[Download] UPSC Mains-2014: General Studies Paper 4- Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude (GS4)

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  1. 2014 Ethics paper: Types of questions
  2. 2013 vs. 2014 trend
  3. Instructions for Mains Ethics 2014 paper
    1. SECTION—A (Bol-bachchan Questions) 130m
    2. SECTION—B (Stupid case studies) 120m
      1. Case: Environment degradation (20m)
      2. Case: Ethics not essential (20m)
      3. Case: Bogus rape complaint (20m)
      4. Case: give bribe or end career (20m)
      5. Case: disillusioned UPSC topper (20m)
      6. Case: Why villagers migrate? (20m)
  4. Question Paper: HINDI medium & linear format
  5. Bogus marketing propaganda

2014 Ethics paper: Types of questions

Analysis UPSC Mains Ethics 2014

2014’s paper was littered with Corruption themed questions

  • Many candidates couldn’t complete the paper on time, or had to compromise with content or quality in the last 3-4 questions.
  • Many found the paper to be boring and tedious because ~40-50% of the paper centered on just single theme of ‘corruption-probity’, so they had to repeat and recycle the same points throughout paper.
Type Question Marks
Personal opinion or experience
  1. What does happiness mean to you?
  2. How do you apply teachings of an eminent personality?
  3. How will you improve your ethical competence?
  4. How will you make yourself trustworthy?
  5. Patriotism in civilian life?
term elaboration
  1. Why ethics important?
  2. Why probity difficult?
Proverbs / Quotes
  1. integrity vs. knowledge
  2. means vs. ends
Economy related
  1. feasible strategies for sustainable Development
  2. why people migrate
Corruption related
  1. case1: your friend preparing UPSC
  2. case2: Rameshwar the uptight UPSC topper.
  3. case3: no bribe no contract.
  4. case4: corrupt subordinates file bogus rape complaint against you.
  5. Poverty leads to corruption?
  6. Meaning of accountability in public service?
Social problems
  1. Caste system and contrasting attitudes
  2. How to stop sexual-violence against women
total 250

UPSC Mains Ethics Paper (GS4): 2013 vs. 2014

Comparison of 2013 and 2014’s papers
2013 2014
In this Ethics paper, UPSC didn’t follow uniform word length rule (i.e. 1 mark=20 words). Instead, for some questions 10 marks=150 words, for others 200 words and so on. There is one case study even requiring 300 words for 25 marks.
  • Uniform rules followed.
  • Every descriptive question worth 10 marks and 150 words.
  • Every case study worth 250 words.
you’re asked to comment on quotes by great thinkers- Gandhi, Lincoln, Aristotle Quotes are given but no specific thinker name given.
Six Case studies worth 125 marks. Six case studies but marks reduced to 120.
“Term vs definition” type questions for five marks each. 10 marks shortnotes on importance of ethics and obstacles against probity.
25% of questions were copied from the sample paper uploaded by UPSC, before mains. from the same sample paper, UPSC asked following questions:

  1. Which great Indian personality has inspired you the most as a role model….? 10 marks.
favorite theme of “finish on Deadline” and “reporting sick” questions found in both CSAT decision making as well as Mains case studies. At least that lunacy is over. No questions or case studies on finish deadline or report sick. But then again, it’s now replaced with ‘corruption’ themed questions and case studies.
You’re CEO, your marketing guy doing sexual harassment of a colleague. Yourself facing a bogus sexual harassment complaint.

Instructions for Mains Ethics 2014 paper

  1. Time Allowed : Three Hours Maximum Marks : 250
  2. QUESTION PAPER SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS (Please read each of the following instructions carefully before attempting questions)
  3. There are FOURTEEN questions divided in two Sections and printed both in HINDI and in ENGLISH.
  4. All questions are compulsory.
  5. The number of marks carried by a question/part is indicated against it.
  6. Answers must be written in the medium authorized in the Admission Certificate which must be stated clearly on the cover of this Question-cum-Answer (QCA) Booklet in the space provided. No marks will be given for answers written in medium other than the authorized one.
  7. Word limit in questions, wherever specified, should be adhered to.
  8. Any page or portion of the page left blank in the Question-cum-Answer Booklet must be clearly struck off.
  9. Answer questions in NOT MORE than the word limit specified for each in the parenthesis. Content of the answer is more important than its length.

