Day 57 – Q 2. “You will never attain integrity if you lack the courage to stand up for what you believe is right”. Do you find this quote relevant for the civil servants? How? Substantiate your views. 

  • IASbaba
  • August 14, 2020
  • 0
Ethics Theory, GS 4, TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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2. “You will never attain integrity if you lack the courage to stand up for what you believe is right”. Do you find this quote relevant for the civil servants? How? Substantiate your views. 

आप कभी भी सत्यनिष्ठा प्राप्त नहीं करेंगे यदि आप जो सही मानते हैं उसके लिए खड़े होने की हिम्मत की कमी है क्या आपको यह उद्धरण सिविल सेवकों के लिए प्रासंगिक लगता है? कैसे? अपने विचारों की पुष्टि कीजिये।

Demand of the question:

It expects a candidate to write about the importance of courage to attain integrity when a person stands up for what he/she believes is right.  It also expects to write about the relevance of courage for civil servants with relevant examples.


Having courageous integrity means being true to our values (or the values of the institution we belong to), even if that means overcoming the fear of the consequences for doing so.


Integrity constitutes adopting similar standards or moral principles in similar situations across time and interested parties. Whereas courage comes in to picture when one has the confidence to act or behave in accordance with one’s beliefs or ideologies, especially in the face of resistance, criticism, or prosecution.

  • For instance, Mahatma Gandhi believed in the value of Non-violence and stood for it even in the times of adversity. In result A strong movement rose in resistance to the oppressive British rule and culminated in to Independence for India.
  • This in turn ensured the integrity and courage to stand for it resulted in good for India.

Relevance for civil servant:

  • Creates credibility : It helps a civil servant to be trustworthy and get lots of respect in the career because honest and courageous people who stand up with integrity are really trusted by others.
  • Leadership: This principle is articulation of the same idea as I referred in the context of Mahatma Gandhi’s Experiments with Truth. 
  • A true leader will always lead by own example. If a leader is courageous and stands up for what she/he believes in then the vibes created percolate down the hierarchy, cleansing the system that she/he controls. By bringing transparency in the system and standing against corruption.
  • A civil servant is required to implement the orders of government without bias, with honesty and without fear or favour. 
  • It is precisely in this area that a degree of a difference of opinion begins to emerge between the political executive and the civil servants. But if that civil servant stands up in courage for what he/she believes is right then it will ensure integrity not just for him/her but in the system too. 
  • For instance, Retired IAS officer Mahesh Zagade once met with such a situation while signing the tenders for new road construction. Where after analysing all facts he came to conclusion that it will be an unnecessary expenditure of public money on the well built roads. It led to conflict between him and some regional political leaders, but he stood firm courageously on the value on avoiding unnecessary expenditure of public money and rose victorious.
  •  It Improve work culture and motivate subordinate officers to be courageous and stand up for what they believe.
  • It helps in taking bold decision: For instance,  Whistleblowers need courage of conviction to disclose information.


Courage to stand up for what one believes is of great importance  for civil servant in governance as it  would have a major impact on the everyday lives of the people and it ensure integrity by continuation of policy of honesty in the governance.

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