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[Mission 2022] SECURE SYNOPSIS: 07 October 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: History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the society.

1. It was from the latter part of 1927 that the curve of the mass anti-imperialist upsurge began to take a marked upward turn. What were some of the events that led up to the Civil Disobedience Movement? Examine. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference:  India’s Struggle for Independence by Bipan Chandra.

Why the question:  

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2022 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:  

To list important events that took place 1927 onwards up to the start of the Civil Disobedience Movement.

Directive word: 

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we have to 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 with a summary of what happened following the Non-Cooperation Movement up to 1927.

Body:

In first part, write how the British government’s actions (in 1927) proved to be the spark that lit the fire (Civil Disobedience Movement).

Proceed to write how a new wave of youth embraced the idea of becoming freedom fighters, were influenced by socialism. Do not forget to mention the Nehru report, the reaction of youth to this report, Jinnah’s 14 points, Delhi manifesto etc.

Conclusion:

Write that the ignorance by the British government of Gandhi’s 11 point-demand triggered the start of the civil disobedience movement.

Introduction

The years 1927 to 1929 are termed are ‘gathering of storm’, in India’s struggle for freedom. The most immediate trigger was the setting up of an all-White seven member Simon commission, to decide on Constitutional reforms and whether India was ready for it.

From here, a series of events led to the ultimate Civil Disobedience Movement in the year 1930.

Body

British government actions that triggered massive response

  • Response to Simon Commission: The response in India was immediate and unanimous.
    • That no Indian should be thought fit to serve on a body that claimed the right to decide the political future of India was an insult that no Indian of even the most moderate political opinion was willing to swallow.
  • Boycott by all factions: The call for a boycott of the Commission was endorsed by the Liberal Federation led by Tej Bahadur Sapru, by the Indian Industrial and Commercial Congress, arid by the Hindu Mahasabha the Muslim League even split on the issue, Mohammed Ali Jinnah carrying the majority with him in favour of boycott
  • INC resolution in 1927: Jawaharlal Nehru had even succeeded in getting passed a snap resolution declaring complete independence as the goal of the Congress.
  • Lathi charge and brutalities: On 3 February 1928 all the major cities and towns observed a complete hartal, and people were out on the streets participating in mass rallies, processions and black-flag demonstrations.
    • Lajpat rai was fatally injured due to lathi blows on his chest.
  • Saunders Murder: It was Lajpat Rai’s death that Bhagat Singh and his comrades were seeking to avenge when they killed the white police official, Saunders, in December 1928.

Events leading upto civil disobedience movement

  • Nehru Report: Meetings of the All-Parties Conference were held in February, May and August 1928 to finalize a scheme which popularly came to be known as the Nehru Report after Motilal Nehru, its principal author.
    • It was a response to challenge of Lord Birkenhead, who constantly harped on the inability of Indians to formulate a concrete scheme of constitutional reforms which had the support of wide sections of Indian political opinion.
    • Dominion status was envisaged in the report, however younger nationalists were opposed to it.
  • Reaction of younger nationalists: Congress decided that if the Government did not accept a constitution based on Dominion Status by the end of the year the Congress would not only adopt complete independence as its goal, but it would also launch a civil disobedience movement to attain that goal.
  • Jinnah’s 14 points: Declaring that the Nehru Report represented Hindu interests, he consolidated all the communal demands made by different communal organizations at different times into a single document which came to be known as Jinnah’s Fourteen Points.
  • Delhi Manifesto: As the round table conference was called to consider Simon report, a conference of major national leaders met and issued what came to be known as the Delhi manifesto.
    • They demanded that it should be made clear that the purpose of the Round Table Conference was not to discuss when Dominion Status should be granted, but to formulate a scheme for its implementation.
    • On 23 December Irwin himself told Gandhiji and the others that he was in no position to give the assurance they demanded.
    • The stage of negotiations was over and the stage of confrontation was about to begin.
  • Gandhi’s 11 point ultimatum: Gandhi gave a set of eleven demands to Lord Irwin, after which he threatened to launch a full blown civil disobedience movement.

Conclusion

Gandhi’s ultimatum of 31 January to Lord Irwin, stating the minimum demands in the form of II points, had been ignored, and there was only one way out: civil disobedience. In mid-February, 1930, the Working Committee, meeting at Sabarmati Ashram, invested Gandhiji with fill powers to launch the Civil Disobedience Movement at a time and place of his choice. Thus began the preparation for civil disobedience movement which severely reduced British legitimacy.

