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Insights SECURE SYNOPSIS: 4 March 2021


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.


General Studies – 1


 

Topic: Case Study

1. You, a manager in one of the top IT firms in the country, are tasked with hiring new recruits for an upcoming project. You find that the company has given tacit instructions of not hiring female candidates in view of the new maternity law passed by the Government. You find this highly objectionable and lodge a protest with people in the higher management but they are firm as they want to cut down all the unnecessary costs. Based on this information, answer the following questions: (250 words)

(a) Identify the stakeholders and their interests in the situation.

(b) What are the dilemmas that a recruiting manager may face in such a scenario?

(c) What are the different options available to you? Which one will you pursue and why? Explain,  

Why the question:

The question is a case study based on ethical concerns associated with gender inequality.  

Key Demand of the question:

Analyse the nuances and answer the questions that follow the case study.

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:

Start with brief understanding of the case in question.

Body:

The answer body must have the following aspects covered:

  • List stakeholders like the hiring manager, the company, female candidates, Government and the society.
  • List their interests.
  • Discuss the dilemma(s) you are facing.
  • List the available options, analyze each in the light of given circumstances and ethical conduct. Choose the one which you may pursue.

Conclusion:

Conclude with fair and balanced opinion.

Introduction

The case involves gender injustice against the collective female labour force, in the backdrop of a low women labour force participation rate. Not only women are subjected to patriarchal perspective of society, but also being robbed of opportunity to work in an egalitarian manner.

Body

(a) Stakeholder in the situation

  • Women and equality of opportunity.
  • Pregnancy discrimination against women.
  • IT firm that sets the wrong precedent.
  • The management of IT firm that does not value diversity.
  • Myself as a Manager and company ethics.
  • New young woman engineers who have to face bias in recruitment.
  • Bad corporate governance and hence company stakeholders affected.

(b) Dilemmas faced by recruiting manager

Covertly the management firm has instructed the hiring manager to only hire male candidates. This means that, though women are allowed to attend the recruitment drive, they won’t be selected. This is legally, ethically and morally wrong on all counts.

Moreover, even if a woman candidate has higher merit that anybody else, she won’t be selected due to the gender discrimination that is happening. Especially in lieu of the company wanting to avoid maternity benefit costs. This is grossly unlawful and detrimental to progress of the society as a whole.

It also shows the appalling attitude of the management of the firm and their core ethical values. Even though the hiring manager wants to recruit women engineers, he cannot do not strictly on account of the management direction.

There is no resolution to this dilemma as the hiring manager is instructed strictly against it. And any divergence from the said norm, would put his or her job at risk. It is also a matter of bad corporate governance.

(C) Options available and course of action

  • Option 1: Do as instructed and hire only male candidates

Merits: My job will be intact and I can sustain myself in the company for long. This won’t be against the said mandate given to me by the higher management.

Demerits: This goes against the idea of merit and level playing field to all. It still shows that many obstacles are placed for women, thus denying them equal rights.

  • Option 2: Speak to the HR managers and highest level of management and convince them against it.

Merits: It would mean, recruitment of truly meritorious candidates without bias while giving everyone the same opportunity. It would also satisfy my ethical conscience.

Demerits: My request may be unheard or my job may come under scanner for taking a stance against the company’s decision.

Course of action: I would go with the option number 2 and make sure I register my protest against such move. I will try to convince the Human Resource manager to think of diversity in the company and the prospects of good reviews about the company work culture.

Over and above this I would inform the highest level of management to ensure that meritorious are recruited devoid of gender considerations. As a society, we must end the patriarchal mindset and encourage more women to come forward and take up jobs in STEM careers.

It is our duty to ensure that women are felt safe in the workplace and get all benefits mandated by government. Failure to provide these would be a failure of society and injustice to all women by the society.

If no amount of convincing works, I would recuse myself from the hiring responsibility so that the guilt conscience does not remain and then I would actively look to move to a better organization with better work ethics and values.

Conclusion

Gender diversity benefits not only women by improving their spending power and living standards, but it also has a huge impact on an organization’s productivity and success. By supporting women we are also ensuring that our next generation is well nourished and educated , thereby creating a great human capital.

