January 22, 2017
how to read the economic survey- Part 1
February 13, 2017

Hi friends,

Economic survey 2016-2017 is out and once again, the question in the minds of the aspirants is “How to read this Economic survey?”

“How many questions will come in the prelims and mains?”

“Can I skip reading it ?”

Importance of Economic Survey

  • It is a document released by the Government of India, ahead of the Budget.
  • It talks about the year that passed and the forthcoming year.
  • It talks about important policies, need and  performance and the path ahead.

Previous year Questions (Prelims)

Lets have a look at the previous three years’ question papers to understand nature of  questions asked.

1.With Reference to the Fourteenth Finance Commission, which of the following statements is/are correct?

  1. It has increased the share of States in the central divisible pool from 32 percent to 42 percent
    2. It has made recommendations concerning sector-specific grants
  2. a) 1 only
    b) 2 only
    c) Both 1 and 2
    d) Neither 1 nor 2

2.The Fair and Remunerative Price of Sugarcane is approved by the

  1. a) Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs
    b) Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices
    c) Directorate of Marketing and Inspection, Ministry of Agriculture
    d) Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee

3.In India, markets in agricultural products are regulated under the

  1. a) Essential Commodities Act, 1955
    b) Agricultural Produce Market Committee Act enacted by States
    c)Agricultural Produce (Grading and Marking) Act, 1937
    d) Food Products Order, 1956 and Meat and Food Products Order, 1973

4.With reference to India economy, consider the following statements:

  1. The rate of growth of real Gross Domestic Product has steadily increased in the last decade.
    2. The Gross Domestic Product at market prices (in rupees) has steadily increased in the last decade

Which of the statement given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
    b. 2 only
    c. Both 1 and 2 *
    d. Neither 1 nor 2

5.There has been a persistent deficit budget year after year. Which of the following actions can be taken by the government to reduce the deficit?

  1. Reducing revenue expenditure
    2. Introducing new welfare schemes
    3. Rationalizing subsidies
    4. Expanding industries

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 3 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 only
(d) 1,2,3 and 4

Previous years’ questions(Mains)


  1. Given the vulnerability of Indian agriculture to vagaries of nature, discuss the need for crop insurance and bring out the salient features of the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)
  2. How globalization has led to the reduction of employment in the formal sector of the Indian economy? Is increased informalization detrimental to the development of the country?
  3. Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) is necessary for bringing unbanked to the institutional finance fold. Do you agree with this for financial inclusion of the poorer section of the Indian society? Give arguments to justify your opinion.


  1. The nature of economic growth in India in described as jobless growth. Do you agree with this view? Give arguments in favour of your answer.
  2. In view of the declining average size of land holdings in India which has made agriculture non-viable for a majority of farmers, should contract farming and land leasing be promoted in agriculture? Critically evaluate the pros and cons.
  3. In what way could replacement of price subsidy with Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) change the scenario of subsidies in India? Discuss.
  4. Craze for gold in Indians have led to a surge in import of gold in recent years and put pressure on balance of payments and external value of rupee. In view of this, examine the merits of Gold Monetization Scheme.
  5. “Success of ‘Make in India’ programme depends on the success of ‘Skill India’ programme and radical labour reforms.” Discuss with logical arguments.


  1. Normally countries shift from agriculture to industry and then later to services, but India shifted directly from agriculture to services. What are the reasons for the huge growth of services vis-a-vis industry in the country? Can India become a developed country without a strong industrial base?
  2. While we found India’s demographic dividend, we ignore the dropping rates of employability. What are we missing while doing so? Where will the jobs that India desperately needs come from? Explain.
  3. The right to fair compensation and transparency land acquisition, rehabilitation and resettlement act, 2013 has come into effect from 1 January 2014. What implication would it have on industrialization and agriculture in India?


Economic Survey is important for prelims as well as GS paper 3 of Mains.

This year’s Economic Survey is slightly different from the previous years(there is just one volume).Here is the link to the Economic Survey.

I will write about the Economic Survey in two parts. Part 1 of the Economic Survey will follow shortly.

Stay tuned,

All the best.

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