 

Topic: History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the society.

2. The League of Nations was a toothless tiger since its inception and hence was bound to be an utter failure. Comment. (150 words)

Difficulty level: Easy

Reference: History of modern world by Jain & Mathur.

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2022 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about composition and powers of the League of nations and to write about its successes and failures.

Directive word:

Comment– here we must express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Introduction: 

Write briefly about the background of the formation of the League – the first world war.

Body:

In the first part, write what the League’s aims were. Proceed to write what its successes were. In the final part, write what its failures were.

Conclusion:

Conclude by highlighting the league’s legacy, viz. it being the first attempt at creating an international body that was meant to pursue peace, and that it was the precursor to the UN.

Introduction

Woodrow Wilson’s 14 point program had envisaged creation of an international agency that would work for maintenance of world peace. The League of Nations was set up after the 1st World War in 1920 with the following two main aims

  • Settle international disputes to prevent war in future. This was to be achieved through the principle of collective security. The maintenance of international peace and security was the primary goal of the League.
  • Economic and Social work: The League of Nations was to seek international cooperation for socio-economic development across the world.

Body:

The shortcomings of league of nation were

  • Toothless Tiger: League of Nations lacked enforceable rights. It did not have military force of its own. The League failed to implement its decisions in disputes, where the verdict of the League was against a major power. Aggressive regimes like Japan, Italy and Germany defied the League. Britain and France did not do much to give teeth to the League.
  • Germany was not allowed to join until 1926 and the USSR only became a member in 1934 (when Germany left). India which was not even an independent country was made a member. USA which played the leading role did not join it.
  • The “Versailles Treaty” had an upper hand where the Victors of 1st World War dictated terms of League of Nations as well as on other countries.
  • Failure of collective responsibility: In 1930s when many countries resorted to aggression, the League was ignored or defied. It did not come forward in case Japanese attack on Manchuria in 1931 & Italy attack on Ethiopia in 1936.
  • It recognized the division of spoils of the war and most of the colonies were transferred as mandates not to be annexed thus undermining the very ideals with which it was formed.
  • The Conference of Ambassadors undermined League’s authority. The Conference of Ambassadors overruled the League’s decisions. Example: in case of the Corfu incident (1923) involving Mussolini’s Italy and Greece.
  • Failure of Disarmament: Security concerns lead to a race for armament. The World conference on Disarmament in 1932-34 was a failed effort of League of Nations as the major powers disagreed to disarm. This further strengthened Hitler’s fascist agenda in Germany.
  • Economic Crisis of 1929 led to poverty and unemployment and consequently, right wing governments came to power across the world. These governments were more aggressive and violated the League Covenant.

Conclusion:

League of Nations did important work for the socio-economic development across the world.  However, it failed with respect to its aim of being a leading forum for resolution of international disputes and ensuring a peaceful world. These failures lead to the disastrous Second World War.

Value addition:

In the socio-economic development context, it had its fair share of successes.

The League of Nations set up some of the organisations like International Labour Organization, International court of justice which is still relevant even today.

ILO took some reforms like

  • Fixed maximum working days and minimum wages.
  • Started old age pensions.
  • Took actions in the area of welfare of the workers.

The Refugee Organization reforms:

  • It helped the Prisoners of War in Russia to their homes outside Russia.
  • In 1933, it helped the Jews, who were fleeing to escape Nazi persecution, to resettle in different countries where they would be safe.

Resolution of minor International disputes by LoN:

  • Solved the dispute of smaller countries like Finland, Poland, Albania and Czechoslovakia.
  • The League solved a territorial dispute between Peru and Columbia.
  • Also in 1921, when there was a dispute regarding Upper Silesia (an industrial region) between Germany and Poland, the League successfully made both the parties reach a settlement and Upper Silesia was partitioned between the two.

 

Topic: Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues

3. India’s Global Gender Gap Index rating, 2021 indicates that the phenomena of ‘motherhood penalty’ strongly prevails in the employment sector. Examine the causes for the same and suggest some measures to address this issue. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Live Mint

Why the question:

India’s 2021 Global Gender Gap Index ranking, wherein it has slipped 28 places since 2020 to No. 140 out of 156 nations ranked. 

