Code of Ethics and Code of Conduct

It is a broad framework of ethical principles and standards acceptable to society it can include

Seven principles of Nolan committee i.e., LOHASI objectivity (Leadership, openness, honesty, accountability, selflessness, integrity and objectivity)

principles of Jainism (Satya, ahimsa, asteya, aparigraha)

Principles of Buddhism

Principles of Buddhism

Indian constitution

  • Preamble: democratic, republic, socialist, secular, justice, equality, liberty, fraternity
  • Fundamental rights: Right to equality, freedom, against exploitation, freedom of religion, cultural and educational rights
  • DPSP: equal distribution of wealth, and the welfare of vulnerable sections.
  • fundamental duties. respect women, and protect the environment.

Code of Conduct for civil servants as a Source of Probity in Governance

Benefits of Code of Conduct

It can help in achieving the following purposes

  1. Guiding light: civil services conduct rules
  2. Uniformity: it is common for all employees in an organisation.
  3. Promotes morality:
  4. Promote privacy: doctors are prevented from disclosing the privacy of patients.
  5. Emergency: the doctor must treat the patient in the emergency
  6. Promote social good: any code of conduct is based on ethics and societal good.

Components of ethical standards/code of Conduct

One of the most comprehensive statements of what constitutes ethical standards for holders of public office came from the Committee on Standards in Public Life in the United Kingdom, popularly known as the Nolan Committee, which outlined the following seven principles of public life:

  1. Selflessness: Holders of public office should take decisions solely in terms of public interest. They should not do so to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves, their family or their friends.
  2. Integrity: Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organizations that might influence them in the performance of their official duties.
  3. Objectivity: In carrying out public business, including making public appointments, awarding contracts or recommending individuals for rewards and benefits, holders of public office should make choices on merit.
  4. Accountability: Holders of public office are accountable for their decisions and actions to the public and must submit themselves to whatever scrutiny is appropriate to their office.
  5. Openness: Holders of public office should be as open as possible about all the decisions and actions they take. They should give reasons for their decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest clearly demands it.
  6. Honesty: Holders of public office have to declare any private interests relating to their public duties and take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest.
  7. Leadership: Holders of public office should promote and support these principles by leadership and example.

Code of conduct can be classified into four types: conduct rules affecting your

  • office life,
  • public life
  • financial life
  • personal life

#1: Conduct Rules Four Office Life

  • Respecting the hierarchy
  • Must finish his assignments within time and quality limits. 
  • Must not indulge in sexual harassment.
  • Strike Must not join any employee union/ labour union without government permission.

#2: Conduct Rules Four Public Life

  • He cannot file a defamation suit against them or make press statements, without government permission. 
  • shall guard the official secrets.
  • He must not take part in politics and must not give election fund/ assistance to any political party Can vote. But must not tell his preference to other people.

#3: Conduct rules Four Financial Life

  • At Office Must show diligence and probity in spending public money.
  • Must not take any Private trade or employment without government permission.
  • Must not accept any fees from any public/private authority without government permission.

#4: Conduct Rules4 Personal life (family any person bound to him by blood/marriage, and wholly dependent on him)

  • Bigamy prohibited
  • Must not give dowry, take dowry or demand dowry.
  • Must declare expensive gifts received by him / his family member.
  • Must not come to duty while under the influence of liquor/drugs.


Ministers should:

  • Disclose to the Prime Minister, or the Chief Minister, as the case may be details of the assets and liabilities, and of business interests, of himself and his family members.  
  • Refrain from starting, or joining, any business.
  • Refrain from accepting valuable gifts etc.

Other Suggestions for Improving Probity in Governance

  • Legislation to check misfeasance in public office. Misfeasance means a wrongful performance of a normally lawful act.
    • If a public servant abuses his office either by an act of omission or commission, and the consequence of that is an injury to an individual or loss of public property, an action may be maintained against such public servant.Legislation for Ethics in Government like the Ethics in Government Act of the USA.
Online Counselling
Table of Contents
Today's Current Affairs
This is default text for notification bar