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AIR 5 2019 Jeydev CS | How to make revision notes for UPSC Law Optional Mains | International Law


What you get from this series : This notes making series will let you know For non - subscribers of lawxpertsmv notes : 1. What are the standard books to be referred ( for those who have not subscribed lawxpertsmv notes )for International Law 2. How to refer standard books for International Law 3. How to make revision notes for International Law like a topper 4. How to increase your retention capacity in International Law For subscribers of lawxpertsmv notes : Dear subscribers you already have compiled version of notes which covers standard books , current affairs, previous year UPSC questions - so you can right way learn how to make your final mini notes from the lawxpertsmv revision notes. UPSC Law Optional Mains wants the aspirants to read on following topics ( International Law Syllabus for USC Law Optional Mains )

Simple Analysis on 2020 UPSC Law Optional Question Paper on International Law is followed in this blog post.

1. Nature and Definition of International Law.

[Repeated question is asked. International law as positive morality and argue on it. But the question further demands you to discuss the nature and scope of International Law - inexperienced fellow would waste a lot of time here.]

2. Relationship between International Law and Municipal Law.

[Another repeated question asked from this topic. Simple stuff. State practices relating to IL & ML]

3.State Recognition and State Succession.

[Analytical Question asked from the area where usually the question would be straight-forward for past 5 years. Aspect of Statehood of Palestine and theories of recognition]

4. Law of the sea: Inland Waters, Territorial Sea, Contiguous Zone, Continental Shelf, Exclusive Economic Zone and High Seas.

[Coastal state rights and obligations are asked. Repeated Question from 2007 & 2013]

5. Individuals: Nationality, statelessness; Human Rights and procedures available for their enforcement.

[Compulsory question was asked as regards to status of individual in human rights law - its a straight forward question]

6. Territorial jurisdiction of States, Extradition and Asylum. [One of most repeated questions, but giving perfect answer requires some proper inputs. Aspect of Asylum vis-a-vis Extradition was asked. And difference between Territorial and Extra-territorial asylum was asked.]

7. Treaties : Formation, application, termination and reservation. [Compulsory Question for 10 marks was asked on formation of treaty in this 2020 Mains. No one thought that such simple area would have been asked. But it was a surprise for everyone who was prepared for rebus sic stantibus ]

8. United Nations : Its principal organs, powers and functions and reform.

[Compulsory Question was asked on purpose and core principles of UN along with reforms needed - this question can be supplemented with a lot of recent issues - even it could be stated how UN respond to global pandemics ] [Another question was asked from this same topic on ICJ on its jurisdiction under compulsory part ]

9. Peaceful settlement of disputes—different modes.

[Question about Arbitration is favorite choice for UPSC always. even from 1996. Same has been done here]

10. Lawful recourse to force : aggressions, self-defence, intervention.

[This area is not so important for UPSC in past. Same effect this year too except for the meagre 5 marks on "Grounds of intervention"]

11. Fundamental principles of international humanitarian law—International conventions and contemporary developments.

[This law is a separate branch of IL. Every year, UPSC choose a topic from one of the sub-topics under IHL. This year another topic was asked. It was on the application of IHL to Non-International Armed Conflict. Anyone who started the reading this topic in whichever book or our notes, is supposed to know about this in first 2-3pages ]

12. Legality of the use of nuclear weapons; ban on testing of nuclear weapons; Nuclear nonproliferation treaty, CTST.

[Direct 5 marks on NPT]

13. International Terrorism, State-sponsored terrorism, Hijacking, International Criminal Court.

[Direct 5 Marks on International Terrorism]

14. New International Economic Order and Monetary Law : WTO, TRIPS, GATT, IMF, World Bank.

[Compulsory question for 10 marks was asked in problem format - relating to GATT and WTO in 2020 Mains]

15.Protection and Improvement of the Human Environment : International Efforts.

[Aspect on soft law has been asked this year. This is not something new, same kind of question was asked in 2018 also]


For those who have subscribed, and for those who are going to subscribe Lawxpertsmv India, please have a look how the notes can be summarized for your own purpose. For those who have not subscribed, we recommend them to read from standard books ( standard books for each subject will be given in this series ). This same notes taking technique can be used by the aspirants who read from standard books too. But main caution kindly do not read everything given in standard books be wise to eliminate the unwanted and concentrate on UPSC centric areas ( this is where guidance is needed )

For those who do not know,

Why we need mini revision notes ?

  1. It easier to revise before the exams.

  2. Convenient usage

  3. Helps in retention capacity.

IMPORTANT NOTE : For those who have already taken the course, kindly refer the notes of Mr.Jeydev CS so that you could know how revision notes of Lawxpertsmv india can be summarized.



Step 1 : Read the parent notes as reading a story book

Step 2 : While reading make sure to underline ( At this juncture do not try to memorize anything pay attention to understand what you are reading and why you are reading it )

a. Relevant definitions of eminent authors(for any concept)

b. The key terms

c. land marks cases

d. Principles

Step 3 : Rewrite those important concepts only with relevant definitions , key terms and mention the required case law along with it. ( By this you get good retention capacity along with easy mini notes ) - Make sure only you could understand such notes, only then it will be mini notes. Mr. Jeydev has done the same, check on the image given to understand the same, this is where the technique lies.

Nature and Definition of International Law

State Succession


Step 4 : Try adding recent issues in just a single line .

Example 1: When taking notes on extradition -

Example 2 : When making notes on UNSC and India, this can be supplemented with :

Example 3 : When making notes on Law of Sea, following issue can be supplemented with "- Current affairs are most important for International law thus always leave some space under each topic to update them when required.

Step 5 : At the end of each concept mention the legal provisions or concepts to which the topic read could be related or linked ( This will help you build a comprehensive answer in final UPSC exam and stand out of the crowd)

Step 6 : Its not just done now - make sure to give it a monthly revision .


This book is like Editorial of The Hindu. You should know the concepts. Author will tell you how how to analyse the topics of International law. If you do not know the concepts of IL, you are a very wrong place.

2. International Law. SK Kapoor. -

One of the best books for International Law by an Indian author. All concepts are explained in a beautiful manner. But it can be an nightmare as to what to read in a particular chapter and further, after the explanation of a topic, topics would be discussed in haphazard manner.

3. International Law by JG Starke - Wonderful book. But insufficient for our purpose. It can be relied on other books mentioned above.

Update for lawxperts notes subscribers : You can 100 % rely on lawxperts notes without other standard books because our AIR 5 Mr. Jeydev has proved it. ( We do cover standard books and current affairs do not worry ) Apart from standard books kindly do cover current affairs from - The Hindu , PRS, PIB etc because its the trigger for UPSC questions.

Check your knowledge always by answering previous year UPSC questions ( If interested can join UPSC PREVIOUS YEAR LAW OPTIONAL WRITING PRACTISE conducted by Lawxpertsmv )

Next Series : How to take notes for Indian Penal Code will be posted on 25th Jan 2020

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UPSC Law Optional Mains course - preferr
UPSC Law Optional Mains course - preferr


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