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IAS Mains


General Studies‐I

  • Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society.
  • Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
  • Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the presentsignificant events, personalities, issues
  • The Freedom Struggle — its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country.
  • Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country.
  • History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the society.
  • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India.
  • Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.
  • Effects of globalization on Indian society.
  • Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism..
  • Salient features of world’s physical geography.
  • Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian sub-continent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India).
  • Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location-changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

General Studies‐II

  • Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations.
  • Indian Constitution—historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
  • Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
  • Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.
  • Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries.
  • Parliament and State legislatures—structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
  • Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary—Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.
  • Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.
  • Mental ability.
  • Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies
  • Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies
  • Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
  • Development processes and the development industry —the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders
  • Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
  • Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health,Education, Human Resources.
  • Issues relating to poverty and hunger.
  • Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governanceapplications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.
  • Role of civil services in a democracy.
  • India and its neighborhood- relations
  • Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
  • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.
  • Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate.

General Studies‐III:

  • Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management
  • Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.
  • Inclusive growth and issues arising from it
  • Government Budgeting.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Food processing and related industries in India- scope’ and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management
  • Land reforms in India
  • Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.
  • Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
  • Investment models.
  • Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.
  • Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
  • Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.
  • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.
  • Disaster and disaster management
  • Linkages between development and spread of extremism
  • Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.
  • 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.
  • Security challenges and their management in border areas - linkages of organized crime with terrorism.
  • Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

General Studies‐ IV:

Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude

  • This paper will include questions to test the candidates’ attitude and approach to issues relating to integrity, probity in public life and his problem solving approach to various issues and conflicts faced by him in dealing with society. Questions may utilise the case study approach to determine these aspects. The following broad areas will be covered• This paper will include questions to test the candidates’ attitude and approach to issues relating to integrity, probity in public life and his problem solving approach to various issues and conflicts faced by him in dealing with society. Questions may utilise the case study approach to determine these aspects. The following broad areas will be covered
  • Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in-human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics - in private and public relationships. Human Values - lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family society and educational institutions in inculcating values.
  • Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.
  • Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.
  • Emotional intelligence-concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance.
  • Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world.
  • Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.
  • Probity in Governance: Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and probity Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.
  • Case Studies on above issues

Optional (Sociology / Public Administration)

PAPER– I SOCIOLOGY

Fundamentals of Sociology

  • Sociology ‐ The Discipline:
    1. Modernity and social changes in Europe and emergence of Sociology.
    2. Scope of the subject and comparison with other social sciences.
    3. Sociology and common sense.
  • Sociology as Science:
    1. Science, scientific method and critique.
    2. Major theoretical strands of research methodology.
    3. Positivism and its critique.
    4. Fact value and objectivity.
    5. Non-positivist methodologies
  • Research Methods and Analysis:
    1. Qualitative and quantitative methods.
    2. Techniques of data collection.
    3. Variables, sampling, hypothesis, reliability and validity.
  • Sociological Thinkers:
    1. Karl Marx - Historical materialism, mode of production, alienation, class struggle.
    2. Emile Durkhteim - Division of labour, social fact, suicide, religion and society.
    3. Max Weber - Social action, ideal types, authority, bureaucracy, protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism.
    4. Talcolt Parsons - Social system, pattern variables.
    5. Robert K. Merton - Latent and manifest functions, conformity and deviance, reference groups.
    6. Mead - Self and identity.
  • Stratification and Mobility :
    1. Concepts - equality, inequality, hierarchy, exclusion, poverty and deprivation.
    2. Theories of social stratification - Structural functionalist theory, Marxist theory, Weberian theory.
    3. Dimensions - Social stratification of class, status groups, gender, ethnicity and race.
    4. Social mobility - open and closed systems, types of mobility, sources and causes of mobility.
  • Works and Economic Life :
    1. Social organization of work in different types of society - slave society, feudal society, industrial capitalist society.
    2. Formal and informal organization of work.
    3. Labour and society.
  • Politics and Society:
    1. Sociological theories of power.
    2. Power elite, bureaucracy, pressure groups and political parties.
    3. Nation, state, citizenship, democracy, civil society, ideology.
    4. Protest, agitation, social movements, collective action, revolution
  • Religion and Society:
    1. Sociological theories of religion.
    2. Types of religious practices: animism, monism, pluralism, sects, cults.
    3. Religion in modern society: religion and science, secularization, religious revivalism, fundamentalism.
  • Systems of Kinship:
    1. Family, household, marriage.
    2. Types and forms of family.
    3. Lineage and descent.
    4. Patriarchy and sexual division of labour.
    5. Contemporary trends..
  • Social Change in Modern Society :
    1. Sociological theories of social change.
    2. Development and dependency.
    3. Agents of social change.
    4. Education and social change.
    5. Science, technology and social change

