprehensive as it mainly consists of political rights. It makes no provision for important social and economic rights like right to social security, right to work, right to employment, right to rest and leisure and so on. These rights are made available to the citizens of advanced democratic countries. Also, the socialistic constitutions of erstwhile USSR or China provided for such rights.
- No Clarity
They are stated in a vague, indefinite and ambiguous manner. The various phrases and words used in the chapter like ‘public order’, ‘minorities’, ‘reasonable restriction’, ‘public interest’ and so on are not clearly defined.
- No Permanency
They are not sacrosanct or immutable as the Parliament can curtail or abolish them, as for example, the abolition of the fundamental right to property in 1978. Hence, they can become a play tool in the hands of politicians having majority support in the Parliament. The judicially innovated ‘doctrine of basic structure’ is the only limitation on the authority of Parliament to curtail or abolish the fundamental right.
- Suspension during Emergency
The suspension of their enforcement during the operation of National Emergency (except Articles 20 and 21) is another blot on the efficacy of these rights.
- Expensive Remedy
The judiciary has been made responsible for defending and protecting these rights against the interference of the legislatures and executives. However, the judicial process is too expensive and hinders the common man from getting his rights enforced through the courts.
- Preventive Detention
The critics assert that the provision for preventive detention (Article 22) takes away the spirit and substance of the chapter on fundamental rights. It confers arbitrary powers on the State and negates individual liberty. It justifies the criticism that the Constitution of India deals more with the rights of the State against the individual than with the rights of the individual against the State. Notably, no democratic country in the world has made preventive detention as an integral part of their Constitutions as has been made in India.
In spite of the above criticism and shortcomings, the Fundamental Rights are significant as they constitute the bedrock of democratic system in the country and provide necessary conditions for the material and moral protection of man. They serve as a formidable bulwark of individual liberty.
3.Disasters are routinely divided into natural or human-made. Discuss the types of disasters. (GS Paper-3, Disaster Management) (150 words)
Structure of the Answer
· Discuss the natural disasters and their examples
· Then write about man-made disasters and their examples
Types of Disasters
Primarily disasters are triggered by natural hazards or human-induced, or result from a combination of both. In particular, human-induced factors can greatly aggravate the adverse impacts of a natural disaster. Even at a larger scale, globally, the UN Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has shown that human-induced climate change has significantly increased both the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events.
- A natural disaster is a natural process or phenomenon that may cause loss of life, injury or other health impacts, property damage, loss of livelihoods and services, social and economic disruption, or environmental damage.
- Various phenomena like earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards, tsunamis, and cyclones are all natural disasters that kill thousands of people and destroy billions of dollars of habitat and property each year.
- However, the rapid growth of the world’s population and its increased concentration often in hazardous environments has escalated both the frequency and severity of disasters.
- With the tropical climate and unstable landforms, coupled with deforestation, unplanned growth proliferation, non-engineered constructions make the disaster-prone areas more vulnerable. Developing countries suffer more or less chronically from natural disasters due to ineffective communication combined with insufficient budgetary allocation for disaster prevention and management.
- While heavy rains, cyclones, or earthquakes are all natural, the impacts may, and are usually, worsened by many factors related to human activity. The extensive industrialization and urbanization increases both the probability of human-induced disasters, and the extent of potential damage to life and property from both natural and human-induced disasters.
- The rise in population, rapid urbanization and industrialization, development within high-risk zones, environmental degradation, and climate change aggravates the vulnerabilities to various kinds of disasters. Due to inadequate disaster preparedness, communities, and animals are at increased risk from many kinds of human-induced hazards arising from accidents (industrial, road, air, rail, on river or sea, building collapse, fires, mine flooding, oil spills, etc.).
- Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) hazards rank very high in among the human-induced risks. Terrorist activities and secondary incidents add to these risks and call for adequate preparedness and planning.
4.What is the difference between Consequentialism and Non-consequentialism? Freedom of will is fundamental to Kantian Ethics. Explain (GS Paper-4, Ethics) (150 words)
|Structure of the Answer
· Explain difference between Consequentialism and Non-consequentialism
· Discuss the importance of freedom of will in Kantian Ethics
Reference: Lexicon’s Ethics
Consequentialism and non-Consequentialism are two opposite positions in Ethics.
- Consequentialism says that we ought to do whatever maximizes good consequences. It doesn’t matter what kind of thing we do. What matters is that we maximize good results.
- A popular theory of Consequentialism is the hedonistic utilitarianism, according to which we should always do whatever maximizes the balance of pleasure over pain for everyone affected by our action.
- Non-consequentialism says that some kinds of actions are wrong in themselves and not just wrong because they have bad consequences. In other words, human actions can be absolutely right or wrong regardless of the result, which follow from them
Freedom of will
- Kant was convinced that no system of morality could reasonably be either thought or spoken about without the presupposition of freedom of will. Because no one can be held responsible for what he/she does unless he/she is able to do otherwise. The will refers to a faculty, potency or force in a person involved in decision making.
- An action can be moral if and only if its agent is free from all internal and external influences while deciding upon the course of it.
- The ability to be motivated by reason alone is called by Kant as the autonomy of the will. This free will is the seat of the moral principle, the Categorical Imperative, which has the characteristics of universality and objectivity
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