Key Demand of the question:  

To understand the term ‘motherhood penalty’ and also to give suggestions to resolve the issue.

Directive word: 

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must investigate 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: 

Begin by defining motherhood penalty.

Body:

First, mentioning some ground reality of hiring trend, pay structure and promotion trend of women and especially mothers in India. mention the gender disparity prevalent in workspace in terms of women especially mothers being considered as Care givers, to be less talented and participating in their duties assigned.

Next, indicate the lacunae in the Maternity Benefit Act in terms of extending paid leaves only for the mothers and keeping paternity benefits and leaves at a minimal low.

Next, suggest measures such as day care benefits in work space, acknowledging care duties of men in the household and ensuring equal pay in workspace etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude by saying that the gender gap actually leads to a loss of GDP especially when the scenario is grim in the post covid situation and this calls for swift action.

Introduction

India has slid 28 spots to rank at 140 among 156 countries on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap index. The pandemic causing a disproportionate impact on women jeopardises rolling back the little progress made in the last decades—forcing more women to drop off the workforce and leaving them vulnerable to domestic violence.

Amongst women, mothers are discriminated the most as employers consider them as less competent. This is being termed as motherhood penalty.

Body

Motherhood penalty: Definition

  • Among women, mothers face higher discrimination than non-mothers.
  • Some employers perceive the former as being less competent and committed than the latter, and hold them to much higher professional standards.
  • Mothers are also hired and promoted less often, and generally receive lower salaries. This is called the ‘motherhood penalty’.
  • The motherhood penalty in India has been documented by Das and Zumbyte (2017) using regression analysis to establish an increasingly negative relationship between the probability of Indian women getting employed and the presence of a young child in their households.
  • Bedi et al (2018) conducted a field experiment in India, under which they sent fake CVs for service-sector jobs with some selected at random to include mothers, and found a motherhood penalty evident in the call-back rates.
  • Mothers are employed less than non-mothers, implying that this penalty plays a significant role in low Indian female labour force participation, which according to World Bank data for 2020 is only 20.3%.

Gender dap and discrimination

  • High gender divide: The gender gap in the country has widened, with only 62.5% of it closed and especially low gender parity in political empowerment and economic participation and opportunity.
  • Wage gap: Women are paid considerably less than men, with some research showing that the gender pay gap between women and men in the same jobs with equivalent qualifications can be as much as 34%.
  • Labour force participation: India, as of 2020, has the lowest female labour force participation rate among South Asian nations, with four out of five women neither working nor looking for jobs.
  • High Job loss: According to Oxfam, 17 million women in India lost their jobs in April 2020, with their unemployment rate rising far higher than that among men.
  • Lesser opportunities for women: Women were found to be seven times more likely to lose their jobs during the lockdown phases, and if rendered unemployed, were 11 times more likely to remain jobless than their male counterparts.
  • Uneven domestic responsibility: Potential reasons for this include the increased burden of domestic responsibilities that Indian women typically had to bear, in terms of not just household chores but extra time needed for elderly care and children’s studies, with schools shut.
  • Even pre-pandemic, a Time Use Survey conducted by the National Sample Survey Office showed that women spent nearly 4.5 hours on childcare and other care-giving responsibilities, in contrast with the meagre 0.88 hours for men.

Measures to overcome gender gap and motherhood penalty

  • Behavioral Nudge: For instance, by using taxes to incentivize fairly sharing child-care responsibilities, or by encouraging women and girls to enter traditionally male-dominated sectors such as the armed forces and information technology. g., Supreme Court in India declared that women could now hold commanding positions in Army.
    • Paternity leaves for men, to share the responsibility of child rearing.
    • Incentivizing companies to employ women, and reach 50% target.
  • Strong laws and policies wrt equal pay for equal work, maternity benefits are needed to promote women’s representation in economy.
  • Maternity and paternity: . An amendment to the Act in 2017 increased paid maternity leave from 12 to 26 weeks. Though well-meaning, this unfortunately fortifies notions of care-giving being primarily the onus of the woman, and thus reinforces and raises the risk of women being subject to the motherhood penalty.
    • An explicit law for mandatory paternity benefits will go a long way towards equalizing gender roles and reducing employer bias
  • Better work conditions: The provision and strengthening of childcare facilities for working mothers are very important.
    • The Maternity Benefit Act mandates the setting up of creche facilities for organizations with over 50 employees.
    • A better policy measure would be to provide mothers in need of childcare with a monthly allowance. This will also help mothers working from home.
  • Political Representation: India has provided 33% reservation for women in the Panchayats and Local Bodies. Capacity Building and training can increase their capabilities further.