SECTION—A (Bol-bachchan Questions) 130m

Each of the following question is worth 10 marks and 150 words.

  1. All human beings aspire for happiness. Do you agree? What does happiness mean to you? Explain with examples.
  2. What does ethics seek to promote in human life? Why is it all the more important in public administration?
  3. In the context of defence services, ‘patriotism’ demands readiness to even lay down one’s life in protecting the nation. According to you, what does patriotism imply in everyday civil life? Explain with illustrations and justify your answer.
  4. What do you understand by ‘probity’ in public life? What are the difficulties in practicing it in the present times? How can these difficulties be overcome?
  5. “Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, but knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.” What do you understand by this statement? Explain your stand with illustrations from the modern context.
  6. “Human beings should always be treated as ‘ends’ in themselves and never as merely `means’.” Explain the meaning and significance of this statement, giving its implications in the modern techno-economic society.
  7. Which eminent personality has inspired you the most in the context of ethical conduct in life? Give the gist of his/her teachings giving specific examples, describe how you have been able to apply these teachings for your own ethical development.
  8. There is a heavy ethical responsibility on the public servants because they occupy positions of power, handle huge amounts of public funds, and their decisions have wide-ranging impact on society and environment. What steps have you taken to improve your ethical competence to handle such responsibility?
  9. The current society is plagued with widespread trust-deficit. What are the consequences of this situation for personal well-being and for societal well-being? What can you do at the personal level to make yourself trustworthy?
  10. It is often said that poverty leads to corruption. However, there is no dearth of instances where affluent and powerful people indulge in corruption in a big way. What are the basic causes of corruption among people? Support your answer with examples.
  11. What factors affect the formation of a person’s attitude towards social problems? In our society, contrasting attitudes are prevalent about many social problems. What contrasting attitudes do you notice about the caste system in our society? How do you explain the existence of these contrasting attitudes?
  12. What does ‘accountability’ mean in the context of public service? What measures can be adopted to ensure individual and collective accountability of public servants?
  13. We are witnessing increasing instances of sexual violence against women in the country. Despite existing legal provisions against it, the number of such incidences is on the rise. Suggest some innovative measures to tackle this menace.

SECTION—B (Stupid case studies) 120m

Case: Environment degradation (20m)

Now-a-days, there is an increasing thrust on economic development all around the globe. At the same time, there is also an increasing concern about environmental degradation caused by development. Many a time, we face a direct conflict between developmental activity and environmental quality. It is neither feasible to stop or curtail the development process, nor it is advisable to keep degrading the environment, as it threatens our very survival.

Discuss some feasible strategies which could be adopted to eliminate this conflict and which could lead to sustainable development. 250 words

Case: Ethics not essential (20m)

Suppose one of your close friends, who is also aspiring for civil services, comes to you for discussing some of the issues related to ethical conduct in public service. He raises the following points :

  1. In the present times, when unethical environment is quite prevalent, individual attempts to stick to ethical principles may cause a lot of problems in one’s career. It may also cause hardship to the family members as well as risk to one’s life. Why should we not be pragmatic and follow the path of least resistance, and be happy with doing whatever good we can?
  2. When so many people are adopting wrong means and are grossly harming the system, what difference would it make if only a small minority tries to be ethical? They are going to be rather ineffective and are bound to get frustrated.
  3. If we become fussy about ethical considerations, will it not hamper the economic progress of our country? After all, in the present age of high competition, we cannot afford to be left behind in the race of development.
  4. It is understandable that we should not get involved in grossly unethical practices, but giving and accepting small gratifications and doing small favours increases everybody’s motivation. It also makes the system more efficient. What is wrong in adopting such practices?

Critically analyze the above viewpoints. On the basis of this analysis, what will be your advice to your friend? 250 words.

