Now that all your concepts of general studies are clear, you should start reading a newspaper. Another question now that will be asked by you is “WHICH NEWSPAPER IS BEST?” There is no newspaper exists in our country from which UPSC directly asks questions. So read any newspaper of your choice. If you haven’t read any newspaper yet then start with your regional newspaper or any other of your choice. After getting habituated by it, start reading THE HINDU/INDIAN EXPRESS.
If we talk about how it will be helpful to you, you’ll not have doubts as mentioned in the previous step’s example. Now that you are clear about what the money bill and what inflation is, you will be getting to know how those things which you used to read in NCERTs works in the real world. Your practical knowledge will be enhanced by this exercise. Try to join the lines of the newspaper with your knowledge.
For example, you’re reading a news article “Heavy flooding puts Kerala in crisis”, now you have to build multidimensional thinking while reading this i.e. what caused this devastating flood? What will be its effect on our economy/our ecology/on agriculture/on society/on health/on development, what steps should be taken? and so on. Imagine that you are a collector and the same kind of flood occurs in your region, what steps will be taken by you? These are the things which will make you think broadly. UPSC exam preparation demands only those candidates whose thinking has this kind of comprehensive approach. So reading the newspaper is not just an exercise to keep you aware about what is happening around your region/district/state/country/the world but to make you think like a Civil Servant.
Initially you may find daily newspaper reading to be time and mind straining. Don’t judge yourself. It happens with most of the candidates. It is the fault of our education system which did not motivate students to read newspapers and magazines on a regular basis.
While reading newspapers, don’t treat it as a whole but part of a whole. Direct questions from the newspapers are seldom asked as mentioned earlier. You will have to research a topic covered by a newspaper on the internet. Let’s take an example. Newspapers may cover an article regarding the recent BRICS summit. But it will not mention “Origin of the BRICS” or “Its member countries” or “Its headquarters”. You need to Google it and also make a note of it in your books. If you encounter any article about BRICS later on which contains additional information add it in your notes. This process will make your preparation wholesome.