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Post Essay and get reviewed : Essay Mains 2015

Hi,

I am creating this thread so that interested people writing Essay for the first time or so and post their essays and get it reviewed by people who would be interested in writing essays or getting them evaluated.

I am posting a sample essay and a couple of essays inboxed to me and sharing the feedback so that others can benefit from it.

@Akita, you have some experience with Essay having scored well. You can also share some feedback.

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Essay-Can India create next Google or Apple.docx
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*No good deed goes unpunished*
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Comments

  • My review:-

    @India you have scored well in essay almost everytime. Please provide a feedback to the essay as well.

    Feedback of the essay posted above :-


    The essay you have written, does not fit into the conventional UPSC style of essay writing. What you have provided is a "theory" or "opinion" and not an essay per se as demanded by UPSC.

    Your strengths lie in good analytical skills and good command over English. Unfortunately this does not immediately convert to good marks in essay paper. An essay as above can fetch both 50 and 150 in UPSC. You would want to score a secure 120+ - 130+ in essay at least , irrespective of the teacher checking your paper, wont you?

    Think of the topic again, and give me a structure of the essay .

    Do not write YOUR OPINION IN AN ESSAY, or a logical theory, because if the examiner disagrees with your theory you end up getting 50-80 marks.

    So reply back with a structure of the essay. As in give me list of 5-8 questions that you will be answering / discussing in the essay. I will tell you how to revolve your answer along those questions.

    The problem with essays as such

    The biggest problem with UPSC answer checkers is that a lot of candidates, by which I mean about 5000 or so will not have prepared well for the Mains exam well and will write redundant answers, or irrelevant answers .

    Now, a checker has seen at least 10 off topic answers, consistently awarding very low marks or 0 marks for off topic answers or essays.

    Your essay is very likely to be misjudged to be an off topic essay no matter how well and thoughtfully you have written it.

    In UPSC there are the good essays, the average essay and the bad essay being awarded very low, above average and good marks ( not respectively ).

    A sure shot way to get low marks is 1) either write off topic essay OR 2) appear as if the essay is off topic

    For average marks, its easy to get, ( Average is something around 50% in essay ) if make the examiner feel the essay addresses the topic - no extra brilliance is required.

    For great essays - two things - 1) Strictly On Topic 2) Covering all dimensions 3) Something extra ( or at least the examiner thinks so ) and 4) some luck.


    How to avoid getting low marks.


    Write an average essay covering all the points. The oldest trick in the book is to frame a structure covering all dimensions of the essay topic. Just follow it and nowhere should the examiner feel that you have lost track of the topic - which penalizes you.

    Also, keep sentences short, don't delve into a theory too deeply, and do not mention a theory or idea that requires an explanation of more than 2 lines. What you write should be self explanatory or do not write it, no matter how brilliant it is.

    Lastly,
    I cannot write this in English so writing it in Hindi -

    Examiner ko kucchh samjhane ki koshish mat karo. Agar usko jayada dimaag lagana pad gaya toh number kam ho jayenege. Jo likho woh ekdum se samajh aa jana chahiye - even if that thing is very obvious.
    *No good deed goes unpunished*
  • “Poverty is the worst form of violence.”—Mahatma Gandhi

    Ever wondered why so many children are out begging on the streets when they should be in schools studying! Why do so many farmers commit suicide every year! Or why are so many youth unemployed even after so many years of independence?

    The answer to all these questions is simple. They are all victims of the crime called poverty. What is poverty? What are the crippling disabilities that poverty imposes on the poor? What are the consequences of these disabilities? What can we do to alleviate the pain of this violence called poverty? These are some issues that we will examine in this essay.

    Poverty and its causes
    The definition of poverty has been a hot topic of scholarly debate on global level. In India also, it has been defined in different parameters such as ‘Per Capita Income’ and ‘Calorific Value’. Scholarly research aside, poverty is the lack of sufficient food to fill the stomachs of the family. It is the inability to have proper clothes or shelter. It is the absence of quality education for a man’s children. It is the lack of appropriate healthcare for a pregnant woman. In a nutshell poverty is the inability of a man to live his life with dignity.

    That a man should have access to all these basic necessities of life and live with dignity should be a natural way after 68 years of independence. But it is not to be. What could be the possible reasons for this persistence? Poverty has become a vicious cycle wherein a man born in poor family does not have access to adequate nutrition which affects his health. He does not have access to quality education, either at home or school reducing his employability. Since he has restricted employability, he gets work in unskilled or semi-skilled sectors and at times he does not get work at all. His income is naturally meager and insufficient to support his generally large family. The large family is also a result of the fear psychosis about the longevity of children. And with children the cycle starts all over again.

    There are multiple factors reinforcing this vicious cycle. Corruption, poor socio economic infrastructure and population explosion are few of the most important ones. Former Prime Minister Rajeev Gandhi famously said that only 10 paise out of a rupee reaches the intended beneficiary in our country. This irony still remains as was found in a recent study conducted by Transparency International. Corruption in turn adversely affects the delivery of socio economic infrastructure including education, health, sanitation, power and energy security, food security and so on. Lastly the population explosion put India on the back foot in terms of growth. We sustain almost 17% population of the world with only 2.4% of the land.

    The ‘Violence’ of Poverty
    Poverty was termed as the worst form of violence since it automatically puts the poor at a disadvantage without any explicit form of violence. That we have come to assume it as a naturally occurring phenomenon is even worse. Poverty inflicts a crippling blow on the life time opportunities of the lower income sections of our country. These consequences of poverty can be described at individual, societal and national levels.

    At individual level poverty results in poor nutrition, food insecurity, lack of access to quality shelters, unemployment, insanitation which hinder the physical and psychological growth of the poor. Also people are increasingly moving out in search of job opportunities which lead to fragmented families. This phenomenon results in emotional stress as well.