PAPER–II INDIAN SOCIETY

Structure and Change

  1. Introducing Indian Society
    1. Perspectives on the Study of Indian Society
      1. Indology (G.S. Ghure)
      2. Structural functionalism (M. N. Srinivas)
      3. Marxist sociology (A. R. Desai)
    2. Impact of colonial rule on Indian society
      1. Social background of Indian nationalism.
      2. Modernization of Indian tradition.
      3. Protests and movements during the colonial period.
      4. Social reforms.
  2. Social Changes in India
    1. Rural and Agrarian Social Structure:
      1. The idea of Indian village and village studies.
      2. Agrarian social structure— evolution of land tenure system, land reforms
    2. Caste System:
      1. Perspectives on the study of caste systems: G. S. Ghurye, M. N. Srinivas, Louis Dumont, Andre Beteille.
      2. Features of caste system.
      3. Untouchability-forms and perspectives
    3. Tribal Communities in India:
      1. Definitional problems.
      2. Geographical spread.
      3. Colonial policies and tribes.
      4. Issues of integration and autonomy.
    4. Social Classes in India
      1. Agrarian class structure.
      2. Industrial class structure.
      3. Middle classes in India.
    5. Systems of Kinship in India
      1. Lineage and descent in India.
      2. Types of kinship systems.
      3. Family and marriage in India.
      4. Household dimensions of the family.
      5. Patriarchy, entitlements and sexual division of labour.
    6. Religion and Society
      1. Religious communities in India.
      2. Problems of religious minorities.
  3. Social Structure:
    1. Visions of Social Change in India:
      1. Idea of development planning and mixed economy.
      2. Constitution, law and social change.
      3. Education and social change.
    2. Rural and Agrarian Transformation in India
      1. Programmes of rural development, Community Development Programme, cooperatives, poverty alleviation schemes.
      2. Green revolution and social change.
      3. Changing modes of production in Indian agriculture.
      4. Problems of rural labour, bondage, migration.
    3. Industrialization and Urbanisation in India
      1. Evolution of modern industry in India.
      2. Growth of urban settlements in India.
      3. Working class: structure, growth, class mobilization.
      4. Informal sector, child labour.
      5. Slums and deprivation in urban areas
    4. Politics and Society
      1. Nation, democracy and citizenship.
      2. Political parties, pressure groups, social and political elite.
      3. Regionalism and decentralization of power.
    5. Social Movements in Modern India
      1. Peasants and farmers movements.
      2. Women’s movement.
      3. Backward classes & Dalit movements.
      4. Environmental movements.
      5. Ethnicity and Identity movements.
    6. Population Dynamics
      1. Population size, growth, composition and distribution.
      2. Components of population growth: birth, death, migration.
      3. Population Policy and family planning.
      4. Emerging issues: ageing, sex ratios, child and infant mortality, reproductive health.
    7. Challenges of Social Transformation
      1. Crisis of development: displacement, environmental problems and sustainability.
      2. Poverty, deprivation and inequalities.
      3. Violence against women.
      4. Caste conflicts.
      5. Ethnic conflicts, communalism, religious revivalism.
      6. Illiteracy and disparities in education.

PAPER‐II PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION


PAPER‐I Administration Theory


  1. Introduction: Meaning, scope and significance of Public Administration, Wilson’s vision of Public Administration, Evolution of the discipline and its present status. New Public Administration, Public Choice approach; Challenges of liberalization, Privatisation, Globalisation; Good Governance: concept and application; New Public Management.

  2. Administrative Thought: Scientific Management and Scientific Management movement; Classical Theory; Weber’s bureaucratic model its critique and post-Weberian Developments; Dynamic Administration (Mary Parker Follett); Human Relations School (Elton Mayo and others); Functions of the Executive (C.I. Barnard); Simon’s decision-making theory; Participative Management (R. Likert, C. Argyris, D. McGregor.)

