You, an anthropologist, have developed cordial relations with a tribal community which was hitherto isolated from rest of the humanity. Notwithstanding increased interest of researchers and media for the newly discovered tribe, you are the only person from outside whom they trust. They are ardent believers in their goddess and, trusting you, take you to her abode on a holy mountain. To your surprise, you find that the mountain is a reservoir of Uranium that can be used in your power-starved country’s nuclear power plants. Besides, you are aware that Uranium being radioactive, it is highly risky to go near the mountain. You try to convince the people about harmful effects it can have and the utilitarian value that it possess for the country. However, they are in no mood to argue and politely ask you to leave. You fear that very soon the outside world will find about this and the vulnerable tribe would be displaced from their land. (a) Evaluate the following courses of action which you can take for their ethical merits and demerits: i. You would continue to convince the people yourself about the possible consequences and urge them to relocate. ii. You would call in local and national NGOs for protecting the rights of the people against the State and file a PIL in Supreme Court if the State proceeds with dispossession. iii. You would yourself tell the government and the scientific community about the reserves and let them proceed in their own way. (b) Without restricting yourself to the above options, state the course of action that you would take and why? 10 marks

Mentor’s comment-

  • In the introduction mention the facts of the case and ethical dilemma which the anthropologist faces.
  • In the body evaluate the options – give merits and demerits in terms of ethical issues listed above. State the course of action with proper reasoning and how will it address or adjust the demerits which you have listed.
  • Conclude with a fair and balanced approach.
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