Saturday, 12 September 2015

How to read "The Hindu " ?

Hi friends ,

Most of my students have had this question "How to read the Hindu ? What notes to make ?"
Yes,' The Hindu ' is the preferred newspaper for IAS aspirants ,because most of the questions are trigerred from there .

Before you learn how to read the newspaper ,here are some points I shall suggest .

  1. Always have the syllabus infront of you .
  2. Have the past question papers with you and keep referring to them,to understand how questions are asked .
  3. Understand the issue rather than just reading word by word. After identifying the issue ,take down notes topic wise and not date wise. 
  4. Use the following websites ,if you need more points .
      5. Do not spend more than 1 hour on the newspaper.Few students end up spending 3-4 hours                 merely on the newspaper .It does not help.

Lets take a look at the newspapers and relevant articles for the exam.

1. Any judgement/ruling /remark by Supreme Court/High Court is important. While you note down the judgement ,also understand its relevance in your syllabus.Relate it to Geography /History /Economics/Polity.

2. Identify social issues /challenges facing the society as such .Understand its pros and cons and also note down the recent incidents .You can quote them to substantiate your point .Example -caste riots ,moral policing ,restriction on freedom of speech,etc.

3.Note down any issue being discussed in the Government departments/ministries. Note down the pros and cons of the issue .example -Linking rivers ,water conservation ,etc.

4.Identify schemes/policies/ initiatives of the government .For the prelims ,you will have to know 
  • Objectives of the policy
  • Under which ministry /department / it operates.
  • Any special feature of the policy.
  • Who are the members (If its an organisation .eg.Inter State council)
  • Any constitutional provisions related to it .

For the mains ,
  • you will have to understand the issue relating to the policy/scheme and make notes on pros and cons.

Here,you will have to know about CISF and cyber crime in detail.

5.While reading the editorial , identify the issue first .Then find out points in favour and against it .Please understand the the editorials have a bias towards one opinion. So,it is your duty to identify points ,both for the topic and against the topic.


Here ,the issue is on the powers of AFSPA . A judgement has triggered this debate.

Hope you find the article helpful in reading the newspaper .
Happy reading .

Stay tuned!
(This is a part of a series of blogs on IAS Exam simplified like never before!)

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  1. I appreciate the way you've elaborated every single aspect of reading it.

    But to my amaze, don't you think this whole process - of knowing several issues, relating from social to national to international to business etc - would take more than one hour?

    Also, when you said 'One Hour', did you include notes making in it as well?

    I'm a bit confused regarding the whole issue of 'Hindu reading'. Even though I enjoy reading it, but I take time; around 2-3 hours.

    Please help me out!

  2. When you read the paper line by line ,it might take longer .

    Learn to skim the paper for relevant issues and information.
    Example : Any business news related to corporates issue of shares /declaration dividend /Flipkart announcing a sale is of no relevance to UPSC.
    What is relevant - RBI/finance minister making any statement .

    2. In the international section,everyday development of Middle East crisis might not be totally relevant to you in depth .You shall just follow important developments.

    The reason I say "one hour " is after taking into consideration all other factors like your classes/work ,self study ,note making ,etc.
    In my view,you should finish reading the newspaper in an hour .
    Which means you shall
    1.find out the relevant issues
    2.Relate it to your syllabus
    3 .Trace the development in that issue
    4. Identify what notes to make.
    Your note making shall take an extra half an hour .

    Remember ,only when you set a time to a task,you will accomplish it more efficiently .

    In the first few weeks ,it might take few hour but eventually the goal is to restrict newspaper reading to an hour's job .

    Hope you find it useful.

  3. Great words , as you said , i will do it in same manner . Thanks a lot

  4. This information is very helpful. Thank you Sir.

  5. Sir, I discontinued my PG. But I did not get TC still now.I have my UG Degree certificate. Is TC required anywhere in UPSC CSE?