IAS Mains Geography Optional 2017 – Paper 2 YouTube Lecture Handouts

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Watch video lecture on YouTube: IAS Mains Geography Optional 2017 Solutions: Paper 2 IAS Mains Geography Optional 2017 Solutions: Paper 2
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Q1. (A) on the Outline Map of India Provided to You, Mark the Location of All of the Following. Write in Your QCA Booklet the Significance of These Locations Whether Physical/ Commercial/ Economic/ Ecological/ Environmental/ Cultural, in Not More Than 30 Words for Each Entry: (2x10=20 Marks)

(i) Thumba

(ii) Nauachar Island

(iii) Doddabetta

(iv) Devsthal

(v) Pangong Lake

(vi) Hampi

(vii) Havelock Island

(viii) Luni River

(ix) Daringbadi

(x) Dudhsagar Waterfalls

Model Answers & Test Series

Examrace IAS Map Locations of India

1 (B) Give a Reasoned Account of Unusual Pattern of Distribution of Monsoonal Rainfall in India in 2017. (10 Marks)

Watch video lecture on YouTube: Indian Monsoon - Factors, Theories, Phenomena & Characteristics Indian Monsoon - Factors, Theories, Phenomena & Characteristics
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  • Monsoon ending sooner – length is compressed

  • Global warming shortens active period & prolongs break periods

  • Impact of El-Nino & La-Nina

  • Warming and cooling of the Indian and Atlantic oceans - Indian Ocean Dipole and the Atlantic Nino

  • Plans for rain capturing, rainwater harvesting and agro-forestry

  • Supreme Court on November 10, 2016 ruled that Punjab Termination of Agreement Act, 2004 with neighbouring Haryana and other states is unconstitutional

  • SC ordered completion of project

  • AR Dave bench – states concerned should settle their disputes themselves

  • Haryana separated in 1966 & Punjab not willing to share waters of Ravi & Beas

  • Centre allocated water to Haryana in 1976 – to enable this canal linking Sutlej to Yamuna was created crossing Haryana

  • 1981 – Centre under Indira Gandhi negotiated tripartite agreement between Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan

  • Work started in 1982 - construction of the 214-km Sutlej-Yamuna Link (or SYL) canal, 122 km in Punjab, and 92 km in Haryana

1 (D) Small Towns in India Have Problems and Prospects of Their Own. Elaborate. (10 Marks)


  • Decentralization

  • Urbanization of rural areas

  • Spread of urban influence

  • Sizeable population

  • Kinship structure and occupational relationship

  • Relieve pressure on metropolitans


  • Outflow of youth

  • Ageing population

  • Lack of infrastructure and high poverty

  • Lack of transportation

  • Limited planning

  • Loss of natural areas

  • Opposition to regulations

  • Flaws in administrative machinery

2 (A) Discuss the Freshwater Crisis in India and Prepare a Blueprint for Its Sustainable Management. (20 Marks)

  • Freshwater sources – surface (rivers are main source with dams) and groundwater (55%)

  • 60% irrigation from groundwater takes 80% total water usage

  • Groundwater accounts for 30% urban water supply and 70% rural water supply

  • Water table is declining – grey zones developed

  • Around 1/3rd of total water potential of Indian rivers can be used

  • Implementation of policies & programs

  • Check over-extraction and poor management

  • Traditional water conservation practices

  • Refer Kurukshetra Special Edition – Nov 2017

2 (B) Identify the Naxal-Affected Areas in India and Discuss Their Socio-Economic Problems. (15 Marks)

  • Naxalites - 60 districts in India

  • Odisha (5 affected districts)

  • Jharkhand (14 affected districts)

  • Bihar (5 affected districts)

  • Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh (10 affected districts)

  • Madhya Pradesh (8 affected districts)

  • Maharashtra (2 affected districts)

  • West Bengal (8 affected districts)

Map of Naxal-affected areas in India

Map of Naxal-Affected Areas in India

Map of Naxal-affected areas in India

  • Mass poverty

  • Expropriation of land, forest, river and other natural resources at the cost of poor peasants, and tribals in name of Industrial revolution

2 (C) Critically Examine the Feasibility of Development of a Comprehensive Network of Airways in India. (15 Marks)

  • Connectivity reflects the range, frequency or service, the economic importance of destinations and number of onward connections available through each country’s aviation network

  • Udae Desh ka Aaam Nagrik – UDAN – 5 airlines to operate on 128 routes connecting 70 airports (hilly terrain – airways is good option)

  • National Civil Aviation Policy 2016

  • Low-cost airlines hold the largest share of the aviation market in India.