Conclusion

Gender equality is a human right which entitles all persons irrespective of their gender to live with dignity and with freedom. Gender equality is also a precondition for development and reducing of poverty. Gender shouldn’t be an unreasonable determining factor curbing the potential of women.

 

 


General Studies – 3


 

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

5. The post-pandemic commodities boom and efforts to reduce coal mining to tackle the climate crisis have driven global coal prices sky high. Analyse the causes for the impending Coal crisis in India and necessary steps to mitigate it. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference:  Economic Times

Why the question: 

Coal-fired power stations have an average of four days’ worth of stock of the fuel, according to the latest data, and more than half the plants are already on alert for outages.

Key Demand of the question: 

To mention the reasons serious coal shortage for power production in India and also suggest effective steps to surpass the same.

Directive word: 

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

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving facts regarding the coal shortage and the dependency ratio of power production plants on coal as their source.

Body:

Firstly, highlight the various factors leading to low coal production such as certain coal mines being dormant and some being affected by the cyclones in the eastern parts of the country and low coal exports.

Next, suggest various measures such as promotion of hydro power generation, other sources of power and incentivising coal based plants to produce more by promoting the spot prices of power in the energy exchange.

Conclusion:

Conclude by stressing that with advancement of technology, the power consumption needs would further increase and a robust plan with a heavy inclination towards clean energy is the need of the hour.

Introduction

The worsening squeeze on India’s coal supply is triggering a power crisis that’s threatening to stall the world’s fastest-expanding major economy. Coal-fired power stations had an average of four days’ worth of stock of the fuel at the end of last month.  With coal used to produce almost 70% of electricity, spot power rates have surged, while supplies of the fuel are being diverted away from key customers including aluminium smelters and steel mills.

Body

Coal shortage: Overview

  • India is contending with two key challenges: soaring electricity demand as industrial activity rebounds after pandemic curbs were lifted and a slump in local coal output.
  • Coal inventories at Indian power plants fell to around 1 million tons at the end of September, about 76% less than a year earlier, according to government data.
  • Average spot power prices at the Indian Energy Exchange Ltd. jumped more than 63% in September to 4.4 rupees ($0.06) a kilowatt hour.
  • The impact on consumer prices would show up a few months later, when distribution utilities get regulatory approvals to pass on the cost.

Factors for low coal production

  • A sharp uptick in power demand as the economy recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic coupled with supply issues have led to the current coal shortage.
  • India consumed 124 billion units of power in August 2021 compared to 106 billion units of power in August 2019 which was not impacted by the pandemic.
  • Coal fired thermal power plants have also supplied a higher proportion of the increase in demand leading the share of thermal power in India’s power mix increasing to 66.4% from 61.9% in 2019.
  • The country meets around three-quarters of its demand locally, but heavy rains have flooded mines and key transport routes.
  • Other key reasons for the supply crunch include lower than normal stock accumulation by thermal power plants in the April-June period and continuous rainfall in coal bearing areas in August and September which led to lower production and fewer despatches of coal from coal mines.
  • A consistent move to lower imports coupled with high international prices of coal have also led to plants cutting imports.

Measures being taken by the government

  • An inter-ministerial team, including representatives of the Power and Railway Ministries, Coal India Ltd, the Central Electricity Authority and Power System Operation Corporation, is monitoring the supply of coal to thermal power plants.
  • The government is pressing thermal plants with captive coal mines to boost their coal output so that they can meet more of their own demand and is also prioritising coal supplies for thermal power plants with low levels of stock.
  • The Power Ministry is also trying to increase the supply of coal by expediting the start of production from a number of mines that already have all requisite clearances in place.
  • The government has also boosted the number of rakes of coal being transported to thermal power plants daily with 263 rakes (248 before) of coal dispatched from coal mines.

