UPSC General Studies 2016 Paper IV Solutions
1.(a)Explain how ethics contributes to social and human well-being.
- Well-being is a state of being with others, where human needs are met, where one can act meaningfully to pursue one’s goals, and where one enjoys a satisfactory quality of life.
- But as human beings live their lives, they acquire a wealth of information about the world. These ideas keep the human being active to achieve something bigger in life.
- But in the race of Scientific and technological advances, economic realities, and global communication pattern, life has turned to be materialistic and places us apart from the true meaning of life and happiness. The concept of well-being attached to being satisfied changes to being materialistic.
- At this point of dilemma Ethics teaches to differentiate between concepts of good and bad in our moral life in community. Ethics set some standards to guide behavior, choices and actions”.
- Ethics helps a person to look at his own life critically and to evaluate his actions/choices/decisions. It assists a person in knowing what he/she really is and what is best for him/her and what he/ she has to do in order to attain it.
- It sharpens general thinking process of the human being.
- Thus ethics contributes to social and human well-being by maintaining peace and stability both external and internal.
(b) Why should impartiality and non-partisanship be considered as foundation values in public services, especially in the present day socio-political context? Illustrate your answer with examples.
- The public service plays an indispensable role in ensuring peace, order and good government. Whether they are providing advice to ministers, effectively managing a program or providing service directly to people, all public servants must ensure impartiality and non partisanship.
- However, due to politicisation of the Public Service with respect to recruitment, hiring, promotions and terminations, the foundational value of impartiality and non-partisanship is decreasing.
- But Public Officers owe loyalty to the Government of the day. They should always serve the Government of the day. Public Officers should observe impartiality in their day-to-day functions.
- They should not, therefore, act in a way that is determined by party political considerations or use official resources for party purposes.
- They should maintain non-partisanship so that successive governments can have confidence that the public service will provide the support in their ministerial functions and mandate without biasness. Similarly in social context public office must act and take decisions impartially, fairly and on merit, using the best evidence and without discrimination or bias.
2. (a) What do you understand by the terms ‘governance’, ‘good governance’ and ‘ethical governance’?
- “Governance” means the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented (or not implemented).
- Whereas, Good governance is about the processes for making and implementing decisions. It’s not about making ‘correct’ decisions, but about the best possible process for making those decisions.
- Good governance share several attributes as being participatory, consensus oriented, accountable, transparent, responsive, effective and efficient, equitable and inclusive and follows the rule of law. It assures that corruption gets minimized, the views of minorities are taken into account and that the voices of the most vulnerable in society are heard in decision-making. It is also responsive to the present and future needs of society.
- But the concept of inclusive growth requires amalgamation of ethical perspective in the decision making process.
- Ethical governance denotes administrative measures, procedures and policies that fulfill criteria required for the ethically good or acceptable handling of public affairs, such as in public administration, public health care, education, and social security.
- For example government programs and policies related to developmental projects come under the concept of good governance as it aims at inclusive growth and development with proper accountability and transparency system but it becomes ethical governance only when the people displaced due to land acquisition are rehabilitated properly with required livelihood facilities.
(b) Discuss Mahatma Gandhi’s concept of seven sins.
- The social sin applies to every action against justice in interpersonal relationship, committed either by the individual against the community or by the community against the individual.
- Mahatma Gandhi’s concept of seven sins include:
a) Wealth without work: This refers to the practice of getting something for nothing. This includes playing the stock market; gambling; sweat-shop slavery; over-estimating one’s worth, like some heads of corporations drawing exorbitant salaries which are not always commensurate with the work they do.
b) Pleasure without conscience: People find imaginative and dangerous ways of bringing excitement to their otherwise dull lives. Their search for pleasure and excitement often ends up costing society very heavily.
c) Knowledge without character: Our obsession with materialism tends to make us more concerned about acquiring knowledge so that we can get a better job and make more money. A lucrative career is preferred to an illustrious character. Our educational centers emphasize career-building and not character building.
d) Commerce without morality: When profit making becomes the most important aspect of business, morals and ethics usually go overboard. We cut benefits and even salaries of employees. People get indulge in commerce without morality to make more money by any means possible.
e) Science without humanity: The person due to very little understanding of the higher human purposes that the technology is striving to serve, becomes victims of technocracy.
f) Religion without sacrifice: Religion has been reduced to meaningless rituals practiced mindlessly. Temples, churches, synagogues, mosques and those entrusted with the duty of interpreting religion to lay people seek to control through fear of hell, damnation, and purgatory. True religion is based on spirituality, love, compassion, understanding, and appreciation of each other
g) Politics without principle: It states that having politics without truth(s) to justly dictate the action creates chaos, which ultimately leads to violence.
