Civil service values and Ethics in public administration GS Paper IV

Mere compliance with the law is not enough,

Mere compliance with the law is not enough, the public servant also has to have a well-developed sensibility to ethical issues for effective discharge of duties. Do you agree? Explain with help of two examples, where i.an act is ethically right but not legally and ii. an act is legally right, but not ethically. (Civil Services Examination 2015).

  • A civil servant needs to have ethical literacy, ethical literacy, ethical competency and moral reasoning abilities, for effective discharge of his duties.

It is signifiacant due to the following reasons

  • For better interpretation of law and its enforcement.
  • Ethics fill the gap which is left by law.it caters to the dynamic nature of administration.
  • For better understanding of needs of people.
  • In adopting effective and holistic approch towards problem solving.
  • For bridnging the gap between people and administration.
  • For better policy formulation and implementation.
  • Optimum utilisation of available resources.

So,both compliance with law and ethical sensibility are needed for a civil servant.however,there are situations were oyone of them fulfilled.

  • Ethically right,Legally wrong A doctor may wish to administer euthanasia to a terminally ipp patient,to relieve him of the unberable pain.though,it is morally right for him,he can’t do it as it isnot permitted legally in india.
  • Legally Right,Ethically wrong Legally,it may be right for army personnel to conduct raid and even kill a suspect in states where armed forces (special power) act is applicable.But ethically,it is wrong.it involves depriving the citizens their basic human rights including their right to get justice from the court of law.
  • So,far effective public service delivery, a public servant must be ethically sensitive alongwith complying with the law.

b.How do the virtues of trustworthiness and fortitude get manifested in public service?Explain with example.

  • Virtues of trustworthiness and fourtitude are needed for effective public service delivery.

They get manifested in the following form.

  • Upholding principles Fidelity Governance is alla bout relationshps.trust is required between government and public,political executive annd civil servant and among the team members.this increases the effciency of administration.if trust is lost everything is lost.this trust is reflected when commitments are fulfilled.
  • Maintaining confidentiality of information in public interest not disclosing budget details before formal announcement.
  • Transparency and participative approch it can develop credibility and trust among people.eg.,panchayat system enhances trust and teamwork between people and administration.
  • Upholding rule of law there may be cahallenging circumustances,when it becomes difficult to uphold the law.it requires moral and fortitude to uphold the rule of law and to work fr relising the values enshrined in the constitution.so upholding it reflects our virtue of fortitude eg., not taking in to account the inappropriate influence by the political boss,which can hurt public interest.
  • Dedication to service There are many temptations to make personal gains at the cost of public interest.it requires moral fortitude to overcome these temptations and remain dedicated to the service of the ppeople,so,our deication to service reflects our fortitude.
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