    At societal level poverty has resulted in the class divide, rural-urban divide, growing social tensions leading to increasing crime rates and naxalism in the red corridor. Of late poverty is giving rise to another dangerous trend. There have been increasing incidents of poor minority youths joining terror outfits at both national as well as global level such as IS. Al Qaeda has already expressed its intent to spread its network in India and poverty creates fertile recruiting grounds for them in the subcontinent. The poor sections are also easily manipulated by the political class for their own vested interests. They have invariably become a vote bank across India with no efforts to improve their living condition.

    At regional and national level also poverty has given rise to diverse concerns ranging from inter regional divide to environmental issues such as consumption of inexpensive but high pollution fossil fuels such as kerosene. The lop-sided development in some advanced states of the country has resulted in migration of people from backward states in search of jobs.

    Who is responsible?
    The blame for poverty can easily be placed upon the government but that will be like finding a escape goat for all our problems. The government is no doubt the biggest culprit as it’s their accountability to remove the poverty from our country. Successive governments have failed at this task or have neglected the kind of attention the issue of poverty deserves. They have simply not done enough. Every year tonnes of food grains rot in the FCI godowns when there are so many people who sleep hungry at night. Substantial amount of power is lost in pilferage and transmission wastes. Corruption plays its own part in almost all aspects related to poor.
    Apart from the government, the industries also have helped in the growing interregional divide and rural-urban divide. They have not invested as much as they should have in the skill developments of the workforce. Even when the industrial houses have invested in the backward states because of natural resources, they have brought the skilled workforce from the outside. They have not put any efforts to train the local population for their purpose. Thus they have also been a culprit in creating the gulf between developed and underdeveloped states.

    Lastly the common man is also to blame for the wretched condition of the poor. We are increasingly becoming a wasteful lot. We waste food, power, water, energy fuels and so on when so many of our fellow countrymen are deprived of these basic amenities. Perhaps if we are a little frugal, we can make a difference towards the condition of the poor.

    Way Forward
    The government has launched a range of programmes to eradicate poverty and bring inclusive development in our country. Such programmes are aimed at skill development, employment opportunities, healthcare, clean energy mechanisms, rooting out corruption and so on. Some of the important initiatives include Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna for financial inclusion of the marginalized sections, Skill India Programme, Din Dayal Antyodaya Yojna for enhancing employability, Make in India for increasing employment opportunities, Mudra Bank for encouraging low cost entrepreneurship, Jan Aushadhi scheme to provide affordable generic medicines to the poor etc.

    Apart from these government initiatives we can link ration cards to Aadhar enable PMJDY accounts to root out corruption in the PDS mechanism. Also the participatory development mechanisms should be strengthened.

    The industries should be compelled to source a certain proportion of workforce from the state itself so that the local population may also benefit from it. Their CSR activities can also be channeled towards desired direction in developing the backward regions.

    A recent SC judgement providing for compulsory enrolment of government servants into government schools is an interesting example how we can improve the quality of service to the poor. More such decisions should be taken so that the quality of service delivery of different government departments can be improved up to the competitive levels.

    An initiative by Dabbdawalas of Mumbai is also an example how a common man can help towards the cause of the poverty. The people who do not finish their lunch donate it to the poor children. Dabbawalas collect this food and distribute it to the poor children through an NGO. Another example can be sought in the “Super 30” initiative where a philanthropic teacher is preparing underprivileged children for IIT entrance examination.

    Much has been done on the poverty front but still much more is still to be done. And for that all the stakeholders including government, businesses and the common man will have to gear up. It’s high time that we put concentrated efforts towards eradicating poverty from our country.
    Gunning for glory!
  • I think I should have uploaded a Docx file. :-O

    This was a rather broad topic. Hence, I do not feel satisfied to the treatment that I have dealt to it. Much is left to be desired.

    What should be the approach when we are presented with a vague or generalistic kind of a topic?

    @Neyawn sir, any feedback would be great!
    Gunning for glory!
  • @mistborn :-

    What is poverty? What are the crippling disabilities that poverty imposes on the poor? What are the consequences of these disabilities? What can we do to alleviate the pain of this violence called poverty? These are some issues that we will examine in this essay.

    This is exactly the thing around which your essay should revolve and is sure shot way of getting at least around 50%.


    Its not a bad idea to break into sub topics. Some more ways to increase marks are :- in a subtopic , write down a list of points that are countable - like firstly, secondly, thirdly - etc

    So the examiner ends up adding a few more marks because of the number of points given.

    Try to get an objective assessment as far as possible.
    *No good deed goes unpunished*
  • Thanks @Neyawn bro! I already get a better picture how to better frame this essay.
    Gunning for glory!
  • @misfitmedico Can you post an essay here too? We will try to arrive at a safe essay ?
    *No good deed goes unpunished*
  • @Neyawn
    Please review my essay, give me feedback and award marks.
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  • @Neyawn
    Please review my essay, give me feedback and award marks.
    [ sorry for the not so good quality of images ]
    I will go through it as soon as I have some time, but can you answer a basic question first:-

    Your topic is:-

    India's foreign relations and its effect on her peace and security.

    What is the structure that you have followed? What questions or dimensions have you tried to address?

    Like give me the breakup like:-

    -Introduction
    -Brief History or evolution of foreign relations
    - Defining peace and security
    - Internal & External security
    - Immediate neighbors relations
    - Relations with developed nations
    - Regional associations and peace and security
    - Challenges
    - Addressing concerns - ways and means
    - Way ahead/ conclusion

    ( The above is a bit random , just give me a wireframe of your essay and we can begin @master4341 )

    *No good deed goes unpunished*
  • @Neyawn
    Please review my essay, give me feedback and award marks.
    [ sorry for the not so good quality of images ]
    I will go through it as soon as I have some time, but can you answer a basic question first:-

    Your topic is:-

    India's foreign relations and its effect on her peace and security.

    What is the structure that you have followed? What questions or dimensions have you tried to address?

