IAS Mains 2017 Case Study: General Studies Paper IV

IAS Mains 2017 Case Study: General Studies Paper IV

IAS Mains 2017 Case Study: IAS Mains General Studies paper-4 will consist of some case study questions and one has to suggest solutions to the problems raised in the questions. The purpose of the case study is to test your ability to understand situations of administrative, moral or ethical dilemmas and work out a pragmatic solution. UPSC knows quite well that a student is not in a real position of power or authority to solve the case. Therefore, the expectation from the case study is to understand it in simple terms and offer simple workable solutions.

However, more than the solution it is the structure of the answer to a case study that holds significance. Answering a case study is not akin to answering a GS question. Therefore, the format has to be entirely different for answering a case study.


IAS Mains 2017 Case Study: Example II

On candidates’ demand, we are raising an expected case study problem based on previous year IAS Mains exam. Missed our previous example? Click on the link given below:

In today’s article, we will be sharing as well as solving the said IAS Mains Case Study question ourselves. Let us go through the problem first:

Case Study Question:

Rekha cleared UPSC civil services exam and became an IAS officer. After her probationary training, she was posted as CEO of Zila Panchayat in a very backward district in a faraway state from her home. There, the violence and discrimination against women were rampant. The politicians, including the elected representatives, were known for their contempt against women officers in the district. Rekha’s parents tried to persuade her to marry an IAS officer from their home state. The boy had already shown the interest in marrying her and had also assured of her return to their home state where, her parents thought, she would get a safe and cozy posting.

Rekha firmly told her parents that she was willing to face such hardships to serve the backward regions. As soon as she assumed her office, the rumours started doing the rounds of her alleged links to the local mafia. She took extraordinary measures to stop illegal activities such as sand smuggling and encroachment of government property despite the imminent risk to her life. A recent news report was quoted as saying that she had been going soft on the mafia. Another rumour of her having an affair with an IAS officer working in a neighbouring district was also detrimental to her personal reputation.

Question: Identify the elements of ethical concerns and dilemma in the above case and substantiate how you would have responded to each of such concerns and dilemma if you were Rekha?

Solution by OnlineTyari:

An upright and honest officer faces organized campaign from vested interest to prevent her from performing public duties. Unsubstantiated rumours and personal attacks to malign her image and damage the reputation should be tackled head on by Rekha in this case.

Elements of ethical concerns and dilemma in above case are:

  • Choosing between a person, family comfort and commitment to public duty.
  • Performing one’s duty without paying heed to rumours or to dispel rumours to maintain credibility and integrity.
  • Protecting one’s privacy in public life (and women’s dignity) when vested interest alleges of immorality.

The appropriate response, in this case, would involve that rather than succumbing to the pressure of vested interest and organised mafia, she should take appropriate legal recourse. The strategy to deal with each of the situation can be:

  1. Rekha should persuade her parents that it doesn’t matter where she serves, be it her home state or any other state, she should make choice based on her own commitment, aptitude, duty and comfort rather than suffocating under parental or societal pressure.
  2. Proper legal recourse should be taken against the people spreading lie and falsehood. Though it may distract some of time and attention from official duties, it is essential for maintaining not only personal integrity but also the professional credibility of authority.
  3. A defamation case may be initiated against people spreading rumours. An official has full right to her privacy in person sphere.

This was the solution posted by OnlineTyari.

Got the Point?? For more ease, we are sharing some crucial tips & tricks on how to write a good IAS Mains 2017 Case Study Answer.


Tips to Write IAS Mains 2017 Case Study Answers

The solution you offer to ethics case study questions must reflect the following aspects of your personality:

  1. That you can provide positive solutions in situations of dilemmas.
  2. That your solution is quick to implement.
  3. That your solution is well within rules and regulations within which you are supposed to function.
  4. That you can provide ‘out of box’ solutions to complex situations.
  5. That you will hold values of integrity, objectivity, impartiality in your solution.
  6. That you will show compassion, empathy in deserving cases.
  7. That you possess a high sense of public duty, that you are committed to public service.
  8. That you hold the core foundational values of Civil Services.

Finally, it is always better to solve ethics case study questions first and then take up general questions in the GS paper. Case studies of IAS exam will require a fresh mind, a lot of thinking and preparing the sketch work before actually writing them. If you take them up in the last minutes, you will not be able to concentrate well on finding the solution.


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We hope this article provides you with useful information regarding the tips to solve ethics case study questions for IAS GS paper 4. Stay connected for more information regarding UPSC Civil Services Exam Recruitment 2017. To excel in Civil Services Examination, download the Best IAS Exam Preparation App for free.

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