  • Focus on regional connectivity

  • Focus on route dispersal – 3 categories (Cat I – more than 700 km)

  • According to DGCA, LCC Indigo had a market share of 38% in India’s aviation market. Passenger load factor (PLF) was highest for LCCs (Low-Cost Carriers) like Spice Jet (91.1%), GoAir (86.3%), IndiGo (85.1%) and AirAsia (82.7%)

  • Improves economic performance – domestic and international

Image of Proportion of global trade transported and regional distribution of indian air

Proportion of Global Trade Transported and Indian Share

Image of Proportion of global trade transported and regional distribution of indian air

3 (A) "An Effective Three-Tier Panchayat Raj System Will Strengthen the Bottom-Up Approach to Multilevel Planning in India." Explain. (20 Marks)

  • Micro-planning – 73rd Amendment Act

  • Participatory approach to planning

  • Niti Aayog

  • Capacity building

  • Accountability and transparency

  • Backward regions grant fund

  • Model panchayats

  • Information support systems

  • Yuva Shakti Kendras

  • Grassroot level monitoring


  • National integration

  • Heritage and culture is preserved

  • Tourism and development

  • New thinking

  • New value systems


  • Social tension

  • Corruption

  • Illiteracy

  • Lack of urbanization

  • Diversity

3 (C) How May Tourism in Hilly Areas of India Be Developed as an Important Source of Economy? (15 Marks)

  • World Travel & Tourism Council calculated that tourism generated INR6.4 trillion or 6.6% of the nation’s GDP in 2012. It supported 39.5 million jobs, 7.7% of its total employment. The sector is predicted to grow at an average annual rate of 7.9% from 2013 to 2023.

  • Hill stations – pilgrimage, resorts, AYUSH centers, wildlife, adventure, ecological, leisure and relaxation

  • Generate income, employment

  • Develop infrastructure

  • Source of foreign exchange

4 (A) Mention Various Methods of Functional Classification of Towns in India and Explain the Method Applied by Ashok Mitra

Watch video lecture on YouTube: Functional Classification of Towns - Ashok Mitra, Shekhar Mukherjee and M.K. Jain Functional Classification of Towns - Ashok Mitra, Shekhar Mukherjee and M.K. Jain
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4 (B) Farmers' Suicide is One of the Major Agrarian Problems in India. Bring Out Its Causes and Suggest the Remedial Measures with Special Reference to Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Punjab


  • High debt

  • Small and unfeasible economic state

  • Crop failure

  • Natural calamities

  • Lack of alternate income

  • Lack of institutionalized credit

  • Exploitation of small farmers (illiterate)

  • Groundwater depletion – lack of water to fields

  • Poor implementation of govt. policies


  • Crop diversification

  • Alternative income

  • Crop insurance

  • Professionalization of agriculture

  • Institutional credit

  • Market facilities

  • Contract farming

  • Skill based education

  • Awareness and simplifying needs and life

4 (C) Land Reform is a Key to Modern Agriculture in India. Describe Various Measures Take in this Direction After Independence. (15 Marks)

  • Aim to eliminate exploitation and social injustice, raise production from the agrarian land

  • Abolition of intermediaries

  • Tenancy regulation

  • Ceiling on landholdings

  • Consolidation of landholdings

  • Labour wage reforms


5 (A) Explain the Role of 'Hill Transport Subsidy Scheme' in Reducing Regional Imbalances in Areas Identified by the Government of India

  1. In hilly areas with no railways or poor roads

  2. Open godowns at public distribution centers (snow bound areas – 25 km & for hilly areas – 50 km)

  3. Mitigate heavy transport cost of food grains

  4. Subsidy ranging between 50% and 90% of the transport cost for transportation of raw material and finished goods to and from the location of the unit and the designated rail‐head

Applicable to the following States/UTs:

  • Arunachal Pradesh

  • Himachal Pradesh

  • Jammu & Kashmir

  • Manipur

  • Meghalaya

  • Nagaland

  • Mizoram

  • Sikkim

  • Tripura

  • Andaman & Nicobar Islands

  • Lakshadweep

5 (B) Bring Out the Geopolitical Implications of Doklam Dispute in the Context of Indo-China Relations

Indian China Standoff-Indo-Bhutan-Ties

5 (C) Bring Out the Significance of Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS)

  • Real time positioning and timing services to users in India & upto 1500 km boundary

  • Independent regional navigation satellite system developed by India on par with US-based GPS.