3. (a)Analyse John Rawls’s concept of social justice in the Indian context.
- Social justice denotes the equal treatment of all citizens without any social distinction based on caste, colour, race, religion, sex and so on.
- Social justice principle of John Rawls identifies that each person should have equal rights to the most extensive liberties consistent with other people enjoying the same liberties; and that inequalities should be arranged so that they would be to everyone’s advantage and arranged so that no person would be blocked from occupying any position.
- From these two principles Rawls derives an egalitarian conception of justice that would allow the inequality of conditions implied by equality of opportunity but would also give more attention to those born with fewer assets and into less favorable social positions.
- He argues that the only way we can arrive at a fair and just rule is if we imagine ourselves to be in a situation in which we have to make decisions about how society should be organised although we do not know which position we would ourselves occupy in that society. Rawls describes this as thinking under a ‘veil of ignorance’.
- He expects that in such a situation of complete ignorance about our possible position and status in society, each person would decide in the way they generally do, that is, in terms of their own interests.
- This concept can be used in case of distribution of resources, like education, Food health, shelter, etc., are available to all persons, even if they are not part of the upper class.
- The decision should be taken based on rationality not the benevolence or generosity.
(b) Discuss the Public Service Code as recommended by the 2nd Administrative Reforms Commission.
- Civil servants have special obligations because they are responsible for managing resources entrusted to them by the community, because they provide and deliver services to the community and because they take important decisions that affect all aspects of a community’s life.
- The community has a right to expect that the civil service functions fairly, impartially and efficiently. It is essential that the community must be able to trust and have confidence in the integrity of the civil service decision-making process. Within the civil service itself, it needs to be ensured that the decisions and actions of civil servants reflect the policies of the government of the day and the standards that the community expects from them as government servants.
- In a democracy, an efficient civil service must have a set of values that distinguishes it from other professions. Integrity, dedication to public service, impartiality, political neutrality, anonymity etc are said to be the hallmarks of an efficient civil service.
- The public service code recommended by second ARC includes:
a) At the apex level, there should be a clear and concise statement of the values and ethical standards that a civil servant should imbibe. These values should reflect public expectations from a civil servant with reference to political impartiality, maintenance of highest ethical standards and accountability for actions.
b) At the second level, the broad principles which should govern the behaviour of a civil servant may be outlined. This would constitute the Code of Ethics.
- At the third level, there should be a specific Code of Conduct stipulating in a precise and unambiguous manner, a list of acceptable and unacceptable behaviour and actionsThe Code of Ethics should be given a statutory backing by including them in the proposed Civil Services Bill.
4. (a)”Corruption cause misuse of government treasury, administrative inefficiency and obstruction in the path of national development.” Discuss Kautilya’s views.
- It has precisely been defined as a deviant human behaviour, associated with the motivation of private gain at public expense and, as such, has persisted for centuries.
- Corruption promotes illegality, unethicalism, subjectivity, inequity, injustice, waste, inefficiency and inconsistency in administrative conduct and behaviour.
- It destroys the moral fabric of society and erodes the faith of the common man in the legitimacy of the politico-administrative set up.
- Kautilya argued that too much of personal interaction or union among the higher executives leads to departmental goals being compromised and leads to corruption. This is because human emotions and personal concerns act as impediments to the successful running of an administration, which is basically a rule-based impersonal affair.
- Similarly, dissension among executives when team effort is required results in a poor outcome.
- Kautilya suggested that the decline in output and corruption can be curbed by promoting professionalism at work. The superintendents should execute work with the subordinate officials such as accountants, writers, coin-examiners, treasurers and military officers in a team spirit.
