Ethics and Human Interface:

Case Studies on Ethics and Morality Issues

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  • Case studies are stories that are used as a teaching tool to show the application of a theory or concept to real situations. Dependent on the goal they are meant to fulfill, cases can be fact-driven and deductive where there is a correct answer, or they can be context driven where multiple solutions are possible. Various disciplines have employed case studies, including humanities, social sciences, sciences, engineering, law, business, and medicine. Good cases generally have the following features: they tell a good story, are recent, include dialogue, create empathy with the main characters, are relevant to the reader, serve a teaching function, require a dilemma to be solved, and have generality. Instructors can create their own cases or can find cases that already exist.

Case Study -1

Kiran cleared UPSC civil services exam and became an IAS officer. After her probationary t raining, she was posted as CEO of Zilla Panchayat in a very backward district in a far away state from her home. There, violence a discrimination against women was rampant. The politicians, including elected representatives were known for their contempt against women officers in the district. Kiran’s parents tried to persuade her to marry an IAS officer (male) from their home stat who had shown interest in marrying her to ensure her return to her home state where, her parents thought, she would get a safe and cosy posting.

Kiran fir told her parents that she wanted to face such hardships and serve backward regions. As soon as she assumed her office, rumors were spread about her past and alleged links with mafia in the region. She had taken extraordinary measures to stopil al activities such as sand smuggling and encroachment of government property despite risk to her life. A recent news report alleged that she was going soft on mafia. Another report suggested that she had an affair with an IAS officer working in a neighbouring district.

(Q).Identify the elements of. ethical concerns and dilemma in the above case and substantiate how you would have responded to each of such concerns and dilemma if you were Kiran.

Answer – An upright and honest officer faces organized campaign from vested interest to prevent her from performing public duties. Unsubstantiated rumors and personal attacks to malign her image and mage the reputation should be tackled head on by Kiran in this case.

Elements of ethical concerns and dilemma in above case are:

  1. Choosing between person, family comfort and commitment to public duty.
  2. Performing one’s duty without paying heed to rumours or to dispel rumours to maintain credibility and integrity.
  3. Protecting one’s privacy in public life and women’s dignity) when vested interest allege of immorality Appropriate response in this case would involve that rather than succumbing to pressure of vested interest and organized mafia, she should be take appropriate legal recourse. The strategy to deal with each of situations can be:
  1. Kiran should persuade her parents that t doesn’t mat serve in home state or any other state. She should make choice based on her own commitment, aptitude, duty and comfort rather than under parental or societal pressure.
  2. Proper legal recourse should be taken against the people spreading lie and falsehood. Though it may distract some of time and attention from official duties, but it is essential for maintaining not only personal integrity but also professional credibility of authority.
  3. A defamation case may be initiated against people spreading rumours. An official have full right to her privacy in person sphere.

Case Study – 2

You are a Block Development Officer. You have been invited by a Panchayat Secretary to attend the Gram Sabha meeting. The meeting has been, called to allot houses to the poor with an aim to make this Panchayat free of huts State government has sent you a strict direction to provide durable houses to all the needy and to make sure no village has a single hut anywhere.

In the meeting a very old widow approaches you and tells you that she is living inahut which is dilapidated and is about to collapse. She has no one in the village and she is all alone and she is at the fag end of her life. When you are about to recommend her a house out of empathy, Panchayat Secretary reveals that she was allotted an house few years ago and that she had sold the house to pay her husband’s debt. Some villagers who treat her as insane old widow also raise objections to grant her another house.

She is very old and she is almost begging you to help her. Selling her previous house was illegal as per Panchayat rules. She has nowhere to go. As per government’s directive, she cannot continue to live in a hut.

(Q). In this circumstance what decision will you take? Explain why?

Answer: The case involves conflict between legality of allotment and society’s larger issue that is poverty. Following ethical considerations are there:

  • Women is old thus require greater protection(Article -14-equal protection of law)
  • Women are poor with no one to care. (Re distributive justice).
  • She has flouted the rules and sold her previous allotment.
  • It is illegal to give her second allotment plus public opinion is against such allotment.

Course of action:

  1.  Discuss the problem of old lady with her and try to find out corrective solution by ensuring a pension and benefits under governmental schemes.
  2. Discuss the issue of old lady in panchayat and try to build consensus by explaining her pitiable conditions. Further, sensitize villagers towards plight and social security of poor and old.
  3. If villagers respond in negative, discuss with people in lighter hierarchy to get permission to allot her house second time with a strict warning to not to sell it again otherwise legal actions will be taken.
  4. If nothing works, contact an NGO or old age home and make arrangements for her care either at her village or at the home.

Case Study – 3

You are now a retired Superintendent of police. During your service you were known for paramount honesty and integrity. You were appreciated by the people wherever you served as an officer. Recently, you were diagnosed with a harmless cancer, which if neglected would turn into malignant and severe one.

Q.(a) What values do you see in this Study? In your view, how these values can be inculcated in children? Discuss. (150 Words)

Q. (b) Will you ever return the medical expenses in some form to the oncologist? Justify why. (150 Words)

ANSWER: (a) I see in this study values of:

  1. Empathy towards a mother and as son who are in need.
  2. Gratitude from the doctor for the service of a police officer.
  3. Integrity and honesty of the superintendent of police during his tenure in serving the people.
  4. Responsibility of officer in ensuring that mother gets a job and leads an independent life.
  5. Accountability to the duty one is endowed with i.e. public service here of police officer.

It is through one action these values can be inculcated in children. Taking children to orphanages to show them what empathy is, making them aware of inequalities in society which is cause of major social ills and asking them to help poor and old aged etc would inculcate in them responsibility toward society. When received a help from others just saying ‘Thank you’ in itself is showing gratitude and telling them the same. Showing examples of people in society like police officers, national Amy etc on what honesty and integrity means and asking them to follow such eminent personalities. It is not just preaching, through practice parents and others can inculcate such qualities which will sustain their ability to follow them.

(b) Yes. I will return medical expenses. As a retired Police officer if lake any monetary, asset or other help from doctor in return for what have done in my service that would amount to bribing for the past service. During service, it is my duty to serve people and what l have done is just part of it. Gratitude from a person benefited from my past actions can be simply acknowledging it and that itself is a great satisfaction for me. Taking monetary help that too when I can afford my expenses would amount to no less than corruption. If not immediately, would return the entire amount to the doctor in some or other form and then only I can derive complete job satisfaction which otherwise will degrade my years of service with integrity and honesty. I will not allow petty benefit to defy my conscience which believes in serving honestly with true to self and the society.


Answer (a) Following value are evident –

  • Empathy of police officer. He was aware of the patriararchal nature of Indian society, and readily helped the woman in escaping the trouble and to stand on her own-feet.
  • Empathy is evident in that he did not accept the offer made by oncologist and insisted in payment for the same. “
  • Oncologists’ humility is visible in that he offered to operate him for free on account of help extended by police officer to his mother when she was in distress.
  • Children are innocent, and such values need to be inculcated in them from an early stage.
  • Regular field visits shall be organized by school authorities to enlighten children about ground realities and the inequality that persist in the society. Schools may join hands with NGOs for this.
  • There shall be zero tolerance for bullying in schools. Children shall be taught that name calling and other bullying acts are not healthy and since these adversely affect the personality of the person bullied and has psychological impacts too.
  • Merely teaching what is mentioned in books does no serves the purpose. Regular interactions which such renowned public servants will be helpful.

Answer (b) I would definitely return the expenses incurred in the treatment to the doctor fraternity, if not to the particular doctor. What I did by helping the woman was a part of my duty as a public servant, and the oncologist shall not feel obliged to provide me free treatment for the same.

Firstly, I will insist that the oncologist accept the amount so pent in my treatment. If he does not accept my request, I may donate the necessary amount to a medical institution or a cancer research laboratory, I may also help NGOs working towards helping cancer patients by providing financial assistance to them and informing general public about the disease and the need for its early detection and diagnosis.

Case Study – 4

You are a Collector of a district. The Chief Minister has arrived to attend a private function and at the same time has summoned all officials to get reports on various works in progress in the district. Your family was also invited by the organizers of this private function. Because of some issues at home, you arrive half an hour late to the function where meeting is also being held by the CM. The CM. who is known for ill temper, soundly abuses you in front of all dignitaries your wife and children. You are insulted and humiliated in full public glare. This was your first such experience.

