(a) A Cabinet Minister sends a D.O letter to you regarding the posting of an official on a supposedly ‘lucrative assignment’ for which you have already decided about the name of a more competent officer with a good track record of honesty, integrity, probity and timely delivery. What will you do?
- An administrative job is for the welfare of the people. Hence the competent person should be placed in the post.
- Generally, D.O letters should be honored within the range of laws, rules, and regulations as well as suitability for the job.
- But in no case, an inefficient and corrupt person should be offered a position for which better options are available because doing so would not be in the interest of the nation or for the larger benefit of the people.
- Saying no with humility is an art and also a matter of uprightness.
(b) As per the rules in your department, every officer needs to be transferred from one destination to another after three years. A woman officer comes to you with a request that as the new destination allotted to her is far-flung and remote, she would fail to provide medical treatment to her aging and sick in-laws who need constant clinical help. But according to her innate qualities and high level of expertise, the new destination would need only officers like her to deliver the best results and meet official targets. What will you do?
- The woman is first an ‘officer’ for the HR department and later a ‘homemaker’. She should be transferred to the assignment for which she is most suited. But one of the basic principles of modern HR management is also to take care of the human and personal concerns of the officers while doing transfer and posting.
- The human and personal concerns, however, have a secondary consideration as long as it is in conflict with professional requirements.
- But the officers who have such concerns as education of children or clinical treatment of parents must be offered retention of quarters or allowance for travel when required or any other incentive or support, but work cannot be allowed to suffer because of personal reasons.
(c) The position in charge of transfer and posting provides a very lucrative opportunity to make money and cultivate liaison for a lifetime. One should not be ‘too idealistic’ to ignore such opportunities and adopt a ‘pragmatic approach’. Do you agree? Give reasons.
- Virtue ethics which emphasizes dutifulness should not be confused with being ‘too idealistic’. It is the basic attribute required in government services. If one’s follow one’s duty with complete zeal then these virtues enable us to act according to the highest potential of our character and on behalf of values like truth and beauty.
- Although some people utilize transfer and posting authority for money-making or liaison, these acts are highly objectionable, undesirable and illegal- neither ethics nor law permit this. Thus it should be construed as a misuse of authority and an immoral act.