Case: Bogus rape complaint (20m)

You are a no-nonsense, honest officer. You have been transferred to a remote district to head a department that is notorious for its inefficiency and callousness. You find that the main cause of the poor state of affairs is the indiscipline of a section of employees. They do not work themselves and also disrupt the working of others. You first warned the troublemakers to mend their ways or else face disciplinary action. When the warning had little effect, you issued a show cause notice to the ringleaders. As a retaliatory measure, these troublemakers instigated a woman employee amongst them to file a complaint of sexual harassment against you with the Women’s Commission. The Commission promptly seeks your explanation. The matter is also publicized in the media to embarrass you further. Some of the options to handle this situation could be as follows :

  1. Give your explanation to the Commission and go soft on the disciplinary action.
  2. Ignore the Commission and proceed firmly with the disciplinary action.
  3. Brief your higher-ups, seek directions from them and act accordingly.

Suggest any other possible option(s). Evaluate all of them and suggest the best course of action, giving your reasons for it.

Case: give bribe or end career (20m)

Suppose you are the CEO of a company that manufactures specialized electronic equipment used by a government department. You have submitted your bid for the supply of this equipment to the department. Both the quality and cost of your offer are better than those of the competitors. Yet the concerned officer is demanding a hefty bribe for approving the tender. Getting the order is important both for you and for your company. Not getting the order would mean closing a production line. It may also affect your own career. However, as a value-conscious person, you do not want to give bribe.

Valid arguments can be advanced both for giving the bribe and getting the order, and for refusing to pay the bribe and risking the loss of the order. What those arguments could be? Could there be any better way to get out of this dilemma? If so outline the main elements of this third way, pointing out its merits. 250 words.

Case: disillusioned UPSC topper (20m)

Rameshwar successfully cleared the prestigious civil services examination and was excited about the opportunity that he would get through the civil services to serve the country. However, soon after joining the services, he realized that things are not as rosy as he had imagined.

He found a number of malpractices prevailing in the department assigned to him. For example, funds under various schemes and grants were being misappropriated. The official facilities were frequently being used for personal needs by the officers and staff. After some time, he noticed that the process of recruiting the staff was also not up to the mark. Prospective candidates were required to write an examination in which a lot of cheating was going on. Some candidates were provided external help in the examination. Rameshwar brought these incidents to the notice of his seniors. However, he was advised to keep his eyes, ears and mouth shut and ignore all these things which were taking place with the connivance of the higher-ups. Rameshwar felt highly disillusioned and uncomfortable. He comes to you seeking your advice.

Indicate various options that you think are available in this situation. How would you help him to evaluate these options and choose the most appropriate path to be adopted? 250 words.

Case: Why villagers migrate? (20m)

In our country, the migration of rural people to towns and cities is increasing drastically. This is causing serious problems both in the rural as well as in the urban areas. In fact, things are becoming really unmanageable. Can you analyze this problem in detail and indicate not only the socio-economic but also the emotional and attitudinal factors responsible for this problem? Also, distinctly bring out why—

  1. Educated rural youth are trying to shift to urban areas;
  2. Landless poor people are migrating to urban slums;
  3. Even some farmers are selling off their land and trying to settle in urban areas taking up petty jobs.
  4. What feasible steps can you suggest which will be effective in controlling this serious problem of our country?

Question Paper: HINDI medium & linear format

Click me to download the PDF file. 2MB only.

Bogus marketing propaganda

None. I discontinued [Ethics] series a long time ago (Mrunal.org/ethics) and have don’t see anything asked from there. There are enough [Wikipedia-cut-paste] books in the market to get you the basic coverage for thinkers and fodder for descriptive questions + blogs like Gaurav Agrawal, to get the idea of how to write answers for case studies.
visit Mrunal.org/download for more papers.

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92 Comments on “[Download] UPSC Mains-2014: General Studies Paper 4- Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude (GS4)”

  1. WOoo.. Man… 2 A.M. in the morning. You doing real late night shifts. Thanks a ton.

  2. Sir who r u?what r u?itni rat ko bhi kam pr lge hue ho.. Plz sir do some rest..itna devotion kaha se late ho sir g..

    1. @damu instead to creating tree of question, one should thanks him for his hard work that too which is for society as a whole !!!!

