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SYNOPSIS: Insights 70 Days Ethics Plan – Day – 19


Insights 70 Days Ethics Plan

Day – 19

1.Define/Differentiate the following in the context of public service with suitable examples:

a) Impartiality

Impartiality means that, regardless of a public servants personal beliefs and preferences, and personal relationships with other servants or with members of the community; he or she must impartially serve the government of the day and treat members of the public and other public servants fairly and impartially.

Impartiality implies tolerance and restraint, particularly in dealing with political or religious convictions.

b) Transparency

Generally, “transparency” implies openness, communication and accountability.With regard to the public services, it means that holders of public office should 
be as open as possible about all the decisions and actions they take. They should give 
reasons for their decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest demands it .

c) Impartial vs Non-Partisanship

Impartiality is a principle of justice holding that decisions should be based on objective criteria, rather than on the basis of bias, prejudice or preferring the benefit to one person over another for improper reasons.Non partisanship is not being specifically owned or affiliated with any group ,party or cause. Non partisanship can be called as political neutrality.

Impartiality connotes that the behaviour of and treatment by an administrator to any individual or entity has to be solely on the basis of merit. However non partisanship implies that the administrator is to do his/her task without any fear of or favour to any political party.

Impartiality and Non-partisanship both form essential foundational values for civil services. While impartiality ensures equality without any bias and prejudices in the general, non-partisanship ensures a neutral approach in politics and a solid commitment to the government

d) Objectivity vs Integrity


  • if you’re a person of integrity, you’ll not do the duties your conscience doesn’t agree with. E.g. Policeman ordered to fire on unarmed peaceful protestors. Honest policeman will obey the order. Policeman of integrity, will refuse to fire
  • In integrity, you’re not blindly following duties. Only if your conscience permits, you’ll do it.


  • It is the opposite of subjectivity. You must not make decision on your values, emotions
  • Policy based / rule based decisions are examples of objective decision because you’re doing them as per the prescribed policy/rule.
  • Objectivity is most crucial in following process
    • Selection/recruitment/posting/transfer/promotion.
    • Selection of right agency for contract/tendering.
    • Selection for Bharat Ratna, Padma-awards etc.
    • Daily administrative work.


e) Tolerance vs Resistance

Tolerance implies being respectful towards others and their viewpoints. It also means restraint on one’s part despite others’ provocation or wrongdoing. Tolerance is being patient, understanding and accepting of anything different. An example of tolerance is Muslims, Christians and Athiests being friends.

Resistance is act of showing discontent for what you believe is wrong. It also means resisting one’s desires/acts which affect public interest adversely.


f) Empathy vs Compassion

Compassion is not the same as empathy or altruism, though the concepts are related. While empathy refers more generally to our ability to take the perspective of and feel the emotions of another person, compassion is when those feelings and thoughts include the desire to help.

Empathy is a gateway to compassion. It’s understanding how someone feels, and trying to imagine how that might feel for you so it’s a mode of relating. Compassion takes it further. It’s feeling what that person is feeling, holding it, accepting it, and taking some kind of action. 

2) “Real integrity is doing the right thing, knowing that nobody’s going to know whether you did it or not.” Comment.

Integrity can be described as the strength of someone’s honesty and ethical standing. A person with strong integrity is less likely to be influenced by those of a lesser moral value. You can have honesty without integrity, but you cannot have integrity without honesty.

For instance a person finds a wallet on the side of the road pick it up and takes it for himself. When questioned by a family member as to whom the wallet belongs the person states his intention that he found it and intends to keep it. The person is exhibiting the trait of honesty but not integrity as he makes no effort to return the wallet to the rightful owner. He is stealing essentially even if he is been honest.

Honesty is about telling the truth, both in word and deed. Integrity goes a bit further. It means being true  to who you are, what you say, and what you believe. And doing so even when no one is around to see.

For instance before students enter the taekwondo training floor, they bow to the national flags kept there as a sign of respect. But even when no one is around a person of integrity bows. Integrity demands that you make that sign of respect, that bow, even if no one in the world is around to see you do it.

Integrity in administration enhances trust in the government machinery by the people and encourages the civil servants to act in public interest