[Studyplan] India 2013 Yearbook: Introduction and approach to Environment and Biodiversity (EnB) (part 1 of 6)

[Studyplan] India 2013 Yearbook: Introduction and approach to Environment and Biodiversity (EnB) (part 1 of 6)

  1. Utility in Prelims (CSAT)
  2. Utility in Mains
  3. Utility in Interview
  4. Limitations of yearbook
  5. General guidelines while using India Yearbook
    1. #1: Skipping sentences
    2. #2: Organizations
    3. #3: Schemes
  6. Yearbook Chapter Classification
  7. Environment and Biodiversity (EnB)
    1. EnB: organizations
    2. EnB: Important facts for MCQ/2m
    3. Laws/conventions/IR
    4. Environment : Policies
    5. EnB: Schemes
    6. EnB: Overview Topics

The India 2013 (also known as India yearbook) is made up of

  1. Overview of topics (like cement industry, Animal husbandry etc.)
  2. Organizations: structure function (like Competition Commission of India, NABARD etc.)
  3. Policies, laws Schemes, projects, missions. (like MNREGA, PMGSY, NRLM etc.)
  4. Some facts, GK (mostly chapter 1, 2, 3, 30, 32).
  5. Truckload of dates, numbers and tables (most of them useless from exam point of view).

Anyways, India Yearbook has specific utility in each stage of UPSC civil service exam.

Utility in Prelims (CSAT)

UPSC often asks MCQs based on

  1. Functions/ Jurisdiction of organizations: “which of the following ministry / organization looks after xyz matter?” and options given.
  2. Salient features of schemes: “which of the following are correct statements regarding XYZ schemes”. Then you’re given 2,3 or 4 statements and you’ve to identify the correct or incorrect statements.
  3. MCQ based on some absolute fact/GK given in yearbook.

Utility in Mains

In last two years, we can see the trend developing

Type Question Yearbook provides
Long questions (20, 25 markers) Often asking you to “analyse” or “evaluate” some topic. Fodder material.
Medium question (10, 12, 15 marks) Salient features of a scheme/policy/organization etc. Or “discuss” xyz thing. Direct answers (with followup point from net/newspapers).
2-markers
(2, 5 marks)
You’re given some name/term, and you’ve to write a few lines on it. Direct answers. (if the term is asked from yearbook).
  1. The schemes/terms with catchy names/short-forms = important for MCQ (prelims)/2markers (in mains). (e.g.SABLA, UJJWALA etc.) so better just maintain a note/MS excel file of it for quick revisions for prelims.

Utility in Interview

  1. Chapter 30 of yearbook provides you information about your home state and neighboring states = important for profile based questions.
  2. The “organization –functions- jurisdiction” angle very important. Because if Board-member asks you “what should be done to improve electricity output for Industries?” and you say “Power ministry should do xyz thing.” But actually that xyz matter falls under jurisdiction of coal ministry / environment ministry = you’re ruining your impression.
  3. The “Schemes” angle. If Board-member asks you “what should be done for Development of North Eastern states?” and you say “xyz thing should be done”. But that xyz thing is already being done under some scheme for last 10 years. Now Board-member thinks that You’re not aware of the realities. Your knowledge/understanding/reading is shallow.

So overall, yearbook helps you in above areas. But at the same time

Limitations of yearbook

  1. For private companies, success = how much money made. Similarly for Government, success = how much money spent. So whenever yearbook talks about a particular scheme, they give you a paragraph/table full of “xyz crores rupees were allotted during 2012-13” and so on….
  2. Such data Is hardly useful for exam (brain’s memory storage capacity). And because of such useless data, book is very bulky.
  3. Yearbook is written by Government. They want to paint a rosy picture. So, Yearbook won’t generally tell you problems / limitations / shortcomings associated with any scheme/organization.
  4. That’s why you’ve to follow newspaper columns on regular basis and maintain a dairy collecting the fodder points. (which you can cite during mains/essay/interview, when questions about “analyse, evaluate, suggest reforms” etc are asked.)
  5. Coverage is not “exhaustive” for every topic. You’ll still need to dig internet/ old newspaper articles to gather more points. (e.g. SEZ, or petro pricing etc.)

General guidelines while using India Yearbook

#1: Skipping sentences

Any statement or table given in yearbook, is important only IF it gives you one or more of the following information:

  1. Some fact/ feature/reason that can be asked in MCQ, 2m or descriptive.
  2. Some fancy name that can be asked in MCQ, 2m (e.g. Annapurna, Swadhar, Ujjwala etc.)
  3. Some Fodder point that can be cited in descriptive answer, essay, interview

^if the statement doesn’t contain any of these, then it’s a useless statement.

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