General Studies Paper 3 – Keywords


Topic 1: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources,  growth, development and employment. 

Key concepts: Planning – Evolution of planning in India – Objectives of Economic Planning  in India – National Planning Commission/ National Planning Committee/Bombay plan/ People’s  Plan/ Gandhian Plan / Sarvodaya Plan/ Planning Commission and NDC – Achievement / Failures  of Planning Commission – NITI Aayog (1 Jan, 2015) – How it is different from Planning  Commission -Cooperative Federalism – Competitive Federalism -NITI Aayog Action Agenda  and Annual Reports – unemployment – jobless growth – investment & savings rate.  Mobilisation of Resources – Mobilisation of natural resource/Human resource/Financial  resource -Plan Vs Non Plan Expenditure – GST, GAAR, Tax Administrative reform  Commission – Federal Issues in Resource Mobilisation – Southern States Concerns with 15th FC – Resource mobilisation of urban local bodies – Growth and Development – Economic  Growth Meaning – Slowdown – Inflation – Phillip’s Curve – Laffer Curve – Indicators of  economic growth – Significance of economic growth – jobless growth – challenges to economic  growth – Difference between economic growth and development – GDP – GNH – HDI – Externalities of Development – Growth Recession –Employment – Employment Scenario – 

Key Facts – PLFS – 2017 -18, NSSO – Employment Unemployment Survey – Labour Bureau  Quarterly Employment Survey – Employment and Formalisation – Employment and  Productivity – Employability – Labour laws – Female Labour Force Participation – Gender  Wage Gap, Artificial Intelligence and 4th Industrial Revolution – Labour Market Disruption – 

Covid 19 – and impact on growth – mobilisation of resources – employment – changing  nature of economy – Cashless economy – digital economy – formalisation of informal sector  – Blue Economy – Gig Economy – Platform Economy. 

Topic 2: Inclusive growth and issues arising from it. 

Key concepts: Inclusive Growth – Livelihood – Access to basic amenities – Social Security – Skill Development – Poverty elimination – Balanced regional Development – Reducing  Inequalities – Empowerment -Employment – Financial Inclusion – Good Governance – Collaboration of Govt, civil Society and Industry – Universal basic Income – Minimum Wages  -Transformation of Aspirational Districts – World Inequality Report & Index – Financial  Inclusion – JAM Trinity – Covid19 & Inclusive Growth. – Failure of trickle down approach – Misery Index – Expanding Middle Approach to inclusive growth – Middle Income Trap

Topic 3: Government Budgeting. 

Key concepts: Budget – Meaning and Importance – Different types of Budget – Line Item  Budget – Performance Budgeting – Zero based Budgeting – Outcome Budgeting – Gender  Budgeting – Various Component of Budget – Revenue and Capital Account – Deficits – Budget  Deficit – Revenue Deficit – Fiscal Deficit – Stages of enactment of Budget – Recent Changes  – Scrapping of railway Budget and merging it with General Budget – Scrapping of Plan and  Non Plan expenditure – Advancement in the Presentation of Budget – March Rush – Budget  2020-21 – Issues in Budgets in India and 2nd ARC recommendations – Fiscal Responsibility &  Budget Management Act – Covid-19 Impact – Direct Tax Code – GST – Taxation Reforms – MAT – Dividend Distribution Tax – Long Term Capital Gains – Tax Avoidance – Tax Evasion  – Tax Heaven – Tax Buoyancy – Base Erosion & Profit Shifting – GAFA Tax – Reduction in  Corporate Tax – Tax to GDP Ration – Debt to GDP Ratio – Sovereign Bond – Ease of Living  – Aspirational India – Economic Development – Caring Society 

Topic 4: Major crops-cropping patterns in various parts of the country, – different  types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of  agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of  farmers. 

Key concepts: Major crops of India – Food crops and Non-food Crops – Rice/Wheat/Millets/Pulses/tea/coffee/Sugarcane/Cotton/Jute/ – 

Cropping Pattern – Rabi – Kharif – Zaid – Issues related with water guzzling crops – “Virtual  Water Export” – Agriculture distress- Rainfed Agriculture Atlas – Zero Budget Natural  farming – Sustainable Agriculture – Integrated Farming – Shifting Cultivation – Monoculture – Diversification of crops – Climate Smart Agriculture – integrated Farming System – PM Fasal  Bima Yojana 

Irrigation System – Key facts regarding Irrigation in India- Need for Irrigation- Different  types of Irrigation in India – Major/Medium/Minor Irrigation Projects – Positive and Negative  Effects of Irrigation – Effect of Irrigation on Environment – Habitat Destruction- Displacement  of population – Salinity – Water logging – Drip Irrigation –Schemes related to Irrigation –  Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayi Yojana – Micro Irrigation Fund – Long term Irrigation fund – 

Irrigation in dryland areas – Watershed development in India – From Land Productivity to  Water Productivity. – Contribution of Visvesvaraya – PM KUSUM. 

