Dilemmas between Ethics and Legal aspect – UPSC Ethics Case Study


“Being ethical may not be the same as following the laws.” Discuss. Give examples from your real life when there was a conflict between being ethical and being legal. How did you resolve the dilemma? (200 Words)
A law, however noble its intention may be or how close to perfection it may be, it always hurts few people in few circumstances. All ethical values simply cannot be encoded in law book. So we sometimes face a dilemma between ethics and law or rule book.
When I was in college, I used to stay in hostel. Strict rules had been promulgated to restrict outing of students after 11 pm and all hostel gates used to be closed by them.
Some incidents such as late night drink parties often ending up in quarrel; bike accidents etc. had forced the administration to take such steps. But one night at around 1 AM, one of my friends called me asking me to rush to hospital immediately to donate blood to a pregnant woman undergoing caesarean. My blood group is O- which is a rare one and could not have been arranged from other in such a short notice.
I first asked from permission from the care taker of the hostel but instructions were strict from the administration. Besides many others had used similar pretexts to go out only for entertainment so I jumped the gate and the boundary wall, reached hospital and donated blood just in time to save the woman. It just seemed right to me. Although my ethics also told me to confess this before the warden but I did not. Because there is risk in too straight forwardness as Chanakya had said.



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