 

 


General Studies – 2


 

Topic:  Supreme Court

2. The judgment of the Apex  Court that brings the office of Chief Justice of India under the domain of the Right to Information Act will give a stimulus to people’s pursuit for transparency and accountability. Analyse. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian polity by Lakshmikant , The Print

Why the question:

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

Key Demand of the question:

The fact that too much transparency can affect the independence of the judiciary, the office of CJI has been brought under the domain of RTI. One has to bring out the significance of such a move.

Directive:

Analyze – When asked to analyse, you have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts and present them as a whole in a summary.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Talk about the importance of balancing transparency and judicial independence.

 Body:

The Supreme Court of India upheld the Delhi High Court judgment of 2010 which stated that the office of the Chief Justice of India (CJI) would come under the ambit of the Right to Information Act, 2005 (RTI Act), as CJI is a ‘public authority’ under the RTI Act.

Explain how such a decision has opened up the doors for enhanced transparency in the judiciary as earlier higher judiciary in India has been criticized for its opaqueness under the doctrine of judicial independence.

Present the significance of the verdict in detail.

Account for associated concerns/challenges any.

Conclusion:

Conclude with significance of such a decision.

Introduction

In Central public information officer, Supreme Court of India vs Subhash Chandra Agarwal case a five-judge Constitution Bench of Supreme Court declared that the Office of the Chief Justice of India (CJI) is a ‘public authority’ under the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

Body

The Supreme Court Rules undermined the RTI in four key ways. Unlike the RTI Act, the Rules do not provide for,

  • A time frame for furnishing information.
  • An appeal mechanism.
  • Penalties for delays or wrongful refusal of information.
  • Makes disclosures to citizens contingent upon “good cause shown”.

The judgement said that the Supreme Court of India and office of CJI are not two different public authorities. The SC includes the office of CJI and other judges as per Article 124. Hence, if the Supreme Court is a public authority (as per Section 2(h) of RTI Act), so is the office of the CJI.

RTI judgement: Accountability and Transparency

  • It opens the doors for transparency in the judiciary. Higher judiciary in India has been criticized for its opaqueness under the doctrine of the independence of the judiciary.
  • The verdict underlines the balance Supreme Court needs between transparency and protecting its independence.
  • While ruling that the office of the CJI is a public authority, the Supreme Court held that RTI cannot be used as a tool of surveillance and that judicial independence has to be kept in mind while dealing with transparency.
  • Asset declaration: It upheld the Delhi High Court judgment of 2010 that the CJI does not hold information on the personal assets of judges in a fiduciary capacity (Relationship of confidence and trust). Thus, disclosure of details of serving judges’ personal assets was not a violation of their right to privacy.
  • Judicial appointments: Here, SC drew distinction between ‘input’ and ‘output’. Output is the final outcome of collegium resolution, while input is the observations, indicative reasons, inputs and data collegium examined. Here, only names of judges recommended by the Collegium (output) can be disclosed.
  • It can give a boost to Good Governance, as now judiciary, executive, legislature, all come under the ambit of RTI Act.

Issues that persist

  • Role of Public Information Officer: The judgement gave list of ‘non-exhaustive satisfied that the larger public interest factors’ to be considered by Public Information Officer (PIO) justifies the disclosure of such information.
    • This makes his role quasi-judicial and most PIOs would choose to steer clear and refuse disclosure by invoking Section 8(1)(j) of the RTI Act and leave the information seekers to appeal against their orders.
  • Lack of clarity: The SC argued that the right to know under the RTI Act was not absolute and this had to be balanced with the right of privacy of judges. However, the public interest is nowhere defined.
  • SC said the information relating to collegium deliberations is treated as confidential third-party information. And cannot be openly put in public domain.
  • Administrative burden: The RTI Act, 2005 did not create a new bureaucracy for implementing the law. It tasked and mandated officials in every office for dealing with RTI requests. However, this adds to the administrative burden of the bureaucracy.

