SECURE SYNOPSIS: 16 AUGUST 2019

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SECURE SYNOPSIS: 16 AUGUST 2019


NOTE: Please remember that following ‘answers’ are NOT ‘model answers’. They are NOT synopsis too if we go by definition of the term. What we are providing is content that both meets demand of the question and at the same time gives you extra points in the form of background information.


Topic:  population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

1) India’s total fertility rate (TFR) is declining. It is now 2.2 per woman, nearing the replacement rate of 2.1, according to the latest government data. Discuss the causes of falling fertility rate and critically analyse India’s challenges as its fertility rate falls.(250 words)

Indianexpress

Why this question: 

PM has flagged ‘challenges’ posed by India’s ‘population explosion’. While India is expected to soon overtake China as the world’s most populous country, the total fertility rate has been falling almost everywhere in India. Thus, it is important for us to analyse the situation.

Demand of the question:

One has to delve into the data to raise issues that will confront the government as India may not remain young for long and explain the possible causes of such a trend and analyse the upcoming challenges.

Directive word: 

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction

Define what is fertility rate, its significance in population studies of the country.

Body

Discussion should have the following aspects explained:

What does the data say about India’s TFR?

How does TFR vary between urban and rural areas of the country? discuss the causes.

The factors that have contributed to declining TFR are: Higher education, increased mobility, late marriage, financial independence among women and overall prosperity.

Then move onto explaining the possible challenges that the falling TFR may lead to.

Conclusion 

Conclude by suggesting solutions to the challenges.

Introduction:

Total fertility rate (TFR) indicates the average number of children expected to be born to a woman during her reproductive span of 15-49 years. The government’s Sample Registration System in 22 states shows that TFR for India declined to 2.2 in 2017 after being stable at 2.3 between 2013 and 2016.

Body:

Reasons for falling fertility rate:

  • Higher education, increased mobility, late marriage, financially independent women, overall prosperity are all contributing to a falling TFR.
  • It goes below 2 in both urban and rural areas, where girls complete schooling and reduces further as they pass college.
  • Bihar, with the highest TFR of 3.2, had the maximum percentage of illiterate women at 26.8%, while Kerala, where the literacy rate among women is 99.3%, had among the lowest fertility rates.
  • Increased focus on family planning by use of Contraceptives, increased tubectomies and relatively lesser vasectomies have also contributed to the reducing TFR.
  • Urbanization, reduced joint family system, increasing nuclear and single-parent families, higher cost of living in urban areas and higher wages have discouraged aspiring parents to reduce the number of kids.
  • Working people in urban areas want better pay, implying that they have to reduce the number of children so as to increase the time they spend at their workplace.
  • As more cities come up, people move for jobs and employment tenure gets shorter, TFR may fall further.

Decreasing fertility rate and its challenges:

  • The decrease in fertility and the associated decrease in the dependency ratio, in turn lead to an increase in the share of the population concentrated in the working ages and hence in the ratio of the working age to the non-working age population.
  • Dependency ratio:
    • The proportion of workers rises sharply, even as the proportion of dependants falls. In many countries, the ratio of workers to dependents goes up, giving a huge boost to per capita income.
    • India will see a significant rise in working age adults India’s dependency ratio that is the number of dependents to working people is low at 0.6, compared with the developed countries. That ratio is going to decline further with fertility rates continuing to fall.
  • For the next few decades India will have a youthful, dynamic and productive workforce than the rest of the world.
  • A demographic trend where the proportion of persons aged 15-24 in the population increases significantly compared to other age groups which paired with limited employment opportunities may contribute to increased poverty, hunger, malnutrition, poorer health, lower educational outcomes, child labour, unsupervised and abandoned children, and rising rates of domestic violence.
  • Education constraints:
    • There are serious problems with Indian higher education. These include a shortage of high quality faculty, poor incentive structures, lack of good regulation
    • India is home to the world’s largest concentration of illiterate people in the world
  • Health:
    • At the primary level, there are also serious problems with health and nutrition that impact the effectiveness of education and the capacity for learning.
    • In future large proportion of older working aged people who face longer periods of retirement, accumulate assets to support themselves.

