[Download] UPSC Mains-2016: Essay Paper & Topicwise Essay Papers of last 24 YEARS (1993-2016)

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Mitrapal Philosophy
  1. Instructions
  2. Section-A: 125 Marks
  3. Section-B: 125 Marks
  4. Analysis: Against past GS papers!
  5. Similarities: Against past Essay papers
  6. Essay-list: Topic wise last 24 years (1993-2016)

    1. 1) India: Democracy, administration, Society, culture
    2. 2) Economy, Development
    3. 3) Education
    4. 4) Quote based, Philosophy, Ethics
    5. 5) Women empowerment
    6. 6) International issues, Internal Security
    7. 7) Science-Technology

Instructions of Essay Paper-2016

  • On 3rd December 2016, UPSC conducted the Essay paper for the civil services mains examination.
  • The essay must be written in the medium authorized in the admission certificate which must be stated clearly on the cover of this question-cum-answer (QCA) booklet in the space provided. No marks will be given for answers written in medium other than authorized one.
  • Word limit, as specified, should be adhered to.
  • Any page or portion of the page left blank, must be struck off clearly.

Section-A: 125 Marks

Write any one of the following essay in 1000-1200 words.

  1. If development is not engendered, it is endangered.
    स्त्री- पुरुष के सामान सरोकारों को शामिल किये बिना विकास संकटग्रस्त है |
  2. Need brings greed, if greed increases it spoils breed.
    आवश्कता लोभ की जननी है, तथा लोभ का आधिक्य नस्लें बर्बाद करता है |
  3. Water disputes between States in federal India.
    संघीय भारत में राज्यों के बीच जल-विवाद |
  4. Innovation is the key determinant of economic growth and social welfare.
    नवप्रवर्तन आर्थिक संवृद्धि और सामाजिक कल्याण का अपरिहार्य निर्धारक है |

Section-B: 125 Marks

Write any one of the following essay in 1000-1200 words.

  1. Cooperative federalism: Myth or reality.
    सहकारी संघवाद : मिथक अथवा यथार्थ |
  2. Cyberspace and Internet: Blessing or curse to the human civilization in the long run?
    साइबरस्पेस और इन्टरनेट : दीर्ध अवधि में मानव सभ्यता के लिए वरदान अथवा अभिशाप |
  3. Near jobless growth in India: An anomaly or an outcome of economic reforms.
    भारत में लगभग रोजगारविहीन संवृद्धि : आर्थिक सुधार की विसंगति या परिणाम |
  4. Digital economy: A leveller or a source of economic inequality.
    डिजिटल अर्थवयवस्था : एक समताकारी या आर्थिक असमता का स्त्रोत |

Analysis: Against past GS papers!

Since Mains syllabus change in 2013, What UPSC asked in General studies papers, now they’ve asking similar in Essay paper-2016! Observe

Last 3 GS Mains Papers Essay Paper-2015
2015| GSM3: jobless growth in India due to capitalism? Jobless growth an outcome of economic reforms
2015| GSM2: concept of cooperative federalism. Cooperative federalism: myth or reality?
2013| GSM2: Constitutional mechanisms to resolve the inter-state water disputes have failed… Interstate water dispute.
 
2013| GSM4: Gandhi’s quote on “earth has sufficient resources to satisfy needs but not greed.” Need brings greed, if greed increases it spoils breed.

Similarities: Against past Essay papers

2015 2016
Since 2014- new trend started: Total 8 essay topics divided equally in two sections and you’ve to write one essay from each section System continued
Two topics required the student to take a stand

  1. Crisis faced in India: Moral *OR* Economic?
  2. Can capitalism bring inclusive growth (*YES or NO*)?
In section “B”- all four topics required the candidate to take stand. “either this OR that”.
Nothing directly from globalization. Same.

Dissimilarities against Paper Essay papers

UPSC Essay Paper 2016

2013 to 15 2016
2015: Section-A: Three essays on ethics/philosophy, and one on education. More diversity. One topic asked from Women-empowerment, ethics, polity, tech-economy each.
Both 2014, 15 they focused on value education. Nothing direct on education. But gradual shift to “innovation”
No essay on women empowerment since 2013, 14 and 15. Draught is over. Finally asked. Engenderment of Development.