(Q). How will you react? Explain and give reasons. (150 Words)

Answer: At that instance, several emotions would be running through my mind.

Embarrassment, ego, frustration, guilt etc. The first thing I would do is manage my emotions because such emotions could lead to taking ill decisions and it is my duty to protect the respect and integrity of the post of Chief Minister and Collector. Instead would try to use them to act accordingly.

Secondly, I would apologize to the Chief Minister and all the other officials as l have wasted their time. As being the head of the district, I should be the first person to intimate the CM about the happenings in the district, so my delay is not pardonable.

Thirdly, I would explain the reason for my delay. If l don’t then l would be setting a bad precedent to all the other officials.

Fourthly, to recover the thirty minutes lost, I would think of ways to give the perfect brief and also save time by eliminating other unproductive activities of the meeting. Because due to time constraint, it should not affect the information being given to the Chief Minister.

Cast Study – 5

Your brother Abraham whom you love so much is cheating in the board examination. You are also writing the sane exam sitting just behind him. You notice that he is looking at a small piece of paper and copying its content in exam. A day before he had confided that he was scared of failing in the exam and facing ridicule from his parents and relatives. He had also talked about taking extreme step if he fails the exam.

(Q). Will you be a mute spectator and allow your brother to cheat without bringing this matter to the notice of invigilators? Justify.

Answer: “You should Write Exam For Future, But Exam Is Not Only The Future Dr.AP.J Abdul Kalam”.

As we all understand, exam is important part of our curriculum but writing exam with cheating or copying, because of certificate without adequate knowledge, which is useless at the same time knowledge without certification or qualification may be worth less so the knowledge with certificate or qualification is definitely help in long way.

As per above given situation, Firstly asked my brother to stop doing copy and resist to do so, still he doing the same then, I inform about wrongdoing to invigilator. As soon as I finish exam, I sit with my brother and explain him about evil effect of wrong doing things on his career and confidence level I also try to convey message that exam is not only life. it is just part of it and request him do not think about extreme steps, which is not good at all. Motive him to do work hard and write exam in next attempt. At the same time inform my parents about what had happen and convince them brother has capacity to do it, just he required is moral support sol request them to support him in this critical situation.

Case Study – 6

Shivesh and Priya, a newly married couple, have joined same company as software engineers. They are put under a same team leader. The team leader has started flirting with Shivesh’s wife. He has also started giving trouble to Shivesh in terms of putting him under lot of work related pressure. Both Shivesh and Priya have signed contract with the company.

Shivesh is now asking Priya to leave the job and stay at home. Priya friendly with the team leader, and she thinks he is harmless. Though she has told Shivesh about this, Shivesh wants her to leave the job at any cost. After few months Priya got promotion whereas Shivesh didn’t. She is made team leader of another team and she now reports to manager who was her former team leader.

These developments have further depressed Shivesh and lately he has started doubting his wife. However, Priya has always been faithful to Shivesh.

(Q). 1f you were in Shivesh’s and Priya’s place, what would you do respectively?

Answer: As Shivesh, I would like to openly convey to my wife about the insecurities I feel in her interaction with her subsequent promotion. I would also like to say to her I trust her lot and would only want good for her and was happy that she had got promotion, but I dint really trust the intent of her boos (my former TL) and therefore I would like her to trust me in my feelings and stay away from him since it was probably sending a wrong message to him, who was misinterpreting her friendly nature and also as it was damaging our personal relations due to my insecurities, if she wasn’t ready to leave the job, as it would be best possible outcome.

As Priya would make my husband understand about my nature and my friendliness, which dint means anything more apart from just that? I would address my husband’s insecurities by listening to him patiently and understanding it in the light of my recent promotion, it would only complicate his thought process. Since i would not like to leave the job i would for one trust my husband and keep my interactions with boss to only professional level since it would inspire confidence in my husband. However to address his deeper bias against me i would give him a plain talk about my freedom, integrity and choices, and the fact that his distrust will not help matters hence he should be more open to me interacting with male counterparts without any bias.

Case Study – 7

Suppose you are a District Social Welfare officer, you have recently rescued a married woman who was subjected to severe domestic violence by her husband and in-laws. She is very depressed and needs urgent medical attention. Your wife suggests that the survivor should be counseled.

(Q). What ethical guidelines will you follow to help this victim as a responsible officer? Discuss.

Answer: The issue at hand should be handled with tact and care in following manner:

Immediate Response: There should be a sense of urgency in dealing with the 1SSue Appropriate and immediate medical care, assisting in all legal action with up .providing moral and emotional support to the victim will go a long way in easing the suffering of the victim.

Media: As the crime is of sensitive nature, I would take action to limit the media exposure and give her protection from legal hassles such as inquisitive questioning, offensive medical examinations which aggravate the pain she might have to endure.

Legal Response: Justice and sense of duty will make me to take firm action against the perpetrators under the prevention of domestic violence act. Provide unflinching support and showing commitment to take the case to logical conclusion of maximum possible punishment to the perpetrator will provide mental relief to the victim.

Sensitivity: Empathy is the key here. It takes effort to understand the victim’s pain from her viewpoint. It will make the rehabilitation process more humane and avoidable issues can be avoided this way.

Sharing The Pain: Sense of justice and fairplay where the victim feels that her loss is being considered as an outrage and authorities are taking actions with more than a sense of just another case to handle. This will make her feel less apprehensive about the legal responsibilities which may be required of her.

Answerability to the community at large is also an important issue to consider. Public will expect swift and s stern action. By publicly assuring the community at large, of proper deterrent action, credible message can be sent to the community and women welfare groups and other NGOs.

Case Study – 8

Suppose you are a jail Superintendent. A politician convicted of rape and murder who has already served 2 years in jail is under rigorous depression. His wife is on death bed due to cancer. He requests you to allow him to see his wife at his home one last time before she dies. He was a high profile politician and has lots of enemies in the opposition party. Your wife, who is a social worker, after coming to know about convict’s request, requests you to allow him to see his wife once subverting court procedures.

Q.(a) Will you follow your wife’s suggestion? Justify.

Q.(b) If you follow your wife’s suggestion, what are the likely consequences that you might face? Enumerate.

Answer (a): As a jail Superintendent. it is my duty to follow and implement the rules and procedures of the jail and courts. Allowing convicted politician to see his wife is not personal matter for my wife and me, so l will not heed to my wife’s request and will ask her to gather enough support for the cause of allowing convicted person to see his wife. As a social activist my wife need to check the public opinion and what are the humanitarian grounds on which a person can get a chance to fulfill his wish against court procedures. I will support my wife in finding out the legal ways if any on how to allow the politician to see his wife as it is the one last time he could see his ailing wife and denying him would amount to cruelty towards other person as a human being when considered on moral grounds.

Answer (b): If l follows my wife’s suggestion,

  • I might have to face the wrath of opposition party and the matter takes political tone.
  • Breach of court procedures may lead to possible action against me in court.
  • Many cases in jail will have emotional aspects with mix of political, criminal and personal aspects. I have to face consequences as because a person in superintendent must be strong enough mentally to handle situation of the sort and under that authorities might consider me as unfit and may lose my job.
  • Conflict of interest due to my personal opinion and legal aspects which could be leads my wife also into problems as a social activist.

Case Study – 9

You are traveling in a government bus to attend a very important job interview. In one hour you should be present at the interview venue. The bus is very congested. Luckily you are seated. From your seat you observe that middle aged man standing next to a girl is touching and trying to molest her. The girl is silently resisting and trying to move away from him. Bu the man is continuing his actions. As the bus is congested, nobody is noticing this except you.

Q(a). In this situation, what will you do? Explain.

Q (b). I you do not do anything, which values will you be compromising? Explain their importance.

Answer (a): First of all, I will offer my seat to that girl. It will prevent the person to make any advances to her. Secondly, I will ask the girl whether she wants to make any complaint against the person. If she wants to do that, I will make a call to the police. If she does not want to get involved into it, I will talk to other passengers and will try to pressurize the person to accept his mistake and not to repeat it in future. (But only if she has no objection as being a girl she might feel being antonyms). I will also encourage her to raise voice against this type of injustice which violates modesty of girl.

Answer (b) If l take no action l’ll violate the following values:

  1. Respect for women- It will become disrespect for dignity of women if I remain silent.
  2. Honesty – Closing eyes towards injustice amounts to dishonesty to myself.
  3. Courage of conviction – Standing up to misbehavior will only true courage of conviction against all such pervert people of society.
  4. Empathy – Though I can see misbehavior being done, if I do not empathies with the girl, it is a loss of humanitarianism.