Way forward:

  • Health and education parameters need to be improved substantially to make the Indian workforce efficient and skilled.
  • Enhance, support and coordinate private sector initiatives for skill development through appropriate Public-Private Partnership (PPP) models; strive for significant operational and financial involvement from the private sector
  • Focus on underprivileged sections of society and backward regions of the country thereby enabling a move out of poverty; similarly, focus significantly on the unorganized or informal sector workforce.
  • Measures should have pan Indian presence and not just concentrated in metropolitan cities as most of the workforce is likely to come from the rural hinterland.
  • Investing in people through healthcare, quality education, jobs and skills helps build human capital, which is key to supporting economic growth, ending extreme poverty, and creating more inclusive societies
  • New technology could be exploited to accelerate the pace of building human capital, including massive open online courses and virtual classrooms
  • Policymakers should have a greater incentive to redouble their efforts to promote human capital so that it can contribute to economic growth and job creation

Topic:  Role of Women, Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.

2) The best investment India can make towards economic prosperity and societal progress is in higher education and employment prospects of women. Discuss.(250 words)

Reference

Why this question:

 The article talks about the interrelationship of women empowerment and economic prosperity.

Key demand of the question:

Answer must discuss in what way higher education and employment prospects of women would matter and bring prosperity and societal progress for the country.

Directive:

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Body:

The status of women has dramatically increased in India. At the time of Independence, policymakers did not focus on educating women. As a result, household income and India’s GDP did not grow as much as it could have.

The data from the AISHE and NFHS surveys indicate that the best investment India can make towards economic prosperity and societal progress is in higher education and employment prospects of women.

Take excerpts from the article and discuss with suitable illustrations.

Conclusion:

Conclude with what needs to be done.

Introduction:

Higher education is the gateway to economic security and opportunity particularly for women in India. Women are part of socio-economic system and they up hold rich cultural and traditional values. Their progress is equated with the progress of the nation.

Body:

Trends in female higher education:

  • The number of women enrolling themselves for higher education in India has risen by a jaw-dropping 1,350 per cent in the last seven years, the All India Survey of Higher Education (AISHE).
  • From 1.2 million women in 2010-11, the number has gone up to 17.4 million women in 2017-18.
  • However, when compared to the percentage of women in the workforce in India, the number is abysmally low.
  • As per the World Bank Report on Labour Force Participation, just about 29 per cent of women in India are part of the workforce.
  • There has also been an increase of more than seven per cent in the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) of women in higher education in this period — from 17.9 per cent in 2010-11 to 25.4 per cent this year.
  • In M.Phil. courses, nearly 70 per cent of students are female, while in post-graduation, they account for 60 per cent of the student population.

Higher GER for women is beneficial for India:

  • The GER between genders is normalising, again indicating that more women are turning towards higher education to improve their livelihood.
  • As more women are turning towards higher education and correspondingly better employment opportunities, they are delaying childbirth and having fewer children. Higher education is one of the contributors to the levelling off of population growth.
  • AISHE data shows that for the first time in 2017-18 enrolment in MBBS had more women, 50.3 percent, than men. If workforce participation for women doctors is improved through policy, this could transform India’s healthcare system.
  • If more women are incentivised to work, they will contribute to society and the GDP for a long time, especially given that Indian lifespan and general wellbeing are also increasing.
  • With India’s women pursuing higher education in larger numbers, they must be empowered to contribute to the nation’s growth. It is opportune for India to leverage this economic multiplier to its GDP as it sets course to the $10 trillion mark.

The Indian Government has introduced policies and procedures with the goal of sensitizing the higher education system, recognize gender equity and increasing the number of women enrolling for higher education. Higher education for women in India has witnessed an impressive growth over the years and the Government is pooling resources needed to promote female education at all levels.