Fear of capitalism- continues

Seems the UPSC examiner is too much worried capitalism vs. inclusive growth. observe

2015 2016
Themes on “capitalism / growth” vs “inclusiveness / development”.

  • Can capitalism bring inclusive growth?
  • Crisis faced in India – moral or economic.
Theme continues

  1. Near jobless growth: in India An anomaly or an outcome of economic reforms.
  2. Digital economy: A leveller or a source of economic inequality.

Another interpretation

  • could be that in 2016- both World bank report (Digital Dividend) and WEF-summit (4th industrial revolution)- highlighted the common theme that ICT, App-based,
  • On-demand economy is creating unequal opportunities wherein 10 member team of whatsapp, facebook making billions whereas 100 worker strong mfg. factories don’t even make crores.

Third interpretation: ofcourse, Narasimha Rao and 25th anniversary of LPG reforms!

Fear of Technology- continues

Seems the UPSC examiner is too much worried about the terminator-3 “Rise of machine”

इतना डर तो विपक्ष को भी नोटबंधी से नही लगता है!
2015 2016
Technology cannot replace manpower. . So continues to ask questions on this theme

  • Cyberspace- blessing/Curse?
  • Digital economy creates  inequality?
2000: Essay on charms and challenges of cyberworld. Cyberspace- blessing/Curse?

Essay-list: Topic wise last 24 years (1993-2016)

Each year, along with essay paper, I also upload topicwise compilation of all essays asked since 1993. However, this time, I’ve further refined the internal classification of the topics. Here it goes:

1India: Democracy, administration, Society, culture

1.1) India Since Independence

  • Is the Colonial mentality hindering India's Success? -2013
  • In the context of Gandhiji’s views on the matter, explore, on an evolutionary scale, the terms ‘Swadhinata’, ‘Swaraj’ and ‘Dharmarajya’. Critically comment on their contemporary relevance to Indian democracy -2012
  • Dreams which should not let India sleep. -2015
  • Why should we be proud of being Indians? -2000
  • Whither Indian democracy? -1995
  • How far has democracy in India delivered the goods? -2003
  • What we have not learnt during fifty years of independence. -1997
  • What have we gained from our democratic set-up? -2001
  • My vision of India in 2001 a.d. -1993

1.2) Federalism, Decentralization

  • Water disputes between States in federal India. -2016
  • Cooperative federalism : Myth or reality. -2016
  • Creation of smaller states and the consequent administrative, economic and developmental implication -2011
  • Evaluation of panchayati raj system in India from the point of view of eradication of power to people.  -2007
  • Water resources should be under the control of the central government. -2004
  • The language problem in India: its past, present and prospects. -1998

1.3) Administration

  • How should a civil servant conduct himself? -2003
  • Politics without ethics is a disaster. -1995
  • The VIP cult is a bane of Indian democracy -1996
  • Need for transparency in public administration -1996
  • The country’s need for a better disaster management system. -2000
  • Politics, bureaucracy and business – fatal triangle. -1994

1.4) Judiciary

  • Justice must reach the poor -2005
  • Judicial activism and Indian democracy. -2004
  • Judicial activism. -1997

1.5) Poverty, Social Justice

  • Economic growth without distributive justice is bound to breed violence. -1993
  • The focus of health care is increasingly getting skewed towards the ‘haves’ of our society. -2009
  • Food security for sustainable national development -2005
  • Reservation, politics and empowerment. -1999

1.6) Indian Culture and Values

  • Indian culture today: a myth or a reality? -2000
  • Modernism and our traditional socio-ethical values. -2000
  • The composite culture of India. -1998
  • The Indian society at the crossroads. -1994
  • From traditional Indian philanthropy to the gates-buffet model-a natural progression or a paradigm shift? -2010
  • New cults and godmen: a threat to traditional religion -1996

1.7) Media, TV & Cinema

  • Responsibility of media in a democracy. -2002
  • Role of media in good governance -2008
  • Does Indian cinema shape our popular culture or merely reflect it? -2011
  • How has satellite television brought about cultural change in Indian mindsets? -2007
  • Is sting operation an invasion on privacy? -2014
  • Mass media and cultural invasion. -1999
  • The misinterpretation and misuse of freedom in India. -1998

