Exam Name: UPSC IAS Mains Geography Optional
Time Allowed: 3 Hours
Year: 2023

Geography Optional Question Paper-1 (2023)

Section: A

1. Answer the following in about 150 words each: 10×5 = 50

1.(a) What is “Geostrophic Wind”? Explain the relationship between barometric slope and air circulation. 10

1.(b) What is ocean ranching ? How are aqua-cowboys related to such activities ? 10

1.(c) Explain the natural processes of soil enrichment and its impact on food production. 10

1.(d) How is Deep Ecology’ as a concept different from ‘Shallow Ecology’ ? Explain. 10

1.(e) What are the environmental implications of economic geology? Discuss.

2. (a) “Evidences from palaeomagnetism and sea floor spreading have validated that continents and ocean basins have never been stationary.” Elucidate with suitable diagrams. 20

2.(b) Explain the characteristics and weather conditions associated with ‘Anticyclones’ giving suitable examples. 15

2.(c) How are ocean currents generated? Discuss their effects on coastal climates with special reference to the Pacific Ocean. 15

3.(a) What are the causes of origin of local winds? Discuss their significance on prevailing weather and climate in various regions, with suitable examples. 20

3.(b) Define Peneplains. Describe the landscape features associated with peneplains under different geomorphic cycles. 15

3.(c) What are the factors affecting regional ecological changes? How do these affect human health? 15

4.(a) Give an account of marine resources and their economic significance. How has marine pollution affected such resources? 20

4.(b) Differentiate between the characteristics of organic horizons and mineral horizons in a generalised soil profile. 15

4.(c) How does inversion of temperature occur? Explain its significance on local weather with suitable examples. 15

Section: B

5. Answer the following in about 150 words each : 10×5 = 50

5.(a) Explain the sequential development of areal differentiation as a fundamental concept in Human Geography. 10

5.(b) Discuss critically food and nutrition problems associated with the developing world. 10

5.(c) Human migration is a reflection of the balance between push and pull factors. Elaborate with reference to the most recent diaspora. 10

5(d) Has Malthusian Theory been discredited in contemporary times? Justify your answer. 10

5.(e) Discuss the different types of polarisation induced spatial inequalities and imbalances associated with growth poles. 10

6.(a) Explain the problems and prospects of urban expansion in the context of urban fringe in developed and developing nations. 20

6.(b) What is the relation between gender equity and human development? Provide a list of commonly used gender related indices. 15

6.(c) Explain population, resource use and development nexus in the Limits to Growth Model. Why has this model been criticized intensively? 15

7.(a) Explain with suitable diagrams A. Losch’s model of the Theory of Location related to Central Places. Why has this been criticized? 20

7.(b) How can Sustainable Land Management (SLM) harmonise the complimentary goals of environmental, economic and social opportunities? Discuss. 15

7.(c) “The stages of Demographic Transition are a reflection of uneven económic development across the globe.” Explain with suitable examples. 15

8.(a) “Rural settlements are expressions of the basic relationships between human beings and their physical and social environment.” Discuss. 20

8.(b) Describe the concept of Planning Region. Explain the environmental and economic factors in the creation of such regions. 15

8(c) “Boundaries and frontiers have different meanings in geographical literature.” Substantiate your answer in the present context.

Geography Optional Question Paper-2 (2023)

Section: A

1. (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: 2*10 = 20

  • Nathula
  • Hutti
  • Ross Island
  • Moreh
  • Ramappa
  • Namdapha National Park
  • Sela Tunnel
  • Ennore Port
  • Ramagundam
  • Betwa River
CSE Mains 2023 Geography

1.(b) Describe the origin, distribution and economic significance of Gondwana system of rocks in India. 10

1.(c) Examine the role of Indian Earth Observation Satellite Technology in enhancing weather forecasting and disaster management. 10

1. (d) Discuss the impact of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010 on forest conservation in India. 10

2. (a) Examine the environmental challenges caused by the solid waste in metropolitan regions of India and discuss the efforts to overcome it. 20

2. (b) Why are millets considered as nutri-cereals’ and climate-resilient? Discuss the constraints and opportunities of millet cultivation in India. 15

2. (c) Examine the geostrategic significance of Indian islands. 15

3. (a) Indian Pharma Industry has to move from volume’ to ‘value’ leadership to capture global market. Discuss. 20

3. (b) Discuss the problems of floods and their management with special reference to Indo-Gangetic Plain. 15

3. (c) Critically examine the role of petroleum energy resources on International Geopolitics with special reference to India. 15

4. (a) With falling fertility rate and rising median age, how can India translate demographic dividend to economic dividend? 20

4. (b) Poor quality of urban planning in India is a huge constraint in realizing the true economic potentials of urbanization. Critically examine. 15

4. (c) Highlight the salient features of India’s trade policy. Discuss the status of India’s balance of trade with China. 15

Section: B

Answer the following questions in about 150 words each: 10×5-50

5. (a) Identify the jute-producing areas and discuss the major causes of decline of jute mill industry in India.

5. (b) Urban built environment in big cities of India creates key changes in biophysical character of the landscape. Discuss.

5. (c) Explain the geological characteristics and ecological significance of the Eastern Ghats.

5. (d) Explain the cultural regions of India based on their cultural attributes.

5. (e) Why are critical minerals essential for the economic development and national security in India?

6. (a) A large number of Indian cities have a complex morphological characteristics due to their historical evolution. Elucidate. 20

6. (b) Discuss the significance of organic farming for sustainable agricultural development in India. 15

6. (c) Examine the geopolitical impact of bilateral relationship between India and Sri Lanka. 15

7. (a) Discuss the green energy initiatives of India as a signatory nation to the Paris Agreement. 20

7. (b) India’s poultry sector has become one of the fastest growing areas of the country’s agricultural sector. Examine its opportunities and challenges. 15

7. (c) Critically examine the ecological and economic impact of Indira Gandhi Canal Command Area development. 15

8. (a) Why India lags behind many other countries in agricultural productivity? Suggest suitable measures to raise productivity across the regions in a sustainable manner. 20

8. (b) Assess the ecotourism potential of Andaman and Nicobar, Lakshadweep islands and highlight the challenges associated with the sustainable development of island territories. 15

8. (c) Describe the regional variations of health indicators among the Indian States. 15

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