Some initiatives:

  • The Udaan program of the CBSE is dedicated to the development of girl child education, so as to promote the admission of girl students.
  • To improve the Social Group Equity, Government of India had Established Equal Opportunity Cells (EOC) for SC/ST/ OBC/Minorities.
  • Government has also established Residential Coaching Academy for SC/ST/ Minorities and Women in Universities and Colleges and the aim of these schemes is to prepare students for NET and All India & State Civil Services examinations and UG/ PG level examinations.
  • Indian Government has also introduced Post-Doctoral Fellowship for SC/ST and Women and Post-Graduate Scholarships for SC/ST students in professional courses.
  • PRAGATI – Scholarships for Girl Child for Technical education aims at providing encouragement and support to girl child to pursue technical education.
  • UGC has introduced the Swami Vivekananda Scholarship for Single Girl Child for research in Social Sciences with an aim to compensate direct costs of higher education especially for such girls who happen to be the only girl child in their family.

Conclusion:

In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, “If you educate the man, you educate the person but if you educate the woman, you educate the nation”. One of the most significant transformations in education in India over the past several decades is the drastic increase in women’s access to colleges and universities. Formulating and implementing stringent and powerful laws and policies have addressed the malice of gender discrimination of Higher Education. Most Indian women, with the possibility of economic independence, through respectable employment, have becomes an important earning member of the family. An educated woman has the skills, the self-confidence and the power to be a better citizen. Women have all the power and capacity as that of men and they are manifesting themselves amongst different opportunities provided through higher education.


Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation. Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate

3) What is the office of Chief of Defence Staff that Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced in his Independence Day address? Where did the idea come from, and what is the CDS supposed to do? Explain. (250 words)

Indianexpress

Why this question:

In his Independence Day address Thursday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the creation of the post of Chief of Defence Staff to provide “effective leadership at the top level” to the three wings of the armed forces, and to help improve coordination among them.

Key demand of the question:

Discussion should explain the significance of creation of the post of CDS, its key functions and roles and responsibilities.

Directive:

Explain – Clarify the topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the particular context. You must be defining key terms where ever appropriate, and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Define in brief who is a Chief of Defense Staff?

Body:

The CDS is a high military office that oversees and coordinates the working of the three Services, and offers seamless tri-service views and single-point advice to the Executive (in India’s case, to the Prime Minister) on long-term defence planning and management, including manpower, equipment and strategy, and above all, “jointsmanship” in operations.

Then discuss the evolution of the concept of CDS across the countries of the world. – The United States Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC), for example, is extremely powerful, with a legislated mandate and sharply delineated powers.

Discuss significance of such a post.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way ahead.

Introduction:

The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) is a high military office that oversees and coordinates the working of the three Services, and offers seamless tri-service views and single-point advice to the Executive (in India’s case, to the Prime Minister) on long-term defence planning and management, including manpower, equipment and strategy, and above all, “jointsmanship” in operations. It shall provide “effective leadership at the top level” to the three wings of the armed forces, and to help improve coordination among them.

Body:

Genesis of the idea:

  • The first proposal for a CDS came from the 2000 Kargil Review Committee (KRC).
  • Although the KRC did not directly recommend a CDS — that came from the Group of Ministers — it underlined the need for more coordination among the three Services, which was poor in the initial weeks of the Kargil conflict.
  • The KRC Report pointed out that India is the only major democracy where the Armed Forces Headquarters is outside the apex governmental structure.
  • It observed that Service Chiefs devote most of their time to their operational roles, “often resulting in negative results”.
  • Long-term defence planning suffers as day-to-day priorities dominate.
  • Also, the Prime Minister and Defence Minister do not have the benefit of the views and expertise of military commanders, in order to ensure that higher level defence management decisions are more consensual and broadbased.
  • The CDS is also seen as being vital to the creation of “theatre commands”, integrating tri-service assets and personnel like in the US military.