2Economy, Development

2.1) Growth vs Development

  • Digital economy: A leveller or a source of economic inequality. -2016
  • Innovation is the key determinant of economic growth and social welfare. -2016
  • Near jobless growth in India: An anomaly or an outcome of economic reforms. -2016
  • Crisis faced in India – moral or economic. -2015
  • Was it the policy paralysis or the paralysis of implementation which slowed the growth of our country? -2014
  • GDP (Gross Domestic Product) along with GDH (Gross Domestic Happiness) would be the right indices for judging the wellbeing of a country-2013
  • Can capitalism bring inclusive growth? -2015
  • Resource management in the Indian context. -1999

2.2) Environment vs Development

  • Ecological considerations need not hamper development. -1993
  • Protection of ecology and environment is essential for sustained economic development. -2006
  • Should a moratorium be imposed on all fresh mining in tribal areas of the country? -2010
  • Urbanization is a blessing in disguise. -1997
  • Urbanisation and its hazards -2008

2.3) MNCs

  • Globalization would finish small-scale industries in India. -2006
  • Multinational corporations – saviours or saboteurs -1994
  • Special economic zone: boon or bane -2008
  • Is the criticism that the ‘Public-Private-Partnership’ (PPP) model for development is more of a bane than a boon in the Indian context, justified ?-2012

2.4) Sectors of Economy

  • BPO boom in India.   -2007
  • Tourism: Can this be the next big thing for India? -2014
  • Are our traditional handicrafts doomed to a slow death? -2009

3Education

3.1) Values in Education

  • Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make a man more clever devil-2015
  • Independent thinking should be encouraged right form the childhood. -2007
  • Are the standardized tests good measure of academic ability or progress? -2014
  • Irrelevance of the classroom. -2001
  • Is the growing level of competition good for the youth? -2014
  • Literacy is growing very fast, but there is no corresponding growth in education. -1996
  • Is an egalitarian society possible by educating the masses ? -2008
  • What is real education? -2005

3.2) Scheme implementation

  •  “Education for all” campaign in India: myth or reality. -2006
  • Restructuring of Indian education system. -1995

3.3) Higher education

  • Privatization of higher education in India. -2002
  • Credit – based higher education system – status , opportunities and challenges -2011

4Quote based, Philosophy, Ethics

4.1) Character, honesty

  • Need brings greed, if greed increases it spoils breed. -2016
  • Character of an institution is reflected in its leader. -2015
  • With greater power comes greater responsibility. -2014
  • Words are sharper than the two-edged sword. -2014
  • Attitude makes, habit makes character and character makes a man.  -2007
  • He would reigns within himself and folds his passions and desires and fears is more than a king. -1993

4.2) Knowledge

  • There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so. -2003
  • Disinterested intellectual curiosity is the lifeblood of civilisation. -1995

4.3) Compassion

  • Compassion is the basic of all morality would -1993
  • Lending hands to someone is better than giving a dole. -2015
  • Be the change you want to see in others (Gandhi)-2013

4.4) Truth

  • Truth is lived, not taught -1996
  • When money speaks, the truth is silent. -1995
  • Search for truth can only be a spiritual problem. -2002

4.5) Youth, Discipline

  • Discipline means success, anarchy means ruin -2008
  • Youth is a blunder, manhood a struggle, old age a regret -1994
  • If youth knew, if age could. -2002
  • Youth culture today. -1999
  • Fifty Golds in Olympics: Can this be a reality for India? -2014

4.6) Towards excellence

  • Quick but steady wins the race. -2015
  • Useless life is an early death. -1994
  • Our deeds determine us, as much as we determine our deeds. -1995
  • The paths of glory lead but to the grave. -2002
  • The pursuit of excellence. -2001

5Women empowerment

5.1) @National Politics

  • Greater political power alone will not improve women’s plight. -1997
  • Women’s reservation bill would usher in empowerment for women in India. -2006
  • The new emerging women power: the ground realities. -1995

5.2) @World / Quote type

  • If women ruled the world -2005
  • The hand that rocks the cradle -2005

5.3) Empowerment overall

  • If development is not engendered, it is endangered. -2016
  • Whither women’s emancipation? -2004
  • Empowerment alone cannot help our women. -2001
  • Women empowerment: challenges and prospects. -1999