Way Forward

  • SC rightly observed that “transparency and accountability should go hand-in-hand”. Increased transparency under RTI was no threat to judicial independence. Thus, judgement goes long way enhancing trust of people in justice system.
  • After bringing SC judges under the ambit of RTI, the next logical step would be to remove opaqueness about appointments of the judges, made through the collegium system in the SC.
  • Despite certain limitations, the Supreme Court judgment paves the way for greater transparency and could now impinge upon issues such as disclosure by other institutions such as registered political parties.

 

Topic: Tribunals

3. Are tribunals a cure-all for judicial efficiency? Does tribunalisation of justice weaken the principles set in our constitution? Examine. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian polity by Lakshmikant

Why the question:

The question is based on the concept of Tribunals and there contribution in justice delivery.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain the contributions of tribunal in justice delivery and the challenges associated with them.

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Briefly mention the concept of tribunals.

Body:

To start with, the original constitution did not contain provisions with respect to tribunals. However, the 42nd amendment Act, 1976 added a new part XIV A to the constitution. The Administrative tribunals are formed under the Article 323A of the Indian Constitution. However, tribunals for other matters are formed under the Article 323B of the Indian Constitution.

 Then discuss whether tribunals promote judicial efficiency. Present both sides of the argument.

 Later, analyze as to how tribunalisation of justice undermine ideas/principles set out in our constitution.

Conclusion:

Conclude that despite such challenges, tribunals are an excellent instrument of speedy dispute resolution and have become agents of good governance. In the interest of better justice delivery, the institutions like tribunals cannot be dispensed with altogether.

Introduction

Tribunal means a set or a bench upon which judge or judges sit and decide controversies between the parties and exercises judicial powers as distinguished from purely administrative functions. It is a quasi-judicial institution that is set up to deal with problems such as resolving administrative or tax-related disputes. Part XIV-A of the Constituion which consist of two Articles 323A and 323B deals with these Tribunals  Eg: National Green Tribunal, Central Administrative Tribunal etc

Body

Background

It performs a number of functions like adjudicating disputes, determining rights between contesting parties, making an administrative decision, reviewing an existing administrative decision and so forth. The Industrial Tribunals, Railway Rates Tribunal, Companies Tribunals, Central Administrative Tribunals, Election Tribunals etc, are the examples of Tribunals in India.

Tribunals and judicial efficiency

  • Flexibility: Rigid procedures and evidence ordeals of courts are not followed, rather it goes by the principle of natural justice.
  • Less Expensive: Administrative justice ensures cheap and quick justice. Its procedures are simple and can be easily understood by a layman.
  • Relief to Courts: The tribunals perform an important and specialised role in justice mechanism. They take a load off the already overburdened courts. They hear disputes related to the environment, armed forces, tax and administrative issues.
  • Reduce pendency: To overcome the situation that arose due to the pendency of cases in various Courts, domestic tribunals and other Tribunals have been established under different Statutes, hereinafter referred to as the Tribunals.
  • Adequate Justice: In the fast-changing world of today, administrative tribunals are the most appropriated means of administrative action, and also the most effective means of giving fair justice to the individuals.
    • Lawyers, who are more concerned about aspects of law, find it difficult to adequately assess the needs of the modern welfare society
  • Efficiency: The Tribunals were set up to reduce the workload of courts, to expedite decisions and to provide a forum which would be manned by lawyers and experts in the areas falling under the jurisdiction of the Tribunal.

Tribunalization at times leads to undermining of constitutional principles:

  • Administrative adjudication is a negation of Rule of Law.
  • Administrative tribunals, with their separate laws and procedures often made by themselves, puts a serious limitation upon the principles of Rule of Law.
  • Most of the tribunals do not enjoy the same amount of independence of the Executive as do the Courts and the judges.
  • The civil and criminal courts have a uniform pattern of administering justice. A uniform code of procedure in administrative adjudication is not there.
  • Administrative tribunals are manned by administrators and technical heads who may not have the background of law or training of judicial work.
  • At times they adopt summary procedures to deal with cases coming before them
  • Functioning of tribunals suffer from lack of autonomy especially in terms of appointment and funding.
  • In Chandra Kumar case, SC held that the appeals to such tribunals lies before the court and hence defeats the whole purpose of reducing burden of the superior courts.
  • Since the tribunals are mainly chaired by the retired judges who are appointed by the government, so the present judges in courts may favour government in certain matter to gain political patronage in appointment to such tribunals after retirement.
  • Lack of adequate infrastructure to work smoothly and perform the functions originally envisioned for them.
  • There is a lack of understanding of the staffing requirements in tribunals.