Need for office of CDS:

  • India has had a feeble equivalent known as the Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee (CoSC); but a toothless office in the manner of its structure.
  • The senior-most among the three Service Chiefs is appointed to head the CoSC, an office that lapses with the incumbent’s retirement.
  • The post did not further tri-service integration, resulting in inefficiency and an expensive duplication of assets.

Conclusion:

Most countries with advanced militaries have such a post, albeit with varying degrees of power and authority. The United States Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC), for example, is extremely powerful, with a legislated mandate and sharply delineated powers. The role of the CDS becomes critical in times of conflict.


Topic:  Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

4) What are polymetallic nodules? In this context discuss the significance and relevance of Deep-Sea Mission of India and also discuss its challenges and limitations. (250 words)

The hindu

Why this question:

The question is based on the concept of PMNs and about discussing the Deep-Sea mission of India.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must discuss in detail the Deep-Sea Mission of India.

Directive:

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin with definition – Polymetallic nodules are small potato like rounded accretions composed of minerals such as manganese, nickel, cobalt, copper and iron hydroxide. They lie scattered on the Indian Ocean Floor at depths of about 6000m and the size can vary from a few millimeters to centimeters. These metals can be extracted and used in electronic devices, smartphones, batteries and even for solar panels.

Body:

Discussion should include the following: 

Why the mission – To Boost India’s Sea Exploration Capabilities. The mission proposes to explore the deep ocean similar to the space exploration started by ISRO about 35 years ago.

Discuss the key features of the mission.

What are the issues and concerns involved?

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

Poly metallic nodules are potato-shaped, largely porous Iron-Manganese oxide deposit nodules found in abundance carpeting the sea floor of world oceans with size ranging from 2 to 10 cm in diameter. These are considered as the precipitates of hot fluids from upwelling hot magma from deep interior of the oceanic crust, discharged through mineralized paths. Besides manganese and iron, they contain nickel, copper, cobalt, lead, molybdenum, cadmium, vanadium, titanium, of which nickel, cobalt and copper are considered to be of economic and strategic importance. India’s ambitious ‘Deep Ocean Mission’ is all set to be launched this year.

Body:

Significance of the Mission:

  • The ‘Deep Ocean Mission’ plan will enable India to develop capabilities to exploit resources in the Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB).
  • India has been allotted 75,000 square kilometres in the Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB) by UN International Sea Bed Authority for exploration of poly-metallic nodules.
  • CIOB reserves contain deposits of metals like iron, manganese, nickel and cobalt.
  • India is entirely dependent on imports to meet its requirements of cobalt, which is the most strategic of the three metals (cobalt, copper and nickel). As for copper and nickel, India is in a precarious position.

Economic significance

  • Employment opportunities skill-sets and capacities
  • Empowerment of coastal communities and attaining greater social and economic inclusion.
  • New development in electronics industry.
  • Providing a boost to coastal and national economies
  • Promoting entrepreneurship in new areas of economic activity
  • Development of blue economy and diplomacy.
  • Sagarmala project will enhance the exploration.
  • It will also open new doors for mining of oil and gas reservoirs which are potent for India’s energy security.
  • These metals can be extracted and used in electronic devices, smartphones, batteries and even for solar panels.

Strategic relevance:

  • India’s exclusive rights for exploration of Polymetallic Nodules in the allotted area in the Central Indian Ocean Basin will continue and would open new opportunities for resources of commercial and strategic value.
  • Presently, China is controlling more than 95% of rare earth metals. This move will nullify the increasing influence of China.
  • It will strengthen the bilateral relationship of India with Japan, Germany and South Korea

Challenges posed by the mission:

  • Environmental impact:
    • According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), these deep remote locations can be home to unique species that have adapted themselves to conditions such as poor oxygen and sunlight, high pressure and extremely low temperatures.
    • Such mining expeditions can make them go extinct even before they are known to science.
    • The deep sea’s biodiversity and ecology remain poorly understood, making it difficult to assess the environmental impact and frame adequate guidelines.
    • Environmentalists are also worried about the sediment plumes that will be generated as the suspended particles can rise to the surface harming the filter feeders in the upper ocean layers.
    • Additional concerns have been raised about the noise and light pollution from the mining vehicles and oil spills from the operating vessels.
  • Technology:
    • The specialized drills and extraction-technology that would be required pulling out the metals from the deep sea would develop a major technical challenge.
  • Commercial Viability:
    • The latest estimate from the ISA says it will be commercially viable only if about three million tonnes are mined per year. More studies are being carried out to understand how the technology can be scaled up and used efficiently.