    2. Maut k baad to sabko sona hai..aj sokar kya hoga…

      1. -_- -_- kuch bhi.. matlab anything.. -_-

      2. Sir you are doing fabulous job but sir plz make some notes on ethics paper as early as you are.

    3. he is OUR coach,guide,Guru .. :)
      and due to this devotion shown by Mrunal Da..lazy ppl like me also started working… (y)
      all credits to him .. :)

    4. Brother Mrunal is passionate about helping civil service aspirants and also he is earning through advertisements which are posted in this site.. more the number of views better the earnings.. Got IT?

  3. @ Mrunal: I don’t know how to thank you, brother…

  4. Found the paper unbelievably long… Ended up leaving 10 marks and the quality of at least 3 questions was rubbish… Difficult to come up with situations where I have ‘improved’ my trustworthiness and ‘ethical competence’ …. :(

    1. any book for reading ethics???@stresscat

  5. Relaxed a lot after going through all the GS PAPERS analysis, gave prelims could not clear, It is True that UPSC Wants to Bury Capitalist Coaching institutes, i feel Anyone with dedicated Newspaper reading can answer 65% to 70% for rest need to touch basics,I am Happy wit the UPSC’s Move.EXPECT Same IN 2015, @MRUNAL JI, Your Analysis is Wonderful, Keep this Work always, Thanks.:)

    1. bhai i m totally agree with u..:)

  6. sir my heart is filled with full of grattitude by seeing all the paper
    i want to say thanku thanku thanku

  7. Since the Essay and GS papers are over I am eagerly waiting for the approach plan for 2015 Mains from mrunal.org.
    Thank You for all your information, invaluable tips and hardwork.

  8. the paper was too lengthy….kind of stupid….same things over and over again…but the good thing is…didn’t left any questions…though wrote only 100 odd words for many questions. Can’t be sure about quality.

  9. Found the paper very long. Left 40 makrs i.e. 4 subquestions. Partly my mistake that I could not manage time well.

  10. Stupid paper..
    Though I din’t get bored because I used bol bachan of all types possible…but I dint feel it was exam for administrator…

    And it was difficult to be mahatama types for tat long..dint leave the paper…as I attempted case study first for multi dim analysis…starting keep ques mein to vase bhi its examiner ‘whims and fancy’ to allot marks

    1. Hriti
      Sorry for heard that you did not like the paper, but my suggestion to this is the best ways to select candidates .
      I think its not an attitude to become a civil service officer.
      Remaining all papers are based mugg ups but ethics paper is outcome of your knowledge and moral values which is bought from our parents, our thinking, and attitude.
      Best wishes to all candidates.

  11. Someone please help me

  12. could someone please tell how to make notes from hindu everyday . i am new to this exam.


  13. Happiness is a emotion of one being well. Definition of Being well does change from one person to other.For example a beggar being happiness is having three meal per a day ,or for a teacher when their children reaching higher position applying the what they thought,and for a businessman achieving more profits.And also happiness will have a time period which changes from time to time.But it is true as many wise man said ,a human being cannot be happy all the time,as their desire changes from time to time.For me being happy is living life how i wanted to live like.As a student who is aspiring for a prestigious exam,happiness lies in clearing exam and then as said it does changes by time.When a person get into a service his aspirations aims and goals changes with more magnificent thought process.
    There is a another notion of defining happiness ,As buddha said sadness is due to our desires which comes one after the other ,so controlling our desires gives happiness.But being in this competitive generation,one should aspire for huge goals,reach them and be happy

    1. Though an entirely subjective concept, happiness must follow an evolutive trajectory wherein it moves from being centred around personal goals to contributing to one’s society.

      1. Thanks Monali for the suggestion .

        1. Its purely psychological feeling. Satisfaction gives happiness.

      2. Hi dear pls suggest me how should I prepare for this exam..

    2. You haven’t describe any examples and important part what is happiness according to you. That is what i feel anyways i was little critical. Examples like you are doing something, makes you happy n all

    3. What does happiness mean to you?

      this question is the best question set by upsc in its history of IAS.

    4. This is what I wrote in the mains

      No, I do not agree that all human beings aspire for happiness.

      Happiness according to me means an emotion that arises upon fulfilling the desires and ambitions…..examples….its transient character…its limitless nature( consumerism, individualism)….(~80 Words)

      Next, I tried to bring in what the “others” aspire..i.e Contentment meaning “ananda” in Indian philosophical thought (charity, once achieved leads to a relatively comfortable life). Supported the view by bringing in buddha, dalai lama and Shri Shri Ravishankar. (~40 Words)

      Concluded saying that for a civil servant contentment is more necessary than happiness.

