Ethics Case Study 4

Case Study 4:-

You were transferred as a DM in a district 1 year ago with a huge problem of illegal encroachments. You are doing your best to demolish all illegal encroachments in the district. At the heart of the city, there is an immediate need of widening a road where lots of accidents have taken place because of huge vehicle traffic. In the middle of this road there is a temple which is causing lots of traffic problems, also temple is constructed illegally on government property. Temple must be demolished to solve traffic problem. You already sent a notice to temple management but they sensationalize the issue through media by twisting facts to politicize and tried to incite communal feelings of devotees. The temple management is getting huge income from the temple and this is one of the reasons why there is stiff opposition for its demolition. You also get frequent calls from prominent politicians requesting you not to go ahead with its demolition. Your family members, who are god-fearing, are also against your decision.

In this situation, what will you do? Explain the consequences and how will you deal with them.(250 Words)


In this situation, ethical dilemma is between government’s role to allow religious freedom and also provide Right to Life for all by providing safe environment to live. I will fully go with provisions of the law as law does not allow to construct any structures on government land without government permission. I will take the following steps:

  1. a) As Temple Management may not have replied within deadline, so I will go ahead and demolish the structure in the night, so that peacefully such activity occurs in presence of low or nil traffic and least inconvenience to public is caused.
  2. b) Later when media or others confront, I’ll cite non-responsiveness of Management to reply or try to negotiate. Hence, I’m obeying Supreme Court directions to demolish any structures made illegally on government land and specifically proclaim that issue not be communalized. I’ll also say that this is for people’s Right to Life, as accidents will be reduced.
  3. c) Meanwhile, I’ll advise the Management to negotiate and get land legally from government so that it can build a better temple on more land which won’t block traffic. If willing to negotiate, then I can offer some sites too which management can legally buy paying rightly rather than cheating government in name of religion.

Therefore, I’ll be dealing with consequences raised by above actions through following law of the land, and also showing willingness for rapprochement with agitating people for maintaining proper law and order in my district.

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