For the following 9 Questions
Read the following interview and answer the given questions based on that. Some words have been printed in bold to help you locate them while answering some of the questions. A pioneering new book, Gender and Green Governance, explores a central question : If women had adequate representation in forestry institutions, would it make a difference to them, their communities and forests as a national resource ? Interview with the author.
Why has access to forests been such a conflict-ridden issue ?
This is not surprising. Forests constitute not just community and national wealth, but global wealth. But for millions, forests are also critical for livelihoods and their daily lives.
Your first book, Cold Hearths and Barren Slopes (1986), Was about forests. Is there an evolution of argument here ?
Yes indeed. In Cold Hearths and Barren Slopes, I had argued that social forestry, with its top-down implementation and focus on commercial species, was neither ‘social’ nor ‘forestry’, and would protect neither forests nor village livelihoods. The answer, I argued, lay in allowing forest communities to manage local forests. Finally, in 1990, India launched the joint forest
management programme and Nepal also started community forestry. So I decided to see for myself how community forestry was actually doing.Between 1995 and 1999, I travelled extensively across India and Nepal and found a paradox : Forests were indeed becoming greener but women’s problem of firewood shortages persisted and in many cases had become more acute. Also, despite their high stakes in forests,women continued to be largely excluded from forest management. I coined the term “participatory exclusions” to describe this. However, the current book is less about women’s exclusion. I ask :
What if women were present in forest governance ? What difference would that make ?
But has this question not been raised before?
Economists researching environmental collective action have paid little attention to gender.Scholars from other disciplines focussing on gender and governance have been concerned mainly with women’s near absence from governance institutions. The presumption is that once women are present all good things will follow. But can we assume this? No. Rural women’s
relationship with forests is complex.On the one hand, their everyday dependence on forests for firewood, fodder etc., creates a
strong stake in conservation. On the other, the same dependence can compel them to extract heavily from forests. As one landless woman told me : ‘Of course, it hurts me to cut a green branch but what do I do if my children are hungry?’ Taking an agnostic position, I decided to test varied propositions, controlling for other factors.
What did you find ?
First, women’s greater presence enhances their effective voice in decision-making. And
there is a critical mass effect. If forest management groups have 25-33 percent female members
in their executive committees it significantly increases the likelihood of women attending
meetings, speaking up and holding office. However, the inclusion of landless women makes a
particular difference. When present in sufficient numbers they are more likely to attend meetings
and voice their concerns than landed women. So what matters is not just including more women,
but more poor women.
Second, and unexpectedly, groups with more women typically make stricter forest use rules.
Why is this the case ? Mainly because they receive poorer forests from the forest department. To
regenerate these they have to sacrifice their immediate needs. Women from households with
some land have some fallback. But remarkably even in groups with more landless women,
although extraction is higher, they still balance self-interest with conservation goals, when placed
in decision-making positions.
Third, groups with more women outperform other groups in improving forest conditions,
despite getting poorer forests. Involving women substantially improves protection and conflict
resolution, helps the use of their knowledge of local biodiversity, and raises children’s awareness
For the following 12 Questions
In the following passage there are blanks, each of which has
been numbered. These numbers are printed below the passage and against each, five words are
suggested, one of which fits the blank appropriately. Find out the appropriate word in each case.
With the announcement that he would donate Rs. 8,846 crore of his equity in the company
to the philanthropic trust he controls, the Founder and Chairman of Infotech giant Wipro Ltd. ,
Azim Premji has set the .....(19)..... very high for other mega rich businessmen of the country. The
28th richest man in the world, and India’s third richest, could not have made a better and more
sound ....(20)... choice than this. His Azim Premji Foundation is already working in the rural areas
of the country to improve the quality of education and is now in the process of setting up a
university for the poor. This .....(21)..... will be a welcome addition to the kitty of a sector that has
the capability to transform India but is badly handicapped due to the lack of adequate funding.
Other IT majors Infosys, MindTree, TCS and HCL also support programmes that support social
At a time when India’s economic footprint on the global stage is rising, the .....(22)....
between the different strata of society has also been increasing. This is not a positive
development and the underprivileged sections need to be equipped with life skills so that they too
can be a part of the growth story. A very basic requirement of this life skills development is to
educate them and make them employable. The fact that most of the heads of these IT majors are
......(23)..... first-generation entrepreneurs ......(24)..... that education, more than anything else, is
a great leveler. At the same time, the improved economic conditions will also push up people into
the middle-class bracket and make India a much more attractive market.
According to Forbes, which keeps a tab on the ....(25).... of the rich and famous, India has
69 billionaires. Yet how many consider ......(26).... as a priority when it comes to spending ?
Industry reports indicate that Indians spend about Rs. 30,000 crore a year on charitable ....(27)....
and this includes the money spent by companies on their corporate social responsibility
programmes. This is not .....(28).... and Indians, especially the corporate czars, have much more
ability to give. In a foreword to Corporate Social Responsibility in India, MS Swaminathan
correctly says : “Just as good ecology is good business, good philanthropy will also be good
business in the ....(29).... term”. Should the country institutionalise CSR interventions to deal
....(30)... malnutrition, education, health, unemployment and poverty ? The government would
welcome a helping hand, wouldn’t it ?
For the following 5 Questions
Rearrange the following six sentences (A), (B), (C), (D), (E) and
(F) in the proper sequence to form a meaningful paragraph; then answer the questions given
(A) While the reference point for the former is the state, for the latter it’s society.
(B) India’s ‘strategic community’ comprises two distinct circles with little overlap.
(C) Consequently, mainstream strategists have an external orientation to their discourse,
concentrating on high politics; the latter is more internal oriented.
(D) Their prescriptions too are understandably poles apart and thus, the state, to which both
their commentary is directed, has to play balancer, and ends up being at the receiving
end of criticism from both cities.
(E) Out of the two, one can be termed the ‘mainstream’ and the other ‘alternate’.
(F) To further elaborate on the external and internal concept while one is enamoured of
India’s rise and place in the global order, the other is more sensitive to its vulnerabilities