How to Read Editorials in "The Hindu' for IAS Preparation

The Hindu is the most crucial part of your preparation for the UPSC CSE exam because it contains significant themes for  prelims and mains questions. This article will teach you how to read editorials for the IAS exam.

Here are some things you should do before learning how to read the editorial section of a newspaper:

  • Understand the UPSC syllabus completely.
  • Practice previous years' question papers and become familiar with the exam pattern.
  • Understand the essential issues in the news.
  • It is advisable to spend not more then one hour reading the newspaper.

There is a tremendous amount of information in 'The Hindu,' but the following are appropriate from a UPSC perspective and deserve your attention:

  • The social issues or challenges that society faces must be properly identified. Understand the pros and cons, and make a list of recent incidents that have occurred concerning the topics. You can cite them to back up your point. For example, caste riots, moral policing, restrictions on free speech, and so on.
  • Write down all the relevant information about the topic being addressed by the departments/ministries in the government. Understanding the issue's pros and cons is also essential—for example, river linking, water conservation, and so on.
  • Any decision or ruling/remark made by the Supreme Court or the High Court is significant. Understand the relevance of the judgment in news. Determine its relationship to geography, history, economics, and politics.
  • The government's schemes/policies and initiatives must be identified. This is extremely important for prelims preparation.
  •  Make a list of the following points:
    • The objectives of the policy.
    • The Ministry/Department running it.
    • The policy's unique features.
    • Who are the members (if it is an organization)?
    • Inter-State Council, for example)
    • Any policy-related constitutional provisions.
  • For the mains, you must understand the policy/scheme issues and make notes on its positives ,negatives,implication, steps that can be taken, wayforward.
  • The issues must be identified first while reading the editorial. Then it would be helpful in determining which points are in favor or against. Please remember that the editorials are slanted toward one point of view. As a result, you must carefully identify the points for and against the topic. Both the pros and cons should be recognized to frame a qualitative and balanced  answer in the Mains examination.

Reading the newspaper is an art that can be learned with practice; let us show you how:

  1. Concentrate on the issue rather than the headline: Assume a news story headlined "Supreme Court judge removed from his seat." Instead of reading who is removed, what he did to be removed, when he was removed, and so on, concentrate on "How a Supreme Court judge can be removed," "What provision does our Constitution have for the removal of a judge from his seat," "What effects could it have on our nation and future generations," and so on.
  2. Sort the news into categories: Separate the news or issues into categories such as Environment & Biodiversity, International Relations, Personalities & Awards, Government Policies & Schemes, Economic Policies, International Organizations, Science and Technology, Health and Medicine, Miscellaneous, and so on. 
  3. Matter alone in "The Hindu" is insufficient: Surf the internet for more information on these important topics.

If you look at previous years' question papers, you will notice that the following topics are given special attention:

  1. National and international historical sites
  2. The Policies of the Government
  3. Scientific Research and discovery
  4. Government Bodies formed/dissolved

Links for reference :