    Like give me the breakup like:-

    -Introduction
    -Brief History or evolution of foreign relations
    - Defining peace and security
    - Internal & External security
    - Immediate neighbors relations
    - Relations with developed nations
    - Regional associations and peace and security
    - Challenges
    - Addressing concerns - ways and means
    - Way ahead/ conclusion

    ( The above is a bit random , just give me a wireframe of your essay and we can begin @master4341 )

    my basic structure is:
    1. Visionary Introduction
    2. Evolution in India's foreign relations in Ancient, Medieval , Modern, Post Independence and Post Cold War era.
    3. Major focus is of Current context in later half part of essay.
    4. Covered neighbors and well as nations far apart.
    5. Challenges and tackling measures are also dealt but not in detail manners - time constraint - wrote this essay in total of 1 hours.
    6. Ending essay with R.N. Tagore poem lines.

    -- Please review and award marks -
    [ this essay is written in total of 1 Hour ]
  • @master4341

    Your essay writing is good , you will easily get more than 110 in this essay.

    Having thrice written mains and always got good marks , the reason was truth, honesty and able to express your self.

    Don't try to fool the examiner with structure and all that stuff. This will make the essay like some newspaper editorial , checkers are not checking words of essay, they are checking you.
    Don't pretend to be artificial.


    Originality is the key to get good marks .
    I read your essay line by line , its really good........
  • @Neyawn
    Please review my essay, give me feedback and award marks.
    [ sorry for the not so good quality of images ]
    I will go through it as soon as I have some time, but can you answer a basic question first:-

    Your topic is:-

    India's foreign relations and its effect on her peace and security.

    What is the structure that you have followed? What questions or dimensions have you tried to address?

    Like give me the breakup like:-

    -Introduction
    -Brief History or evolution of foreign relations
    - Defining peace and security
    - Internal & External security
    - Immediate neighbors relations
    - Relations with developed nations
    - Regional associations and peace and security
    - Challenges
    - Addressing concerns - ways and means
    - Way ahead/ conclusion

    ( The above is a bit random , just give me a wireframe of your essay and we can begin @master4341 )

    my basic structure is:
    1. Visionary Introduction
    2. Evolution in India's foreign relations in Ancient, Medieval , Modern, Post Independence and Post Cold War era.
    3. Major focus is of Current context in later half part of essay.
    4. Covered neighbors and well as nations far apart.
    5. Challenges and tackling measures are also dealt but not in detail manners - time constraint - wrote this essay in total of 1 hours.
    6. Ending essay with R.N. Tagore poem lines.

    -- Please review and award marks -
    [ this essay is written in total of 1 Hour ]

    Went through your essay.

    Good about the essay:-

    You have managed to cover all major points, covered internal security , external security, good intro and good conclusion. This should help score well. Keyword intensity is high - which is a good think.

    It is not an opinion like a column in a newspaper - which is prone to fluctuations in marks, and people vary between 50-150 marks - something that you wouldn't risk.

    What will need to be improved:-

    - Evolution of foreign policy has taken almost 25%-33% . Quite elaborate and coming to the topic has taken a bit longer. Thankfully you have linked the evolution also to the topic.

    You will have to wind up within 15% or less before you introduce the topic directly.

    - You do not have to cover anything in detail, just mentioning it will suffice, ensuring that nothing has been skipped. You have done that well. In fact never get into the detail of anything. Especially in a the current multiple essay format.

    - Do not think any further tips can be given.

    - You will need to write across 3-5 topics including the ones which may not be in your comfort area. That should be enough for your essay prep. Also, one day write as per UPSC pattern and timing within 3 hours.

    I recommend having a structure because it helps you not lose track. It is very very common for people to get emotional in the exam and write on only one dimension and expend all words on it, and by the time they realize it they don't have time or word left.

    Hence having a structure helps that you end up writing a balanced essay, which should help secure around 50%. Anything below 125 in current scenario will not be helpful.



    *No good deed goes unpunished*
  • Last year one of my friend whose english is very good got only 95 marks , he was always aiming for more than 125 marks . whereas i always aimed for less, 110 to 115 was okay for me.
    But i got 133 marks in essay, even i was shocked. Some how able to clear the cutoff , got very good marks in interview and got a rank in lower services,

    so Zyada aim mat karo, Try to be optimum in every subject , yeh mat socho ki essay ya ethics me150 marks aa jaye, aisa nahi hota .
    Higher aim ke chakkar me admi risk leta hai, woh kai bar counter productive ho jati hai, bahut bar.
    Balance is the key in this exam.

    @Neyawn sorry brother! But i don't agree with your review and the way you are thinking . May be i am wrong , may be i am right. No one can decide this who is right who is wrong , only upsc can.
  • edited October 2015
    .

  • @kalla_brahman Its okay :)

    You don't have to agree.

    Following a structure and writing a balanced answer covering all dimensions isn't something that can elicit much disagreement though.

    Secondly, not getting 125 is equally not going to help, esp for GEN category students! You don't have ranks beyond 600 in GEN category, so one has to somehow get at least around 125 to be in there ! This isn't very ambitious. Aiming at 140-150 would be ambitious, something which you cannot target.

    *No good deed goes unpunished*
  • edited October 2015
    Please review

    Essay Topic: “I object to violence because, when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.” (1500 Words)

    First world war gave us Nazism. Nazism gave us second world war. What is common to the three?

    Of all the creations of God,there exists a special place for humans. They love fiercely and fight fiercely.They are both creator and destroyer in themselves.Many civilizations came before and later perished.Throughout this history there has been one constant factor accompanying humanity: violence.These events raise some serious questions.

    Is violence a natural state of mind?

    Why do people resort to violence in first place?

    What good it does?

    Why don't they learn from the past?

    Violence fosters culture of alienation.It destroys moral conscience and corrupts the ability to evaluate choices.It segregates emotions from rationality and gets pleasure from pain of others.It creates destruction and destroys the bonds that hold humans together.Thus,Violence is in direct conflict with the basic values of humanity. This proves that violence is not a natural state of mind.