Way forward

  • Optimal Energy Mix in Power Generation: Power is generated through various sources of energy such as coal, hydro, natural gas, and renewables (solar, wind). This gains tremendous importance as the future generation capacity mix should be cost effective as well as environmentally friendly.
  • Cost Effective Solar Plants: The average cost of coal-fired projects is Rs.4 per unit and generally sees an upward escalation, whereas new solar power plants are being bid out at less than Rs.3 per unit.
  • New Technologies for Coal Based Units: The government has commissioned more efficient supercritical coal based units and old and inefficient coal based capacity is being retired. A range of new technologies (like Coal gasification, Coal beneficiation, etc.) can be deployed to make coal-fired power plants more environmentally compatible.

 

 


General Studies – 4


 

Topic: laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance;

6. When morality is not in consonance with a law, what should prevail – the moral principle or the law? (150 words)

Difficulty level: Tough

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4 and part of ‘Abstract Thursdays’ in Mission-2022 Secure.

Key Demand of the question:

To debate as to what should prevail if morality is in conflict with the law.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Start the answer by mentioning the relationship between morality and law.

Body:

Explain that the popular conception of the connection between law and morality is that in some way the law exists to promote morality, to preserve those conditions which make the moral life possible.

Write about the reason for conflict. They conflict most often because morality gives you a sense of what is right and wrong or acceptable and what is not according to human nature. Law commands obedience not out of a sense of right or wrong but out of necessity. Substantiate the above with examples.

Conclusion:

Conclude by underscoring that Morality forms the foundation, the pre-condition, for laws. Put another way, laws do not have the necessary foundation or reason to be, if there is no such thing as morality.

Introduction

Law is the codification of societal norms and values which helps in delivering justice. Law is enforced and must be obeyed. Morality on the other hand is determined by the will of humans rather than the law itself, it is a set of standards we have set ourselves to decide what is morally right or wrong. Morality is similar to law, but need not always be obeyed. We can see there are cases of both the law reflecting morality and the law not reflecting certain moral judgments.

Body

Relation between law and morality

  • Law is essentially a set of rules and principles created and enforced by the state whereas morals are a set of beliefs, values and principles and behaviour standards which are enforced and created by society.
  • Legal and moral rules can be isolated with the former being created by the legislative institution of parliament whereas the latter have evolved with and through society and are the standards which society in general accepts and promotes.
  • Some laws mirror the majority of society’s moral view, for example, that murder is wrong but the introduction of same sex marriages is seen by some people as morally wrong and society is divided.
  • The existence of unjust laws proves that morality and law are not identical and do not coincide.g.: Slavery of Africans by the White supremacists.
  • The existence of laws that serve to defend basic values such as laws against murder, rape, malicious defamation of character, fraud, bribery, etc. prove that the two can work together.
    • However, this may not always be true.
    • g.: Hitler’s holocaust, where Jews were killed in concentration camps; had support of majority of Nazis.
  • Morality forms the basis of good law and therefore laws are framed to prohibit any immoral act.
    • For example, Laws in India prohibits domestic violence, atrocities on lower castes, child marriages, crimes like murder and rapes because they are immoral.
  • Laws govern conduct at least partly through fear of punishment. Morality, when it is internalized governs conduct without compulsion.
    • The virtuous person does the appropriate thing because it is the fine or noble thing to do.
    • Morality can influence the law in the sense that it can provide the reason for making whole groups of immoral actions illegal.
  • Law can be a public expression of morality which codifies in a public way the basic principles of conduct which a society accepts.
    • In that way it can guide the educators of the next generation by giving them a clear outline of the values society wants taught to its children.
  • Obedience to law depends upon the active support of the moral sentiments of the people. Laws which are not supported by the moral conscience of the people are liable to become dead letters.

Conflict between law and morality

  • Though, it cannot be said that morals are the basis of legal rules. It can be said that usually law has some base of morals but law and morality can be described separately in the contemporary world.
  • There are various things, which may be immoral but not necessarily illegal like cheating on your friend or spouse, breaking promises (for certain sets of people).
    • Even inter-caste marriage is not a norm in India, but it is perfectly legal.
  • There are things, which may be illegal but not necessarily immoral like drinking under age, abortion (for certain sets of people).
    • g.: Take issue of live-in relationships, which already has a moral ban on it.
  • The purpose of law is not to make the laws of the land ineffective but to maintain law and order in the country. If someone violates these minimum standards, then punishment is remedy. Accordingly, morality has got recognition but it does not mean that all the legal rules are based on morals. There are certain legal rules which are not based on morality

Conclusion

The only check against the breach of morality is social condemnation or individual conscience. Moral actions are a matter of choice of inner conscience of the individual; laws are a matter of compulsion. Law cannot be made on each and every aspect of life. More than law behavioural change is the key to a moral society, as rightly said by BR Ambedkar, “No law can protect us if it’s not avowed by the moral conscience of the society at large”.

