Newspaper Reading for UPSC
Any serious aspirant preparing for the UPSC Civil Services Examination knows that newspapers are the prerequisite to start your preparation. An uninformed mind is the one that is devoid of opinions and we know that formation of any opinion require facts. Facts can be sourced through credible and reputed newspapers alone. Newspapers serve as a key to the world of facts and opinion making. Hence, consistency in reading the newspaper silently prepares you for the ultimate battle with your fellow competitors.
But how to read it?
Before you pick a newspaper in the morning, remember that you are preparing for the services which are absolutely politically neutral. Hence, the political trash-talk that newspapers are filled with these days are of no or little significance to you. You are not yet fully developed to understand the political angles that are given to stories and situations. UPSC repels controversies and it works on rational opinions. Therefore, you must try to be politically neutral to opinions. How to do that? See the facts as they are and not how you want to see them.
Secondly, opinion pages or what you say ‘Editorials’ are extremely important for you because newspaper columnists, no matter how much motivated they seem to you, possess at least some stature to comment upon the current issues of importance. Here comes your responsibility to filter out non-significant, biased and non-rational opinion from the Editorials (which you will learn to do so in a few months). How would you do it? Stop taking every argument at face value and question the facts and opinions from every angle. Do not make opinions before checking out complete facts. Learn to interconnect and not see situations in silos.
Once you understand the dynamics of this game, you’ll see how newspaper reading would consume less time of yours and how your brain automatically filters out insignificant news and opinions from your reading list. Remember one thing, do not rely on a single newspaper, diversify your sources to incorporate better information and multiple sides to a story of significance.
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Best of luck with your preparations and newspaper reading for UPSC.