    In an ideal world love and happiness should prevail.From Buddha to Mahavira,from Gandhi to Mandela;this world has seen great souls leading the way in fight against violence.But this only remains symbolic.Humans are greedy,egoistic and selfish.This changes all the dynamics.

    Why people resort to violence and what good it does?

    Science of violence stems from Darwin's concept of evolution.To ensure the natural existence of different species,competition takes place. Violence is a natural outcome of this competition.It helps the dominating species to stay alive and in this process weaker ones are wiped out.This is mainly true for animals,but its manifestation in humans are not hard to find.Hitler justified Jews mass genocide on the basis of theory of racial purity.This was the worst form of violence the world had ever seen.But it did not stop there. World has seen Rwandan genocide,Serbian genocide,India-Pakistan partition genocide,Bangladesh genocide since then.Many others go unnoticed.Competitive interests,religious faith,community attachment and above-all distorted minds are major reasons behind such massacre.

    What good violence does?

    Violence acts as a relief valve.It satiates temporary dissatisfaction and fulfills the desire of domination.Many justify violence on these lines. USA dropped two nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and justified it on the basis that if the bombs had not been dropped,second world war would have continued for an extended time. Lets see what good this bombing did.

    It ended second world war?Yes,but not because of the bomb itself,the war had virtually ended before it.

    Then would it be justified if the nuclear bombs were used in 1942 and not in 1945?The rational human answer considering the preceding arguments(of pre-mature ending of war) would be yes.

    But the natural justice and theory of rights of individuals would discredit any such claim.

    So any action of violence does injustice at two fronts:

    1.It disrespects natural rights.

    2. It disrespects the outcome of the action.

    The second part of above theory acts as a self-feeding mechanism and creates further space and opportunities for violence. One can argue that violence of First world led to Nazism. Violence of Nazism led to Second world war. Second world war led to destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.Against these the numbers of people died in such wars are beyond imagination. No logic can justify such gross violation of human rights.

    Seen in Indian context,Colonial policies created atmosphere for British to perpetrate violence of all types:mental,physical and spiritual. Not withstanding with the enemy policies,Gandhiji stayed true to his practice of non-violence.All the three major movements he led,from Non cooperation movement to civil disobedience movement to quit India movement,he showed a remarkable consistency in staying true to principles of Non-violence.On the eve of August revolution,he said the following words:"Do and Die". But he said these words also "I object to violence because, when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent."Connecting these two gives us the idea about this consistency.This consistency is what makes Gandhiji a global figure.No doubt,it took time and Gandhiji had to face criticisms also but India got the freedom and world recognized the power of non-violence. Martin Luther King in his "I have a dream" shows the similar idea of resilience and resistance that Gandhiji practiced against British government.Mandela challenged apartheid regime and spend good twenty seven years of his life in prisons.But the resilience worked.Not only it ended up apartheid regime,but also resulted in political participation of oppressed Black people.Mandela was chosen the president and world accepted again the power of non-violence.On his death,leaders flew all over the world to attend his funeral. What made these people so big? It is the resistance,the resistance of non-violence they practiced and preached which made them venerable.

    The resiliency of non-violence has miraculous powers.It is non-defeating in nature and creates long-lasting impact. Great and evil hearts can equally be won through it.It gives peace and tranquility of mind,but above all it makes a human, human.It is this humane character that makes non-violence different from all other virtues.

    Now,we come to an important question.When the world has seen power of non-violence and has equally been witness to destruction caused by violence and when almost everyone preaches the ideals of non-violence in schools,college and various conferences,why do we resort to violence time and again?

    At this point distinction can be made of two types of violence:

    1. Community level

    2. Individual level

    The holocaust was a community level violence,so are wars and other genocides. Ashoka,the magadha ruler before he adopted Buddhism will fit under this category. Colonialism and imperialism were the diffused-continuous face of community violence that took place on a daily basis.

    Individual level is the biggest contributor to culture of violence.The acts related to violation of routine law and order,murder,rape,vengeance etc can be put under it.People belonging here have great propensity to join the community level violence whenever their is an opportunity. This especially gets naked during communal clash and riots.Godhara and Muzzafarnagar riots were testament of this inherent violence that still perverse the minds of many.

    This microcosm of violence works at a very mini-level.If left unaltered it will grow in size and any dissatisfaction will further increase it.We can co-relate with a "need hierarchy theory" given by a well known psychologist Abraham Maslow. Malsow' s theory recognizes different level of needs almost arranged in a hierarchical order,that means until the lower level needs are not satisfied,people won't care about the upper level needs.So a hungry person would like to have food first and anything else latter.A terrorist is also a human being before he is turned a terrorist.Certain frustrations are inbuilt in to their mind,some of which might be state perpetrated and some might be falsely fabricated by their leaders.When these needs are not filled,all other needs don't matter to them.Patriotism and human spirit are useless terms for such people.These interplay of need-dissatisfaction is used to fuel violent behavior.The Maoist problem of India gets its elementary form of disapproval of state machinery on similar lines. To work against these problems will require understanding of realities and adoption of corrective measures.Else,the culture of violence will continue till we see the end of humanity.

    ( 1261 words )
    One day, perhaps, love may die of disuse, left to rust in wind and weather.
  • @master4341

    Your essay writing is good , you will easily get more than 110 in this essay.

    Having thrice written mains and always got good marks , the reason was truth, honesty and able to express your self.

    Don't try to fool the examiner with structure and all that stuff. This will make the essay like some newspaper editorial , checkers are not checking words of essay, they are checking you.
    Don't pretend to be artificial.


    Originality is the key to get good marks .
    I read your essay line by line , its really good........
    @kalla_brahman

    Thanks for the review and Marks given.
    I have also given mains in 2013 and 2014, and my marks in these two attempts were 130 and 135 respectively, but in these two attempts my medium was Hindi.