      P.S: Not for UPSC – The real underlying issue is that “Happiness” forms part of Christian/Islamic ethics which believe that man is the centre of the universe. This is in turn gave rise to humanism, individualism, colonialism and economic disparity in the world.Whereas “Contentment” is an essential part of Indian and Confucius ethics which believe in collectivism,trusteeship and harmony with nature.

  14. Sir ,Please verify my answer above ,it is around 200 words,This is my first answer.Please let me know is it okay to mention about clearing exam like that?

    Answer is for the question : All human beings aspire for happiness. Do you agree? What does happiness mean to you? Explain with examples

    Sir, Please do reply

    1. Your are answer is pretty much right….Happiness has two dimension1) Short term 2) long term…..Short term is instant –like when you give food to beggar he feels happy at that moment….but if you ask is it worth living this life then hewill give different answer….it is different to capture long term happiness in certain dimension it keeps changing based upon place, time and need etc. The ethical dimension can be explained by Gandhi’s quote –when what you think, what you say and what you do are in complete harmony …this will bring you real happiness…………You wrote similar things but a bit Ghooma-fira kar.

    2. Good answer .

    3. U can connect it to hedonism and utilitarianism
      No ans fr do u agree all human aspire for happiness or not
      No ans fr what is happiness fr u

      Ans is good fr happiness bt nt in consonance with ques.

    4. All human beings aspire for happiness. Do you agree? and What does happiness mean to you? Explain with examples. there are two things u need to write in this answer . you have not taken any stand whether you are agree or not in the first part you have just explained about happiness which has asked in second part but in second part “What does happiness mean to you? Explain with examples.”you have written well with example .

    5. The question was:
      All human beings aspire for happiness. Do you agree? What does happiness mean to you? Explain with examples.
      The first part remains untouched :( . Happiness is a long term concept, generally it has a definition which is constant for people and not different for different phases, eg. “For me being happy is living life how i wanted to live like.As a student who is aspiring for a prestigious exam,happiness lies in clearing exam and then as said it does changes by time.When a person get into a service his aspirations aims and goals changes with more magnificent thought process.”
      It would have been better if you sticked to a more mature answer.

      Waise its an amazing answer if you wrote something for the first time. Best of luck and improve. I think it helps, though i am not an expert.Do revert if you want my answer. Though i am not a pro :)

      1. Hi Shivam,

        Thanks a lot for your suggestion :)Will definitely try to write more answers to improve my self.
        Can you please explain : generally it has a definition which is constant for people and not different for different phases- does’nt it change over time ?

        I thought examples will cover the first part, so i did not mentioned it directly .
        Yea if you have no problem , i would like to see your answer.

        1. Happiness is a state of mind which is characterized by positive emotions. Since the advent of human life every human being work towards achieving happiness, every of the action is a step towards pursuing happiness.So happiness is the thing which drives human behavior and compels them to work.Every one has a different definition of happiness based on their personal experience, their current state of mind and consciousness.For me happiness has always been something which bring the smile on faces of other people, happiness is satisfaction in what i have and achievement of excellence in everything i do and also I am happy while helping someone achieve happiness. Happiness has also been derived from the fulfillment of my rightful and deserved desires without hurting anyone.
          Eg. I wrote this answer though i am not writing cse in coming 2 years.
          Mrunal feels happy helping everyone achieve their dreams.
          Happiness is what comes to me when my friend said thankyou, it was when my dad said he was proud of me.
          and so on.