Agricultural Marketing – What is Agricultural Marketing -Objectives of Agricultural  Marketing- Present State of Agricultural Marketing in India – effects of Agricultural Marketing  in India – Steps taken by Government for improvement of Agricultural Marketing in India – Integrated Scheme for Agricultural Marketing- e- NAM – Model Agricultural Produce and  Livestock Marketing (Promotion & Facilitation) Act, 2017 – Draft Model Contract Farming  Act 2018 – Agricultural Export Policy, 2018 – Issues in Food Grain Management in India – Restructuring FCI [Shanta Kumar Committee recommendations]- Farmer Producer 60 

Companies [FPO] – Operation Greens [Curbing Price Volatility in horticultural produce] – Post Covid – Agriculture Market Supply Chain – Contract Farming – e-Negotiable Warehouse  Receipt 

E-Technology in Aid of Farmer – ICT and Agriculture – Agritech – Hydroponics – Vertical Farming – GM Crops & Issues therein – technology fatigue in Indian Agriculture –  Contribution of M S Swaminathan 

Topic 5: Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support  prices; Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping;  issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of  animal-rearing. 

Key concepts: Farm Subsidies – Need/rationale for Subsidies – Types of Subsidies – Merits/Demerits of Subsidies -Various Issues in farm Subsidies – Distortive/Regressive etc. – India and WTO: on Farm Subsidies – Green Box/Amber Box/ Blue Box, Negotiations and  their outcomes, Public Stockholding in India and WTO – 10% subsidy cap – Peace Clause,  Possible Permanent Solution, – Export Subsidy & WTO – Minimum Support Price (MSP)  – Need/Rationale for MSP, MSP Calculation, crops covered, Swaminathan Committee Report,  Issues in the MSP – Alternatives Suggested to MSP – NITI Aayog three models of procurement  – Market Assurance Scheme, Price Deficiency Payment, employing private players to procure  on behalf of the government for a concession – PM-AASHA, Public Distribution System  (PDS) – Evolution, objective, Functioning, Limitations of PDS -Recent Reforms undertaken – Shanta Kumar Committee, Digitisation of Ration Card, Linking Ration Card with Aadhaar  Card, PDS Vs DBT, Food Coupons, Colour Coding -Alternatives to PDS – Cash Transfer/  Food Coupons/Universal Basic Income – One Nation – One Ration Card, etc. Buffer Stocks  – Need for Buffer Stock, What is Buffer Stock, Limitation of Buffer stock, Laws supplementing  buffer stock- ECA, Trading restrictions- issues, implications, FCI reforms – Food Security – Need, Component of food security, Govt Initiatives, National Food Security Act, – Nutrition  Security – Hidden Hunger . Technology Missions – National Mission on Oil seeds and oil  palm, Technology Mission on Oilseeds, Pulses & Maize, Technology Mission on Coconut,  National Saffron Mission, National Mission on Agricultural Extension & Technology, etc. – Economics of Animal Rearing – Role of Livestock in farmers economy, Mixed Farming  and livestock, Climate change and Livestock, Issues- quality, breed system- indigenous/foreign,  research, diseases – Government Schemes – National Livestock Mission, Rashtriya Gokul  Mission, National Kamdhenu Breeding Centre, e-pashuhaat, etc. 

Topic 6: Food processing and related industries in India- scope’ and significance,  location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management. 

Key concepts: Food Processing – Scope/Significance/Potential/Issues and Concerns in the  Food Processing Sector – Government Schemes – Nivesh Bandhu’s Portal – Mega Food Parks  – Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana – 100% FDI permitted in Food Processing – Dairy  Processing and development Fund- Fisheries and aquaculture development fund – Animal 

Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund – Setting up/Modernisation of Abattoirs – Village  Storage Scheme – Dhanalakshmi – National Cold Supply Chain. 

Topic 7: Land reforms in India. 

Key concepts: Brief History – Need and Objectives of Land reform, Components of land  reforms, Phases of Land reform, Overall appraisal of land reforms, Regional Variation in land  Reforms – Post liberalisation Land Reforms – Modernisation of Land Record (Now – Digital  India Land Record Modernisation Program) – Facilitation of Land Leasing (NITI Aayog Model  Agriculture Land Leasing Act 2016) – Right to fair Compensation and Transparency in Land  Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, etc.- Model Tenancy Acts – Issues  arising out of Land to Population Ratio. 