    For 2015 , I have changed my medium to English, hence a bit worried with my essay marks this year.
    Thank you.
  • @Neyawn
    Please review my essay, give me feedback and award marks.
    [ sorry for the not so good quality of images ]
    I will go through it as soon as I have some time, but can you answer a basic question first:-

    Your topic is:-

    India's foreign relations and its effect on her peace and security.

    What is the structure that you have followed? What questions or dimensions have you tried to address?

    Like give me the breakup like:-

    -Introduction
    -Brief History or evolution of foreign relations
    - Defining peace and security
    - Internal & External security
    - Immediate neighbors relations
    - Relations with developed nations
    - Regional associations and peace and security
    - Challenges
    - Addressing concerns - ways and means
    - Way ahead/ conclusion

    ( The above is a bit random , just give me a wireframe of your essay and we can begin @master4341 )

    my basic structure is:
    1. Visionary Introduction
    2. Evolution in India's foreign relations in Ancient, Medieval , Modern, Post Independence and Post Cold War era.
    3. Major focus is of Current context in later half part of essay.
    4. Covered neighbors and well as nations far apart.
    5. Challenges and tackling measures are also dealt but not in detail manners - time constraint - wrote this essay in total of 1 hours.
    6. Ending essay with R.N. Tagore poem lines.

    -- Please review and award marks -
    [ this essay is written in total of 1 Hour ]

    Went through your essay.

    Good about the essay:-

    You have managed to cover all major points, covered internal security , external security, good intro and good conclusion. This should help score well. Keyword intensity is high - which is a good think.

    It is not an opinion like a column in a newspaper - which is prone to fluctuations in marks, and people vary between 50-150 marks - something that you wouldn't risk.

    What will need to be improved:-

    - Evolution of foreign policy has taken almost 25%-33% . Quite elaborate and coming to the topic has taken a bit longer. Thankfully you have linked the evolution also to the topic.

    You will have to wind up within 15% or less before you introduce the topic directly.

    - You do not have to cover anything in detail, just mentioning it will suffice, ensuring that nothing has been skipped. You have done that well. In fact never get into the detail of anything. Especially in a the current multiple essay format.

    - Do not think any further tips can be given.

    - You will need to write across 3-5 topics including the ones which may not be in your comfort area. That should be enough for your essay prep. Also, one day write as per UPSC pattern and timing within 3 hours.

    I recommend having a structure because it helps you not lose track. It is very very common for people to get emotional in the exam and write on only one dimension and expend all words on it, and by the time they realize it they don't have time or word left.

    Hence having a structure helps that you end up writing a balanced essay, which should help secure around 50%. Anything below 125 in current scenario will not be helpful.



    Thanks @Neyawn for your review,
    But please give me marks also, so I will get an idea, where I stand.
    My marks in cse 13 and 14 were 130 and 135 respectively , with hindi as a medium.

    this year my medium is english.
    I will surely follow your advice for a 'structured' essay.
    I will also write on some uncomfortable topics and full 3 hour format and show it to you.
    Thank you
  • @Neyawn
    Please review my essay, give me feedback and award marks.
    [ sorry for the not so good quality of images ]
    I will go through it as soon as I have some time, but can you answer a basic question first:-

    Your topic is:-

    India's foreign relations and its effect on her peace and security.

    What is the structure that you have followed? What questions or dimensions have you tried to address?

    Like give me the breakup like:-

    -Introduction
    -Brief History or evolution of foreign relations
    - Defining peace and security
    - Internal & External security
    - Immediate neighbors relations
    - Relations with developed nations
    - Regional associations and peace and security
    - Challenges
    - Addressing concerns - ways and means
    - Way ahead/ conclusion

    ( The above is a bit random , just give me a wireframe of your essay and we can begin @master4341 )

    my basic structure is:
    1. Visionary Introduction
    2. Evolution in India's foreign relations in Ancient, Medieval , Modern, Post Independence and Post Cold War era.
    3. Major focus is of Current context in later half part of essay.
    4. Covered neighbors and well as nations far apart.
    5. Challenges and tackling measures are also dealt but not in detail manners - time constraint - wrote this essay in total of 1 hours.
    6. Ending essay with R.N. Tagore poem lines.

    -- Please review and award marks -
    [ this essay is written in total of 1 Hour ]

    Went through your essay.

    Good about the essay:-

    You have managed to cover all major points, covered internal security , external security, good intro and good conclusion. This should help score well. Keyword intensity is high - which is a good think.

    It is not an opinion like a column in a newspaper - which is prone to fluctuations in marks, and people vary between 50-150 marks - something that you wouldn't risk.

    What will need to be improved:-

    - Evolution of foreign policy has taken almost 25%-33% . Quite elaborate and coming to the topic has taken a bit longer. Thankfully you have linked the evolution also to the topic.

    You will have to wind up within 15% or less before you introduce the topic directly.

    - You do not have to cover anything in detail, just mentioning it will suffice, ensuring that nothing has been skipped. You have done that well. In fact never get into the detail of anything. Especially in a the current multiple essay format.

    - Do not think any further tips can be given.

    - You will need to write across 3-5 topics including the ones which may not be in your comfort area. That should be enough for your essay prep. Also, one day write as per UPSC pattern and timing within 3 hours.

    I recommend having a structure because it helps you not lose track. It is very very common for people to get emotional in the exam and write on only one dimension and expend all words on it, and by the time they realize it they don't have time or word left.

    Hence having a structure helps that you end up writing a balanced essay, which should help secure around 50%. Anything below 125 in current scenario will not be helpful.



    Thanks @Neyawn for your review,
    But please give me marks also, so I will get an idea, where I stand.
    My marks in cse 13 and 14 were 130 and 135 respectively , with hindi as a medium.

    this year my medium is english.
    I will surely follow your advice for a 'structured' essay.
    I will also write on some uncomfortable topics and full 3 hour format and show it to you.
    Thank you
    Your essay is naturally quite structured. Doesn't look like you need any extra efforts to make it one. The challenge for most people is that when they write in a flow, they go off topic. And those who try to assort points via a structure end of writing discordant essay , with no linkages between passages.