          1. Your answer is very theoretical …the question also specified that give examples to justify what you define is happiness. For example – I also said anything which brings smile on the face of others – especially weaker section of society… then i related it with incidence with the postman or courier boy – whenever they come home..i calll them inside and offer tea and snacks.. after 2-3 times – the postman became emotional and said that it does not matter waht is offered to us, what matters is how well we r treated -hence today people want equality and ‘self respect’ and when i am able to help any1 in this direction..I feel happy.. words may differ essence was this.. ( I wrote mains 2014)

          2. Thank you !

    6. While writing ans in exam i added some diff point like statements of betham and js mill.. then how the happiness is diff from the pleasure … People tend more to the momnetarly plesure … Then difined true plesure in terms of betham 7 dimention… Also few more eassy type poins .. in last gave example of cheating in exam like how iy can lead to just mometary plesure of getting mpre marks but crisis of values and frustation in later life … And if u work hard and then give exam it can lead to ever lasting feeling achivememt …

      1. conclusion ws okk.. :)

        1. Actully this type of que was there in one of the vajirams handbook… In hedonism theory .. i just written fodder from that …

          1. ahaah… use of various sources…
            but pata h ek advice dungi..thoda sa creative sochnaa and end up writng kuch aisaa jo alag hatt kr ho..bcz this is sort of common type ka conclusion..bht logo ne ye conclusion diya hoga..soo try to make some catchy lines…:)

            optional k liye all d best.. :)

  15. This time ethics paper will not play a role in maximizing marks….

    1. develop your own thought ,dnt go with like what other do I will do the sme thng
      improve yourself
      it is simplest exam ever

  16. hi guys,
    I forgot to color p in the attendance sheet in essay paper
    will it create any problem.

  17. Hi. Anybody wrote exam here being in Job. How are you managing leaves and time.

    1. Try to read atleast two newpapers – Hindu (left view) and Indian Express (right view) daily and only concentrate on optionals. Rest you know is all rubbish, no need to study for atleast gs 2 3 4.

      1. HI Achal, thanks for the reply. I wrote 2013 prelims and could not able to. I did not write 2014 prelims; felt wan’t prepared enough. i’m observing 2013, 2014 exam patterns. constant visitor of mrunal. I’ve not lost of touch of books. spend time in weekends reading ncert books. Earlier i was reading news papers, but later felt, I should get hold on ncert bookd. Ncert should be read once and be revising.. every year we should add on current issues so that every attempt makes difference and useful… looks like i’m procrastinating the plan.. i tried doing multi tasking etc,.. no consistency in studies. i hardly get 2-3 hours per day.. probably i’ll continue to read more of ncert for some more months and try to clear 2015 prelims..
        How could you able to manage time.

        1. Hi Naveen
          I am also a working SE professional. Gave prelims and Mains (with optional as maths) twice in 13 and 14. Needless to say couldnt clear mains in 2013. For prelims I would say reading standard books would be enough. If you are an engineer use that aspect to secure good marks in Aptitude. You should sail through prelims without going on long leaves (I took a week’s leave for prelims).
          For mains, newspaper is more than enough, atleast for GS 2 & 3. For economics read eco survey and you could use mrunal for basics on eco. No UPSC mains paper would ask any question directly from survey etc. but there is a lot of fodder you could use it to frame your answers. For newspaper, use your travel time to max. I stopped using personal vehicle and started going by public transport which is more than enough for me to complete the day’s newspaper. I used to read it in my mobile (smartphone is an awesome device for us). Articles and its notes’ making helped me a lot.
          As Achal said, regd Optional – you should be very thorough in it preferably before prelims. Taking maths was an adv for me as it doesnt change over time, though its very lengthy.
          Most importantly, use your work time very tactfully ;) Especially if you spend your time mostly in front of computer. News or any extra material could be read during that time. We can only get short spells of 5-15 mns during work and that needs to be utililzed well.
          All the best for you prep.

  18. hi could someone tell me how to prepare notes from hindu . pls pls .

  19. I believe repetition of particular theme(s) in questions was deliberate on part of UPSC to test candidate’s consistency in thought
    process; may be also a trap for those trying to bluff!!

    1. or the reason could be they are themselves confused

    2. this is possible. I have recently been through such objective questionnaire which checks consistency of thinking.

  20. Though it is out of context now. Mrunal Sir or any friends could u post three to five question modeled everyday for upsc mains writing purpose. It will save our time n money from coachingwala.

