17 April 2024 RAS Mains Answer Writing

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Subject – Administrative Ethics

Topic -Contribution of Moral Thinkers and Philosophers from India & the World. Ethical concerns, dilemmas, and challenges in administration

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Q1. Explain the Social Contract theory of Thomas Hobbes. 

Social contract theory – Individuals agree to give their liberty into the hands of a sovereign, on the sole condition that their lives are safeguarded by sovereign power. They do so to avoid the ‘state of nature’

Ex – Sacrificing right to freedom of movement in the time of CrPC section 144 = Safety, Security and law & order  

Q2. Explain the concept of virtue as defined by various Western and Indian philosophers.(5M)

The word ‘virtue’ is derived from Latin Vir which means a man or hero. It corresponds to the Sanskrit word Virya,meaning manliness, bravery, power, energy, or excellence. Hence, Virtue refers to the inner character and its excellence.

PhilosophersVirtue
Krishna (Geeta)Sthithpragyta, Nishakam Karma, Yoga (bhakti, Gyaan, Karma etc) makes one’s inner character excellent and hence essential virtues 
SocratesKnowledge is only virtue and ignorance is only vice. 
PlatoWisdom, courage, Temperance and justice are 4 Cardinal Virtues 
AristotleHappiness and virtue go together. Summum Bonum i.e happiness is the highest virtue. This happiness must come from the intellectual pleasures and philosophical contemplation
BuddhaDhamma is the true virtue and various ways like 8 fold paths, madhyam marg are means to achieve this virtue
MahaviraVirtues like 5 Mahavrata (Satya, Ahimsa, Bramhcharya, Asteya and Aparigraha), Ratnatraya (Samyak darshan, Samyak Jnana, Samyak charitra), Forgiveness (Micchami dukkadam) and  self discipline and knowledge (Jina). 
Immanuel KantVirtue is fortitude of will to fulfill one’s duties despite internal and external obstacles
John RawlsVirtues of fairness, impartiality, non discrimination or positive discrimination, equity and justice 
Jeremy Bentham Virtue is greatest happiness/pleasure of greatest number [Utilitarianism] 
James MillsVirtues (like kindness, honesty, benevolence, and justice) are those qualities of character that tend to produce happiness, both for the individual and for society as a whole 
EpicureanismVirtues are not an end itself rather means to achieve happiness and tranquillity in life 
John LockeVirtues involves acting in accordance with reason and natural law, respecting and upholding the rights and freedoms/liberty of others and fulfilling obligation towards the society
ConfuciusFive Constants” or the “Five Virtues,” which includes – Ren (compassion or kindness), Yi (Justice/fairness/equity), Li (maintaining harmony and order in interpersonal relationships and society), Zhi (wisdom or knowledge) and Xin (Credibility/trust). 
Thomas HobbesVirtue, according to Hobbes, involves obedience to political authority, adherence to laws, and behaviors that contribute to the stability and security of society (Social contract theory)
VoltaireVoltaire believed that true virtue lies in the exercise of reason and the pursuit of knowledge, rather than blind adherence to dogma or tradition. Voltaire also valued virtues such as tolerance and compassion. He advocated for religious tolerance. 
ChankyaVirtues like temperance (self control), integrity (Against corruption), fortitude, humility, donation (Philanthropy) etc  
ShankaracharyaAccording to Shankaracharya’s teachings in Advaita Vedanta spiritual growth, self-realization and Gyaan yoga are essential virtues to realize the non-dual nature of reality
KabirAs depicted in his writings (Dohas), inner purity, love, devotion to the divine, love, compassion and selflessness are core virtues 
NanakNaam Simran (meditating upon the divine name), Seva (Selfless Service), Equality (regardless of caste, creed, gender, or social status) and Santokh (Contentment) are the virtues of Sikhism as depicted by Guru Nanak 
VivekanandaVirtue involves living a life of fearlessness, truthfulness, unselfishness, purity of heart, and service to humanity, guided by the principles of Vedanta philosophy
GandhiVirtues like truth, nonviolence, self-discipline, compassion, and humility etc 

Q3 Enlist different types of ethical dilemmas faced by an administrator and give remedies for each of them.

Intro – 

Definition – Situation when there is conflict between two or more moral principles and the moral agent need to pick one at the cost of other. Moral agents need to optimize the benefit