Therefore, all such values must be upheld in daily life for a dignified living of self and others in society.

Case Study – 10

Recently a peon was appointed in your office (DM office). He is illiterate and mentally not sound. Ever since his appointment he has been more of a burden than any help in the office. He doesn’t know any work. Staffs in your office feel that their work is disturbed by his behaviour. The peon is always found to be talking either alone or with anyone he encounters. He is not obeying your staff’s orders in the office.

He was appointed on sympathy grounds after his father’s untimely death. His mother is ill and always bedridden. His income is the only source for his family now. He got the job after lobbying by a group representing his caste. He is appointed by your predecessor after he was pressurized by local MP Some moves to remove him by your predecessor were met with public protests by a group representing his caste.

You are very strict and discipline in your office. You are being respected in your district for your integrity and honesty. You come to know about the peon few days after you assume power. You have observed his behaviour and found him to be unfit to continue in his job. The peon has no other relatives except his mother.

(Q). Identify your moral and professional responsibilities in this problem and explain how will you deal with the peon.

Answer: Since the peon is unfit for the job, the option of continuing him is ruled out, so protection to his family should remain the priority of DM.

Responsibilities of DM:

  • Social security and health care to peon and his mother.
  • Removing the peon peacefully after pacifying all parties involved.

Course of action to be followed:

  • Certain actions of peon in the office should be video-recorded such as not heeding to the officers, disturbing others in office etc.
  • On priority, DM should make an arrangement for social security benefits along with health insurance to peon and his mother. A request for pension should also be made to higher authorities on exceptional grounds.
  • There after a meeting should be arranged with his caste members to explain the real problem being faced in the office and why he should be removed from the office by showing them video-clips.
  • At the same time DM should take own responsibility for peon’s pension and other benefits before the members.
  • Once they agree, his removal would be done in a smooth manner without any controversy.
  • In case they do not agree immediately, step should be taken to constantly persuade the key members of his caste group one-by-one through constant consultations and that would surely resolve the problem.
  • In doing the above, work culture and discipline in the organization will be protected but at the same time solved the problems of most vulnerable people i.e. peon and his mother empathetically.

Case Study – 11

If you’re 10 year old son has stolen an laptop from your neighbor’s home. Your neighbors are your close family friends too. Your son is hiding stolen laptop in his room and using it for many days now. You neighbors’ daughter one day somehow finds out that the laptop was stolen by your son. She tells this to hers parents. They come to you and tell you that it’s not a big deal and asks your son to keep it as their gift. But your wife is agitated and asks you to punish your son stringently. Whereas your neighbors suggest you to pardon’ your son and let go of the matter.

(Q). What actions will you take on your son? Justify and explain the merits of your action.

Answer: Stealing is a vice. Children should be made to despise it. An ethical standard and nom of completely foregoing should be developed in children. With this objective will take the following steps:

Firstly, I will ask my son to return it. If I allow him to keep it, then he might get accustomed to stealing and expects pardon every time.

Secondly stringent punishment is not an effective deterrent especially for children. It creates hatred and deviates the child from the n o despise stealing.

Thirdly, I will use Social pressure through his siblings, mother to create an idea that such actions lead to so boycott and embarrassment.

Fourthly, I will ask him if he liked the laptop would want one, so that he realizes that he could have achieved the same by asking his parents then stealing.

Through these measures and by reciting stories about legends who despised stealing and lived morally, I will make my child treat stealing a vice, a person should condemn.

Case Study – 12

As a DM of a home district of serving Chief Minister, you find out that a huge land scam has taken place in which close relatives of the Chief Minister are involved. The scam which you have unearthed has caused lots of financial loss to the state’s exchequer. You have been recently married to a daughter of an MLA who is known as staunch political enemy of the CM.

While you are investigating the matter for further proofs, before you make this issue public, the CM comes to know about this. He threatens you with dire consequences if you do not close the file and bury the matter silently. He threatens you with false criminal cases and CBl investigation in case you do not budge. Unfortunately, a case is pending against you regarding misuse of treasury funds, in which you haven’t done anything wrong. This case can be reopened and used against you. However, if you stop investigation, he has assured you that you will be given a plum post in the capital.

(Q). Identify which course of action are available to you. Examine each action’s merits and demerits. Finally, explain which course of action would you follow and why?

Answer: In this situation, the following options are available:

  • Acting as per the directions of the CM and close the file in return for the plum job and to avoid investigation
  • Cary on with the investigation to find substantiates proofs to the issue which caused loss to the exchequer. Upholding the law and constitution to which owe my allegiance.
  • Use my father-in-law’s position to expose the current CM and share the gain of this expose with my father-in-law.
  • Report the matter in media anonymously.

Option l:


  • Plum post will be rewarded.
  • Will be freed from the threat of CM and career will be safe.


  • Loss to the state exchequer and ultimate sufferer would be public.
  • Subversion of constitutionally mandated duty for the personal benefit.
  • Public image and trust will be lost.



  • Upholding personal integrity, objectivity, honesty, spirit of civil service
  • Unearthing such act would cause deleterious effect on others who may be indulged in similar other activities
  • Bringing such issue before the public will improve trust and confidence between state machinery and public.
  • Send a strong message to the political class that honest civil servant would not succumb to their pressure tactics.


  • Lot of personal hardship caused in the process including false CBl enquiry.
  • Putting life and family in jeopardy.

(Similarly merits and demerits in Option 3 and Option 4).

Course of action to be followed:

I would choose option 2. Investigation would be carried out as usual. Meanwhile CM should be told politely but firmly that I am performing my constitutionally mandated duties and I have no option to go.

There is a possibility that CM’s party workers would spread message that MLA is playing vendetta politics through his in law. So sound proofs before the public are necessary to avoid any backfire.

If CM, in the meanwhile starts any CBI investigation on my any past acts, I would welcome that as I have not done anything wrong. Even government suspends, I would cooperate with the enquiry to prove my innocence. If necessary I would move to court for protection against harassment.

But in no case, I would close the file to avoid any personal hardship to my career and my family as it would amount to compromising on ny values and ethics which civil service holds.

Case Study – 13

Suppose you are posted as food supply inspector in naxal activities region. As soon as you assume your office, you receive a note from an unknown source It asks you to transfer 10000 rupees every month to a local naxal leader failing which you would be abducted and killed. The note asks you to meet an unknown person at a place and get details about where, when and how to pay the money. The note tells you that in case you inform the police, you and your family would be killed.

You show this note to your friends and family. Some suggest you to go back to old posting by paying bribe to concerned authorities; some suggest you to sign; others suggest you that the practice of giving ‘protection money’ is common in the region and if you too pay this money regularly you could live a peaceful life

(Q). What are the options before you? Analyze their merits and demerits and explain which course of action would you take in the end and why?

Answer: A classic case of protection money’, this is where a struggle ensues between the instinct of survival and standing on your principles.

The options available in this situation are:

  • Succumbing to the pressure: This will involve just giving in to the demands of the extortionist. Though, it will give mental peace for a few days, the problem will inflate in time and will consume the efficacy of my official and personal life. Also, if the matter gets disclosed, it will bring defamation in the public eye, leading to increased frustration.
  • Asking for a transfer/resign: A safe or old posting may help in keeping me and my family safe. But shirking away from my duty at one place will make the job difficult to pursue at other location too, as I will always try to seek the easy way out. Moreover, by paying bribe, I will strengthen the very system, I had wished to eliminate.

Rooting out the issue: It will be difficult to pursue in the beginning but the long term effects will surely benefit myself and the society at large. This includes:

  • Informing my seniors and colleagues about the letter.
  • Involving the police into the matter to try to catch hold of the person who has sent the letter .
  • Relocating my family to a safer place, till the matter is sorted out.
  • Discussions with the locals the malaise of naxalism in the locality and come out with short and long term plans to tackle it.

So, I would prefer the third option as a way forward.

Case Study-14

Suppose you are District Collector in a drought prone region. Recently due to failure of rains and severe drought many peasants committed suicide. Despite pleadings from the Chief Minister himself debt.-ridden farmers are continuing to commit suicide. The CM calls you and asks you to manage the situation. He clearly tells you to do something to stop these suicides immediately by any means.

(Q). What measures will you take to stop farmer suicides in your district? Suggest out of the box solutions.

