1. A civil servant must be politically unaffiliated but one can’t expect him/her not to be. Analyse.
What does political unaffiliation mean?
Political unaffilaition means staying neutral and acting in an unbiased manner, no matter under which government a one is working. The government in power may have some ideology completely different from what a civil servant may possess, working in an unbiased manner, giving honest opinion without patronage is working in a political unaffiliated manner. A civil servant is expected to work In unbiased manner without favoring an individual or a party.
Why is it important for civil servant to be politically unaffiliated?
Unaffiliation towards any political ideology and maintaining political neutrality in all aspects is vitally important for the efficient functioning of the bureaucracy.
Also given the fact that it is the bureaucracy which provides a continuum, while political parties come and go, their neutrality towards parties and commitment towards work must remain same so as to achieve the desired result of a policy.
Given the diversity in country and the trend of vote bank politics we have in our country, a political leader may be biased towards a particular community. A politically unaffiliated civil servant in this case will help provide justice to all as she will give an honest opinion while policy making and be non-discriminatory while implementation.
Political affilitation, on the other hand, results into a nexus between bureaucrats and political leaders which hurts Indian society and economy severely as seen in many past instances and is a major cause of corruption in India.
Working in tandem with government’s ideology without maintaining objectivity may result into government of propaganda.
A civil servant’s neutrality towards government in power helps maintain people’s faith in the administrative system of the country and thus ensures stability.
Why one can’t expect him/her to be so?
A civil servant must be politically unaffiliated in an ideal scenario but one cannot expect him/her not to be politically unaffiliated.
There have been instances where incentives to civil servants in the form of promotions, transfer to a favorable position etc. which have been carried out by the ruling government for their endorsement. This lures others to act in the same manner.
He/she can be influenced and may choose to work towards a particular ideology. So it becomes unattainable sometimes for a person to work with government of different ideology.
Factors like caste, community do play a role in the affiliation of officers.
In today’s extremely connected society it becomes really difficult for an individual, be it civil servant, to not develop any ideology.
What is the way forward?
The transfer, posting and promotions of civil servants must be guided by definite set of guidelines and must not be based on whims and fancies of political bosses.
Increasing transparency and accountability in bureaucracy.
Promoting people’s participation through methods such as social auditing.
Bureaucracy is seen as the steel frame of the country, any biasness on its part will result into poor governance. Maintaining non-partisanship is of prime importance and this has to be understood both by the civil servants as well as the politicians in the country.
2. Attitude shapes our thoughts and behavior. Do you agree? Substantiate with the help of at least two examples from your personal experiences.
Attitude is our approach and state of mind towards certain objects or task. It might be positive or negative, optimistic or pessimistic, sincere or otherwise. Every human being is characterized by certain attitude which is derived by his past experiences, environment and social upbringing.
Our attitude is dependent on subjectivity of the mind. Therefore, it affects our thoughts and actions that stems from such thought- our behaviour. However, our thoughts and behaviour reinforces our attitudes towards a thing.
Attitudes influence our beahviour along with other factors such as legal obligations, social pressure, etc. Also, they in turn get influenced by our behaviour.
(General examples are mentioned instead of personal experiences for better understanding of the concept)
Case 1: Attitude shaping negative behavior:
A person holding a patriarchal attitude thinks that women are not suitable for higher leadership roles and he may not allot them managerial posts. Here his attitude towards women shaped his behavior and he does not wish to see a women in any authoritative position.
Case 2: Attitude shaping positive behavior
Positive attitude helps person to respond to certain difficult situations in right manner and overcome that problem. For ex: When Dr B R Ambedkar faced caste based discrimination, instead of succumbing/rebelling against society, he successfully fought with it and played major role in forming Indian constitution which helps to uplift the downtrodden like him.
Case 3: Thoughts shaping attitude (Inverse Relationship)
After watching shows on Discovery channel about deadly snakes, Neha is frightened to enter into Snakes section in the zoo and is frightened even after looking them from distance. Here her thoughts about snake being a poisonous animal shaped her attitude towards snakes.
3. Why should a civil servant command social influence? Examine.
The responsibilities of civil servant is fragmented over wide range of arenas including designing of policies, their implementation, maintenance of law and order, accountability of state services, and overall welfare of public.
Social influence can be increased in two ways:
Being incorruptible, having high moral grounds and complete dedication and honesty in work. Reputation of an officer precedes the officer.
Having more affinity to local culture, tradition and language. The more a person is involved in the social activities of a place, the more confidence and faith he will gain from local public.
Social influence is one of the most important quality that a civil servant should have because:
To execute command over wide range of people: A civil servant act as a link between public and authorities, thus his day to day dealings comes from vivid sections of society. It is literally impossible to implement every decision through power and authority, to ensure support and cooperation of public as well as authorities, it is imperative to have good social influence. Eg: AjitDoval, current NSA is famous for his role in insurgency operations in Mizoram, Kashmir and Punjab, where he effectively persuaded many militants to give up violence and cooperate
During Crisis Management: During a crisis or situation of breakdown of law and order, the direct role of civil servant enables him with the opportunity to neutralize the tension. With no social influence, it leads to further distrust in authority and escalation of tension. Eg. ShivdeepLamenWande, who played a critical role in drastically crime rate and illegal practices in Patna, when he was transferred, people protested by organizing candle light rallies.
