PAPER-2: General Studies -II: 250 Marks


This is GS Paper II . Before we proceed keep in mind “


The questions by far and in general likings are designed to test the candidate’s take on replevant issues, his/her ability to analyse and perceive, guiding his/her responsiveness on conflicting socio-economic goals, its objectives and demand it raises.”

The level of paper always remains of good quality . GS paper 2 remains more or less the most difficult paper. The best approach is to cover the syllabus topic wise and balanced preparation of current affairs along side theoretical knowledge. The aspirants also need an ability to reuse the information they needed in prelims paper to subjectify their objectivity in the mains paper.


  • GS II
  • Constitution
  • Governance
  • Polity
  • Social Justice
  • International Relations

Marks Distribution

  • Polity
  • 2013: 90
  • 2014:100
  • 2015: 100
  • 2016: 100
  • Governance
  • 2013: 50
  • 2014: 62.5
  • 2015: 37.5
  • 2016: 50
  • International Relation
  • 2013: 70
  • 2014: 62.5
  • 2015: 50
  • 2016: 50
  • Social Justice & Welfare
  • 2013: 40
  • 2014: 25
  • 2015: 62.5
  • 2016: 50

(Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations)

PART I (Constitution) 

  • Must Read Books-
  • NCERT Class XI- Indian Constitution at work
  • NCERT XII-Contemporary World Politics
  • Indian Polity M.Laxmikant


Indian Public Administration: Institutions and Issues: Fadia & Fadia

D.D. Basu

Subhash Kashyap

Reports/ Website

  • 2 ARC Report no. 1, 6, 10, 11, 12, 15
  • Government Websites
  • Press Information Bureau

Syllabus: “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.”

This is static part and basic knowledge of it can be taken from Indian Polity by M Laxmi Kant. However, UPSC is not interested in what part and Mains Paper demand analysis. `That can be prepared from:

  • 6th report of ARC-Local Governance
  • Indian Public Administration: Institutions and Issues- Fadia & Fadia (Selected Chapters)
  • For Federal Part have a conceptual clarity from Indian Public Administration: Institutions and Issues- Fadia & Fadia (Selected Chapters)
  • Current Issues


  • Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions

Dispute resolution from 7th ARC  Report – ‘Capacity Building for Conflict Resolution’ 

  • Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries

No question has been asked yet and this topic can be prepared from:

Books : Indian Public Administration: Institutions and Issues- Fadia & Fadia .

Apart from this, A book by S. Chand – Select Constitutions of the world also covers this topic comprehensively. However, be careful don’t read in much depth and waste your time in research work.


  • Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, the 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.
  • Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies.
  • Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

These parts of syllabus discussed well but analysis part is not there in M. Laxmikant. Best resource for this part is Indian Public Administration: Institutions and Issues- Fadia &Fadia  and D.D Basu or Subhash Kashyap. Apart from this RSTV/RSTV debates, 13th Report- Organisational structure of Govt of India and Current Issues.

                              Part 2 Social Justice/Welfare Policies

policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Must Read Books/ reports Reference
Economic Survey, Yojana, India Year Book, Kurukshetra EPW, Frontline Magazine, Niti Ayog Reports


Syllabus: Development processes and the development industry- the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders.

This part is dynamic and question. For example, Question on NGO. This was in news due to an adverse report of IB against foreign funding o

Examine critically the recent changes in the rules governing foreign funding of NGOs under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA), 1976. CSE 2015

Must Read Books/ reports Reference
Indian Public Administration: Institutions and Issues- Fadia & Fadia  , Current Daily Business News Paper


Syllabus: 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 the development and management of Social Sector or Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.
  • Issues relating to poverty and hunger.

There is no need to mug up all the schemes and their analysis. Just focus on current part and whichever scheme is in news. Also read summery of some important reports like

  • Human Development Report by UNDP
  • Migration Report by IMO
  • Hunger Report & Hunger Index

Part 3 Governance

Syllabus: Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance- applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.

  • Role of civil services in a democracy.

This part has some overlapping with Paper IV but here purpose is different than Ethics Paper. You should have some basic understanding of all the concepts which are mentioned in syllabus

Must Read Books/ reports Reference
Indian Public Administration: Institutions and Issues- Fadia & Fadia  , 2nd ARC REPORT (Right to Information, Promoting e-Governance, Citizen Centric Administration, Social Capital) Development Administration – Mohit Bhattacharya, Democracy and Development (IGNOU MPS 003)


Part IV International Relation

  • India and its neighbourhood- 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.

This part is completely dynamic but for basic understanding of Indian foreign policy after Independence can read Book of V.P.Dutt & India & Neighbourhood relation from Ministry of External Affairs Website.

Must Read Reference Important Website/ Author
NCERT Class XII – Political Science II, V.P. Dutt


Does the Elephant Dance, book by David Melon, Book by Rajiv Sikri,  , Article of C. Raja Mohan