Way forward:

  • In the interest of better justice delivery, their traditional structures and methods of functioning can be reformed.
  • In the interest of maintaining the rule of law in society and to preserve individual freedom, that there should be some kind of judicial control over these tribunals.
  • Increasing the number of judges, filling the existing vacancy, use of technology to bring efficiency in administration of justice.
  • Tribunals themselves are better positioned to gauge their own administrative requirements. Therefore, providing power to tribunals to create or sanction posts

Conclusion:

The Tribunals plays an important role and part in the sphere of the adjudication of disputes. Tribunals function differently from courts, from the manner of appointment to the procedure followed. The Tribunals do not have to follow any uniform procedure as laid down under the Civil Procedure Code and under the Indian Evidence Act but they have to follow the principles of Natural Justice. But still, they seek to achieve the same objective as that of the courts i.e. – To impart and deliver Justice.

 

Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

4. Examine the need and opportunity for India to forge stronger ties with the European Union to revitalize its exports, in the backdrop of BREXIT and India’s Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan.  (250 words)

Reference:  The Hindu 

Why the question:

The article talks about the need and opportunity for India to forge stronger ties with the European Union to revitalize its exports, in the backdrop of BREXIT and India’s Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan.

Key Demand of the question:

Discuss the need and opportunity for India to forge stronger ties with the European Union to revitalize its exports, in the backdrop of BREXIT and India’s Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan. 

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start by explaining India’s vision for self-reliance.  

Body:

The Atmanirbhar Bharat programme and the Budget 2021-22 have set the tone and tenor to bolster supply chains and achieve self-reliance. However, it does not mean that India looks at being economically insular.

Then with some data discuss the export potential of India.

Explain the concerns associated.  Talk about the FTAs; India’s negotiation for a Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement, which commenced in 2007, is yet to materialize due to lack of concurrence in areas like automotive and dairy and marine products. India’s cautious approach to FTAs is due to its past experience of an unequal exchange of benefits in several FTAs signed by the country.

Conclusion:

Post-Brexit EU finds itself in the midst of a growing need for recalibrating ties with its partner countries. Forging stronger ties with the EU through a mutually beneficial agreement could help strengthen Indian manufacturing and revitalize exports.

Introduction

Realising the vision of a self-reliant India along the lines of Atmanirbharta, would entail localising an increasing share of value added along supply chains through investments and phase-wise reduction of import tariffs with strategic partners such as the European Union (EU).

Body

Why India must conclude agreement with EU at the earliest?

  • There are several products where India has export potential in the EU, but these have “graduated” or are at the brink of “graduation” under EU GSP.
  • Product graduation applies when average imports of a product from a beneficiary country exceed 17.5% of EU-GSP imports of the same product from all beneficiary countries over three years.
  • India’s exports of products such as textiles, inorganic and organic chemicals, gems and jewellery, iron, steel and their articles, base metals and automotives are already out of the ambit of EU-GSP benefits.
  • There is also a likelihood of losing EU-GSP benefits in other categories such as apparel, rubber, electronic items, sports goods and toys due to product graduation.
  • In apparel, India’s exports to the EU were valued at $7 billion in 2019, of which nearly 94% was under EU-GSP, indicative of the impact that the graduation may have on apparel exports.
  • Meanwhile, India’s competitors in apparel exports such as Bangladesh would continue to receive tariff benefits in the EU under Everything but Arms Initiative.
  • Another competitor, Vietnam, concluded a free trade agreement (FTA) with the EU in 2019. In light of the declining preferential access and the plausible erosion of competitiveness in the EU market, there is clearly a need to deepen trade and investment ties with the region.

