The topics in paper IV – ethics, aptitude and integrity are interrelated. The identification of these interrelated areas makes it easy for you to grasp the paper.
The topics like ethics in public life, foundational values of civil service, integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service etc overlaps with the topic Probity of governance. The Right to information, fight against corruption, conflict of interest etc are topics concerned with probity of governance.
probity in governance
The probity is closely linked to societal values.
Eg: When a corruption case is brought against a politician or beaurocrat, then the whole target is the ‘individual’. Who shapes the individual? The society to an extent shapes his values. A person who lives in a society which gives social standing/respect to a person who has money, in turn will work to gain money by all means. This is where value education comes in.
The probity of governance is closely related to “equality before law”.
Eg:  Is it wrong if a file before government is cleared within 2 days? The answer is “no” if all citizens with similar file status can get it cleared in 2 days. Here the concern is “compliance with processes”. If an ordinary citizen submits a file, the processes might take lot of time, which is shortened when some1 powerful submits.


One concept in probity of governance is that ‘Something is legally right’ doesn’t always mean it is ‘right’. The law may be interpreted in ways that are suited. This is especially important when it comes to ‘land acquisition’, ‘signing contract with certain foreign firms’ etc.

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