  3. Administrative Behaviour: Process and techniques of decision-making; Communication; Morale; Motivation Theories content, process and contemporary; Theories of Leadership: Traditional and Modem:

  4. Organisations: Theories systems, contingency; Structure and forms: Ministries and Departments, Corporations, Companies; Boards and Commissions; Ad hoc, and advisory bodies; Headquarters and Field relationships; Regulatory Authorities; Public-Private Partnerships.

  5. Accountability and Control : Concepts of accountability and control; Legislative, Executive and judicial control over administration; Citizen and Administration; Role of media, interest groups, voluntary organizations; Civil society; Citizen’s Charters; Right to Information; Social audit.

  6. Administrative Law: Meaning, scope and significance; Dicey on Administrative law; Delegated legislation; Administrative Tribunals.

  7. Comparative Public Administration: Historical and sociological factors affecting administrative systems; Administration and politics in different countries; Current status of Comparative Public Administration; Ecology and administration; Riggsian models and their critique.

  8. Development Dynamics: Concept of development; Changing profile of development administration; ‘Anti-development thesis’; Bureaucracy and development; Strong state versus the market debate; Impact of liberalisation on administration in developing countries; Women and development the self-help group movement.

  9. Personnel Administration : Importance of human resource development; Recruitment, training, career advancement, position classification, discipline, performance appraisal, promotion, pray and service conditions; employer-employee relations, grievance redressal mechanism; Code of conduct; Administrative ethics.

  10. Public Policy: Models of policy-making and their critique; Processes of conceptualization, planning, implementation, monitoring, evaluation and review and their limitations; State theories and public policy formulation.

  11. Techniques of Administrative Improvement: Organization and methods, Work study and work management; e-governance and information technology; Management aid tools like network analysis, MIS, PERT, CPM.

PAPER‐II Indian Administration


  1. Evolution of Indian Administration : Kautilya Arthashastra; Mughal administration; Legacy of British rule in politics and administration Indianization of Public services, revenue administration, district Administration, local self Government.

  2. Philosophical and Constitutional framework of Government : Salient features and value premises; Constitutionalism; Political culture; Bureaucracy and democracy; Bureaucracy and development.

  3. Public Sector Undertakings: Public sector in modern India; Forms of Public Sector Undertakings; Problems of autonomy, accountability and control; Impact of liberalization and privatization.

  4. Union Government and Administration : Executive, Parliament, Judiciary-structure, functions, work processes; Recent trends; Intra-governmental relations; Cabinet Secretariat; Prime Minister’s Office; Central Secretariat; Ministries and Departments; Boards; Commissions; Attached offices; Field organizations.

  5. State Government and Administration : Union-State administrative, legislative and financial relations; Role of the Finance Commission; Governor; Chief Minister; Council of Ministers; Chief Secretary; State Secretariat; Directorates.

  6. District Administration since Independence: Changing role of the Collector; Union-State-local relations; Imperatives of development management and law and order administration; District administration and democratic decentralization.

  7. Civil Services : Constitutional position; Structure, recruitment, training and capacity building; Good governance initiatives; Code of conduct and discipline; Staff associations; Political rights; Grievance redressal mechanism; Civil service neutrality; Civil service activism.

  8. Financial Management : Budget as a political instrument; Parliamentary control of public expenditure; Role of finance ministry in monetary and fiscal area; Accounting techniques; Audit; Role of Controller General of Accounts and Comptroller and Auditor General of India.

  9. Administrative Reforms since Independence: Major concerns; Important Committees and Commissions; Reforms in financial management and human resource development; Problems of implementation. 11. Rural Development: Institutions and agencies since Independence; Rural development programmes: foci and strategies; Decentralization and Panchayati Raj; 73rd Constitutional amendment.

  10. Urban Local Government : Municipal governance: main features, structures, finance and problem areas; 74th Constitutional Amendment; Global-local debate; New localism; Development dynamics, politics and administration with special reference to city management.

  11. Law and Order Administration: British legacy; National Police Commission; Investigative agencies; Role of Central and State Agencies including para military forces in maintenance of law and order and countering insurgency and terrorism; Criminalisation of politics and administration; Police-public relations; Reforms in Police.

  12. Significant issues in Indian Administration: Values in public service; Regulatory Commissions; National Human Rights Commission; Problems of administration in coalition regimes; Citizen administration interface; Corruption and administration; Disaster management.