Answer: Drought and debt combination is a serious situation for anyone be it lamer As the District collector of the area l will take the following necessary measures on priority basis to control the suicide:

Short Term Measures

  • Announcement and address. I will visit those village and address famers and appeal them as well assure them that not to loose hope, I am there with them. I will ensure that officials visit those areas on regular basis to meet the families in distress.
  • Food, and other relief material supply: I will ensure uninterrupted water, food and other relief material supply in the area. I will also give them helpline numbers to register complain.
  • Restriction on any contractual acquisition of land/ property in this period This will ensure that the lenders cannot forcefully or fraudulently acquirer the debtor land or property.
  • Insurance Scheme: While the relief work is in process, I will initiate the process of insurance payment to these farmers.
  • Counseling: Numbers would be provided to famers, so that they can contact counselors to talk and share their problem. Face to face session will also be organized.

Long term measures

  • Credit availability: I will ensure that there are institutionalized micro finances available in future.
  • Irrigation: Set up micro/macro irrigation plan and implement it well before next year dry season.
  • Enrollment in crop insurance plans: Ensure every farm is ensured.
  • Scientific methods/ IT: We will introduce scientific methods like SRI and climate smart farming to cope with drought like situation in future. l enabled services will help them choose the right crop in every season.


As a district collector in a drought-prone district with frequent suicides due to agrarian distress. I will have to take measures both short-term and long term to ameliorate the condition of famers.

Short term measures

  • I will assure the farmers that their debt will be restructured with immediate moratorium on repayments by convening a meeting of district-vide lenders- bankers and other unofficial money-lenders to ask them to cooperate with administration on resolving the situation and put on hold repayments. I will make sure that unofficial lenders are registered to verify whether they are charging fair interest or not. so that farmers are not harassed in situation of distress.
  • The farmers have to be sensitized of the fact that suicide is not the way out of problems they face. I will organize IEC campaigns, launch help lines to instill confidence in them along with counseling Sessions by setting up kiosks at important landmarks in village.
  • I will also request a short-tem emergency relief from CM that will be used to provide essential necessities that farmers may lack due to crop failure or failure to get remunerative prices.

Long-term measures, I will ensure:

  • Scientific assistance for crop diversification, higher productivity via KVKs.
  • Private markets without middlemen and mandi taxes to market produce at competitive prices.
  • Many well-meaning schemes languish due to flaws in implementation. Periodic review of all-farmer related programmes like Irrigation Schemes, compensation to farmers- will be mandated. Use of technology has to be central to any endeavor to help farmers get rid of mental agony they face on account of crop failures.

Case Study – 15

You are working as Junior Engineer in a Tehsil. You have been given responsibility to measure MGNREGA works undertaken by 3 Gram Panchayats. You have authority to give technical sanctions to all MGNREGA works. In one Of these Panchayats you notice that your predecessor had wrongly measured many works, and in many cases he had approved works that never existed. One day few elected members of that Panchayat with bundle of job cards come to you to seek ‘sanction’ for the works done by then when enquired; they reveal that they were contractors who had completed works under MGNREGA. When you reject their demand, they threaten you and tell you that the previous Junior Engineer was made to quit his job because he didn’t listen to them. This is your first job and is very important to sustain your family. There have been precedents in the past that some junior officials were beaten to death in some parts of the Tehsil. 

(Q). What will you do in this situation? Explain in detail citing rules from MGNREGA Act. 


  • I would tell contractor that there is provision of social audit for MGNREGA and in future it is most likely that they would get caught in future. Also the provision of DBT and biometric authentication will reveal all their wrong doings. 
  • Subsequently i will report such incidence to my higher authorities and seek police protection in case my life is at risk. A report of bogus as well as valid job card shall be separately prepared by me who shall lie as a proof for all past irregularities. 
  • My courage and uptightness will deter me from succumbing to their demands. In any case if i comply as directed by contractors, my job would be in peril. Truth can’t be hidden for long and it’s better to be courageous than to hide facts and face future actions 

Case Study – 16

Your brother, who is living with you in Delhi away from your home in Kerala, desperately wants to clear civil services Preliminary exam is under lots of pressure. He was unable to clear prelimina1y exam in his last three attempts. Staying away from home for past five years, he desperately wanted to reassure his parents by passing civil services exam at least the first stage. In the just released result of last year’s exam. You have secured a top rank. Your brother is both happy and tensed. Out of desperation he proposes you an idea to help him. Knowing that you have always been a good scorer in preliminary exam, he requests you to ‘assist him during exam through a wireless device. He shows you small a device that can be hidden 1n his glasses which can send and receive messages without ever being noticed by the exan1i1ier.He assures you that 1t is safe and he or you would never be caught. You are also under pressure from your pa1ents to help your brother. However they are unaware of your brother‘s plan. 

(Q). What are the different courses of action available to you and which one will you choose? Justify. (200 Words) 

Answer: Honesty and morality are essential for eve1y person and especially for public servant so using these methods and assisting him in doing so will be unethical and morally wrong on the pan of my brother and me. To tackle this situation, I have different course of action like

  • I can tell directly to my parents that he is forcing me to assist him in cheating, which can harm both of us. Probably, they will understand me and will scold him but this would bring sourness in our relationship which will probably never go away. 
  • I can directly refuse him to help him in this act. But by this he will become more pressurized and may become more depressed and probably will take other routes for cheating in an exam. 
  • I can counsel him and can help him in the studies – I will try to persuade him both emotionally and by threatening. 

Emotionally – I will ask him that he is going to become a future public servant who has to manage very difficult situation in his life, UPSC is just a test for entrance into that struggle so he should not lose his confidence and adopt these unethical methods. 

Threatening – I will also say him that if gets caught then both of us will be in trouble, our career will be at the stack. There is various another opportunity to excel in life UPSC is not just one. 

So, I will go with the last option and in this I will also take help of my family members and friends of my brothers. 

Case Study – 17

As a Block Development Officer, you were invited to preside over a Gram Sabha meeting in one of Gram Panchayats falling under your jurisdiction The Gram Sabha was called to take a decision on two crucial things to identify and confiscate fake job cards used under MGNREGA scheme and to choose the beneficiaries to allot houses under Indira AwasYojana. You had ordered a month ago to all G1am Panchayat secretaries to conduct programs to create awareness and advenise about coming Gram Sabha so tha§$eople would participate in large numbe1s. 

Unfortunately, on the day of Gram Sabha to which you were invited, very few villagers turned up. It is mandatory that at least one tenth of members of Gram Sabha (those whose names are in electoral rolls) attend the Gram Sabha. But on that day less than one tenth was in attendance. At the same time, all the Panchayat members were present. They all insisted that the Gram Sabha should continue as people would slowly come and attend as the meeting progressed. Somehow you were convinced and the meeting started. Those few who attended were chosen by vote to get homes allotted after verification that they met the criteria under the Indira Awas Scheme. Job card verification was not possible as there were no people at the meeting. 

Next day you received a complaint by a villager accusing Panchayat members of coercing Panchayat Secreta1y to conduct Gram Sabha on a date when villagers had gone out to neighboring village to attend a festival. According to the complaint this was done to stop the identification of fake job cards, which some elected Panchayat members had themselves created to siphon off money. The complaint also alleged that you and Panchayat secretary had taken bribe from Panchayat members to conduct a fake Gram Sabha meeting. There was also allegation that beneficiaries who got allotted lAY houses were actually all relatives of Panchayat members present on the day of Gram Sabha. 

Q. (a) Identify the major issues and your options in the problem. (150 Words) 

Q. (b) As a responsible officer what were your duties prior to conducting Grant Sabha and what course of action you should follow after receiving the complaint. (200 words) 

Ans: (a) (i) Major issues: 

  • Dishonesty shown by gram panchayat members as they deliberately timed the gram sabha on a day when the attendance of people would be less.
  • Corruption: Prima facie it appears that as alleged in the complaint, the panchayat members did indulge in corrupt practices by create fake job card holders to Siphon off money.
  • Nepotism: The gram panchayat members kept the interests of their relatives above the general public which elected them 
  • Accusation: The villages accusing me of collusion with panchayat members by taking bribe is a serious allegation. I need to prove my honesty so that people do not lose confidence in my conduct, which will affect my administrative duties in the future.

(ii) My options:

  • Cancel the whole gram sabha and all the allocations-done on that day, and reconvene another one taking in to consideration when the maximum attendance would be there. 
  • Ignore the complaint and blame the people for not attending it.