Topic 8: Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and  their effects on industrial growth. 

Key concepts: Liberalisation of Economy – Impact of Liberalisation on different sectors  of economy – Agriculture and Allied Sectors, Manufacturing/Industries, Service Sectors, MSME,  Export improvement, Healthcare/Education etc. – Global Value Chain – Economy of Network  Products – Marxist Perspective – COVID-19 & Globalisation – Trade War – Protectionism – 

Industrial Policy – Need for Industrial Policy, Evolution of Industrial Policy, New Industrial  Policy – 1991- Its Achievement and Failures, Why India needs New Industrial policy, -Missing  Middle – problem of Dwarfism – Pre-mature Deindustrialisation of India – FIRE Economy 

Topic 9: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc. 

Key concepts: – Energy – Key Facts – Conventional and Non-Conventional sources of  Energy – Power Sector – Thermal/Hydro/Nuclear/Renewables – Issues and Challenges in  Power Sector and their remedies – Various Initiatives by Government – Renewable Energy – Solar Power/Wind Energy – Issues and challenges in renewable energy power – National  Infrastructure Pipeline. 

Ports/Shipping Industry – Major and Minor ports, Inland Water Navigation, SAGARMALA  – Ro-Ro Service & Its Impact – Major Ports Act – 

Roads – Road network in India – Importance of Roads – Issues/Challenges in road Sector – Various schemes – Bharatmala- Roads Accident – Steps taken to prevent road Accident – Road Construction – PPP – EPC- BOT- HAM – TOT – Swiss Challenge. 

Railways – Rail network in India – Importance of railways – Various Issues– recommendation  of Various Committees – Bibek Debroy Committee- Sam Pitroda Committee – Anil Kakodar  Committee – Merger of railway Budget with General Budget – Privatisation of Railways – Restructuring of Railways – Rail Development Authority – Rail Safety – High Operating Ratios  – Cross Subsidisation Policy


Airports/Civil Aviation – Importance of Aviation Sector, Issues in aviation sector – Airport  Development – Models – Initiatives by Govt. – UDAN – Disinvestment of Air India – Covid  19 & Aviation Sector. 

Topic 10: Investment models. 

Key concepts: Different Investment Models – PPP – Evolution of PPP in India/ Why We  need PPP, Challenges/Issues in the PPP model, Kelkar Committee Recommendations – Different PPP models – BOT, BOO, BOOT, BOLT, LDO, DBFO – EPC model – TOT, Hybrid  Annuity Model, Swiss Challenge etc – FDI vs FII – Greenfield – Brownfield – Debate 

Topic 11 : Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects  in everyday life. 

Key concepts: Science technology and innovation policy – Defence technology – Space  technology – Information technology – Bio Technology – Nano technology – General science  concepts of chemistry, physics and Biology, – Commercialisation of Space – Mission Shakti – Technical Textile Mission & PPEs – Vaccine Development – Covid -19 – Integrated Disease  Surveillance Program – 4th Industrial Revolution – Quantum Computing – Virtual Currency  – Big Data – Internet of Things -e-Vehicles – Li-ON – eNDS. 

Topic 12: Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of  technology and developing new technology. 

Key concepts: Famous Indian scientists from ancient to the modern age – Notable scientists  of India – CV Raman, M Visvesaraya, J C Bose, Homi Bhabha, Vikram Sarabhai, APJ Abdul  kalam – The extent of indigenization in sectors of Indian economy: Agriculture, Automobile,  Information and Communication Technology, Healthcare and biotechnology, Space- Defence  Indigenisation 

Topic 13: Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, Nano technology, biotechnology and issues relating to intellectual property rights. 

Key concepts: Bio-Technology – GM Crops (Bt Cotton, Bt Brinjal, Bt Mustard Golden  Rice), Gene Therapy, Gene editing, Gene Silencing, Three Parent baby, Human Genome  Project, Genome Project India, MAANAV- Human Atlas, DNA Technology Regulation Bill,  Stem Cells, Embryo Transfer Technology – Neglected Tropical Diseases – Zoonotic Diseases  

Space Technology – Earth Observation Satellite, Communication Satellite, Global  Positioning system, Gaganyaan, Chandryaan, NaVIC, Aditya L1, AstroSat, Vyommitra, – Contribution of ISRO – PSLV – GSLV – Cryogenics – Mars Mission – 

IT and Computer – 4G and 5G, 4D printing, Li-Fi, Cryptocurrencies, Blockchain technology,  Quantum Computing, Data Localisation, Dark Web, etc.