Conclusion:

There is an urgent need for an international charter as in the absence of a clear charter, deep sea mining operations could cause irreversible damage to a little understood ecology. A new set of exploration guidelines must be worked out with discussions involving multi-stakeholders like ISA, IUCN, UNCLOS, littoral nations etc.


Topic:  Disaster and disaster management.

5) In the backdrop of recent floods that deluged most parts of the country, don’t you think the water footprint needs to be reinstated, and the relationship with water resources rebuilt to face a future of changing weather patterns? Elucidate.(250 words)

The hindu

Why this question:

The article captures the policy level lacunae and the lack of proper planning with respect to existing water resources that has led to the current conditions of floods in the country.

Key demand of the question:

The answer must discuss and detail upon need of conscious efforts in terms of planning and effective ways to rebuild the relationship with the water resources.

Directive:

ElucidateGive a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the particular context. You must be defining key terms where ever appropriate, and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Describe the current flood situation being witnessed across the country.

Body:

The answer must discuss in detail the issue – causes of the flood situation; Large-scale urbanization, Dilution of laws, lack of planning etc.

Then discuss what should be done essentially to overcome the problem, take clues from the article and detail on the aspects that need focus.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way ahead.

Introduction:

In an unnerving reminder of last year’s devastating floods, Kerala’s worst in about 100 years, incessant precipitation has deluged many districts, causing havoc, snapping communication lines and claiming several lives. Rains have battered Karnataka and Maharashtra, too, leaving many dead and several missing. Meanwhile, dramatic visuals from Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat have revealed widespread distress. Parts of Bihar and Assam are also reeling under torrential rainfall, with a large number of people left battling grim circumstances.

Body:

The water footprint is a measure of humanity’s appropriation of fresh water in volumes of water consumed and/or polluted. It helps us understand for what purposes our limited freshwater resources are being consumed and polluted.

Factors causing floods:

Natural factors:

  • More than average rainfall:
    • India’s western coast has received above-average rainfall on account of sustained low-pressure conditions.

Anthropogenic factors:

  • Land use:
    • Injudicious use of land is responsible for making states more prone to floods and landslides.
    • However, other factors such as a change in land use patterns and climate change could have contributed to the situation on the ground.
  • Deforestation:
    • Unfettered development activity had increased the chances of landslides, a major cause of casualties during the floods.
  • Uncontrolled urbanization:
    • The linear development which has been along major road networks, has completely ignored the varying and ecologically sensitive landscape.
    • Substantial portions of revenue lands in the State are wetlands and forests, which has resulted in a shortage of buildable land parcels.
    • This in turn is creating huge pressure on these ecologically fragile areas for conversion to government-supported infrastructure projects as well as private profit-making enterprises.
  • Poor planning:
    • The State Action Plans on Climate Change elucidate measures for disaster-risk reduction in the wake of an increasing frequency of heavy rainfall in turn leading to more flooding and landslides.
    • Though plans and laws such as Integrated Water Resources Management or Coastal Regulation Zone Notification hold key solutions to natural disasters that are linked to water management, most of them are not implemented or followed to the letter.
    • A lack of holistic and coordinated measures within planning departments has resulted in further problems
    • Roads, railway lines and housing colonies being laid and built without regard for natural water ways, but with formal planning permission.
  • Dilution of laws:
    • The need of the hour is for a review and revision of building bye-laws for urban and rural areas in accordance with bettering environmental sustainability.
    • For instance, in 2017, a judgment of the High Court of Kerala mandating the inclusion of a clause in building rules, and which said that ‘natural drains and streams shall not be obstructed by this development/building permit’, has yet to come into effect.
    • Further, the Kerala Conservation of Paddy Land and Wetland Act, 2008 — it has immense potential to preserve such land as natural watershed buffers — has suffered too many dilutions even as rampant reclamation of paddy lands continues.
  • Mismanagement of dams:
    • For dams to truly tame floods, experts say dam reservoirs need to be relatively empty before the onset of rain. This was not the case in many states.
    • Local officials have been blamed for exacerbating the situation by failing to gradually open the dams dotting the state’s complex river network, waiting instead until they were already full before unleashing the excess water.
    • More flooding was caused by emergency releases from dams that were full. Despite forecasts of more rain, there were no controlled releases.
    • World Bank analysis while preparing the National Hydrology Project (NHP) in 2015 showed that although weather forecasts are more accurate now, dam managers (especially bureaucrats) are reluctant to authorise advance controlled releases.