    I wouldn't give marks, but yes that should get 125+ on a like topic IMO - you haven't missed a thing.

    Don't show it to me per se, just writing 3-5 essays in itself solves half the problems. Besides, this is a peer review.
    *No good deed goes unpunished*
  • @Neyawn , my Essay
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    15K
    IRS-IT [2016]
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  • edited October 2015
    “Poverty is the worst form of violence.”—Mahatma Gandhi

    Ever wondered why so many children are out begging on the streets when they should be in schools studying! Why do so many farmers commit suicide every year! Or why are so many youth unemployed even after so many years of independence?

    The answer to all these questions is simple. They are all victims of the crime called poverty. What is poverty? What are the crippling disabilities that poverty imposes on the poor? What are the consequences of these disabilities? What can we do to alleviate the pain of this violence called poverty? These are some issues that we will examine in this essay.

    Poverty and its causes
    The definition of poverty has been a hot topic of scholarly debate on global level. In India also, it has been defined in different parameters such as ‘Per Capita Income’ and ‘Calorific Value’. Scholarly research aside, poverty is the lack of sufficient food to fill the stomachs of the family. It is the inability to have proper clothes or shelter. It is the absence of quality education for a man’s children. It is the lack of appropriate healthcare for a pregnant woman. In a nutshell poverty is the inability of a man to live his life with dignity.

    That a man should have access to all these basic necessities of life and live with dignity should be a natural way after 68 years of independence. But it is not to be. What could be the possible reasons for this persistence? Poverty has become a vicious cycle wherein a man born in poor family does not have access to adequate nutrition which affects his health. He does not have access to quality education, either at home or school reducing his employability. Since he has restricted employability, he gets work in unskilled or semi-skilled sectors and at times he does not get work at all. His income is naturally meager and insufficient to support his generally large family. The large family is also a result of the fear psychosis about the longevity of children. And with children the cycle starts all over again.

    There are multiple factors reinforcing this vicious cycle. Corruption, poor socio economic infrastructure and population explosion are few of the most important ones. Former Prime Minister Rajeev Gandhi famously said that only 10 paise out of a rupee reaches the intended beneficiary in our country. This irony still remains as was found in a recent study conducted by Transparency International. Corruption in turn adversely affects the delivery of socio economic infrastructure including education, health, sanitation, power and energy security, food security and so on. Lastly the population explosion put India on the back foot in terms of growth. We sustain almost 17% population of the world with only 2.4% of the land.

    The ‘Violence’ of Poverty
    Poverty was termed as the worst form of violence since it automatically puts the poor at a disadvantage without any explicit form of violence. That we have come to assume it as a naturally occurring phenomenon is even worse. Poverty inflicts a crippling blow on the life time opportunities of the lower income sections of our country. These consequences of poverty can be described at individual, societal and national levels.

    At individual level poverty results in poor nutrition, food insecurity, lack of access to quality shelters, unemployment, insanitation which hinder the physical and psychological growth of the poor. Also people are increasingly moving out in search of job opportunities which lead to fragmented families. This phenomenon results in emotional stress as well.

    At societal level poverty has resulted in the class divide, rural-urban divide, growing social tensions leading to increasing crime rates and naxalism in the red corridor. Of late poverty is giving rise to another dangerous trend. There have been increasing incidents of poor minority youths joining terror outfits at both national as well as global level such as IS. Al Qaeda has already expressed its intent to spread its network in India and poverty creates fertile recruiting grounds for them in the subcontinent. The poor sections are also easily manipulated by the political class for their own vested interests. They have invariably become a vote bank across India with no efforts to improve their living condition.

    At regional and national level also poverty has given rise to diverse concerns ranging from inter regional divide to environmental issues such as consumption of inexpensive but high pollution fossil fuels such as kerosene. The lop-sided development in some advanced states of the country has resulted in migration of people from backward states in search of jobs.

    Who is responsible?
    The blame for poverty can easily be placed upon the government but that will be like finding a escape goat for all our problems. The government is no doubt the biggest culprit as it’s their accountability to remove the poverty from our country. Successive governments have failed at this task or have neglected the kind of attention the issue of poverty deserves. They have simply not done enough. Every year tonnes of food grains rot in the FCI godowns when there are so many people who sleep hungry at night. Substantial amount of power is lost in pilferage and transmission wastes. Corruption plays its own part in almost all aspects related to poor.
    Apart from the government, the industries also have helped in the growing interregional divide and rural-urban divide. They have not invested as much as they should have in the skill developments of the workforce. Even when the industrial houses have invested in the backward states because of natural resources, they have brought the skilled workforce from the outside. They have not put any efforts to train the local population for their purpose. Thus they have also been a culprit in creating the gulf between developed and underdeveloped states.

    Lastly the common man is also to blame for the wretched condition of the poor. We are increasingly becoming a wasteful lot. We waste food, power, water, energy fuels and so on when so many of our fellow countrymen are deprived of these basic amenities. Perhaps if we are a little frugal, we can make a difference towards the condition of the poor.

    Way Forward
    The government has launched a range of programmes to eradicate poverty and bring inclusive development in our country. Such programmes are aimed at skill development, employment opportunities, healthcare, clean energy mechanisms, rooting out corruption and so on. Some of the important initiatives include Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna for financial inclusion of the marginalized sections, Skill India Programme, Din Dayal Antyodaya Yojna for enhancing employability, Make in India for increasing employment opportunities, Mudra Bank for encouraging low cost entrepreneurship, Jan Aushadhi scheme to provide affordable generic medicines to the poor etc.