  21. mrunal sir please provide some free mock test online links or paper for various subjects

    1. Give or emailid , I have a test series PDF I will mail it you

      1. Sorry typing error, I just checked now..give your mailid , I will send you the test series PDF I have..

        1. Which test series btw?

        2. hi can u send me the mains practise tests

        3. hello can u send me mains tests

      2. can you send me if any mains model test with answers

  22. happiness is perception and purely subjective experience. it cab basically be devided on two types , happiness arrising from materialistic pleasure and inner happiness ( spritualistic kind of happiness). everyone aspires for happiness and it cats as an motivation to achieve something worth in life.
    for me happiness is feeling content with whatever i may be doing . my every action should be guided towards contributing to society in every way possible. learning from my mistakes and start moving towards my this objective is my source of happiness
    everyday when i study an hour more or waste one less contributes to my happiness . any public officer who stands against corruption for sake of his beliefs and values is nothing but happiness
    happiness by its very nature is temperory in nature. it’s a journey rather than being destination

  23. It was such a subjective paper left to discretion of examiner .. vaguer than 2013 …

  24. Q) In the context of defence services, ‘patriotism’ demands readiness to even lay down one’s life in protecting the nation. According to you, what does patriotism imply in everyday civil life? Explain with illustrations and justify your answer.

    Ans. In everyday life, unlike our soldiers, we are usually not expected to make great sacrifices like laying down our lives. However we are expected to make a large number of small sacrifices with respect to time, inconvenience and money.

    While getting a car license, it is very common to go through an agent and thus be a part of the corrupt system. In this context patriotism implies going through the normal procedure and thus spending a lot more time, inconvenience and stress which arise while facing the RTO staff most of whom will be hostile to us.

    Similarly if we are caught without PUC certificate while driving a car, the easy way out will be to bribe the traffic police with Rs. 100 to 200. Patriotism in this context will imply paying the official fine which is much higher and thus sacrifice money.

    Thus patriotism demands that a soldier must be willing to make one large sacrifice i.e. his life, to protect the nation. However in everyday civil life, patriotism demands readiness to make a large number small sacrifices daily in order to prevent corruption in the nation.

    1. i havent given bribe to police, they were asking for registration certificate of bike, which was not made by rto till that day, (bike was 1 month old) so i was unable to produce rc. they seized my bike and i got my bike via court after spending 2600 and 20 days. after this incident i learn that it is better to give bribe than facing lengthy process. so try ethics in paper and interview bt dont try it in real life.

      1. @power You are right. There’s a saying, “In a country of honest people, the bad guys have a hard time . In a country of dishonest people, the good guys have a bad time.”

        In real life because of various reasons like lengthy procedures, meaningless rules which are impossible to follow etc… it is not possible to follow the rules in most of the cases. Most of those who pay bribes are not villains but victims.

        However in some cases it is possible to be honest. E.g. returning a bag forgotten by somebody.

        But we cannot take such a stand of ‘selective ethics’ in GS 4 or interview.

        Whether we like it or not, the reality is that the society expects us to be an ideal person but makes it almost impossible to be ideal in practice. We have no choice but to follow double standards i.e. in GS 4 we must have certain standards whereas in real life we must have standards which may be quite different depending on the situation we are facing.

        Thank you for you honest reply. It was great to have this discussion with you.

  25. Q) “Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, but knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.” What do you understand by this statement? Explain your stand with illustrations from the modern context.

    Ans. A person with very high integrity but less knowledge will be very ineffective in doing his job and thus will be weak and useless. The best exam example in this regard is Anna Hazare. Mr Hazare is a very honest person and has dedicated his entire life for the nations well being. However due to lack of knowledge about politics, polity and administration he led an anti corruption demanding the institution of ‘Lok Pal’ which will never be implemented considering the present political scenario. Also if implemented, it will create havoc by disturbing the balance of power between the legislature, judiciary and executive which was designed so thoughtfully by our constitution makers.

    Thus, by making demands like ‘Lok Pal’ a honest person like Mr Hazare made the anti corruption movement in India weak and useless.

    A person or society without integrity is dangerous and dreadful. Excellent examples of this are those financial experts, some of whom are Indians, who help their political masters in money laundering or their MNC’s in tax evasion. They reduce government revenues making it very difficult to finance the fight against malnutrition or disease due to lack of funds. Thus, they are also responsible for those children who die due to disease and malnutrition and hence are very dangerous and dreadful.

