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Discuss Kautilya’s philosophical basis of governance.

7. Discuss Kautilya’s philosophical basis of governance. (250 words)

Reference: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications

Why the question:

The question is from the static portions of GS paper IV.

Key Demand of the question:

The aim of the question is to discuss Kautilya’s philosophical basis of governance.


Discuss – This 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:


One can start with the definition of Governance.


Governance refers to “all of processes of governing, whether undertaken by a government, market or network, whether over a family, tribe, formal or informal organization or territory and whether through the laws, norms, power or language.

Discuss the background of Kautilya’s Arthashastra; the purpose of the Arthasashtra was to be a comprehensive guide for government in the Mauryan Empire, and to aid its ruler to increase the wealth, power and security of the kingdom.

Kautilya said that good governance and stability go hand in hand. According to him, there is stability if rulers are responsive, responsible, accountable, removable, and recallable, otherwise there would be instability. Discuss the inherent philosophies that his propositions carry and guide the good governance in a country.


Conclude with importance.