Measures needed for flood management:

  • The dire need is for watershed-based master planning and development legislated guidelines for each major river basin, especially those that impact densely populated settlements.
  • There must be a demarcation of ecologically sensitive zones using existing village survey maps and public participation.
  • There must be clear land use plan for these zones specifying flood plains, protected forest areas, agricultural and plantation zones, with details of the types of crops, building usages permitted and the density of buildings permitted.
  • To compensate owners in non-buildable areas, there must be strategies such as Transfer of Development Rights to buildable zones in cities.
  • The master plan should focus on permitting only ecologically sensitive building strategies for these areas by proposing new construction techniques.
  • Controlled development can be proposed using building height rules, floor area ratio control, and restrictions on cutting and filling natural land.
  • Strategies to make sure that all infrastructure projects are carried out in a scientific manner with strict scrutiny must be specified.
  • This should include roads built on difficult terrain and all public infrastructure projects in wetlands and the High Ranges.
  • Copenhagen in Denmark, which faces a similar problem of repeated flooding, has come up with active cloudburst responsive planning as a process to develop the city in line with climate change needs.

Conclusion:

A complete overhaul of processes to hire technical expertise which allows access to necessary skills, and with a long-term vision of capacity building of local agencies, is the way forward.


Topic:Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and nonpartisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker sections.

6) In the present-day socio-political context, why do you think integrity and impartiality must be considered as foundational values in public services? Illustrate.(250 words)

Ethics by Lexicon publications

Why this question:

The question is based on the concepts of Integrity and impartiality

Key demand of the question:

The question is straightforward and there is not much to deliberate. One must discuss the significance of the concepts.

Directive:

Illustrate – A similar instruction to ‘explain’ whereby you are asked to show the workings of something, making use of definite examples and statistics if appropriate to add weight to your explanation.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Define the virtues of Integrity and impartiality.

Body:

Explain the following aspects in your answer:

Detail upon the concepts of Integrity and impartiality.

Impartiality and Integrity imply acting solely according to the merits of the case and serving equally well the governments of different political persuasions. An impartial and politically neutral civil service is a defence against the spoils system which has the propensity to degenerate into a system of patronage, nepotism and corruption.

Conclusion:

Conclude by reasserting significance of such values in public administration.

Introduction:

Aptitude and foundational values for civil services like integrity, impartiality and non partisanship, objectivity are needed to bring the attitudinal and behavioural reforms in them.

Body:

Integrity: It is the practice of synchronisation of thought, words and actions. It can be correlated to honesty but unlike honesty it’s more a professional value. It’s related to institution. It advocates sacrifice of personal gains in favour of organisational objectives. In conflict between personal and organisational objectives organisation must be given importance. Financial integrity is important component. Civil servants are handling public assets they are the custodians of public money. Integrity ensures the economy of expenditure, reduction in unproductive expenditure, minimisation of corruption. Hence integrity is utmost required value.

Example: Not accepting praise of acclaim for someone else’s work. That includes stealing someone’s idea or pretending to have worked on a successful project.

