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Q. “Where the roots of private virtue are diseased, the fruit of public probity cannot but be corrupt”. Explain this statement in the context of working civil servants. (10 Marks) Viewpoints: Explain private virtue and public probity. Mention th...


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Q. “Where the roots of private virtue are diseased, the fruit of public probity cannot but be corrupt”. Explain this statement in the context of working civil servants. (10 Marks)

 

Viewpoints:

  • Explain private virtue and public probity.

  • Mention the importance of virtue for civil servants.

  • Give value to decision-making on anonymous matters, accountability towards public resources, ethical actions, integrity, etc.

  • Put forward a plan to secure probity in public service by upholding moral and ethical virtue in private life.

 

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Posts: 4
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(@khushhal38)
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Ans:

The above statement tries to highlight that private virtue is essential for any person to show probity. Private virtue here means moral traits or habits for which the larger institutional order is, within very wide limits, irrelevant. Virtuous living in this sense takes as given and thus does not much care about what shape the larger society has. Being honest or trustworthy is, for instance, a trait all people can exhibit whether the society is egalitarian or aristocratic. Virtue ethics does not fall victim to moral schizophrenia, which is one advantage it has over most other moral theories.

On the other hand, probity in Governance is defined as adherence to ethical and moral values like honesty, integrity, rectitude, uprightness, etc. Importance of virtue for civil servants to maintain probity in the governance:

  • Civil service involves decision-making in the public sphere. They have to deal with many matters that are anonymous and discrete. 

  • Smooth civil service assists to foster good policy making, effective service delivery, accountability, and responsibility in utilizing public resources which are the features of good governance.

  • That’s why a civil servant must have strong private virtue to show probity in the governance. 

  • Probity is a vital feature of governance that facilitates the government to act ethically and perform its duty. It has been observed that due to different irregularities such as corruption; insensitivity; red-tapism, irresponsibility; disregard to office and law, the governance system is losing its credentialed people. 

  • Probity is also needed to ensure that accountability and integrity are maintained in the governance.

Hence, Private virtue is quintessential for public servants to show probity in the governance. Probity in public service can be ensured by adopting moral and ethical virtue in private life.

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