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ETHICS CASE STUDY: Civil Aspirant’s Dilemma – What would you have done in such a situation? Justify your action.

Topic:  Ethics in Human Actions

7) You are aspiring to become an IAS officer and you have cleared various stages and now you have been selected for the personal interview. Night before the interview, you are having dinner with your wife in a restaurant. Next to your table, suddenly a group of goons headed by a son of local MLA starts beating an innocent person. They are hitting him hard with certain weapons and the person is pleading for help. Others in the restaurant either run away or witnessing the scene mutely. Your wife is scared and wants to move away from the place. At the same time few of the goons are scaring away other customers and staff there. One of them comes to you and warns you to not to talk about the incident anywhere.

What would you have done in such a situation? Justify your action. (250 W0rds)


Why this question?

Similar question was asked by UPSC in CSM-2017. We have modified based on a recent event in Bangalore. It’s important because society is divided between the rich and poor where rich think they have more privileges. This is also important as most of us witness injustices as mute spectators.  

Key demand of the question:

This tests your values such as courage and emotional intelligence. It also tests your decision making abilities. 

Directive Word:

Justify: You need to substantiate why you are going to take particular action in this situation. You may substantiate based on certain examples, laws, rules, cases also. 

Structure of Answer:

There should be a general introduction highlighting important facts and the ethical issues in the case. Also mention stakeholders. You should also highlight values tat are tested in this case. Write in paragraph. 
In the body, you should go on constructing your answer based on options available to you. Start from least best option (such as escaping from the scene) and write its merits and demerits in a paragraph. Then think of next best option and its merits and demerits. For each option go on saying why you won’t opt these options. Finally, in detail, justify which course of action you want to pursue. Here, give all justifications. Here, answer varies from individual to individual. But, ultimately your interest and the interest of the victim should be preserved. At the same time, criminals should be punished.  remember all stakeholders while writing your answer. Don’t focus excessively on yourself (remember wife too).
Again, there should be conclusion. Here, write about need for average citizens to stand against injustices and need for upholding rule of law in society.