Policy Design and Implementation: Every policy should take into consideration interests, aspirations and worries of a wide range of stake holders including the one’s in the lowest of the pyramid. Good social influence can helps in accurately understanding the pulse of the society.
Accountability and Transparency: It can work in multiple ways, at individual level social influence can help people from falling into illegal practices. As an organization, it improves the standard and outlook of the organization. And as a whole society, it brings positive behaviour re-instilling the trust in government authorities and ethical practices. Eg: B. Chandrakala, Bulandhshahar DM, known for tough actions against corruption by officials.
Out of box solutions: Eg. AmstrongPame, IAS Officer from Manipur Cadre, built a 100 km long road in a remote hill of Manipur without the government’s help, through crowd funding.
Citizens also play a major role in the success of a policy as its execution becomes easier and smoother if people cooperate. A civil servant also acts as a role model for society and can play an important role is resolving disputes. He will be easily approachable by the public and will be more empathetic to their problems which will help him framing the policies and programs.
4. Examine the factors behind the ongoing agrarian crisis in India. What can be its remedy? Discuss
The recent spate of farmer protests across the country and farmer suicides are symptomatic of the persisting agrarian crisis in the country. The ongoing agrarian crisis is proving disastrous to both the morale of the farmers and the integrity of the nation.
Reason for agrarian crisis:
Escalating cost of input while return on investment remains low or sometimes even negative.
Post-harvest issues, lack of food processing facilities.
Variable nature of monsoonal rain and el-nino effect, Drought for last two years.
MSP issues other than wheat and rice.
APMC reforms issues,e NAM in initial stage.
Technological deficiencies, poor investment of research and development.
Unscientific cultivation (choice of crops, use of fertilizers).
Efforts by government to address the issue are:
Loan provided under Priority Sector lending.
2. Interest subvention scheme help meeting liability of debt by farmer.
3. Crop insurance scheme to protect farmer from loss of crop damage due to weather.
4. Kisan channel to provide extension service.
5. PMKSY to provide “har khet ko pani” and “more crop per drop”.
6. Soil health card to assess nutrient of soil and recommend the customized fertilizer for farmer.
7. e-NAM portal to make them aware of price in market of crop.
8. ARYA to promote agriculture as occupation. Bio-kisan to provide lab to land link.
Remedies for agrarian crisis:
Implementing eNAM,APMC reforms
Drop resilient crops,crop diversification,GM crops
Scientific cultivation (Soil health card,E KISAN,Sustainable agriculture)
Promoting Drip irrigation,micro irrigation,increasing water use efficiency
Increasing the MSP of grains up to at least 50% higher of input cost.
NITI Ayog proposed Model Land leasing act, Land reforms amendment act.
Debt redressal councils in each district.
Increased FDI in food processing industries.
Promoting mixed farming, agroforestry, cattle rearing as an alternative income source.
Cooperative farming as taken up in Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh. Radhakrishna Committee suggested cooperative farming with SHG linkage.
All this is adding to the woe of the farmer who already struggles to make a living and lead a decent life. This forces many of them to commit suicide leaving their family in debt and distress.Loan waiver is a onetime move, the farmers need a permanent solution.
5. Why is ISRO as an organisation so successful? Do professional ethics play a role in an organisation’s success? Critically examine.
Reasons for success of ISRO:
Organizational Structure: ISRO come under the Department of Space which is directly overseen by the Prime Minister’s Office. Tis gives ISRO functional autonomy and expedites the decision making and implementation.
Operational Hierarchy: the top echelons of ISRO are occupied by field specialists, who are experts in their own fields, this has reduced the time taken in planning and execution as it eliminates the layers of bureaucracy.
Outcome Budgeting: ISRO submits an outcome budget that contains a detailed breakdown of ISRO projects every year, even though the projects have a long gestation period.
Location: The headquarters of ISRO is located in Bangalore away from the powerplays of the Capital, which has made it apolitical and objective in working.
Can Do Attitude: Even after failures of early Cryogenic engines and the embargo from the western countries, ISRO has worked by utilizing the available means to the best extent and has successfully overcome the hurdles.
Role of Professional ethics in success of an Organization:
Maintaining good ethics is being consistent with the principles of correct moral conduct constantly. Organizations that are consistent with professional standards and ethics have a longer lifespan than those which are not.
“Good ethics is good business.”, as it not leads to run the business successfully, but it also provides many ways for growth and development by leaving a good impression about an organization in the market.
An organization strives continually to be in pursuit of its goals while benefiting the employees in building up their high competencies.
The ethics that leaders in an organization use to manage employees will have an effect on the morale and loyalty of workers. Leaders with impeccable record inspire professionalism in the subordinates.
Employees who use ethics to guide their behavior adhere to employee policies and rules while striving to meet the goals of the organization. They own responsibility for their actions as well as take corrective measures.
Leaders and employees adhering to a code of ethics create an ethical organizational culture. The leaders of a business may create an ethical culture by exhibiting the type of behavior they’d like to see in employees.
A positive and healthy corporate culture improves the morale among workers in the organization, which may increase productivity and employee retention; this, in turn, has financial benefits for the organization.
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