Paper 1

(1)    Topic – Culture and Heritage of India

Buddhism and its thoughts are very important from preliminary point of view. Every year 2-3 questions are asked on Buddhism and Jainism. Here I’ll write a short summary of important points on Buddhist thoughts. Very-Very Important topic.


(a)    Buddhism is a ‘way of life’ rather than religion, because no idol worship is done.

(b)   4 Noble Truths are basic teachings of Buddha which are truth of suffering, the truth of the cause of suffering, the truth of the end of suffering, and the truth of the path that leads to the end of the suffering.

(c)    In Buddhism desire and ignorance lies at the root of suffering. Desires are craving pleasure, material goods and immortality which can never be fulfilled, and which ultimately result in rebirth of individual again and again to suffer more in this world.

(d)   End of suffering is Nirvana or Moksha in which a person attains total enlightenment and transcends the rebirth cycle.

(e)   In order to attain Nirvana, the path that to be followed is Noble Eightfold path of Right Understanding, Right Thought, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Concentration.

(f)     The above are divided into Good moral conduct, mediation and mental development, and wisdom or insight. (you think yourself, which of the above 8 will come in which of these 3 sections)


Then there is concept of “Karma” which says that you will be rewarded counteractions on the actions that you do. Good actions bring happiness and bad actions bring unhappiness. Sleeping, eating etc. are neutral Karma with no benefits or costs.


Cycle of Rebirth – this concept says that living beings are reborn in 3 fortunate realms and 3 unfortunate realms.  Those with positive Karma are born into Demigod, God and Men. And Negative Karma are born in Animal, Ghost and Hell. The realm of men only offers “Nirvana” i.e. an opportunity to achieve enlightenment.




Paper 2  

(1)    Topic – Powers, Functions and Responsibilities of Various Constitutional Bodies. Here in this article the role of CAG is given. Very beautiful article. I would say that you guys should read it whole rather than reading a summary.



Paper 3

(1)    Topic – Indian Economy

Banking sector is facing problems in capital adequacy, and incremental growth in NPA’s (Non-Performing Assets). Also, some major challenges are target for agricultural credit, MSME credit, housing credit, education credit, lending to minority communities, and financial inclusion. There are many infrastructural projects installed by PSB’s help, which are halted due to various factors thus turning into NPA’s.



 Watch the banking sector report card of this financial year below. Very important, and please understand the terms such as Adjusted Net Banking Credit (ANBC), Priority Sector Lending (PSL) , Gross Non-performing Assets (GNPA). Also list out what Priority Sector contains and what is subsection lending in the gross 40% lending target. Very important for preliminary.




India is on high growth rate, and urbanisation is increasing. But, with urbanisation problems of waste management, and pollution control has also came upfront, which needs to be solved. “Waste to Energy” is one such initiative in which waste materials are to be segregated and converted into energy by various new technological advancements. This will also keep water bodies less polluted and potable.




Depository receipts are one of the instruments which make it easier to invest in foreign companies or to get foreign investment. When India was facing financial crunch in 1991, and our capital market was not opened to direct FII’s then this innovating scheme of issuing Depository Receipts was introduced. Now, the committee formed for reviewing of current scheme has made many recommendations for making it easier to trade through DR route.



(2)    Check what comes under Consumer Price Index (CPI) which is hovering around 8-9% these days. I’m not sure if heavy industrial products such as iron and steel, automobiles, electricity etc. are counted in list or not. Anyway the price list is maintained online, and is supplied by NSSO offices in urban areas and postal department in rural areas. Also, the annual change is used to measure the overall inflation and is used to index the prices, salaries and pensions of employees. Also, this is one of main measure to ensure sound monetary and fiscal policies as without this data, determining rates and policies will be impossible. This CPI also helps in measuring changes in real values and thus real inflation or growth in GDP. Very important for pre.



(3)    Public Sector Insurance companies LIC, General Insurance have a fairly large market share in the insurance sector. Private sector keeps on complaining for partiality, and asks for the disinvestment in these public sector companies so that the sector can grow. Our insurance sector has far less penetration than global standards, and this is the major cause of distress in social sector, including agriculture and life sectors.

Check what challenges does insurance sector face for its growth and penetration. What role does it play in nation building and social peace? What are major companies working in this area? List different types of Insurances such as accidental insurance, motor insurance, health insurance, life insurance etc.?



(4)     The Indices of Industrial Production for the Mining, Manufacturing and Electricity sectors for the month of March 2014 stand at 145.8, 204.8 and 173.0 respectively, with the corresponding growth rates of (-) 0.4%, (-) 1.2% and 5.4% as compared to March 2013 (Statement I). The cumulative growth in the three sectors during April-March 2013-14 over the corresponding period of 2012-13 has been (-) 0.8%, (-) 0.8% and 6.1% respectively.


Check what is IIP(index of Industrial production). The above data shows that Mining and Manufacturing have slowed while only electricity generation has increased. What are the major reasons for this slowdown? Is it monetary policy of RBI or supply side constrains or lack of fiscal policies such as relaxation in FDI, forest and environmental clearances, easy land acquisition, availability of infrastructure. Ponder over.