Most Important Topics for IAS Prelims Exam 2020

The Union Public Service Commission’s (UPSC) Prelims Exam is scheduled for 2 June 2019. The official notification for the Civil Services Examination...

Avatar Written by Payal Ghosh · 3 min read >

The Union Public Service Commission’s (UPSC) Prelims Exam is scheduled for 2 June 2019. The official notification for the Civil Services Examination 2019 will be issued in the month of February and the exam will be conducted in the month of June.

You will have around 4 months to prepare for the prelims exams and you will need to put in concentrated effort to be able to make the list. In order to prepare smartly you need to know the topics that you need to concentrate on. We have analyzed the previous years’ papers and we list below the topics that you need to concentrate on in order to clear prelims. You would have covered 60% of the syllabus if you cover the topics in this list.

As an aspirant of UPSC, you always have to be on top of current affairs. Other than current affairs you need to prepare everything related with the socio-economic, geographical, political, environmental, historical and cultural aspects of India.

Below is the aforementioned list of topics you will need to cover:

  • National Issues
  • India Strategic Overseas Fund
  • Elections and Model Code of Conduct in India


  • New India @75
  • SDG India Index Baseline Report
  • Health System for New India
  • Move Summit Reports
  • Three Year Action Agenda
  • Young India-Vibrant India initiative for IAS Exam
  • Most Important Government Schemes II
  • Most Important Government Schemes I
  • Provisions of National Intellectural Property Rights (IPRs)
  • National Mineral Exploration Policy
  • National Health Policy
  • Modi Government’s Schemes and Policy
  • NITI Aayog’s Draft National Energy Policy
  • National Wind-Solar Hybrid Policy
  • New Aviation Policy
  • National Disaster Management Plan

Hydrocarbon Vision 2030 for North-East

  • Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy

Bills and Acts

  • Triple Talaaq Bill
  • The Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill 2018
  • Model Agricultural Produce and Livestock Marketing (Promotion & Facilitation) Act, 2017
  • Geospatial Information Regulation Bill
  • Land Acquisition Act and Reforms
  • GST Bill
  • Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017
  • National Water Framework Bill
  • Real Estate Bill
  • Enemy Property Amendment Bill 2016
  • Carriage by Air (Amendment) Bill, 2015
  • Juvenile Justice Act, 2015
  • Anti-Hijacking Bill
  • Compensatory Afforestation Fund Bill, 2015
  • Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2015
  • Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill, 2016
  • Industries (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2015
  • Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and services) Bill, 2016
  • SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Rules, 2016
  • Representation of the People Act, 1950
  • Rights of Transgender Persons Bill, 2015
  • Model Shops and Establishments (Regulation of Employment and conditions of Service) Bill, 2016
  • Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code Bill 2016
  • Sugar Cess (Amendment) Bill, 2015


  • Pradhan Mantri KIsan Samman Nidhi Yojna(PM-KISAN)
  • Ayushman Bharat – National Health Protection Mission
  • Indradhanush Scheme for Banks
  • Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay Shramev Jayate Karyakram
  • Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana
  • Gram Uday se Bharat Uday Abhiyaan
  • Smart Cities Mission
  • Agriculture Marketing in India
  • Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana
  • Beti Bachao Beti Padho Scheme
  • Rurban Mission
  • Project Sunrise    
  • Ganga Gram Yojana

Indian Economy

  • FAME I and FAME II
  • Autonomy of RBI
  • Employment Elasticity
  • The future of crypto-financing in India
  • Universal Basic Income
  • India’s Infrastructure needs and the Smart Cities Mission
  • Asia Africa Growth Corridor
  • EPF Tax Issues
  • Economic Survey Questions 2016-17
  • Demonetisation
  • Cashless Economy
  • Economic Survey 2015-16
  • Union Budget 2016-17: Highlights
  • Union Budget 2016-17: Financial Sector Reforms
  • Payment and Settlement Systems in India: Vision-2018
  • India Post Payments Bank
  • Reforms in FDI Policy
  • National Capital Goods Policy 2016
  • Inflation and its dynamics
  • CRR, SLR, Repo Rate, Reverse Repo Rate, Bank Rate
  • 4th Industrial Revolution
  • New Silk Route
  • 14th Finance Commission Recommendations
  • Stand Up India Scheme
  • Agriculture Schemes
  • NBFC Guidelines
  • Double Taxation Avoidance Treaties with other countries
  • Economic Survey 2017-18: Analysis and Questions