- Such an effort creates a sense of belonging among members of the department who start identifying and synchronising their goals with the larger goals of the organisation, thereby contributing to the eventual success of the state.
- Further Kautilya advocated hefty fines to be imposed apart from the confiscation of ill-earned hordes. If a functionary was charged and proved even of a single offence, he was made answerable for all other associated offences related to the case. Since taxes paid by the people are utilised for their welfare, any loss of revenue affects the welfare of the society at large.
(b) How could social influence and persuasion contribute to the success of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan?
- Social influence and persuasion is the change in behavior that one person causes in another, intentionally or unintentionally, as a result of the way the changed person perceives themselves in relationship to the influencer, other people and society in general.
- As the behavior and attitude of person decides his actions, social influence and persuasion technique can be used to change one’s actions and participation towards government schemes.
- Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is being an essentially ‘Clean India Programe’ based on participatory process to achieve considerable success. The foundation of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is to create a chain of people who will work together and inspire others to clean their surroundings.
- But mindset of a major portion of the population habituated to open defecation. Many of them already have a toilet but prefer to defecate in the open. There is need to change triggering behavior and involve the citizen in vast section of rural population regarding need to use toilets.
- For social influence several celebrities have been nominated and each would, in turn, nominate others and the others would nominate accordingly – making the whole of India to come under one fold.
- An army of ‘foot soldiers’ or ‘SwachhataDoots’ on sanitation could be developed and activated.
- People can be persuaded towards sanitation by providing Incentives for individual household latrine units
5. Law and ethics are considered to be the two tools for controlling human conduct so as to make it conducive to civilized social existence.
(a) Discuss how they achieve this objective.
(b) Giving examples, show how the two differ in their approaches.
- Law can be defined as a consistent set of rules that are widely published, generally accepted, and usually enforced. These rules describe the ways in which people are required to act in their relationships with others in a society. They are requirements to act in a given way, not just expectations or suggestions to act in that way. Since the government establishes law, the government can use police powers to enforce laws.
- Ethics is the voluntary framework of guiding principles, which brings order and purpose into what would otherwise be a void between laws. Ethics are internal obligations on an individual whereas laws are external obligation.
6.Our attitudes towards life, work, other people and society are generally shaped unconsciously by the family and the social surroundings in which we grow up. Some of these unconsciously acquired attitudes and values are often undesirable in the citizens of a modern democratic and egalitarian society.
a) Discuss such undesirable values prevalent in today’s educated Indians.
- Values are standards, rules, criteria, attitudes, guidelines, desirable ideas/beliefs and important things, which play a crucial role in shaping the life of individuals.
- The values that a person holds have been derived from family, friends, neighbours, teachers, mass media and so on.
The undesirable values prevalent in today’s educated Indians are:
a) Tendency to consider material possessions and physical comfort as more important than spiritual values.
b) Intolerance towards recognizing and accepting characteristics that differs from one’s own.
c) Insensitivity towards people
d) Lack of integrity and truthfulness in private and public life
6 b) How can such undesirable attitudes be changed and socio-ethical values considered necessary in public services be cultivated in the aspiring and serving civil servants ?
- Each person’s actions should be guided by following principles:
(a) The person should perform one’s Duties. This includes the behaviors expected of persons who occupy certain roles; that is, the obligations taken on when assuming a role or profession.
(b) The person should have righteous virtues. It is the qualities that define what a good person is; moral excellence
(c) The person should be guided by principles that form the basis for behavior.
(d)The actions of person should be for the benefits to society i.e. the actions that produce the greatest good for the greatest number.
7. Anger is a harmful negative emotion. It is injurious to both personal life and work life.
(a) Discuss how it leads to negative emotions and undesirable behaviours.
(b) How can it be managed and controlled?
- Anger is “an emotional state that varies in intensity from mild irritation to intense fury and rage. The instinctive, natural way to express anger is to respond aggressively and it is a natural outflow of emotions.
- But the anger can be converted or redirected. This happens when person hold in anger, stop thinking about it, and focus on something positive.
- Hence for managing anger following steps are needed:
(a) Angry people need to become aware of their demanding nature and translate their expectations into desires.