  • NavIC provides two types of services:

  • Standard positioning service: For all users

  • Restricted service: Only to authorised users like military and security agencies

  • Applications of IRNSS:

    • Terrestrial, aerial and marine navigation;

    • Disaster management

    • Vehicle tracking and fleet management

    • Precise timing mapping and geodetic data capture

    • Terrestrial navigation aid for hikers and travellers

    • Visual and voice navigation for drivers

Image of Geostationary earth orbit and geosynchronous orbit

Image of Geostationary Earth Orbit and Geosynchronous Orbit

Image of Geostationary earth orbit and geosynchronous orbit

In IRNSS, four satellites are always in geosynchronous orbits & each satellite is always visible to a receiver in a region 1,500 km around India

5 (D) Mini Steel Plants Can Act as an Instrument of Decentralization of Iron and Steel Industry in India. Explain

Idea of decentralization – regional growth theories of divergence

Watch video lecture on YouTube: Regional Development Theories - Boudeville and Hirschman's Trickle Down and Polarization Regional Development Theories - Boudeville and Hirschman's Trickle down and Polarization
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5 (E) Goods and Services Tax (GST) Has Differential Impact on Developed and Backward States of the Country. How and Why?

Watch video lecture on YouTube: GST (Goods and Service Tax): Yojana August 2017 Summary GST (Goods and Service Tax): Yojana August 2017 Summary
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  • Destination based tax system

  • Old tax system – Manufacturing states collect more tax & develop more infrastructure

  • GST will also lead to setting up manufacturing facility closer to consumption center

6 (A) Interlinking of Rivers May Serve as a Major Source of Assured Irrigation and All-Weather Inland Navigation in India. Comment on Its Feasibility Taking into Account Physical, Economic and Ecological Implication. (20 Marks)

Watch video lecture on YouTube: 24 Major Government Schemes, Projects and Yojanas 2017: Summary 24 Major Government Schemes, Projects and Yojanas 2017: Summary
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Approval Grated for First Phase of Ken-Betwa Interlinking

Work on Three River Interlinking Projects to Begin

6 (B) Religious Minorities Are Largely Concentrated in Border States of India. Discuss Its Causes and Consequences. (15 Marks)

Causes –

  • Parsis migrated (Udvada in Gujarat & neighboring Maharashtra)

  • Buddhist – Bhutan, Nepal (Sikkim, Arunachal, Ladakh)

  • Sikhs -

  • Christianity (Goa, coastal states)


  • Marginalized

  • Increases regionalism

  • Tendency to gravitate to neighbouring nations

  • Communal violence (extreme cases)

  • Power relationships

  • Social and educational deprivation

6 (C) What Do You Understand by Soil Pollution? Delineate the Areas Vulnerable to It in India and Suggest Remedial Measures. (15 Marks)

  • Post green revolution – soil quality deteriorated

  • Fertilizers – NPK

  • Biocides

  • Municipal solid waste

  • Urban soil pollution, agrochemical soil pollution, industrial practices

  • Poor irrigation

  • Moratorium

  • Burning of fossil fuels

Preventive measures

  • Organic farming

  • Proper disposal

  • Proper farming

  • Prevent industrial waste

  • Community awareness

  • Reduce pesticides and heavy metals

7 (A) Integrated Development of Road and Rail Networks in a Complementary Framework is a Prerequisite for Regional Development. Explain with Reference to North-Eastern Region of India. (20 Marks)

  • Infrastructure like the longest Dhola-Sadia, Bhupen Hazarika, bridge – Connect Assam and Arunachal Pradesh on Lohit river – defence asset

    Construction of Foot Suspension Bridges (In Meghalaya, Sikkim, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh)