  26. Question) Case: Ethics not essential (20m)

    Ans) 1. We must accept that the life of a civil servant is filled with hardships and problems. By being unethical, we may avoid some problems like frequent transfers but face other problems like media scrutiny. If we are caught by the ACB while taking bribe, we will face more problems than an honest officer and this public humiliation will also cause great mental hardship to our family.

    An honest officer faces risk to his life very rarely. Due to active media, civil society, judicial activism and fear of opposition party, very few politicians have the guts to kill an officer. Besides a corrupt IPS officer who gives a free hand to the gangsters of the ruling party and takes action only against the gangsters of opposition party will face more risk than an honest officer especially when the opposition comes to power.

    2. If we wanted to follow the crowd then why did we start preparing for CSE? We are not here to make a difference but to do our job as effectively as we can. A small minority of officers may not make a great difference however things will get much worse without them.

    3. If the coal mines were auctioned ethically, it would have lead to more revenues for the government and the private sector would have got coal mines at low prices. Thus ethics will lead to economic development and in this era of competition we cannot afford to be left behind.

    4. Corruption is like an addiction. Everybody starts with accepting small gratifications but later they get so addicted to making money, that they will do anything to earn more money. The custom officer who allowed Tiger Memon’s RDX consignment used in the Mumbai blasts for Rs 50 lakhs, proves this point. Thus small gratifications are almost always followed by grossly unethical practises.

    Bribes do not motivate people to work hard but they motivate people to make more money. The custom officer was thus motivated to betray his country and cause the deaths of hundreds of people. We do not need such motivations. Also such gratification makes the system more inefficient and insensitive.

  27. Q) Case: Bogus rape complaint (20m)


    First option: – Although by giving my explanation to the commission I would be able to maintain professionalism however if I go soft on the disciplinary action it will send a wrong message in the department and set a very wrong precedent. Also this incident will encourage others to file such false complaints. Besides if I neglect the troublemakers, it will lead to the erosion of my authority making me very ineffective.

    Second option: – It would be very unprofessional to ignore the Women’s Commision and lead to inter departmental hostility. Also by proceeding firmly with the disciplinary action against the troublemakers which includes the women, will lead to suspicion that the complaint is true and I am pressurizing the women to take back the complaint by taking disciplinary action against her and her colleagues.

    Third option: – Although it is good to be in touch with your higher ups and seek guidance. However in this case if it happens that they are in league with the troublemakers or are biased against me on account of the media report, they may tell me to stop the disciplinary proceedings. Thus the matter wil become more complicated.

    I disagree with all the above options and hence I suggest : –

    4. Give your explanation to the Commission, proceed firmly with the disciplinary action, brief your higher-ups and seek directions but act accordingly only if you agree with them.

    By explaining to the Commission my side of the story, I will be able to maintain professionalism and also give credibility to myself. I would also be able to counter the allegation made against me when I will the disciplinary proceedings. After initiating the proceedings, I will brief all this to my higher ups seek directions. If I feel that their directions are just, I will act accordingly.

  28. Disclaimer: I have just started prep for civil services and have not started studying Ethics now. The answer is based on my instinct.

    Happiness has different connotations for different people. But in general it’s to live a meaningful life. What gives meaning to an individual is a subjective matter but everybody aspires to live a meaningful life i.e. aspires to live a happy life.

    For me also happiness is to give meaning to my life. That is, to be successful in my career, to fulfil responsibilities towards my family and moreover to be an asset for the society. Let me explain individually– (1) To be successful in my career implies a career full of responsibilities and that gives me ample opportunities so that I can imply my innovative ideas for the benefit of the organisation and society at large for which I work.
    (2) To fulfil the responsibility towards my family not only includes taking care of them but also to set a good example for my younger family members they attract to follow.
    (3) To become an asset for society simply implies for me to ameliorate pains and sufferings of poor and disadvantaged people, to strive for elimination of evils prevailing in the society and this way to lead my nation to glory.

    1. Excellent answer.

      I think that it would be great idea if you include a point about materialism because many people feel that happiness for them and their families lies in buying better cars, larger house etc…

      Also you can state that by working for the well being of the poor and by doing your job honestly and sincerely gives happiness irrespective of whether you are successful or failure.

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