(b) (i) My duties prior to conducting Gram Sabha 

  • Should have made sure that the panchayat chose a right day for the sabha.
  • The rules clearly stated that a sabha should not be conducted when the quorum of 1/10th members are not present. So I should not have started without it. As the secretary said that the people would come after it gets started, I would insist on waiting till people came.
  • I should have smelt that something is fishy because, there is no reason why people would not attend the sabha if they are being allotted a house. I would enquire other people the reason for the absence.
  • I would then cancel the sabha then and there and complain the conduct of secretary to higher ups.

(ii) Course of action I should follow alter receiving the complaint

  • l would call the panchayat secretary and ask for an explanation and take it in writing.
  • The secretary is clearly guilty as he should have known about the festival in the neighbouring village.
  • l would then join the complaint and the secretary’s explanation and my recommendation which is cancellation of the sabha and allocations on that day and send it to the higher ups. 
  • I would apologies for my mistake to the people in the next sabha for not following the quorum rules.
  • I would also ask an enquiry in the alleged corruption and nepotism shown by panchayat and order cancellation of fake job card.

Cast Study – 18

You are working as Superintendent of Police. Recently you arrested few criminals involved in a rape case. They happen to be distant relatives of Chief Minister of the state where you are serving. You get a call from the Chief Minister himself asking you to drop cases against all criminals immediately. You politely reject CM’s diktat. Next day, again you receive a call from CM. This time he threatens you with dire consequences if you do not follow his orders. As per your wife’s suggestion, you have recorded this conversation. Your wife, who is a social activist, releases the tape to media. Next day an FIR is lodged against you and your wife: accusing you of committing a rape; and against your wife on the charges of receiving illegal foreign funds to an NGO run by you both. 

Your friends who are also bureaucrats, ask you to meet CM and beg for his forgiveness. They suggest you to release all goons citing lack of evidence against them.

Q. (a) Will you listen to your friends’ suggestions and act accordingly? Justify. 

Q. (b) Critically comment on the ethical issues involved in this problem. 

Answer: (a) Since the advent of criminalization in politics there has been a constant effort to make the bureaucracy subservient to political class. Anyone challenging the wrongdoings of powerful people get threatened, transferred and in some cases even get killed. Such developments not only demoralize the honest civil servants but also threaten the democracy. Any such kind of incidences should be out rightly opposed. 

In this case I respect the concern of my f1iends who ate worried about my safety and security but “I will politely reject their suggestion. Any kind of compromise in this regard will be equivalent to dereliction of the duty as a civil servant. Begging for the forgiveness is just out of question. 

Leniency towards goons will further encourage such incidence in future. Being a keeper of law and order I will not release them with the compelling evidences. Rather I will make sure that culprits are properly investigated, prosecuted and justice is done to the victims.

(b) Ethical Issues involved Nepotism: Protection given to criminals by CM because they me his relatives are grave case of betrayal of public trust. CM is the face of whole state and people have chosen him with lot of expectation. Keeping the larger public interest at bay for sake of protecting goons is quite unhealthy development.

Subservience to Political Class: Many of my friends who suggested begging for forgiveness may be unaware of their duty towards the constitution of India.

They are supposed to follow only official order of political bosses that too in larger public interest rather that practicing sycophancy.

Criminalization of Politics: Political class in this case is guided by self interest rather than public interest. As many of these criminals assist them during the election in booth capturing and the threatening the voters; they have become the favorite of politicians. They are not only getting protection but also getting opportunities to joining politics. 

Way ahead 

We as a society deserve a better democratic system which is devoid of criminals and sycophants. Therefore there is need to have high intolerance towards such criminals and corrupt politicians. People need to assist administration in keeping such elements in control as well as use their mandate in fair and impartial way above the caste and religion so that people doesn’t even reach to higher echelon of politics.

Cast Study – 19

A former employee who was fired due to poor quality work, absences, and lateness related to her drinking problem, informs you that she has applied for a position at another company and has already given your name as a reference. She desperately needs a job (she is a single parent with three children), and she asks you to give her a good recommendation and not mention her drinking, which she assures you is now under control. 

She also asks you to say that she voluntarily left the company to address a family medical crisis, and that the company was pleased with her work. You like this person and believe she is a good worker when she is not drinking. You doubt that she really has overcome her drinking problem, however, and you would not recommend your own company hire her back. 

Q. (a) What do you say to this woman? 

Q. (b) What do you say to an employer who calls you for a reference? 

Q. (c) What if the prospective employer was a friend? 

Q. (d) Suppose the problem was a theft? 

Q. (e) Suppose she had asked you to be a reference prior to supplying your name to her prospective employer? 

Q. (f) What values are at stake? Do some of the values conflict with one another? 

Answer: (a) What do you say to this woman? 

At first I would tell her that it was not fair and ethical on her pan to mention my name as a reference without my prior permission, this shows that her desperation may drive her to adopt such unfair means in future also to achieve any other intentions. As she was not honest to her prospective employer initially she may continue this behavior and I might put that employer and his organization at risk along with my own honesty and integrity. I would say to her that despite her saying she overcame her drinking habit which I am not myself sure of she still lacks integrity and honesty as she lied to get her hands on the job and mere stopping drinking did not certify that her other Grey areas like late coming and  l poor work quality will show improvement. We in life may face such dilemma’s more often but we should not act emotionally always as unfair means are never going to benefit. it will be unethical on my part to concur on her claims to her prospective employer. 1 would recommend her to tell truth to her prospective employer and then I might talk to him if he calls and tell the employer about her positives and her present conditions.

(b) What do you say to an employer who calls you for a reference?

Answer: would tell him regarding her problems and her efforts to get rid of those bad habits I would highlight her positive facets also and will also inform him about her present family conditions. l would tell him that she has tried to l. overcome her weakness and is now willing to work with proper work culture as l required by any reputed company or organization. I would not give surety of her l conduct but I may ask him to give her chance if he is willing to give her a chance I to change for good as she is in need of a job desperately because she is a single mother catering to three children.”

 (c) What if the prospective employer was a friend?

Answer: l will be easier for me to explain the situation to him, although I would not recommend her to my company I may ask my friend to give her chance and give permanent employment only after he is sure that she is now changed and is well suited to work as habitual drinkers show behavioral changes after they suffer from withdrawl of the alcohol.

(d) Suppose the problem was a theft?

Answer: Theft is an offense and it should be judged by the magnitude of theft, but legally theft is theft either of small or big magnitude. If an employee commits thievery in organization it will be cheating to the organization and to his employers and to his/her conscience also. It is also a criminal offense which attracts punitive actions. I may not be in position to recommend her if it was proved that she indeed committed thievery. Despite her being a single mother of three I may not overshadow her conduct of theft because she has to cater to three children alone. But I will tell employer that she was a good worker at large, and he should try to visualize her overall performance and situation before arriving at any decision. 

(e) Suppose she had asked you to be a reference prior to supplying your name to her prospective employer? 

Answer: lf she had asked me to be reference prior to giving my name as one, and then I would have heard to her, regarding her situation. If I get assured that she indeed has stopped drinking and is she is willing to work and Stan again with proper conduct and honesty I might recommend her to the employer but I will not keep him in dark regarding her past, I will explain him situation in which my company removed her and situation now, I would explain as I can not recommend her in my company due to her past deeds as it might not get accepted by my company: he can give her chance to rectify her past mistakes for a good future of her kids of whom she is a single parent.

(f) What values are at stake? Do some of the values conflict with one another?

Answer: Here along with ethical values like Honesty, Integrity and work values this makes me marketable as a person whose recommendation matters in organizations other than his own and my values like selflessness and altruism conflict with each other. I may lie and help her gain employment by unfair means and I being a partner in this misdeed or I can tell the truth to retain my honesty and integrity. I may by being honest tell employer about her, but i may being selfless and sensitive towards the employee‘s problems try to convince the prospective employer to consider her and give her one chance as she is desperate for the job and she is willing to overcome her drawbacks and may in future prove to be an asset to the prospective employer. 

Case Study – 20

You are seeing as Superintendent of Police of a district. You were in charge of conducting violence-free general elections in your Jurisdiction and also you were responsible to stop distribution of illegal money, liquor and other freebies during campaigning by the candidates. During one night two police personnel at check post seize rupees one crore unaccounted money from a car. The money was meant to be distributed among voters to lure them to vote to a particular party. One of the policemen pockets rupees ten lakhs as he badly needed that money to pay for the treatment of his wife who was battling a life and death situation due to cancer. The other policeman knowing this truth supports his friend, but he too pockets rupees ten lakhs. They let the driver escape from the scene warning him not to show up in the district. Later they send their money to their homes and the report at the station that they have seized rupees eighty lakhs from an unknown vehicle whose driver ran away abandoning the vehicle. 

