Title: Leaders and growth

Issue: Political system

Syllabus: General Studies-II - Indian Polity and Constitution - Executive, Pressure Groups

Context: Political systems across the world tend to elect strong leaders. Example: Trump in USA, Erdogan in Turkey, Janos Ader in Hungary, Jair Bolsanaro


  1. Some of the reasons why strong leaders are preferred are: they can take decisive actions in economic, defence sector etc
  2. Some of the studies on this subject has thrown up following observations:
  • The methods through which leadership impacts growth was through monetary and fiscal policy, not private investment
  • It has been found out that resilient leaders facing a lower probability of being replaced are less likely to reform institutions in the direction of constraining executive power.
  • It has been found out that more educated leaders ensure higher periods of growth compared to less educated leaders.
  • Leaders facing a lower probability of being replaced are less likely to reform institutions in the direction of constraining executive power.

Takeaway point: Political systems across the world continue to be tipped towards the ‘strong leaders’, more research needs to be done in this regard to understand it better and whether if it is a good development or not.


Keywords: Political system strong leaders

# Previous UPSC Question Marks Year
1 Instances of President’s delay in commuting death sentences has come under public debate as denial of justice. Should there be a time limit specified for the President to accept/reject such petitions ? Analyse. (200 words) 10 marks 2014
2 Pressure group politics is sometimes seen as the informal face of politics. With regards to the above, assess the structure and functioning of pressure groups in India. (200 words) 10 marks 2013
3 The exercise of executive clemency is not a privilege but is based on several principles, and discretion has to be exercised in public considerations. Analyze this statement in the context of the judicial powers of the President of India. (250 words) 15 marks. 20 2011
4 Pressure group are an anonymous empire and are an unofficial Government. Do you agree with above statement. Substantiate with reasons? 20 2009
5 Pressure groups and political parties share an intimate and inconclusive relationship. They work closely and are not the same. Analyse how political parties and pressure groups are different from each other? 20 2009
6 Pressure groups mushroomed in India but quality of work did not improve. Discuss the reasons for the rise in pressure groups and their failure to make impact in India. 20 2009
7 Pressure groups in India are not matured but they are too diverse. Analyse the characteristics of pressure groups in India? 20 2009
8 Functioning of pressure groups differ widely in India and western countries. Analyse 20 2009
9 Bring out the aberrations of the parliamentary system of government in India. (250 words) 2001
10 The office of the president of India was designed in the British mode, With this background consider the modification of the executive powers of the president by the 42 nd amendment, 1976 and the 44th amendment 1979 to the constitution of India. Comment on the changes. 1982
11 Describe briefly the legislative and executive powers of the President of India. Have there been any changes during the last decade? Offer your comments. 1981

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