Dilemma ExampleRemedy
Principle Vs preservation (सिद्धांत बनाम संरक्षण/रक्षा)IES satyendra dubey exposed corruption in highway development – Was killedNehruvian Approach – National interest must be at the top 
Professional life Vs personal life (व्यावसायिक जीवन बनाम निजी जीवन)IPS officer 24*7 Duty – Less time to family membersUtilitarian Approach – The Greatest Good for the Greatest Number
Profit vs Social responsibility (लाभ बनाम सामाजिक जिम्मेदारी) Social ethics vs Economic ethics (सामाजिक नैतिकता बनाम आर्थिक नैतिकता)An IAS officer heading DISCOM – Dilemma to bring it out of loss vs govt’s commitment to give free electricityCommon Goods Approach – What is good for society is good for an individual. Hence decisions should be beneficial for all members of society. 
Preferential treatment vs non-discrimination (विशेषाधिकार बनाम गैर-भेदभाव)Ex – Jharkhand tribal girl death from hunger due to denial of PDS (Biometric didn’t work) – Such a case demand preferential treatmentRights Approach – Every human being has right to live with dignity 
Punishment vs Reward (दण्ड बनाम पारितोषिक)Offering flowers to those violating traffic rules = Change of heartJustice/Fairness approach – All equals should be treated equally. 
End vs Means (साध्य बनाम साधन)End – To make a bridge for better traffic management Means – Need to break a temple = Religious sentiments might get hurt Gandhian Approach – Both end and means should be auspicious for long-lasting impact 
Autonomy vs Accountability (स्वायत्तता बनाम जवाबदेही)Autonomy – To take CL (Casual Leave), PL (privilege leave) and other leaves Accountability – Of Incharge of office to get the work done on time Ex – Shri Satish Dhawan gave autonomy to APJ Abdul kalam for Rohini Satellite launch but when the launch failed, he made himself accountable for the failureVirtue Based Approach – The act done by a virtuous person is right. Hence the decision maker should focus on character development first and then autonomy should be provided 
Rules vs Discretion (नियम बनाम स्वविवेक)Rules – Don’t provide PDS to anyone without proper documents Discretion – Someone dying from hunger must be provided reliefDeontological Approach – Follow Rules irrespective of the result Virtue Based Approach – Give discretion for effective implementation 
Loyalty vs Honesty (वफादारी बनाम ईमानदारी)Loyalty – Towards govt in power Honesty – Expose wrongdoing if requiredLegal Approach  – The action must follow the legal principles and hence must withstand the court’s trial 
Automation vs Employment (ऑटोमेशन बनाम रोजगार)Ex – Govt to promote AI, ML, Robotics and other cutting edge technology, on the other hand 69% jobs are at threat due to automationUtilitarian Approach – The Greatest Good for the Greatest NumberJustice or fairness approach – Each according to his need, Each according to his ability 
National interest vs Humanity (राष्ट्रहित बनाम मानवता)Officer investigating Ajmal KasabNehruvian Approach – National interest must be at top Vivekanadan Approach – Service to mankind is the ultimate goal 
Development vs sustainability (विकास बनाम संधारणीयता/निरंतरता)Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (MMRCL) to cut trees in Aarey forest Mumbai SC allowed to cut 177 trees [Penalty above than that]Sustainable development 
Letter of law vs Spirit of law (कानून बनाम कानून की भावना)A traffic police challan a car carrying critical patient for overspeedingVirtue Based Approach – The act done by a virtuous person is always right. Hence in such a case, intentions matter.  
Speed vs accuracy (गति बनाम सटीकता)Attempting RAS paper In administration – CM needs to inaugurate a bridge in 2 months. The speed must not compromise the safety standardsUtilitarian Approach – The Greatest Good for the Greatest Number [i.e try to maximize the outcome] 
National security vs Privacy (राष्ट्रीय सुरक्षा बनाम गोपनीयता)Taking someone’s fingerprint or Narco testNehruvian Approach – National interest must be at top 
Equality vs Equity (समानता बनाम न्याय संगतता)Reservation in administrative jobs Justice/Fairness approach – All equals should be treated equally. Favoritism should not be promoted
Senior’s order vs public good (वरिष्ठ का आदेश बनाम जनता की भलाई)When the superior’s direction is against public good. Ex – A Junior can’t or shouldn’t rebel against his/her senior (Otherwise work culture gets spoiled) but also he/she shouldn’t get succumbed to wrong adviceLegal Approach – The action must follow the legal principles and hence must withstand the court’s trial 
Secrecy vs Transparency (गोपनीयता बनाम पारदर्शिता)Someone demanding information of national importance in RTI (RTI act section 8)Nehruvian Approach – National interest must be at top 
Centralization vs Decentralization (केंद्रीकरण बनाम विकेंद्रीकरण)Too much Centralization = Imposing decisions on stakeholder = Poor result Too much decentralization = Inefficiency and Poor implementationBuddha’s Madhyam marg or Aristotle’s golden mean approach 
Justice vs mercy (न्याय बनाम दया/रहम)Ex – Nirbhaya rape case. One of the culprits was a juvenile. Got only 3 year sentence (Juvenile Justice Act) Release of A.G. Perarivalan, a convict in the former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi assassination case seeing his satisfactory conduct in jail. Rights Approach Every human being has the right to live with dignity 

Q4. आयुक्त, काॅलेश शिक्षा, राजस्थान, जयपुर की ओर से प्राचार्य, राजकीय कन्या महाविद्यालय नोखा, को सत्र 2017-18 में महाविद्यालय में संपन्न गतिविधियों की रिपोर्ट प्रेषित करने के लिए एक अनुस्मारक लिखिये                [RAS Mains 2018]
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