UPSC Exam Preparation: IAS Booklist for Agriculture Optional

UPSC Mains Exam: Booklist and Strategy for Agriculture Optional

Here is a compilation of book list and preparation strategy for Agriculture optional subject for UPSC Mains Exam, which would help the aspirants in IAS Exam Preparation.

Booklist for Agriculture Optional Subject

  1. Agricultural Economics and Farm Management by J. M. Dhaka
  2. Soil Science – D.K Das or Brady
  3. Agronomy by Yellamananda Reddy
  4. Plant Breeding by B.D. Singh
  5. Genetics by B.D.Singh
  6. Physiology by Pandey & Singha
  7. Introduction to Horticulture – Dr. N. Kumar
  8. Handbook of Agriculture by ICAR
  9. Agricultural Extension Education in India
  10. Plant Pathology – R.P.Singh
  11. Elements of Economic Entomology – Vasantha Raj & David
  12. The Hindu – Survey of Indian Agriculture
  13. Agriculture Statistics – Dept. of Agriculture and cooperation’s statistics at a glance
  14. Special Issue of Agriculture by The Hindu

Preparation Strategy for Agriculture Optional

Paper I

Paper I of Agriculture optional basically deals with farm practices and foundation of agriculture. This paper demands an in-depth understanding of each topic mentioned in the UPSC Syllabus. While covering the Farm Practices section of the Agriculture Syllabus, candidates should focus on the sustainability and economic dimensions of any method corresponding to the current Indian situation. For e.g. lately debated issues in different areas like agricultural marketing, pricing etc. They should have latest accurate data as mentioned in the reports of the Government of India such as Economic Survey and Ministry Of Agriculture’s Annual Report.

Paper II

Candidates with non-botany background who have opted for agriculture should focus on genetics, plant biochemistry, cell biology, plant breed, biotechnology, and physiology. And, candidates with botany background need not cover this section separately as they would be covering this section in botany and it is advisable to focus on other areas instead of wasting the time on this section.

One should also focus on agricultural application. To cover this section, Plant Breeding by B D Singh and Plant Physiology by Jain are highly recommended.

To cover the Horticulture, Plant Pathology and Food Production, apart from the books mentioned in the book list, candidates should also focus on current issues related to agriculture and plant diseases particularly related to India and commercial perspective. They should build an ability to connect the static part of the syllabus with the current affairs. For e.g. the loss in various terms due to a particular crop disease. The candidates should also include diagrams in their answers wherever required as it will fetch them that extra mark.

Some of the areas of this subject like ecology and environment, food security, crop productivity, agricultural economics and sustainable agriculture overlap with the General Studies Papers of UPSC Mains Exam.

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