    Much has been done on the poverty front but still much more is still to be done. And for that all the stakeholders including government, businesses and the common man will have to gear up. It’s high time that we put concentrated efforts towards eradicating poverty from our country.
    @Neyawn :

    What is your opinion on this: That is it okay to write essay with subheadings with underline (like above essay)? Or is it something like anti-essay or GS answer type when we write 6-7 subheadings and underline them (on the lines of logic that essay is more of a literary writeup and not an answer to a question) and thus to write like @master4341 (the images he uploaded, writing a v. decent essay meriting a good score, but with no subheading)
    Life Is Calling. Where Are You?
  • Topic: Impact of international relations on peace and security in the country

    Feedback welcome.
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    Mission 2018 - Final assault
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  • @Mistborn

    First empression good
    You have missed the theme.
    It is philosophical essay. Yours looks like economics long answer.
    Gandhian view on poverty and how it cripples vulneable is missing.
    Addition world scenario, disaster proneness of poor, historical perspective, social outlook and treament towards poors would have made this essay awesome.
    Solutions are good. Some out of box solutions can still be added.
    Few quotes and an anecdote can be added.
    It appears short..


  • “Poverty is the worst form of violence.”—Mahatma Gandhi

    Ever wondered why so many children are out begging on the streets when they should be in schools studying! Why do so many farmers commit suicide every year! Or why are so many youth unemployed even after so many years of independence?

    The answer to all these questions is simple. They are all victims of the crime called poverty. What is poverty? What are the crippling disabilities that poverty imposes on the poor? What are the consequences of these disabilities? What can we do to alleviate the pain of this violence called poverty? These are some issues that we will examine in this essay.

    Poverty and its causes
    The definition of poverty has been a hot topic of scholarly debate on global level. In India also, it has been defined in different parameters such as ‘Per Capita Income’ and ‘Calorific Value’. Scholarly research aside, poverty is the lack of sufficient food to fill the stomachs of the family. It is the inability to have proper clothes or shelter. It is the absence of quality education for a man’s children. It is the lack of appropriate healthcare for a pregnant woman. In a nutshell poverty is the inability of a man to live his life with dignity.

    That a man should have access to all these basic necessities of life and live with dignity should be a natural way after 68 years of independence. But it is not to be. What could be the possible reasons for this persistence? Poverty has become a vicious cycle wherein a man born in poor family does not have access to adequate nutrition which affects his health. He does not have access to quality education, either at home or school reducing his employability. Since he has restricted employability, he gets work in unskilled or semi-skilled sectors and at times he does not get work at all. His income is naturally meager and insufficient to support his generally large family. The large family is also a result of the fear psychosis about the longevity of children. And with children the cycle starts all over again.

    There are multiple factors reinforcing this vicious cycle. Corruption, poor socio economic infrastructure and population explosion are few of the most important ones. Former Prime Minister Rajeev Gandhi famously said that only 10 paise out of a rupee reaches the intended beneficiary in our country. This irony still remains as was found in a recent study conducted by Transparency International. Corruption in turn adversely affects the delivery of socio economic infrastructure including education, health, sanitation, power and energy security, food security and so on. Lastly the population explosion put India on the back foot in terms of growth. We sustain almost 17% population of the world with only 2.4% of the land.

    The ‘Violence’ of Poverty
    Poverty was termed as the worst form of violence since it automatically puts the poor at a disadvantage without any explicit form of violence. That we have come to assume it as a naturally occurring phenomenon is even worse. Poverty inflicts a crippling blow on the life time opportunities of the lower income sections of our country. These consequences of poverty can be described at individual, societal and national levels.

    At individual level poverty results in poor nutrition, food insecurity, lack of access to quality shelters, unemployment, insanitation which hinder the physical and psychological growth of the poor. Also people are increasingly moving out in search of job opportunities which lead to fragmented families. This phenomenon results in emotional stress as well.

    At societal level poverty has resulted in the class divide, rural-urban divide, growing social tensions leading to increasing crime rates and naxalism in the red corridor. Of late poverty is giving rise to another dangerous trend. There have been increasing incidents of poor minority youths joining terror outfits at both national as well as global level such as IS. Al Qaeda has already expressed its intent to spread its network in India and poverty creates fertile recruiting grounds for them in the subcontinent. The poor sections are also easily manipulated by the political class for their own vested interests. They have invariably become a vote bank across India with no efforts to improve their living condition.

    At regional and national level also poverty has given rise to diverse concerns ranging from inter regional divide to environmental issues such as consumption of inexpensive but high pollution fossil fuels such as kerosene. The lop-sided development in some advanced states of the country has resulted in migration of people from backward states in search of jobs.

    Who is responsible?
    The blame for poverty can easily be placed upon the government but that will be like finding a escape goat for all our problems. The government is no doubt the biggest culprit as it’s their accountability to remove the poverty from our country. Successive governments have failed at this task or have neglected the kind of attention the issue of poverty deserves. They have simply not done enough. Every year tonnes of food grains rot in the FCI godowns when there are so many people who sleep hungry at night. Substantial amount of power is lost in pilferage and transmission wastes. Corruption plays its own part in almost all aspects related to poor.
    Apart from the government, the industries also have helped in the growing interregional divide and rural-urban divide. They have not invested as much as they should have in the skill developments of the workforce. Even when the industrial houses have invested in the backward states because of natural resources, they have brought the skilled workforce from the outside. They have not put any efforts to train the local population for their purpose. Thus they have also been a culprit in creating the gulf between developed and underdeveloped states.

    Lastly the common man is also to blame for the wretched condition of the poor. We are increasingly becoming a wasteful lot. We waste food, power, water, energy fuels and so on when so many of our fellow countrymen are deprived of these basic amenities. Perhaps if we are a little frugal, we can make a difference towards the condition of the poor.

    Way Forward
    The government has launched a range of programmes to eradicate poverty and bring inclusive development in our country. Such programmes are aimed at skill development, employment opportunities, healthcare, clean energy mechanisms, rooting out corruption and so on. Some of the important initiatives include Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna for financial inclusion of the marginalized sections, Skill India Programme, Din Dayal Antyodaya Yojna for enhancing employability, Make in India for increasing employment opportunities, Mudra Bank for encouraging low cost entrepreneurship, Jan Aushadhi scheme to provide affordable generic medicines to the poor etc.