5.4) Compared to men

  • Woman is god’s best creation. -1998
  • Men have failed: let women take over. -1993
  • Managing work and home – is the Indian working woman getting a fair deal ?-2012

6International issues, Internal Security

6.1) Globalization

  • Geography may remain the same ; history need not. -2010
  • Modernisation and westernisation are not identical concepts. -1994
  • ‘ globalization’ vs. ‘ nationalism’ -2009
  • National identity and patriotism -2008
  • Globalizations and its impact on Indian culture. -2004
  • The masks of new imperialism. -2003
  • As civilization advances culture declines. -2003
  • The implications of globalization for India. -2000
  • My vision of an ideal world order. -2001
  • India’s contribution to world wisdom. -1998
  • The world of the twenty-first century. -1998
  • Preparedness of our society for India’s global leadership role. -2010

6.2) International Org./ Bilateral

  • Restructuring of UNO reflect present realities -1996
  • The global order: political and economic -1993
  • India’s role in promoting ASEAN co-operation. -2004
  • Importance of Indo-US nuclear agreement -2006

6.3) Security

  • Good fences make good neighbours -2009
  • Terrorism and world peace -2005
  • True religion cannot be misused. -1997
  • In the Indian context , both human intelligence and technical intelligence are crucial in combating terrorism -2011
  • Is autonomy the best answer to combat balkanization? -2007
  • Are we a ‘soft ’ state ? -2009

7Science-Technology

7.1) Science and Religion

  • Spirituality and scientific temper. -2003
  • Science and Mysticism : Are they compatible ?-2012

7.2) Science and Education

  • Modern technological education and human values. -2002
  • Value-based science and education. -1999
  • The march of science and the erosion of human values. -2001

7.3) Computer and internet

  • Cyberspace and Internet : Blessing or curse to the human civilization in the long run -2016
  • Increasing computerization would lead to the creation of a dehumanized society. -2006
  • The cyberworld: its charms and challenges. -2000
  • Computer: the harbinger of silent revolution. -1993

7.4) Sci-Tech: others

  1. Technology cannot replace manpower. -2015
  2. Science and technology is the panacea for the growth and security of the nation-2013
  3. The modern doctor and his patients. -1997
  4. The lure of space. -2004

Want more mock essay papers for practice? visit Mrunal.org/DOWNLOAD

Want more past papers of UPSC? visit Mrunal.org/DOWNLOAD

Mrunal recommends

  1. (free) NCERT, NIOS, TN-Books 4 History,Geo,Sci
  2. Indian Polity M.Laxmikanth (Hindi | English)
  3. Spectrum: Modern History (Hindi | English)
  4. Maths: Quantam CAT Sarvesh Kumar
  5. Objective General English SP Bakshi
  6. Word Power made Easy -Norman Lowe
  7. Topic wise Solved Paperset by Disha

53 Comments on “[Download] UPSC Mains-2016: Essay Paper & Topicwise Essay Papers of last 24 YEARS (1993-2016)”

    1. Thanks for meesage to all of you

  1. Who attempted First essay of Section A, that Engendered endagered thing? What is your interpretation of the topic? I mean many were confused.

    1. @ Naveen
      I guess it mean the balancing of gender equality for the development of society.

    2. It is about women equality in development.

    3. development and gender

    4. @ Naveen : I attempted the same. I am equally confused with the word Engendered. It is a verb which means to produce or procreate. When I saw the hindi translation, it has mentioned “men-women” which is english translates into GENDER. As per my view, the question paper setter should have used GENDER in place of ENGENDER. Moreover, GENDER does not simply include men and women, it also includes trans-genders. Nevertheless, though confused, I attempted it because it was comparatively easy for me. Let’s see. Rest Mrunal Sir can reflect light upon it more clearly.