After the elections, the driver turns up with an influential local politician who has just won the election and narrates the incidence to you and registers a complaint against the two policemen. 

Q. (a) What will you do in this situation? Justify. 

Q. (b) The police man who took money to pay for the treatment of his wife requests you to not to take any action against him. You know that what he is saying is true. Will you treat him leniently? Justify. 

Answer: (a) First of all this is related to an election offence. Already a case has been registered for the Rs 80 lakhs produced by the police men. Case needs to registered against the driver of that car for the additional 20 lakhs which he claims have been appropriated by the police men.

Secondly, the information regarding the whole episode will be shared with the District Collector as he is district returning officer and CEO of the Election Commission. 

Thirdly, an inquiry committee will be constituted against the whole episode and the police man involved in this. I would be a part of this inquiry committee. 

A fair Opportunity will be given to both the police men to voice out their version with facts, once the inquiry is completed, based on the report action will be initiated against both the police men and the same will be informed to the higher authorities. 

(b) Firstly, cancer to the police man’s wife and corruption involved are two different issues.

Secondly, all the government employees and their families are provided with the insurance facilities which cover the costs of treatments. So the claim that the police man resorted to the corrupt practice for treatment may not be completely true.

So there is no question of treating the police man leniently. Further, an opportunity will be extended to both the policeman, to deposit back the appropriated money and accept their mistake.

In case they come forward to do so, a lighter punishment will be recommended against the both and necessary action will be initiated.

Case Study – 21

Your friend who is travelling with you in a train gives ten rupees to an eight year old girl who is begging for money. An elderly co-passenger comments that it is unethical to give money like that and it would make these children lazy forever. Another co-passenger, a middle aged lady sympathizes with the girl and. tells the elderly man that the girl must be an orphan thus needs money for sustenance and she goes on to appreciate your friend for giving the girl money? 

(Q). Whom will you support In this situation? Explain why? 

Answer: It is highly unlikely that the eight year old has started begging on her own.

  • She may be driven into it by her family who is in dire economical condition or 
  • By the greed of crime cartels (or even her family itself). 
  • Or She may be an orphan as told by the lady.

Here the dilemma is to either support the friend in this philanthropic work and the admire the appreciation of women or to commend it and agree with the elder co-passenger. 

The situation demands proper combination of compassion and long term view of children‘s development. From the situation it appears that my friend gave the money on impulsive instinct. It is evident from the immediate step he took without any effort on his part of inquiring why the girl is begging when she should devote her time for study. On prima facie I will oppose the act of my friend. 

I will not favor the statement of my fellow co-passenger who is giving hint that the child should be employed or he should be earning some wage. On the other hand I will say that the proper statement should be that she should be attending school. 

The middle age lady is making statement on the compassionate ground and her observation does not seem to originate from the proper inquiry. I will question on her assumption and I will give example of the availability of orphanage which will promote her overall development.

If possible I will try to approach the girl and will ask her if she is attending the school. On the other hand if she is orphan or she is under pressure I will try to contact nearest orphanage will get her enrolled. Else I will try to enroll her in any adoption center 

Case Study – 22

A rape victim was offered marriage proposal to marry the person who had raped her and also a promise of financial support was made to her. All this was made so that she would not go to court to seek justice.

(Q). In your opinion, does such offerings do justice to the victim? Critically comment on this issue. 

Answer: Rape means sexual act without the consent of the women or men. It is a heinous crime which has no justifications in any society. It is violative of a persons right over themselves. It is the highest form of assault on another person. It attacks their dignity. Hence, any reprieve or being liberal on the perpetuator is undoing of a moral society. 

Offering marriage proposal and financial incentive is in itself a negation of the women‘s dignity and respect. The idea that marriage with the rapist would reduce the women’s trauma and be justice to the women is a manifestation of the patriarchal mindset of seeing women as sex objects. How can a woman who has suffered severe trauma due to a person’s lust spend her whole life with him? 

Justice for the victim and for the common good of the society means firstly, the rapist should be punished and secondly, marriage proposal by a rapist sets a very bad precedent to the society. It should be severely condemned. The victim should be rehabilitated and allowed freedom to live her life and seek justice from counts. 

Case Study-23

An IAS officer visits to see demolition of an illegal temple that was built on a public road. He had ordered that demolition in the public interest after receiving a complaint and thoroughly verifying facts.

He is accompanied by handful of police personnel. While the demolition is going on a mob tries to disrupt it. They try to burn lAS officer’s vehicle. When the police try to escort lAS officer to safety, the mob pelts stones at them. 

At this moment someone suggests lAS officer to order police to tire shots at the stone-pelting mob. IAS officer’s safety is at risk. 

(Q). If you were the [AS officer, how you would have conducted yourself? Substantiate. 

Answer: In the above mentioned case, the [AS officer is correct from the point of legality in ordering the demolition of the temple as it was illegally built on public road. Although, Indian constitution provides the right to religious Freedom it is subject to certain regulations and it certainly should not disrupt public life and cause inconvenience to others. Moreover, in the case they have not obtained permission to construct the temple on the public road in the first place: However, secularism In India is unique to us and religion related issues should be dealt with sensitively to avoid any unrest in the execution of the action. 

A better course of action by the officer should have been an attempt to obtain peaceful consent from those who constructed the temple for the demolition citing the facts. Also, the officer should have made a prior assessment of possible protests from any group while the demolition is being carried out. The area should have been adequately secured before the IAS officer reaches there to monitor the demolition. Even as the disruption arises as it had in the case by the stone pelting mob, firing shots at them is not to be recommended as it may lead to loss of life and cause further unrest. Instead, the police can try to disperse the mob by other means such as using tear gas. Also, since the mob is not said to be carrying any other lethal weapons, indiscriminate firing on them is unethical. 

Case Study – 24

You have passed UPSC Civil Services exam with a very good rank and you have given first preference to IAS and your home state. You will get home cadre as you are the t0pper from the state and there is vacancy available under your category. A former Chief Minister, who belongs to your caste, now wants to make you his Son-in-Law. Just like you, his daughter is also a graduate from top foreign university, she is very beautiful and as per information gathered from different sources by your parents, she is a down to earth and sweet girl. 

The former Chief Minister is also the head of the political party he belongs to and there is every chance that he would become Chief Minister again if his party comes to power in next elections. Your parents are on cloud nine ever since this marriage offer has been proposed. 

The former Chief Minister was jailed for few years in the past on corruption and murder charges. There are serious cases still pending against him in different courts. He is very rich. He has only one daughter. 

His family has liked you a lot for your personality and looks also. They want you to be their Son-in-Law at any cost. The girl has also liked you. Recently they have sent costly gifts to your parents, about which you were unaware of. 

Q. (a) Do you think it is unethical for you to marry the girl as you are going to serve in the same state and where there are chances of you working under your future Father-in-Law? 

Q. (b) Will you deny this marriage proposal because your father-in-law was a criminal and many cases against him are pending? Comment.

Q. (c) Critically examines ethical issues involved in this problem. 

Answer: (a) Under this situation I will ready to marry the girl as she was well educated and down to earth, and my parents also like her. I don’t think that there will be any issue in this. More specifically I do not think that anyone can affect integrity of job, influence my decision or take undue advantage of my position until I don’t give him the authority to do so. For a civil servant it is very important to make clear differentiation between his personal affairs and duties. And what was the guarantee that if I marry some other girl than her parents or relatives does not try to take undue advantage of my post. Here the question is related to my integrity, and I am constitutionally bound for my duty, and do so without any external pressure. 

(b) In this situation just by pending cases one cannot consider a person criminal. It was the prerogative of court and let it decide so. And I have no authority to vanish someone image just on the basis of pending cases. As a civil servant It is very Important for me that my decisions, should not be based on my prejudice Rather than I will work accordance to law. And laws clearly revealed that no person is gum) until proven so. Also even if he is proven guilty, there is no fault with her daughter as she is down to earth and gentle. Just being a daughter of a criminal does not make her a criminal.