    Much has been done on the poverty front but still much more is still to be done. And for that all the stakeholders including government, businesses and the common man will have to gear up. It’s high time that we put concentrated efforts towards eradicating poverty from our country.
    @Neyawn :

    What is your opinion on this: That is it okay to write essay with subheadings with underline (like above essay)? Or is it something like anti-essay or GS answer type when we write 6-7 subheadings and underline them (on the lines of logic that essay is more of a literary writeup and not an answer to a question) and thus to write like @master4341 (the images he uploaded, writing a v. decent essay meriting a good score, but with no subheading)
    Sub-headings and underlining do not create problems. In fact both Gaurav agarwal and Ira Singhal (toppers of last 2 years) have used this pattern and have written this in their blogs. Naturally they got very high marks in essay. It just depends on your style.
    A person must be known for what he does not for what he says.
  • My review:-

    @India you have scored well in essay almost everytime. Please provide a feedback to the essay as well.

    Feedback of the essay posted above :-


    The essay you have written, does not fit into the conventional UPSC style of essay writing. What you have provided is a "theory" or "opinion" and not an essay per se as demanded by UPSC.

    Your strengths lie in good analytical skills and good command over English. Unfortunately this does not immediately convert to good marks in essay paper. An essay as above can fetch both 50 and 150 in UPSC. You would want to score a secure 120+ - 130+ in essay at least , irrespective of the teacher checking your paper, wont you?

    Think of the topic again, and give me a structure of the essay .

    Do not write YOUR OPINION IN AN ESSAY, or a logical theory, because if the examiner disagrees with your theory you end up getting 50-80 marks.

    So reply back with a structure of the essay. As in give me list of 5-8 questions that you will be answering / discussing in the essay. I will tell you how to revolve your answer along those questions.

    The problem with essays as such

    The biggest problem with UPSC answer checkers is that a lot of candidates, by which I mean about 5000 or so will not have prepared well for the Mains exam well and will write redundant answers, or irrelevant answers .

    Now, a checker has seen at least 10 off topic answers, consistently awarding very low marks or 0 marks for off topic answers or essays.

    Your essay is very likely to be misjudged to be an off topic essay no matter how well and thoughtfully you have written it.

    In UPSC there are the good essays, the average essay and the bad essay being awarded very low, above average and good marks ( not respectively ).

    A sure shot way to get low marks is 1) either write off topic essay OR 2) appear as if the essay is off topic

    For average marks, its easy to get, ( Average is something around 50% in essay ) if make the examiner feel the essay addresses the topic - no extra brilliance is required.

    For great essays - two things - 1) Strictly On Topic 2) Covering all dimensions 3) Something extra ( or at least the examiner thinks so ) and 4) some luck.


    How to avoid getting low marks.


    Write an average essay covering all the points. The oldest trick in the book is to frame a structure covering all dimensions of the essay topic. Just follow it and nowhere should the examiner feel that you have lost track of the topic - which penalizes you.

    Also, keep sentences short, don't delve into a theory too deeply, and do not mention a theory or idea that requires an explanation of more than 2 lines. What you write should be self explanatory or do not write it, no matter how brilliant it is.

    Lastly,
    I cannot write this in English so writing it in Hindi -

    Examiner ko kucchh samjhane ki koshish mat karo. Agar usko jayada dimaag lagana pad gaya toh number kam ho jayenege. Jo likho woh ekdum se samajh aa jana chahiye - even if that thing is very obvious.
    My structure is as below.

    Can India create a Google or Facebook?

    Yes it can:
    1. Good talent
    2. Good colleges in the form of IITs and NITs though less. They manufacture good talent since we see students recruited by the Googles and Facebooks.
    3. Advantage of the industry being in the vicinity.
    4. Good english learning capability and hence easy assimilation into the global pool.
    5. Entreprenuership is being promoted by the present govt. Many indian origin MNCs are designing and manufacturing mobile phones today. Eg MUDRA bank
    6.

    why is it difficult?
    1. More emphasis on result based outcome than learning based outcomes. ASER report, less than 1/3rd of graduates are employable.
    2. Very few colleges. Most of the grads in IITs and NITs are opting for jobs abroad. Brain drain happening. They are also not choosing local institutions for theri

    higher education.
    2. Lack of state support for research in basic sciences. very few institutes like IISc, TIFR etc encourage research in those areas.
    3. Lack of Industry-Academia collaboration
    4. Lack of opportunities.
    5. Lack of encouragement for reasearch. Ex Very few students opt for higher studies after engineering degrees. (PhD)
    6. Lack of state support. Less than 1% of GDP spent on science and tech. Innovation is bred when you encourage people to try and fail. Lack of funds for research.
    7. We are happy doing easy things. Like software services, generic drugs etc.
    8. red tapism, lack of funds for startups etc are another reason.
    9. reservation policy discourages many students to pursue their education in foreign countries. While countries like USA accepts talents and grooms them.
    10. Lack of infrastructure.
    11. Govt interference in the functioning of the higher learning institutions.

    More reasons for it being difficult than easy.

    Way forward:
    1. Emphasize on learning outcomes.
    2. Increase the spending on Science and Tech
    3. COncentraing more on quality than quantity.
    4. Giving independence of functioning for institutes of higher learning.
    5. More encouragement to reasearch.
    6. Improving ease of doing business. Will help domestic talent as well as foreign angel investors for investing in start ups.
    7. rational reservation policy.

    Please review.
  • @runner4life Most of your points are focused on education sector. Also include role of society, its preference for obedience over inquisitiveness, Financial issues, regulatory issues
    Mission 2018 - Final assault
  • @runner4life Most of your points are focused on education sector. Also include role of society, its preference for obedience over inquisitiveness, Financial issues, regulatory issues
    Thanks for the review bhai. Need to "widen my gaze ".
  • Please check the attached essay on "Is growing level of competition good for the youth."
    pdf
    pdf
    Essay.pdf
    431K
    Enjoy the hard work.
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