      1. 1. If development is not engendered, it is endangered
        Context : If the development based on inequality of gender, it became devastation altogether.
        DIMENSIONS:
        Historical evidence: Since late civilization flourished in India and around the world, the key role played by women along with men carried the generation ahead with the new hope and perspective. Despite this fact, there were few incidences wherever the development is not based on equality of gender, it brought up the skewness in the development and whereby one section of society gets higher benefit than other which ultimately lead to chaos in the country. The are many a places in the world in past where female representation and their right were not granted which led to revolution in turn. The ideological believe, in such case, developed feminism.
        Geographical development: Unless the development is not open to all gender, there will be concentration of the particular gender in few place where they find more secure and safe and country will not reap the benefit of demographic dividend. More of the places, such as heavy works, will be dominated by the male gender as required strength. However, now a day, all such work can even be operated by technical support. It does not require muscular power to do so. Therefore, there should have even distribution of the gender to arrest the comparative higher development without discarding the others.
        Constitutional obligation: Keeping in this perspective, our forefather has envisaged the constitution enshrined with Article 15, equality in sex; education to the child in general and girl child in specific. Women empowerment, upliftment of the weaker section of the society, all this direct the state to development of the state with equality of the gender. Many a times, supreme court ruling direct the government, if any infringement found, to implement policy which is inclusive development at large. Recently, transgender will be allowed to travel in the train provide with the separate bogies. This will boost their moral and state will have good image amongst the world power.
        Social factor: Despite the fact that there is persistent effort toward the engender development, still the society is reeling under the patriarchal mindset. This mindset undermining the growth at large and more specific generating the marginalization of the society. Unless society accept that it is equality of the gender which eventually develop their surroundings, it is difficult to find the success at grass root level. Although, government effort to provide equal platform to all have been commendable, but there are few left which still need to be done.
        Economic factor: The simple question is; can a single gender bring the sign of development in the state? Is there any developed state in the world where without encompassing the all gender development, the growth has been possible? The answer must have been, none. It the state policy where economic development uplifts the state in world superpower position. If government will give support to a particular gender specific sector, say male in heavy industries, then the counterpart will be at the disadvantages side which state will loss to arrest the benefit of the demographic dividend.
        Technological & innovation factor: Rapid development of the information technology and IT enables services have provided the jobs to large sector of society in large and youth in particluar.IT sector have been offering the jobs at equal war foot considering the equality of sex where male and female do have reasonable proportion. This has provided good opportunities to even the girls in rural area to access to the internet facilities. They are now better aware about the many of the domestic items and better work with quality. Men and women participation have to witnessed in defense sector as well. We are now living in the progressive environment with the consideration of engendered development. If not, we might still be developing state amongst other but now we placed our position in world forum as emerging economy due to inclusive, engender and sustainable development.
        Ethical perspectives: Development should have envisaged the all the section of the society keeping with the view of the humanity and ethical societal change in governing the country by the leader of the state. Can we presume that a state can develop where there is feticide occurs in fetus knowing the gender, if it is female. There is not a single reason where such state will achieve the path of the development. The governing bodies, Institutions and each person should have ethical and moral responsibility toward the nation building respectively.
        At last note, it highly recommendable to all the stakeholders and entities to do any implementation of policies in the state based on the inclusive, sustainable and engendered otherwise it is we who have to bear the consequences at long term.

    5. It means that no society can develop when 50 % of its population is still held back due to social , economy, political reasons.

    6. development of indian society in all field should be independent from genders.I think they are asking only about men and women rights in todays society.because we are still living in that society which is still very slow increasing their step towards female riights.

  2. But how to download that in that in the form of pdf

  3. I forgot to strike off the blank pages..is that a big problem ?

  4. The eassy revolve around GENDER EQUALITY IS NECSSARY CONDITION TO GET BENIFITS FROM DEVELOPMENT…

  5. “Engendered” has nothing to do with gender….as far as english meaning goes…

  6. Section A—- water dispute….
    Section B—- digital economy

  7. Hv attempted that topic…n my simple Xplaination to this topic was that how gender inequality impacts development…..wrote mainly adverse impact of gender inequality…india’s rank ,sm example of scandevian countries etc….