(b) Angry people tend to jump to – and act on – conclusions, and some of those conclusions can be very inaccurate. Hence, listen carefully to what the other person is saying and take time before answering
(c)Listen to what is underlying the anger.
(d)Find healthier ways to express your anger.
8.”Max Weber said that it is not wise to apply to public administration the sort of moral and ethical norms we apply to matters of personal conscience. It is important to realise that the State bureaucracy might possess its own independent bureaucratic morality.” Critically analyse this statement.
- Weber has characterized bureaucracy by hierarchical organization, delineated lines of authority, action taken on the basis of and recorded in written rules, career advancement depends on technical qualifications judged by organization, not individuals, etc.
- He has made a clear distinction between the private and official life of a bureaucrat. He stressed that bureaucrats were personally free as they were subjected to legal rational authority with respect to their impersonal official obligations.
- They have to work under the clear schedule of duties for which they were responsible and this excludes them from unlisted duties.
- But there has been an enormous increase in the scope of governmental activity and in the range of its objectives. This expansion has deposited immense power and authority in the hands of public officials, thereby increasing opportunities for abuse of power and authority, as well as incidents of unethical activities. For example top position holders may prioritise their power and privileges at the expense of the bureaucracy goals.
- But as they are responsible for managing resources entrusted to them by the community and to work for the betterment of people, thus basic ethical principles have to be maintained to establish ethical governance.
9. A fresh engineering graduate gets a job in a prestigious chemical industry. She likes the work. The salary is also good. However, after a few months she accidentally discovers that a highly toxic waste is being secretly discharged into a river nearby. This is causing health problems to the villagers downstream who depend on the river for their water needs. She is perturbed and mentions her concern to her colleagues who have been with the company for longer periods. They advise her to keep quite as anyone who mentions the topic is summarily dismissed. She cannot risk losing her job as she is the sole bread-winner for her family and has to support her ailing parents and siblings. At first, she thinks that if her seniors are keeping quiet, why should she stick out her neck. But her conscience pricks her to do something to save the river and the people who depend upon it. At heart she feels that the advice of silence given by her friends is not correct though she cannot give reasons for it. She thinks you are a wise person and seeks your advice.
A) What arguments can you advance to show her that keeping quiet is not morally right?
- In the above stated case study the dilemma is to whether take the side of villagers who depends
- on the river for their livelihood and getting affected due to pollution or to keep quiet and save one’s job.
- It is a case study related to dilemma between job security or working for the greatest good of the people. Absolute morality is not feasible and practical also.
Keeping quiet is not morally right because:
(a) Decision of giving a blind eye to the situation is incorrect as water pollution is affecting the lives of many villagers including children.
(b) Keeping quiet for the sake of job and salary is incorrect as due to this selfish act many lives are at stake. Other jobs can be persuaded but the impact of water pollution is irreversible.
b) What course of action would you advise her to adopt and why?
- The course of action can be:
(a) Collecting data about the impact of water pollution on the villagers and designing a proper report on that to depict its negative impact.
(b) As stated in the case study seniors are indifferent towards this issue, thus the report can be submitted in government organization (NGT).
(c) Other job can be persuaded and the PIL on the above stated issue can be filed in the court submitting proper data and records.
10. Land needed for mining, dams and other large-scale projects is acquired mostly from Adivasis, hill dwellers and rural communities. The displaced persons are paid monetary compensation as per the legal provisions. However, the payment is often tardy. In any case, it cannot sustain the displaced families for long. These people do not possess marketable skills to engage in some other occupation. They end up as low paid migrant labourers. Moreover, their traditional ways of community living are destroyed. Thus, the benefits of development go to industries, industrialists and urban communities whereas the costs are passed on to these poor helpless people. This unjust distribution of costs and benefits is unethical.
Suppose you have been entrusted with the task of drafting a better compensation-cum- rehabilitation policy for such displaced persons, how you approach the problem and what would be the main elements of Your suggested policy ?
Compulsory acquisition of land for public purpose including infrastructure projects displaces people, forcing them to give up their home, assets and means of livelihood. Apart from depriving them of their lands, livelihoods and resource-base, displacement has other traumatic psychological and socio-cultural consequences.