(c) Ethical issues involved:

  • Honesty: for the efficient working in future without thinking of any personal gains of postings and promotions.
  • Integrity: for being honest, integrity is the prerequisite and moral strength makes a complete integrated personality having no confusions in taking decisions. 
  • Unbiasedness: taking decisions uprightly requires no deviations from the objectives of the decision and its impact on the greater interests of the targeted section of the society. 
  • Foresight: any present action could impact the future outcomes so a great vision is required instead of myopic views.

Case Study – 25

Keshav recently got a job of First Division Assistant in Tehsil (Taluka) office. He is smart and hardworking. Because of which Tehsildar has become fond of him and though he is Keshav’s superior, he has made Keshav his good friend. 

Keshav is married to Priya who is educated and recently got posted as Panchayat Secretary, incidentally to the Panchayat office located in Keshav’s village itself. Priya’s mother-in-law is not supportive of her and her job. She frequently taunts Priya and demands all of Priya’s salary to be given to her. Though Keshav supports Priya, he seldom objects to her mother’s remarks to his with. 

A young, male Panchayat member of same Panchayat where Priya works ,and who wields considerable clout in the village and Tahsil, comes to know that she had ‘illegally’ signed a property assessment certificate and claims that he has documents to prove his claim. The certificate was obtained by a relative of this Panchayat member who was not in good terms with him, in the past serious tights were taken place between them over this property. 

Priya insists that she signed it only after Panchayat’s bill collector surveyed the property and gave his verbal assurance about the legality of the property in question. As he was born and brought up in the village and knew matters of the village very well, Priya had trusted him. Now the Panchayat member is threatening her to take the matter to District Panchayat and get her suspended. 

Priya a seeks her husband’s help who is close to tehsildar and who in turn is a close friend of Block Development Officer Priya‘s mother-in-law is forcing her to quit the Job and stay at home, but Priya wants to be financially independent and pleads her innocence. Keshav is in moral dilemma over the entire episode. 

(Q). What should be keshav’s course of action so that he doesn’t compromise his ethics in personal and professional relationships?

Answer: In this case, Keshav has to deal with the crisis within family as well as the professional live of his wife, a public servant. First he should deal with the attitude of his mother towards her daughter-in-law. Demanding her salary and forcing her not to go to work reveals the backward and dominating mindset of his mother. Keshav should not remain quiet. He should talk to his mother and make her understand the needs of Priya as an individual with self-respect. 

Regarding the issue of property assessment and threats of Panchayat member, it is natural for Priya to ask her husband to use his good relations with the Tahsildar and influence the Block Development Officer (BDO). But it is a fact that she relied on the verbal assurance of the Panchayat’s bill collector on the legal status of the property in question. She should have sought a written assurance. It is definitely a mistake on her part. Keshav should advise his wife to present the facts of the case before the BBQ. He should decline the request of Priya to plead with the Tahsildar for her. Though Keshav would have good personal relations with Tahsildar, but asking Tahsildar to influence the public functions of BDO lacks propriety and hurts the integrity of both Tahsildar and Keshav. 

Cast Study – 26

You are a board member of a multinational food processing company. You also own significant shares in the company. Recently the company is reeling under huge debt and looking forward to launch a product to make profits. The company has decided to launch a special energy drink product specially made for school children. Food scientists in the company warn the board about possible health impacts of this drink. They say that their research has found that this product as energy drink would make children prone to obesity and lose their hunger for home food. According to them this would adversely affect the health of large pool of children m the country within short term, as the company had large presence and trusted brand name across the country. But the board rubbishes these findings. They defend the product by quoting internal findings that it would be a big hit among children because of its taste and company would make huge profits by selling it. Except you, all the board members support the launch of this product and buy the findings of their scientists. They say that for them saving the company, their wealth and saving employees is of immediate concern. 

(Q). Discuss the ethical issues present in this case and examine what options are available to you in this situation. Which option will you choose? Justify. 

Answer: Following ethical issues are present in this case: 

  • Self interest v/s society good: self interests of few board members, their company and employee are undermining health of millions.
  • Scientific truth v/s irrational lie: Findings of scientist is being hidden by lie of irrationality of profit making minds.
  • Loss of empathy: In lieu of making profits company people have lost the empathy towards children.
  • Cheating: Hiding the truth from consumers to help them make an informed choice is gross cheating. 

Options available before me:

  • Bowing down before the majority and becoming silent on the issue: This will save me from excessive confrontations with company members but my silence would endanger the health of millions. 
  • Raising my voice and showing my dissent among board members: It would give me satisfaction that atleast I tried. But if not stopped it would still be endangering lives of many.
  • Whistle blowing the whole findings: I may be able to stop the release of this product. But the whole company and its employees may loose future forever. 

My action:

  • Since rationality and logic has evaded from profit seekers I will place the fact before them in economic terms. I will put the calculations showing the huge loss we can have if government catches our lie. 1 will give the example of Volkswagen.
  • If not agreed, as board members will send circular to company employees informing about the findings and possible impact this release might have.
  • Will talk with employee groups and ask to protest against the release.
  • Even after all this release does not stop I will whistle blow and release the findings to government and press. 
  • As well wisher of company I will try my best to inform and save employees but as responsible citizen I will never allow future of millions of children endangered. 

Case Study – 27

Your twelve year old daughter asks her grandfather why she is not allowed to play with boys in the neighborhood. Her grandfather keeps telling her it is for safety and it is against Indian culture for girls to mingle openly with boys outside her home. You have observed that she is very good in asking questions and has an inquisitive mind. When she would in turn ask him why it’s not against Indian culture for boys to mingle with other boys and girls, he would tell her that a child, especially girl child should not speak like that to elders like him. She used to be fond other grandfather, but nowaday she is rather scared of him. She has also stepped asking questions these days. Your wife who has a modem outlook, and who is a teacher herself is closely watching her daughter’s conversations. These days she wants to move away to a new home with you and her daughter. She thinks that the future of her daughter will be in jeopardy if they continue to live together with her in-laws. She also thinks that both families can be happy if they live far away from each other. 

(Q). As a father, do you agree with your wife’s views? Highlight the issues in this case and discuss. 

Answer: The situation here is clearly clash of values. Grandfather has his notions about women.

Issues can be broadly classified as 

Societal/Religious/Cultural Issue 

Patriarchy is still the norm prevalent in the society. 

  • Recent examples killing of a 6 years Old girl by her father in UP(she hadn’t covered her face) .Banning cycle/Mobile/Jeans for girls. 
  • Value System: Is not only a place dependent thing but also a Time dependent thing. The Grandfather is trying to impose his time’s Values in today’s generation, which is a gross injustice on his part. He is making a young inquisitive mind suffer from complexes, and shaken self confidence and self awareness. 

As a father, Son & Husband I should act as a cushion and should intervene in the scenario. I will try to have an informed dialectics with my Father and would try my best to reason out to answer his apprehensions about the Girl’s ‘welfare’. I would try to make him understand that how his generation left Polygamy, Sati Pratha when they realized it was bad, they also should give the present generation to evolve out to this gender biasedness and let them work out a society of their own. 

As far as Wife is concerned, l would try to convey that I talked to the Father and will tell her to be optimistic as running away from the problem is never a solution. The issue should be faced on the face and reasoning, winning. Heart is the only way out. As the responsibility of the Old parents also lies on the Husband-Wife duo. I would say her it is our duty to bridge the gap between the two generation people and ensure the affectionate relation continues forever. 

Case Study – 28

Immediately after your IPS probationary training, you are posted as Additional SP of a district famous for operating illegal gun making factories. From the day one itself you have taken up the job of identifying and arresting local criminal’s involved in illegal manufacturing of guns. You were told by seniors that it was tough to west these criminals as they had a deep network of informants including local police who would help criminals escape whenever senior officers sent teams to at rest them on tip off. You were also told that most illegal gun factories operated under the patronage of powerful politicians. You were advised to go slowly on the issue without taking risk as this job of hunting down criminals involved risk to life as well. You were told not to act like super-cop and try to become a ‘hero’ as it would draw lots of attention on you from underground criminal networks and powerful politicians. You soon realize that most of the things told by your seniors were true. Your efforts to arrest individuals involved in illegal gun-making meet with failures. You find it difficult to trust your subordinates as your secret plans are leaked to criminals most of the times. In one incident, dustings night raid, you meet with gunfire from a local gang. Fortunately you were not injured, but one of your stall was met with serious injuries in the incident. You are frustrated and dejected. You receive no support from any quarters be it senior officers or political bosses Your parents urge you to get a safe posting and prepare for civil services exam again to fulfill their dream of seeing you as an IAS officer. Your father who retired as IGP, never wanted you to be an IPS officer. 