  8. development has many aspect or diversified in nature..like wise religion, socital, industrial, spritual, enviornmental, agricultural, institutional, technoligical…sustainable and personal development and resources needs and their limits and transportations ….impact of globalisation on may be in all manner behavioral, food, shelter or cultural or geographical aspect or need …people develops their needs and imitating and importining others values and culture…. that is what engendered or propagate and so on thinks…… can be protect and propagate developments …its on going process and not in denger

  9. I did and wrote on development vs environment .. As engendered meaning is nothing related to gender on dictionary.. Did not read the hindi translation. :(

    1. Yes, you are correct. I think Hindi meaning contradicts with English.

  10. Great work sir..

  11. sir.
    ,mere paas bhartiya rajyvevastha laxmikanth ki 4th addition hai to kya hume 5th addition lena zaruri hai ,purani or new me kya diffrents hai plz hlp me sir

    1. nehi…par 2nd edition aur 3rd edition zaroor khareed lena….

  12. In second essay i was able to write only 700-800 words, does it will effect marks ? Some senior player please clerify.

    1. No problem provided your coverage should be 360 degree

  13. how cam i download from here plz tell me

  14. great guys really hats off who ever faced todays paper … god bless you all … all the best for future papers … and of course Mrunal sir thank you so much \,,/

  15. yes i wrote on this topic. I interpreted the dictionary meaning of engendered and hence wrote about unplanned development and its consequences. did not read the hindi translation

  16. Need :Greed
    Jobless Growth

  17. women development and jobless growth

  18. @ Naveen Mavi The topic wants how the development of nation or society if not distributed across genders-male or female, how the further consequences we need to face. Male & Female are part of society ,the opportunity for growth & development should be equal to both male 7 female.It will not happen that half part of ur body is full of blood supply & other part had been dried up without blood supply.This leads to Paralysis or Gangrene. So in this sense you need to articulate ur arguments & goes on giving examples.

  19. I have written essay with black pen. Is it prohibited? Marks katenge kya

    1. Yes…not just essay marks but some from your GS papers and optional papers as well.

  20. Engendered has nothing to do with gender. Engender means “to be felt”. The topic means that development must be felt by people in terms of increased incomes and opportunities not just GDP numbers. Its economic topic. Kindly correct me if i’m wrong.

    1. you are wrong…
      The line itself was picked from HDI report which mentioned Women need be involved in development

  21. Hi Abhijit, thank you.
    Indeed i wrote the same, just wanted an assurance (hehehe) as “engendered” have different meanings dictionary-wise this makes the topic itself very confusing and tough, at least i find the same.
    I didn’t find a single person around me who attempted this one. (Not to say that only i understood it’s meaning lol)

  22. The essay topic regarding “engendered” has been quoted from Human Development Report 1995 by UNDP. The Report analyses the progress made in reducing gender disparities in the past few decades, highlighting the wide and persistent gap between women’s expanding capabilities and limited opportunities.

  23. hello fellas . can anyone send any link through which i can get some outline on these topics ? thankyou

  24. Hello guyzz….I think what ever topic came in Essay,i think the topic “Water dispute among states in federal India” is some how easy in section-A.But in section-B the topics are very difficult…

  25. Bhai log
    Don’t fikar about word engender….

    Mains funda is very simple …..what you have written must be relatively better than others … There is not anything like right or wrong!!!!

    All the best to my fellows!!!

  26. Bhai log
    Don’t fikar about word engender….

    Mains funda is very simple …..what you have written must be relatively better than others … There is not anything like right or wrong!!!!

    All the best to my fellows!!!

  27. Its the starting line of UNDP Report of 1995 and they have related it with gender.

  28. Everything is fine except GS-2.!!!

  29. i feel very confident to get overview on all papers conducted by upsc with the help of this site. now i can decide good stratgy for next exam… thanks alot mrunnal sir…

  30. hello friends,this is Anil Saini living in ajmer.i am also preparing for ‘civil services(upsc)ias’ exam.I have recently given ‘mains exam this(2016)year’ and highly expecting interview call from upsc.I am interested in making an ‘ias discussion’ groups to discuss national and international issues.I also have large experience in clearing prelims in current format.Thus if you are interested then call me on this number’7742776063′.

  31. Cooperative federalism: Myth or reality. sir in this easy, we can only talk about one topic or we can descriptively explain both and come to the solution what is it (myth or reality) .

  32. thank you so much sir , mrunal’s last year post on essays immensely helped me in 2016. it seems atleast 1 question from each section was asked from past papers.

  33. Dear Sir,

    Please let me know where i can get previous year language paper question paper pdf

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