The compensation-cum-rehabilitation policy should be based on the following principles:
(a) Rehabilitation of tribals with proper arrangement of basic amenities.
(b)Compensation should not be equated only with monetary compensation, proper vocational and skill development training should be provided. The cultural structure of the tribals should be preserved while formulating rehabilitation policy. Thus the steps which can be initiated are:
- Principle of rehabilitation before displacement;
- Skill development support and preference in project jobs ( one person per nuclear family );
- Option for shares in companies implementing projects to affected families;
- Housing benefits to all affected families including the landless;
- Monthly pension to the vulnerable, such as disabled, destitute, orphans, widows, unmarried girls, Skill development support and preference in project jobs ( one person per nuclear family );
- Necessary infrastructural facilities and amenities at resettlement areas.
- Initiate a livelihood development programmes such as initiation of financial inclusion drive or formation of self help groups to improve their suitable skills.
- Provide a basic education ground for all people and create awareness about their rights provided under different laws, programmes and policies.
- Help them in using their indigenous knowledge for improving crop yield to maintain food security in the long run.
- Provide vocational education.
Compensation is not a replacement for property, it is only indemnification for the losses of the private owner. So, the right to property cannot be regarded as merely a right to compensation and it cannot be said that a state has a power to take private property as long as it compensates the owner.
11.Suppose you are an officer in-charge of implementing a social service scheme to provide support to old and destitute women. An old and illiterate woman comes to you to avail the benefits of the scheme. However, she has no documents to show that she fulfils the eligibility-criteria. But after meeting her and listening to her you feel that she certainly needs support. Your enquiries also show that she is really destitute and living in a pitiable condition. You are in a dilemma as to what to do. Putting her under the scheme without necessary documents would clearly be violation of rules. But denying her the support would be cruel and inhuman.
a) Can you think of a rational way to resolve this dilemma?
b) Give your reasons for it.
In the above case study being an officer in-charge of implementing a social service scheme, it is one’s duty to help the old and destitute women.
But sense of dutifulness should not be swayed by the emotions. Thus as stated above the documents required for availing the benefits are missing, the steps which can be taken are:
(a) The officer in charge after proper verification can send her with reference to the required office for getting the documents. This will not be violation of rules as identification of beneficiaries and providing benefits comes under one’s duty.
(b) He should aware her about the other government schemes (antyodaya scheme, pension scheme) so that after getting proper documents she can avail other benefits also provided by the government. The campaign can be initiated to identify the beneficiaries for the scheme and to organize camps for formation of required documents bi-monthly.
12. You are a young, aspiring and sincere employee in a Government office working as an assistant to the director of your department. Since you have joined recently, you need to learn and progress. Luckily your superior is very kind and ready to train you for your job. He is a very intelligent and well-informed person having knowledge of various departments. In short, you respect your boss and are looking forward to learn a lot from him.
Since you have a good tuning with the boss, he started depending on you. One day due to ill health he invited you at his place for finishing some urgent work.
You reached his house and before you could ring the bell you heard shouting noises. You waited for a while. After entering the house the boss greeted you and explained the work. But you were constantly disturbed by the crying of a woman. At last, you inquired with the boss but his answer did not satisfy you.
Next day, you were compelled to inquire further in the office and found out that his behaviour is very bad at home with his wife. He also beats up his wife.
His wife is not well educated and is a simple woman in comparison to her husband. You see that though your boss is a nice person in the office, he is engaged in domestic violence at home.
In such a situation, you are left with the following options. Analyse each option with its consequences.
(a) Just ignore thinking about it because it is their personal matter.
(b) Report the case to the appropriate authority.
(c) Your own innovative approach towards the situation.
The above case is related to incident of domestic violence. In the official duty the person is good at behavior but at home he is involved in domestic violence. The steps which can be initiated are:
(a) Just ignore thinking about it because it is their personal matter
It is a personal matter and being a subordinate one should not interfere in personal matter of others. But as stated, it is a matter related to domestic violence thus a blind eye cannot be given to that.
Steps need to be taken to resolve the issue.
(b) Report the case to the appropriate authority.
Reporting a case to the appropriate authority without any evidence will not serve the purpose. It will deteriorate the relation more between the two and will alert the senior.