When your senior asks you to do something against your personal code of conduct, refuse. If it means losing a good paying job, so be it. Find a more ethical option to use.

Impartiality: Impartiality (also called even handedness or fair-mindedness) is a principle of justice holding that decisions should be based on objective criteria, rather than on the basis of bias, prejudice, or preferring the benefit to one person over another for improper reasons. A civil servant should never show any kind of prejudices, biases, and preferences into their functioning. Impartiality lies at the heart of public service and is the core of the commitments of a public servant. A public servant must not act on the basis of nationality, race, religion, or political point of view. His / her service must be based on the principle of non-partisan.

Example: making decisions and providing advice on merit and without bias, caprice, favouritism or self-interest; implementing Government policies and programs equitably.

Conclusion:

Present day civil servants needs to perform multiple functions of giving suggestions to political representatives, addressing public grievances, institutionalisation of the socio economic changes, delivering goods and services. Hence a value committed bureaucracy is need of hour.


Topic: Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and nonpartisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker sections.

7) What do you understand by objectivity? How can one inculcate objectivity? Discuss in relevance with the need of the same in public services.(250 words)

Ethics by Lexicon publications

 

Why this question:

The question is based on the theme of objectivity and its significance in public services.

Key demand of the question:

Explain in detail the concept of objectivity and in what way one can apply the same to civil services.

Directive:

DiscussThis is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Define objectivity.

Body:

Objectivity is the opposite of subjectivity. You must not make decision on your values, emotions. Policy based / rule-based decisions are examples of objective decision because they are made upon prescribed policy/rule.

Then move onto discuss why objectivity is crucial for public services.

Discuss in what way objectivity can be inculcated in an individual.

Explain the relevance of objectivity in public services.

Conclusion:

Conclude with way forward.

Introduction:

Objectivity is a central philosophical concept, related to reality and truth, which has been variously defined by sources. Generally, objectivity means the state or quality of being true even outside of a subject‘s individual biases, interpretations, feelings, and imaginings. A proposition is generally considered objectively true when its truth conditions are met without biases caused by feelings, ideas, and opinions (mind-independent).

Body:

Inculcation of Objectivity:

  • Critical thinking: By thinking both pros and cons and then taking a decision.
  • Right to review decisions: within judicial / administrative procedure, there should be mechanism for appellate board e.g. in taxation, land acquisition etc.
  • Right to be heard: often officers don’t hear the complaint or opinion of people properly and just do the things that are in their mind. Hence new schemes should have ‘social audit / public hearing’ components.
  • Information management: if you don’t have hardcore information /statistics, you can’t take objective decisions. E.g. sustainable development goals (SDG) have 17 goals and 169 targets. Previously in Millennium development goals (MDG), we had 18 indicators, yet we lacked proper statistical databases to compare performance. Lack of data, prevents us from finding the faults and fixing them.
  • Transparency:g. right to information act. Bureaucrat will think twice before taking subjective/discretionary decisions, fearing that he’ll have to answer it if someone files an RTI

Relevance of Objectivity in Public Services:

  • Objectivity will help civil servants to be non partisan, impartial and more service oriented.
  • For example District collector in making appointments needs to give priority to merit rather than other factors like the caste or background of the caste.
  • It also contributes in rational merit based decision makings in day to day work of them. Ex. Team work, solving emergency issues like riotous situation.
  • Being objective ensures that work of civil servant becomes fair, transparent and visionary above all narrow considerations of kinship, nepotism, favouritism.
  • It also plays a big role in reducing menace of corruption from the system.
  • It is regarded as one of the foundational values for civil servant as she enjoys much discretionary powers, is in charge of public funds and has responsibility of welfare of lakhs of people especially from weaker section of society.
  • Objectivity ensures the utmost use of these powers.

Conclusion:

In public life objectivity as a value must strive for in all interaction but at many times being objective become difficult. Fairness as a value closest to objectivity can be practiced which progressively leads to objectivity.