  • Umbrella Revolution in Hong Kong
  • Srilankan Blast Details
  • BRI – Belt and Road Initiative and India
  • Veto Powers of the UNSC Permanent Members
  • European Refugee Crisis
  • Missile Technology Control Regime and India
  • Brexit Issue
  • India and NSG Membership dynamics
  • Nuclear Security Summit  
  • Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage
  • Supporting Syria and the Region Conference 2016
  • International Solar Alliance

Science and Tech

  • Mission SHAKTI
  • Zinc Deficiency and its effects( Linke between CO2 in Atmosphere and Zinc in crops)
  • West Nile Virus
  • Potassium Bromate 
  • Zika Virus       
  • 3D Printing Technology
  • Solar Cells
  • GPS
  • Blood
  • Mineral important for Human Growth

Indian Polity

  • National Anti-Profiteering Authority
  • Indian Foreign Policy
  • National Intellectural Property Rights (IPRs) Provisions
  • Aadhaar and the Right to Privacy
  • Naga Peace Accord
  • The Enemy Property (Amendment and Validation) Ordinance
  • Police Reforms in India
  • Religious Liberty and Women Rights
  • Cooperative Federalism
  • Representation of the People Act, 1950
  • Fundamental Rights
  • DPSP—Uniform Civil Code, Animal Husbandry, Child Labour
  • Union Executive—Prime Minister and Union Council of Ministers
  • Types of Bills- Money Bill, Finance Bill, Private Member Bill
  • Veto Powers of President
  • Union Judiciary and related provisions
  • Union and State – Administrative Relations
  • Union and State – Financial Relations
  • State Judiciary
  • Transaction of Business Rules
  • Constitutional Position of NCT of Delhi

Geography + Environment

  • Effectiveness of National Disaster Management Authority in India
  • Cleaning of River Ganga: Programme and Achievement
  • Green Climate Fund
  • Effectiveness of NDMA in India
  • National Green Tribunal of India
  • Climate Change and Food Security
  • GM Mustard Crop Approval and Other Issues
  • Role of Governments in flood mitigation
  • Indus Water Treaty and Analysis
  • Cauvery Water Dispute and Analysis
  • Labour Reforms in India
  • Earth Interior and Earthquake
  • Geological Time scale of Evolution
  • Himalayas in India
  • Landforms
  • Climate and Types of Climates
  • Census 2011
  • Different Indices related to Human Development
  • Monsoon, ITCZ
  • Forests in India
  • Water Resources of India—River systems, Waterfalls
  • Soils in India
  • Climate Change and related Conferences Chronology — Paris Summit
  • Major Disasters in the Year
  • Renewable Energy
  • Noise Pollution
  • Air Pollution
  • Food Web and Food Chain
  • CoP24 Summit 2018

Modern History

  • 1857 Revolt and Associated Leaders
  • Social Reforms in the Indian Society and related Acts
  • Indian National Congress and its meetings
  • India After the arrival of Mahatma Gandhi
  • Life of Mahatma Gandhi and the Movements
  • HSRA and associated leaders
  • Bengal Partition and Delhi Darbar
  • List of Governor General and Associated Works
  • Muslim League
  • Puna Pact
  • Simon Commission
  • Social Personalities
  • Education Under British
  • Agriculture Taxing Structure under Britishers
  • Agrarion Revolts

History of India

  • Indus Valley Civilisation- Harappan, Mohanjodaro
  • Gautama Buddha, Buddhist Councils and principles of Buddhism
  • Jainism, its principles and 24 Jain Tirthankars
  • Temple Architectures
  • Mauryan Rule overview
  • Ashokan Inscriptions
  • Gupta Rulers and its overview
  • Foreign Visitors
  • Accession of Qutub-ud-Din Aibak
  • Sultanate Period
  • Tughlaq Rulers
  • Vijay Nagar Empire-Harihar and Bukka
  • Mughals Rulers, Arts, Architecture and major achievement of Mughal Rulers
  • Akhbar and his religious philosophy- in Details
  • Aurangzeb and his Policies
  • Hyder Ali, Tipu Sultan and wars they fought
  • Peshwas


  • Water Pullution due to Industrialisation
  • Solid Waste Management in India  
  • National Company Law Tribunal and Appellate Tribunal
  • Animal Husbandry in India
  • National Agriculture Market
Written by Payal Ghosh
Payal is an FRM and an XLRI Jamshedpur alumnus interested in things as diverse as Waste Management and photography. She has over 16 years of work experience and is passionate about writing, teaching and sustainable living. Helping students and seeing them succeed makes gives her motivation to push herself further. Profile

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