Also the judicial laws with respect to family relationships are needs to be accurate and with fair determination of guilt or innocence. Thus reporting a case should be a last resort. Steps should be initiated to rebuild it.
(c) Your own innovative approach towards the situation.
As cleared in the case, victim is bearing the pain of domestic violence but has not complained about it. So moving out and complaining to authorities will not serve the purpose as women might not move against his husband.
Hence, my innovative approach will focus on rebuilding the relationship. The steps which can be taken in this direction are:
- I will develop the informal talks with the senior so that issue can be raised.
- I will try to persuade the senior by referring him to different incidents or cases and its implications on reputation and status of individual.
- The support of colleagues (close to boss) in office can be taken to bring change in the mindset of the officer.
13. ABC Ltd. is a large transnational company having diversified business activities with a huge shareholder base. The company is continuously expanding and generating employment. The company, in its expansion and diversification programme, decides to establish a new plant at Vikaspuri, an area which is underdeveloped. The new plant is designed to use energy efficient technology that will help the company to wave production cost by 20%. The company’s decision goes well with the Government policy of attracting investment to develop such underdeveloped regions. The Government has also announced tax holiday for five years for the companies that invest in underdeveloped areas. However, the new plant may bring chaos for the inhabitants of Vikaspuri region, which is otherwise tranquil. The new plant may result in increased cost of living, aliens migrating to the region disturbing the social and economic order. The company sensing the possible protest tried to educate the people of Vikaspuri region and public in general that how its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policy would help overcome the likely difficulties of the residents of Vikaspuri region. In spite of this the protests begin and some of the residents decided to approach the judiciary as their plea before the Government did not yield any result.
(a) Identify the issues involved in the case.
(b) What can be suggested to satisfy the company’s goal and to address the residents’ concerns?
The business should include the sense of social responsibility. A social responsibility is an obligation that businesses have to act in ways that benefit the society. It means that businesses have an obligation to help out the poor, or to help clean up environment.
(a) Identify the issues involved in the case.
In the above case study the issues involved are:
- Mistrust between the local people and the company over the intention of goals of the company.
- Influx of people from other region may disturb the socio economic condition and may also affect the culture.
- As it is underdeveloped region, the employment opportunities for the local will be related to unskilled and resources will move to others who are more skilled and educated.
(b) What can be suggested to satisfy the company’s goal and to address the residents’ concerns?
- Providing better life opportunities in areas as good schools, better health options under CSR.
- The employment opportunities can be provided with proper skill development mechanism.
- The strategy for management of waste and other environmental issues should be transparent. Participation of local people should be there in designing the strategy.
- Company should invest in enhancing community livelihood by incorporating them into their supply chain.
- Transparency and proper accountability system should be maintained.
14.Saraswati was a successful IT professional in USA. Moved by the patriotic sense of doing something for the country shereturned to India. Together with some other like-minded friends, she formed an NGO to build a school for a poor rural community. The objective of the school was to provide the best quality modern education at a nominal cost. She soon discovered that she has to seek permission from a number of government agencies. The rules and procedures were quite confusing and cumbersome. What frustrated her most was the delays, callous attitude of officials and constant demand for bribes. Her experience and the experience of many others like her deterred people from taking up social service projectsA measure of Government control over voluntary social work is necessary. But it should not be exercised in a coercive or corrupt manner. What measures can you suggest to ensure that due control is exercised but well meaning, honest NGO efforts are not thwarted?
Cases of involvement of NGO in corruption and mis-utilisation of funds are increasing. But there are many genuine initiatives also which require government support to initiate positive steps for the betterment of the marginalized people.
The steps which can be taken are:
- Single window clearance mechanism can be established to reduce the registration time.
- The centralized system can be designed for registration of NGOs and then they can be linked with respective ministries to improve coordination and transparency in funding pattern.
- The funding mechanism from the donors should be made accountable and money beyond a certain amount should be disclosed to the government.
- Third party Audit mechanism should be made mandatory so that genuine efforts can be differentiated properly with malpractices.
- The mechanism for registration for opening schools, health facilities or other social initiatives should be made more people friendly.
- Changes should be proposed in the management and marketing of the NGOs