India forging stronger ties with EU to revitalize exports: Opportunity

  • India has an untapped export potential of $39.9 billion in the EU and Western Europe. The top products with export potential include apparel, gems and jewellery, chemicals, machinery, automobile, pharmaceuticals and plastic.
  • India benefits from tariff preferences under the EU’s Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) for several of these products.
  • In fact, India is among the major beneficiaries of the EU’s GSP, with exports under the GSP valued at nearly $19.4 billion in 2019, accounting for nearly 37% of India’s merchandise exports to the EU.

Way Forward:  India-EU Trade Agreement

  • Post-Brexit EU finds itself in the midst of a growing need for recalibrating ties with its partner countries.
  • Forging stronger ties with the region through a mutually beneficial agreement could help strengthen Indian manufacturing and revitalise the flailing exports.
  • India also needs to negotiate on investment-related aspects with the EU to enhance bilateral investments and foster stronger value chains, especially in technology-intensive sectors in which the EU has a comparative advantage.
  • As far as NTMs are concerned, India faces as many as 414 NTMs in the EU, in a wide array of sectors. FTAs have some institutional arrangements for NTMs.
  • India should critically review the availability of such arrangements in its negotiations, as also their operationalisation and effectiveness.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Government Budgeting

5. Explain the concept of Participatory Budgeting; also discuss its relevance in budgeting of Local self-government in India. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian Express

Why the question:

Based on the theme of participatory budgeting and its relevance for local self-governments in the country.

Key Demand of the question:

One must explain the concept of participatory budgeting and its relevance to local self governments.

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 what Participatory budgeting is.

Body:

Participatory budgeting (PB) is a process of democratic deliberation and decision-making, in which ordinary people decide how to allocate part of a municipal or public budget. Participatory budgeting allows citizens to identify, discuss, and prioritize public spending projects, and gives them the power to make real decisions about how money is spent.

Explain the advantages of such a system – PB processes are typically designed to involve those left out of traditional methods of public engagement, such as low-income residents, non-citizens, and youth.

Participatory budgeting refers to the active involvement of people in the processes of budget priority setting and management. According to this approach, citizens and civil society along with the relevant organs of the Government and legislature, deliberate and negotiate over the distribution of public resources. In contrast to the techno-bureaucratic administration which is limited in its ability to achieve equitable development, participatory budgeting has the potential to maximize equity in policy choices and effect better policy outcomes.

Conclusion:

Conclude with significance.

Introduction

For the first time ever, participatory budgeting was adopted in 1989, in the Brazilian city of Porto Alegre. Participatory budgeting (PB) is a process of democratic deliberation and decision-making, in which ordinary people decide how to allocate part of a municipal or public budget. Participatory budgeting allows citizens to identify, discuss, and prioritize public spending projects, and gives them the power to make real decisions about how money is spent.

Body

Participatory Budgeting: Concept and benefits

  • In India, participatory budgeting in cities was pioneered by Janagraha in Bengaluru in 2001 but took firmer roots in Pune, which drew inspiration from the Bengaluru experience and had a more committed leadership.
  • It ensures that the diverse needs and experiences of local communities are understood and a range of voices is heard in local decision-making is essential in this process.
  • Participatory budgeting (PB) has significant potential to transform the relationships between local communities and the public institutions that serve them.
  • It is a very good mechanism to run efficient governance because it is the people who are the ultimate beneficiaries of the product of good governance.