Intellectual Property Rights – Different Categories of IPR, Traditional knowledge Digital  Library, Patent Prosecution Highway Programme, – National IPR Policy – Branded vs Generic  Drugs – Issue of APIs – Patent Act & TRIPS – WIPO – Developed vs Developing World  Debate on IP Rights – Evergreening – Compulsory Licensing. 

Topic 14: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental  impact assessment. 

Key concepts: Environmental Pollution, Deforestation, Eutrophication, Coral Bleaching – Climate change – Impact of Climate Change, Mitigation Strategies, Initiatives by India – ISA – Global Climate Fund – UNFCC, etc – Air Pollution – Issue of SPM 10 – Stubble Burning &  Issues Arising out of it – Vehicular Pollution – River Pollution – Land Degradation – Desertification – Illegal Wildlife Trade – Mangroves – Water Crisis – Pesticide Management  – Western Ghats Conservation : Kasturirangan vs Madhav Gadgil – Carrying Capacity of  Environment. 

Environmental Impact Assessment – Need of it, Various Issues in EIA – Draft EIA 2020

Topic 15: Disaster and disaster management. 

Key concepts: Concepts in Disaster management – Disaster Preparedness – Importance of  Disaster management – Various mitigation methods – Natural and man-made disasters – Disaster management act 2005, National Disaster Management Authority – Vizag Gas Leak – Sendai Framework – Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure – Flood – Landslide – Wildfires – Pandemic as a Disaster – Epidemics Act – Dam Protection Bill. 

Topic 16: Linkages between development and spread of extremism. 

Key concepts: Deficit of development and its regional variations – loss of trust in  government efforts –Land acquisition – issues around compensation and commercial  acquisitions -Tribal discontent – development induced displacement – Indoctrination- role of  non-state actors in promoting extremist ideas (Left Wing Extremism etc) – Naxalbari  Movement – Saranda Action Plan – Urban Naxals 

Topic 17: Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to  internal security. 

Key concepts: Threats from external state actors – Pakistan & China – Cross-border  terrorism – state sponsored terrorism – Threats from non-state actors to internal security – Terrorist Organisations, Drug cartels – Golden Triangle – Golden Crescent – Fake currency  rackets, cross border ethnic group – illegal immigrants – Rohingya Crisis – Overground  Workers of Terror Organisations – Operation Sunrise – Maritime Piracy –

Topic 18: Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of  media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber  security; money-laundering and its prevention. 

Key concepts: Propaganda and indoctrination – recruitments via social media sites – Personal  messaging platforms as a vehicle of protest and false ideas – Challenges to monitor social  media content – Organized crime and its networks using dark web – Fake news – Impact on  democracy – Mob Lynching – Cyber Security – Paid Media – Corporatisation of Media – Data  protection – Data Localisation – Data Sovereignty 

Cyber Security – Different kinds of cyber security vulnerabilities – malwares, Trojan horses  etc, Cyber security of critical infrastructure – Nuclear power plant – financial institutions etc  – Steps by Government to thwart cyber – attack – CERT – IN, etc – Crypto jacking – National  CyberSecuirty Policy – 

Money Laundering – Methods and stages of Money laundering – Black Money – Tax Havens  – Round Tripping – Impact of Money laundering on India, Government steps to combat money  laundering – Legislative Provisions, Institutional mechanism, Global mechanism, FATF – Prevention of Money Laundering Act – Benami Transactions Act – BEPS. 

Topic 19: Security challenges and their management in border areas – linkages of  organized crime with terrorism. 

Key concepts: Border Management –India – China – LAC, Aksai Chin, Arunachal Pradesh,  Stapled visas, Tibet Issue, CPEC, Doklam Issue – India – Pakistan – Sir creek Issue, Siachen,  Border river Dispute , Indus Water Treaty 1960, Dispute on various hydro-electric project  built by India, State sponsored terrorism, fake currency etc – India – Nepal – Kalapani, Susta,  Mechi, Tanakpur – India – Bangladesh – 100th Constitutional amendment act, Illegal migrants,  drug trafficking fake currency, Teesta River Water Dispute – India – Srilanka – Katchatheevu  Island, Fishermen Issue – India – Myanmar – Drug Trafficking, Illegal migrants, Insurgency, etc  – Operation Sunrise – CPEC – Human Trafficking – 

Linkages of Organised crime with Terrorism NIA, UAPA (Amendment) Act – Communal  Violence – Insurgency in North Eastern States and in Jammu and Kashmir – Illegal Wildlife  Trade. 

Topic 20: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate 

Key concepts: Various security forces – Coastal Security – Indian Coast Guard – Central  Armed Police Force – BSF, CISF, CRPF, ITBP, SSB, NSG, AR –their mandate – NIA Amendment  Act – AFPSA – Need for a Cyber command – Chief of Defence Staff


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