The Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) has played a pivotal role in shaping the ethical landscape of public administration in India. Its recommendations pertaining to ethics in public administration underline the significance of integrity, accountability, and transparency in government operations. ARC emphasized the need for a strong code of ethics for civil servants, outlining principles that emphasize impartiality, honesty, and the public’s interest. Moreover, it called for mechanisms to hold public servants accountable for their actions and decisions, fostering a culture of responsibility and ethical conduct. The ARC’s recommendations have had a lasting impact on the country’s public administration, instilling a sense of ethical responsibility among civil servants and ensuring that governance remains rooted in integrity, which is essential for the well-being of a democratic society.
The Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) was set up in 1966 by the Government of India to examine
the existing administrative system in the country and suggest ways to improve it. The ARC made several
recommendations with regards to ethics in public administration. Some of these recommendations are:
- Code of conduct: The ARC recommended that a code of conduct should be developed for public servants, which should be enforced by an independent body. The code of conduct should cover all aspects of public service, including integrity, impartiality, accountability, and transparency.
- Ethics training: The ARC recommended that ethics training should be made a part of the initial and ongoing training for public servants. The training should focus on values such as integrity, honesty, and respect for the law.
- Whistleblower protection: The ARC recommended that a mechanism should be put in place to protect whistleblowers who report corruption or malpractices in public service.
- Strengthening the vigilance machinery: The ARC recommended that the vigilance machinery should be strengthened to prevent corruption and ensure accountability in public service.
- Merit-based recruitment: The ARC recommended that recruitment to public service should be based on merit rather than on nepotism or other considerations.
- Punitive action: The ARC recommended that punitive action should be taken against public servants who violate ethical standards or engage in corrupt practices.
Apart from the recommendations of the ARC, there are several other possible ways to address ethical issues in
public administration, some of which include:
- Strengthening accountability mechanisms: A strong accountability mechanism can serve as a deterrent against unethical behavior in public administration. This can include measures such as independent audits, regular reporting, and monitoring of public officials’ activities.
- Implementing a code of ethics: A code of ethics can serve as a guiding principle for public officials, outlining the expected behaviors and values that they must adhere to while serving the public.
- Encouraging transparency: Public officials must be transparent about their actions and decisions, and this can be achieved by ensuring that information about government activities is readily available to the public. This can include measures such as the publication of annual reports, disclosure of financial information, and regular press briefings.
- Promoting education and training: Education and training programs can be designed to equip public officials with the knowledge and skills required to make ethical decisions while serving the public.
- Encouraging whistleblowing: Whistleblowers can play a critical role in exposing unethical practices in public administration. Therefore, public officials must be encouraged to report any wrongdoing without fear of retaliation.
- Strengthening public participation: The involvement of the public in decision-making processes can promote transparency and accountability in public administration. This can include measures such as public consultations, citizen juries, and participatory budgeting.
- Applying sanctions and penalties: Sanctions and penalties can be imposed on public officials who engage in unethical behavior. This can include disciplinary action, fines, and in extreme cases, criminal charges.
FAQs on Recommendations of ARC with regards to Ethics in Public Administration
Q1: What is the First Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) in the context of UPSC?
A1: The First Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) was a committee established to examine and recommend reforms in the Indian administrative system. In the context of UPSC (Union Public Service Commission), the recommendations of the First ARC may be referred to in the syllabus or exam questions to assess the candidate’s knowledge of administrative reforms.
Q2: What were the key areas of focus for the First ARC recommendations relevant to UPSC aspirants?
A2: The First ARC recommendations covered a broad spectrum of administrative and governance issues. Aspirants should be aware of recommendations related to civil services reform, decentralization of power, and improving public administration, as these topics may be relevant to their UPSC exam preparation.
Q3: How can UPSC aspirants benefit from knowledge of the First ARC recommendations?
A3: Understanding the First ARC recommendations can provide aspirants with valuable insights into the historical context of administrative reforms in India. It can help in answering questions related to governance, public administration, and civil services in the UPSC examinations, especially in the General Studies paper.
Q4: Where can I access the First ARC recommendations for study purposes?
A4: The First ARC recommendations are available in the public domain. Aspirants can access these reports through government websites, libraries, or online resources. Reviewing the recommendations is a useful part of UPSC exam preparation for a comprehensive understanding of governance and administration in India.
Q5: What is the Second Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC)?
A5: The Second Administrative Reforms Commission, often referred to as the Second ARC, was a high-level committee in India tasked with suggesting reforms in the Indian administrative system. It was established to evaluate the functioning of various government departments and recommend improvements to enhance efficiency, transparency, and governance.
Q6: What were the main objectives of the Second ARC?
A6: The primary objectives of the Second ARC were to provide recommendations for administrative and governance reforms. These recommendations aimed to streamline government processes, reduce bureaucratic red tape, and enhance the delivery of public services to citizens.
Q7: What were some key recommendations of the Second ARC?
A7: The Second ARC made several recommendations covering a wide range of topics, including governance, public administration, financial management, and more. Some notable recommendations included reforms in the civil services, decentralization of power, and improving the efficiency and transparency of the government machinery.
Q8: Were the Second ARC recommendations implemented?
A8: The implementation of Second ARC recommendations varied. Some recommendations were adopted and led to policy changes, while others faced challenges and resistance. The extent of implementation depended on political will and the practicality of the suggested reforms.
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