Relevance in budgeting of Local self-government in India

  • Implementation in India: More recently the MyCityMyBudget campaign, first launched in 2015, is gathering traction in Bengaluru, Mangaluru and Visakhapatnam, as a collaborative effort between respective city corporations, neighbourhood communities and Janaagraha.
    • Across Bengaluru, Mangaluru and Visakhapatnam, over 85,000 budget inputs have been crowdsourced from over 80,000 citizens in over 350 wards on a wide range of civic issues such as “yellowspots” (public urination spots), public toilets, footpaths, garbage dumps, roads and drains.
  • Community participation: This would foster far greater ownership in communities for civic assets and amenities, thereby resulting in better maintenance and upkeep. At the local level, it is a win-win for communities, elected councillors, and the city administration.
  • Prioritisation: Region specific budget allocation can be made, thus preventing one size fits all approach.
  • Inclusive participation: It makes citizens feel like they have a voice in civic governance and thereby builds trust. Children, women, senior citizens, the differently-abled, and several interest groups would be able to make a case for their causes and aspirations and have them fulfilled. It facilitates a targeted, hyperlocal focus on budgeting and problem-solving.
  • Democratic voice: There seems to be evidence to suggest that when there is citizen participation in budgeting and closer engagement of citizens in the monitoring of civic works, there are better outcomes and fewer leakages.

Conclusion

Though every year Union and state governments’ budgets look very promising, they have a hard time gaining assurance that these schemes and funds result in intended citizen outcomes. Participatory budgeting can help in this regard. However, the institutional engagement and analysis needed to effectively integrate the requirements of equality legislation into participatory budgeting (PB) processes requires a transformational approach.

 

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

6. Explain and assess  India’s potential to be the “pharmacy of the world”. (250 words)

Reference:  Indian Express 

Why the question:

Economic Survey analysis shows that India has the potential to be the ‘pharmacy of the world’. The provision of COVID-19 vaccine to other countries has made India the epicenter for its manufacturing.

Key Demand of the question:

One is

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:

Start with some key data on current status of Indian pharmaceuticals.

Body:

Indian pharmaceutical sector has high value of trade specialization coefficient (TSC), closer to one, consistently from 2014-15. The value of TSC lies between -1 and 1, wherein a higher TSC value denotes stronger export competitiveness of the country.

Discuss the facts that make India a strong pharmaceutical hub for the entire world such as – significant raw material base and availability of a skilled workforce, one of the lowest manufacturing costs in the world etc.

Then present some data to provide for comparison with other leading countries and explain how still India holds a better place.

Conclusion:

Conclude with need to focus and emphasize on the need for govt. to recognise its significance and take necessary steps in this direction.

Introduction

There is an opportunity for the Indian pharmaceutical industry to play a larger role in global drug supply-security. In 1969, Indian pharmaceuticals had a 5 per cent share of the market in India, and global pharma had a 95 per cent share. By 2020, it was the reverse, with Indian pharma having an almost 85 per cent share and global, 15 per cent.

Body

Background

  • Over the last 50-plus years — in terms of both meeting the domestic needs as well as building a leading position in the global pharmaceuticals landscape — Indian firms have been successful.
  • India already contributes over 20 per cent by value to the global generics market, with Indian products contributing over 40 per cent (by volume) of US drugs.

India’s potential to be the “pharmacy of the world”

  • Potential of Pharma sector: The Indian pharmaceutical industry, valued at $41 billion, is expected to grow to $65 billion by 2024 and $120-130 billion by 2030, noted the new Economic survey.
  • Rise in exports: During April-October 2020, India’s pharmaceutical exports of $ 11.1 billion witnessed a growth of 18 percent against $ 9.4 billion in the year-ago period.
  • Positive growth: Drug formulations, biologicals have consistently registered positive growth and the highest increase in absolute terms in recent months.
    • This led to a rise in its share to 7.1 percent in April-November 2020 from 5 percent in April-November 2019, making it the second-largest exported commodity among the top 10 export commodities.
    • This shows that India has the potential to be the ‘pharmacy of the world’”, the survey said.
  • Significant advantage: The availability of a significant raw material base and skilled workforce have enabled India to emerge as an international manufacturing hub for generic medicines.
  • Further, India is the only country with the largest number of USFDA compliant pharma plants (more than 262 including APIs) outside of the US.
  • Capacity: The COVID-19 pandemic has shown that India can not only innovate but also rapidly distribute time-critical drugs to every part of the globe that needs it.
  • Global leader: Presently, over 80% of the antiretroviral drugs used globally to combat AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) are supplied by Indian pharmaceutical firms.