  • Arunachal Pradesh

    • Road from Pangchau Circle HQ to Longwa Village

    • Multi-storied parking systems

  • Assam - Improvement of road in Karbi-Anglong, Tinsukia

  • Manipur - Chura- Sugnu Road

  • Emerging market for development & improving GDP

  • Links to Bangladesh, Myanmar, Bhutan & Nepal

  • Connectivity proposals floated by sub-regional or regional groupings, such as BBIN (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal), BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation)

  • Bangladesh consulate in Guwahati

  • Assam has “Act East” department

  • NHAI is building roads in Mynamar to create SE Asian highway. Ministry of External Affairs funded first Rs 1177 crore is to be built by a private sector Indian joint venture; Punj Lloyd and Varaha Infrastructure

7 (B) Describe the Salient Features of Sagar Mala Project and Highlight Its Role in Port-Led Development of Coastal Regions in India. (15 Marks)

Watch video lecture on YouTube: Sagar Mala Project - Closer to Success of Blue Revolution with Key MAP Locations Sagar Mala Project - Closer to Success of Blue Revolution with Key MAP Locations
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7 (C) Justify the Inclusion of Meghalaya in Peninsular India and Discuss Its Vegetation and Soil Types. (15 Marks)

  • Meghalaya plateau was once a part of the Deccan plateau and it is formed of hard ancient rocks.

  • Slopes down abruptly towards the south in Sylhet plain of Bangladesh.

  • Waterfalls such as, Beadon, Bishop, Elephant and Mawsmaiare found along Meghalaya plateau edge are seen

  • Karbi Anglong Plateau and Meghalaya plateau detached from mainland (structural – geology)


  • Rich timber such as teak and sal woods, plants with medicinal values such as Cinchona, Taxus Baccata etc.

  • High biodiversity

  • Amongst wettest areas

  • Small seasonal rivers for cultivation of crops

Meghalaya soils are rich in organic carbon, which is a measure of nitrogen supplying potential of the soil, deficient in available phosphorous and medium to low in available potassium.

  • Red loamy soil along foothills

  • Sandy soil in central uplands of Khasi-Jaintia hills

  • Silty soil in Ri-Jaintia hills

  • High humus & organic matter and devoid of base minerals

  • Hilly soils are acidic and good for fruits and vegetables

  • Hill slopes and terraces we have rice cultivation

8 (A) Name the Major Industrial Regions of India Indicating the Bases of Their Identification. Highlight Their Basic Problems. (20 Marks)

  • Mumbai-Pune Industrial Region

  • The Hugli Industrial Region

  • Bangalore-Tamil Nadu Industrial Region

  • Gujarat Industrial Region

  • Chotanagpur Industrial Region

  • Vishakhapatnam-Guntur Industrial Region

  • Gurgaon-Delhi-Meerut Industrial Region

  • Kollam-Thiruvananthapuram Industrial Region

Map of Clustering In India

Map of Clustering in India

Map of Clustering In India

  • Developed near ports, cheap land, cheap labour, raw material, transport, historical advent (Bristiher)

  • Problems – silting of rivers, huge pressure on land, alternate sources, congestion, land reclamation, slum development

8 (B) Drainage Pattern in Peninsular India is a Result of Its Geological Structure and Topography. Elaborate. (15 Marks)

  • Drainage is outcome of the geological time period, nature and structure of rocks, topography, slope, amount of water flowing and the periodicity of the flow

    • Older than Himalayan rivers

    • Non-perennial

    • No deep gorges

  • Subsidence of the western flank of the Peninsula leading to its submergence below the sea during the early tertiary period. It has disturbed the symmetrical plan of the river on either side of the original watershed.

  • Peninsular block - subsidence and trough faulting. Narmada and Tapi flow in trough faults and fill the original cracks with their detritus materials. Lack of alluvial and deltaic deposits in these rivers.

  • Slight tilting of the peninsular block from NW to SE direction gave orientation to entire drainage system towards the Bay of Bengal

8 (C) Why Has Solar Energy in India Not Been Developed to Desired Level in Spite of Its High Potential? (15 Marks)

  • International Solar Alliance

  • High cost in establishment

  • Low efficiency

  • Low intensity

  • Technology risk – cost decreasing at tremendous rate

  • Built and support technology

  • Fragile materials are used

  • Storage is expensive

  • Requires huge empty space

  • Unreliable & not 100% predictable

Practice Writing Scoring Answers in IAS Optional Geography: Tests with Personalized Feedback