Study Material | Prelims Test Series
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2 Solved Questions with Answers
  • 2017

    1. Conflict of interest in the public sector arises when
    (a) official duties, (b) public interest, and (c) personal interest
    are taking priority one above the other.
    sHow can this conflict in administration be resolved? Describe with an example. (2017)

    For an administrator, a conflict of interest situation arises when there is actual or apparent conflict between public duty and private interest of a public official. In such a situation official's private interest could improperly influence the performance of official duties. 

    In recent past a beedi manufacturer from Uttar Pradesh was on a Parliamentary Committee, Instead of recusing himself from the proceedings of the committee because of direct conflict of interest, he made a forceful plea against the warming and influenced the panel to take a decision which favoured the tobacco industry. Clearly such conflict of interest interferes with unbiased public policy making and will not be based on objectivity.

    Conflict of interest reduces public trust and confidence in integrity and impartiality of public functionaries. To deal with such a scenario the person who is found involved in such a conflict first need to identify the situation. All financial and potentially relevant non-financial relationships thus identified need to be disclosed to appropriate authority. For example it is well accepted norm for judges to opt out hearing of a case where his/her family members are involved.

    Various oversight bodies, judicial institutions and commissions of enquiry could also be constituted for identification of any conflict of interest involved. We also need to move beyond treating conflict of interest as mere moral issue and should also take into perspective the legal angle. The priority must be to frame a modern law relating to conflict of interest, along the lines of what exists in the statute of the other countries like the United States.

  • 2017

    4. (a) One of the tests of integrity is complete refusal to be compromised. Explain with reference to a real life example. (2017)

    Integrity means adopting similar standards or moral principles in similar situations across time and interested parties. In other words it means to be honest and consistent in thoughts, speech and action. A man of integrity is never influenced by temptations and pressures from outside and would only respond to his conscience.

    Integrity is a four-step process: keeping in mind the aim/ purpose of one’s action or inaction and acting consistently with that choice—even when it is inconvenient or unprofitable to do so; choosing the right course of conduct in conformity with moral principles; openly declaring one’s intentions or where one stands; and results of one’s actions.

    In 1964, Mandela was sentenced to 27 years in prison at Robben Island. He accepted it with dignity. He knew that overthrowing apartheid called for struggle and sacrifice, and was prepared for the long walk to freedom.

    Ten thousand days in prison failed to break Mandela and he refused to compromise on his beliefs or leave the struggle midway.

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