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UPSC Mains General Studies Paper 2 | Detailed Analysis

UPSC Mains General Studies Paper 2 Analysis- In UPSC Mains General Studies Paper 2, UPSC gave some relief  to those,who are appearing for UPSC Mains this year. The difficulty level was less as compared to General Studies paper 1. And most of the questions were predictable in this paper.

This is the third  analysis in the series of “Mains Analysis 2017”.Here is given the analysis of General Studies Paper 2 that was held on 30 Oct 2017,Monday.  First we will go through the section wise allocation of number of questions and marks that has been done by UPSC.

UPSC Mains Gereral Studies Paper 2 Analysis | UPSC Mains 2017

Subject No. of questions



wise marks



Actual Questions asked in mains General Studies paper 2 in 2017 Marks Word Limit
Governance 3 35 1 “The local self government system in India has not proved to be effective instrument of governance”.

Critically examine the statement and give your views to improve the situation.

10 150 words
8 Hunger and Poverty are the biggest challenges for good governance in India still today. Evaluate

how far successive governments have progressed in dealing with these humongous problems.


Suggest measures for improvement.

10 150 words
18 Initially Civil Services in India were designed to achieve the goals of neutrality and effectiveness, which

seems to be lacking in the present context. Do you agree with the view that drastic reforms are required

in Civil Services. Comment

15 250 words
Indian Constitution

& Polity

10 130 2 Critically examine the Supreme Court’s judgement on ‘National Judicial Appointments

Commission Act, 2014’ with reference to appointment of judges of higher judiciary in India.

10 150 words
3 ‘Simultaneous election to the Lok Sabha and the State Assemblies will limit the amount of time and

money spent in electioneering but it will reduce the government’s accountability to the people’ Discuss.

10 150 words
4 How do pressure groups influence Indian political process? Do you agree with this view that informal

pressure groups have emerged as powerful than formal pressure groups in recent years?

10 150 words
5 Discuss the role of Public Accounts Committee in establishing accountability of the government

to the people.

10 150 words
11 Explain the salient features of the constitution(One Hundred and First Amendment) Act, 2016.

Do you think it is efficacious enough ‘to remove cascading effect of taxes and provide for

common national market for goods and services’?

15 250 words
12 Examine the scope of Fundamental Rights in the light of the latest judgement of the Supreme

Court on Right to Privacy.

15 250 words
13 The Indian Constitution has provisions for holding joint session of the two houses of the Parliament.

Enumerate the occasions when this would normally happen and also the occasions when it cannot,

with reasons thereof.

15 250 words
14 To enhance the quality of democracy in India the Election Commission of India has proposed electoral

reforms in 2016. What are the suggested reforms and how far are they significant to make democracy


15 250 words
15 Is the National Commission for Women able to strategize and tackle the problems that women

face at both public and private spheres? Give reasons in support of your answer.

15 250 words
16 ‘The emergence of Self Help Groups(SHGeneral Studies) in contemporary times points to the slow but

steady withdrawal of the state from developmental activities’. Examine the role of the SHGeneral Studies in

developmental activities and the measures taken by the Government of India to promote the SHGeneral Studies.

15 250 words
Social Justice

(Gov. policies & schemes)

3 35 6 ‘To ensure effective implementation of policies addressing water, sanitation and hygiene needs,

the identification of beneficiary segments is to be synchronized with the anticipated outcomes’

Examine the statement in the context of the WASH scheme.

10 150 words
7 Does the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 ensure effective mechanism for

empowerment and inclusion of the intended beneficiaries in the society? Discuss

10 150 words
17 ‘Poverty Alleviation Programmes in India remain mere show pieces until and unless they are

backed by political will’. Discuss with reference to the performance of the major poverty alleviation

programmes in India.

15 250 words
International Relation 4 50 9 ‘China is using its economic relations and positive trade surplus as tools to develop potential military

power status in Asia’, In the light of this statement, discuss its impact on India as her neighbor.

10 150 words
10 What are the main functions of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)? Explain

different functional commissions attached to it.

10 150 words
19 The question of India’s Energy Security constitutes the most important part of India’s economic progress.

Analyze India’s energy policy cooperation with West Asian Countries.

15 250 words
20 Indian Diaspora has an important role to play in South-East Asian countries’ economy and society.

Appraise the role of Indian Diaspora in South- East Asia in this context

15 250 words


Same number of questions were asked this year also. But UPSC has made some changes in the pattern of question paper as, B


  1. Like paper 1 paper 2 is also divided into  two sections that is not indicated in the paper but can be assume easily.First 10 question(1-10) are awarded 10 marks each and last 10 question (11-20) are of 15 marks each.
  2. World limit has varied for each question.World limit for first 10 question is 150 words and for last 10 questions is 250 words.So it is more challenging to manage time intelligently when you are attempting each question.
  3. More than 50% paper belonged to General Studies to Indian polity and constitution.And all question asked in this area related to past 2-3  years current affairs and are more relevant in present also.
  4. UPSC has not much focused on International Relation this year. Only 50 marks out of 250 marks are assigned to this section.
  5. Particularly, Asian region (South East Asia and West Asia) is given more importance in India’s relation.And UPSC has not gone beyond Asian region this year 🙂


However,questions seem to be completely from the syllabus and those who studied and stuck to the syllabus might be very comfortable with the questions to identify the area from where,it is being asked.So this type of paper needs not much more than a fair amount of writing and revised NCERT’s and lastly for specific knowledge -one standard book for each subject.It’s necessary  for basic and fundamental understanding but not sufficient ,it should  be supplemented by good and enough amount of Current Affairs reading as well.

Therefore we can see a good balancing showed by UPSC.And the level of understanding and analysis being expected from students is constantly increasing.

Hence we will retreat it again and again 🙂

Few Important links for UPSC Aspirants-

UPSC Notification 2017 UPSC Syllabus UPSC Prelims Syllabus
UPSC IAS Exam Pattern UPSC Reference Books UPSC Eligibility
UPSC Mains Exams Pattern UPSC Question papers UPSC IAS Preparation Tips
UPSC IAS Exam Application UPSC Admit Card UPSC Results


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