Challenges in Indian pharma sector

The Economic Survey noted several issues as follows

  • The pandemic exposed the excessive dependence of the Indian pharmaceutical industry on China for sourcing Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) and Key Starting Materials
  • It said that the pharmaceutical industry in the country needs greater research and development (R&D) expenditure to move up the value chain from generics to Novel Chemical Entities (NCEs).
  • While India today is preferred low-cost producer and exporter of simpler off-patent formulations, the road taken is ‘hollowing out’ manufacturing (in raw material: API) and hampering the productive and competitive thrust of domestic firms.
  • Fake versions of high value and/or high-volume brands of the pharmaceutical companies in India are adversely affecting their business performance posing another major challenge. It also creates a negative impact to the end consumer and a huge health hazard.

Conclusion

The Covid-19 crisis provides an opportunity to the Indian pharmaceutical industry to play an even more important role in global healthcare. There is a potential opportunity for India to truly play the role of ‘pharmacy of the world

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.

7. “The basic problem with administrative ethics is: how can officials be granted scope for dissent without undermining the capacity of the organization to accomplish its goals”. Evaluate this statement and suggest measures in the context of Indian administration. (250 words)

Reference:  Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude

Why the question:

The question is based on the theme of Administrative ethics.

Key Demand of the question:

Explain the issues marring the administrative ethics and suggest measures to overcome the problems especially in the Indian context.

Directive:

Evaluate – When you are asked to evaluate, you have to pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidences.  You have to appraise the worth of the statement in question. There is scope for forming a personal opinion here.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start with the definition of Administrative ethics.

Body:

Administrative ethics involves the application of moral principles to the conduct of officials in organizations. Broadly speaking, moral principles specify (a) the rights and duties that individuals should respect when they act in ways that seriously affect the well-being of other individuals and society; and (b) the conditions that collective practices and policies should satisfy when they similarly affect the well-being of individuals and society.

Administrative ethics assumes that individuals in organizations can make moral judgments and can be the objects of moral judgments.

The challenge is that by its very nature administration precludes the exercise of moral judgment.

Conclusion:

Conclude with measures.

Introduction

The service conduct rules for the government employees bars them from criticising the government publicly. This gives rise to a complex and unresolved area of constitutional law, which is the constitutional rights of government employees. The issue is an interesting one, because in its relationship with its employees, the government assumes two faces: as an employer, with the power to enforce discipline and unity, and as the State, which must respect fundamental rights. The scope of government employees’ rights to freedom of expression and association, therefore, depends upon which of those faces the Courts have considered to be the dominant one, and to what extent.

Body

An example on this front can be that of Finland. The main principle in Finland has always been that everything in the public administration really is public, open for criticism by other civil servants, citizens and the media. All the diaries and records kept in the public administration are open to everybody.

In context of India, civil servants cannot openly criticise government decisions as they are bound by the regulations. Rule 9 of Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules provides inter-alia that no Government servant shall make any statement of fact or opinion in any form of communication, which has the effect of an adverse criticism of any current or recent policy or action of the Central Government or a State Government.

Civil servants are the implementing agents of government decisions. Hence the rationale is to show the highest level of loyalty to the government. However, civil servants also serve the people and legitimate concerns of government decisions must be raised through appropriate channels, if not publicly. This will ensure, better harmonisation of government efforts for general welfare of people and also efficient allocation of limited resources.

Hence there exists scope for dissent through right chain of authority that are equipped to address the concerns, so expressed.

Measures needed in this regard

  • Allow for constructive criticism of government’s policies while upholding political neutrality.
  • Form an independent committee to which civil servants can submit issues, concerns regarding government policies.
  • Even civil servants must have freedom of speech and expression, with minimum restrictions.
  • Any criticism should not lead to inciting violence, but genuine issues must be given a platform as it can benefit the whole society.

Conclusion

In Golam Mohiuddin vs State of West Bengal, AIT 1964, the Calcutta High Court had asked: “Conduct on the part of a public servant, which is likely to appear as unbecoming or improper in public estimation, may be an indiscretion on his part. But such a conduct is not necessarily a misconduct. Considering all the above factors, appropriate avenue for limited dissent by civil servants is necessary for good governance.


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