 

Topic: Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information

7. Do you think Whistleblowing is ethically justified? (150 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian Express 

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 4 and part of ‘Abstract Thursdays’ in Mission-2022 Secure.

Key demand of the question:

Explain in detail the act of whistle blower and how it can have both perspectives.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Explain what is whistle blowing.

Body:

The discussion in such questions can be best explained using examples, students must explain in what way whistle blowing can prove to be unethical or ethical depending on situation.

Explain What are the moral and ethical justification of whistleblowing? – whistleblowing is morally required when it is required at all; people have a moral obligation to prevent serious harm to others if they can do so with little costs to themselves. Give examples to justify your points.

Debate whether whistleblowing is an act of ethical practice?

Conclusion:

Conclude with a fair and balanced opinion.

Introduction

A whistle-blower is a person who comes forward and shares his/her knowledge on any wrongdoing which he/she thinks is happening in the whole organisation or in a specific department. A whistle-blower could be an employee, contractor, or a supplier who becomes aware of any illegal activities. Personal Values and Organizational Culture are the Foundation of Whistle-blowing

A good civil servant is one who is kind, responsive, fair, has sense of duty, objective judgement skills with a hint of rebellion.

Body:

In the course of civil service, an officer is bound to face challenges of various types. One must find innovative solutions to such problems by working around the problems. However, when there are inevitable situations, it becomes necessary to whistle blow, albeit within the system.

Challenges in finding a solution from within the system:

  • Non-cooperation of peers
  • Inertia of status quo, the lack of incentive to accept change within the system
  • Pressure from politicians and other groups.
  • Threats of demotion and frequent transfers
  • lack of evidence in most of the cases renders his case weak

Merits of whistleblowing:

  • Exposing Unethical Behaviour: When corporations and government agencies step over legal and ethical lines, whistle-blowers can make these practices public knowledge, which can lead to violators being held accountable.
  • Take care of things internally: Stronger whistle-blower protection laws all over the world, such as in the EU and Australia, mean that if you do not listen to and act upon whistleblowing tips internally, people may decide to report externally, for example to the media, and are legally protected if they do so.
  • Reduce losses when misconduct occurs: Whistleblowing benefits organisations through significant loss savings. Organisations that did not have a whistleblowing system in place suffered losses that were twice the size compared to those who did have a whistleblowing system.
  • Build trust in your brand: 50% of the participants responded that building trust was the main benefit of a whistleblowing system. An openness to whistleblowing demonstrates a commitment to high ethical standards and builds trust in the company.
  • Ensure legal compliance: Having a system in place for whistleblowing benefits organisations by reducing compliance risk.

Demerits of whistleblowing:

  • The world, government, corporates and even society to an extent do not like whistle-blowers and some countries go so far as to call them ‘traitors’
  • The case of Edward Snowden and Julian Assange of Wikileaks proves the point
  • Whistle-blowers face legal action, criminal charges, social stigma, and termination from any position, office, or job.
  • Vindictive tactics to make the individual’s work more difficult and/or insignificant, assassination of character, formal reprimand, and difficult court proceedings

Ethical perspective:

The ethics of whistleblowing is a tricky matter. Whistle-blowing brings two moral values, fairness and loyalty, into conflict.

In the case where a company does serious harm through its service or product, the disclosure of such information for the sake of public constitute the ground for an understanding that takes whistleblowing as an ethical behaviour.

The situations where whistleblowing is morally justified:

  • Whenever and wherever the product/service of the firm will cause considerable harm to the public.
  • Whenever an employee feels serious threat or harm to him or anybody he should report to the firm.
  • If an immediate boss does not care for report (whistle blowing) the employee should go up to highest level to present his case.

Conclusion

A good civil servant would adhere to the foundational principles and fight against corrupt practices in a pragmatic way as the situation demands.


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