(Q). Will you accept the system as it is and play safe as an officer? What decisions will you make in the light of growing frustration on your part and your parent’s advice? Critically comment. 

Answer: “Battles are not won on morals alone” 

I am facing an ethical dilemma where adhering to the right conduct is putting my career and life at risk. The case involves a strong nexus of corrupt local police, politicians and hardcore criminals. There are two ways to deal with the situation:

Extreme Path unflinching righteousness and highest integrity: 

I am sure my senior officers have tried to go down this path before. Hence they are suggesting me against it. Experience is valuable and more so in public services. Even my small attempts of arresting these criminals have been in vain. 

Middle Path – Play smart not ‘safe’ 

Do not go head on against the criminals as proved by the failed night raid. Find the upright officers in your department and discuss a potent strategy with them both on field and off it. For example – I can deploy discrete teams comprising of locals to collective evidences. Then I can make the right noises and gather support in my department.

As an IPS officer, I am duty bound to fight criminal activities. I am required to be impartial and not collude with the nexus out of fear or greed. I shouldn’t accept status quo but not go on a mad mission either. The middle-path described above can be one way to move forward. 

Regarding my parents suggestion of preparing for IAS, what is the guarantee I will not face a similar situation? Problems are overcome least by running away from them. I do not deny my frustration but I should use it as a learning curve on my duty, not an excuse. Therefore, I will stay in my service since IAS 18 not my but their dream. I can take inspiration from the story of the Mountain man of India who chiseled his way through a mountain, one inch at a time. 

Cast Study – 29

Your son is studying in 12th standard in a government residential school. He is school captain and IS also head of students committee that looks after catering needs of school mess. One unfortunate day, hundreds of children in school fall sick after consuming chicken biryani. Preliminary investigation by Principal himself reveals that a very old stock of chicken was used in preparing biryani. Your son was away due to sports meet when food committee members along with school catering assistant had purchased chicken from the market. His team members tell your son that the catering assistant bought meat of dead chicken at half the market pi ice despite their objection. The meat was also undercooked in biryani. Now, the Principal who is very close to catering assistant threatens to punish your son and his team members for causing the food poisoning. They are threatened with suspension if they reveal the truth to enquiry committee that would be sent by District Collector later. They are asked to lie to the committee by saying that a lizard has fallen into biryani while it was being cooked. Your son who wants to become a doctor is studying well and has always been topper in studies. If he is suspended, he might risk his future studies. His friends want him to be) Principal’s orders. 

(Q). What course of action will you suggest to your son? Justify.

Answer: My son is facing an ethical dilemma where right actions may come at a personal loss.

Following would be my suggestions:

Reveal the truth after establishing facts. As the head of student committee he has a responsibility towards other students. His own integrity is also at stake. 

Visit the ailing students in the hospital. Their pain will give him the resolve to stand up against the culprits.

Show courage against of the principle. Yet maintain his calmness m an emotionally charged situation. 

Reason out with his friends and ask for their cooperation. A leader always takes the team in the right direction. 

My son wants to be a doctor. Honesty and empathy towards others is cardinal for him. A wrong step here will leave a negative impact on his moral values. He may even develop a habit out of it. It will then be a greater damage to his future as doctor and more importantly as a human being. 

The actions of the principle reveal the corrupted value system of the school. At the end of the semester, I would myself transfer my son to another school. His hardwork and intelligence cannot be diminished by a suspension. Instead; a good environment helps to enhance these qualities. 

Case Study – 30

You are working as superintendent of police in a naxal affected district. Recently, naxalites have kidnapped live of your policemen and two local political leaders. They are demanding a complete ban on bauxite mining in the district In exchange for safe return at kidnapped persons. You are worried about the lives of kidnapped persons. Previously no policeman was sent home alive by naxlites. Family members of policemen, who are extremely scared, are requesting you to take action and help release them immediately. The district administration is adamant that mining cannot be stopped as it involves millions of dollars of investment and also is a source of employment for tribal youth. The state gm eminent has asked you to take appropriate action in this situation to deal with the situation. You decide to personally lead a team of highly trained force to light naxalites and rescue kidnappers. Your wife is completely opposed to this idea. She pleads you to send a junior officer to lead anti-naxal operations instead of you leading it personally. She is scared for your life.

(Q). How will you handle this situation? Justify. 

Answer: The situations involves ethical dilemma arising out of issues like concerns of safety and security of kidnapped persons, the demand of naxalites and my wife’s worry.

The root cause of above situation is Law and Order of my district and it‘s my duty to maintain and ensure proper law and order m the area. So, keeping that in mind. I’ll take following steps:

  • I‘ll convince my wife that maintenance of law and order is my duty and responsibility and hence I’m the one who should lead the situation. 
  • I‘ll make my wife realize that I‘m going with highly trained force and full-backup plans, so, she need not worry about my safety and everything would be under control.
  • I‘ll also tell family of those kidnapped that they need not worry and soon will get them free-ed and we’ll take situation under control. 
  • Then, I’ll request higher authorities to give me backup force and proper equipments in case situation demands extreme action. 
  • I’ll then try to have a dialogue with Naxalites leaders to handle the situation through peaceful means and request not to harm the persons who have been kidnapped.
  • I’ll involve other institutions like Political, bureaucratic class to negotiate and ensure Naxalites that their demands could be discussed, if they’re willing to and appropriate decisions be taken by higher authorities. 
  • If they don‘t surrender or respond, then I’ll divide my team into two parts and ask:
  • 1st team to do a covert operation, whose goal is to rescue kidnapped persons at minimum cost or causalities.
  • 2nd team to keep naxalites engaged directly through firings, gherao so as to divert their attention as well as take appropriate action if situation demands.

This way, I’ll ensure that the situation is handled at its best with minimum causalities, I‘ll be able to convince my wife and maintain and ensure proper law and order in my district. 

Case Study – 31

Recently your brother was awarded PhD by not so good university. Your family members were happy about his achievement. They even published small congratulatory note in local newspaper. You are preparing for civil services exam soon after completion of Bachelor of Arts from a well known college in the capital city. Over the years you have acquired good knowledge of various issues and you can articulate them very well with anyone. On the other hand, despite getting PhD, your brother is not aware of current issues. A well known school nearby your residence calls for applications for the post of social science teacher. You and your brother both apply for this job. In the interview process you are rejected and your brother is selected. They say that you are ineligible as you are not sufficiently qualified to teach students. Your parents are again happy that your brother got the job. At the same time they insist you to pursue masters and then PhD just like your brother so that you too would get some job if you do not make it into civil services. 

(Q). If given an opportunity, what will you suggest to school authorities and to your parents? Critically comment. (200 Words) 

Answer: This case reflect the concern of our education system where a degree still holds more value than the knowledge of a person. It is also reflecting the traditional mindset of parents who instead their kids to pursue something which will get them job than knowledge.

I will suggest following to school authorities: 

  • Only degree should not he made the criteria as that will restrict their selection candidates pool. Sometime they may end up in selecting less desirable just for the lack of choice. 
  • In subjects like social science which also requires knowledge of present issues selection criteria should not be similar to technical subject like science where PhD scholar may be considered better than bachelors. Flexibility should be adopted as per need. 

To parents I will make following suggestion:

  • They should trust their children and let them follow their dreams.
  • Parents should not compare between their children. All should be equal to them irrespective of circumstances.
  • Knowledge is the biggest wealth and should have faith in fact that if this is acquired money will be the easy thing to earn thereafter.

This case shows how families and educational institutions are still bounded by old age norms and procedures. Accepting change is still far a dream. I will try my best to increase their acceptance to good changes. 

Case Study – 32

You are working as a Superintendent of Police. Your husband is working as District Collector. By chance, from his Smartphone you happen to read some of his e-mail which reveals that he is deeply involved in a corruption scandal with realtor. If you act as whistle-blower, the revelation will help the state government to save lots of money. At the same time your husband might face lifelong jail sentence if case against him is proven. You both love each other very much. 

(Q). What options are available to you? Which one will you choose? Justify. 

Answer: The above case surrounds around

  • Love and trust.
  • Duty and work ethics.
  • Impartiality.
  • Patriotism.

Options available to me in this case:

Not to expose the scandal and purse my husband to change his way. This option may protect my husband and we can live happily but it is for a short moment of

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