Posted in Blogosphere

How do IAS officers feel about answering to goons and illiterate ministers?

How do IAS officers feel about answering to goons and illiterate ministers? by Ashish Rai

Answer by Ashish Rai:

Pranab Mukherjee mentioned somewhere in his Interview when he met an IAS officer when he was minister.

Pranab : How do you feel when you have to answer & report to people like me who is not even remotely qualified as you are & had not went through the grind that you did.

IAS officer : Respected sir, I am not answerable to you I am answerable to the chair that you sit & in this way I am answerable to the People who voted for you, I am their servant.

How do IAS officers feel about answering to goons and illiterate ministers?

Posted in Blogosphere

How many countries can an IFS officer visit in his career?

How many countries can an IFS officer visit in his career? by Rahul Shrivastava

Answer by Rahul Shrivastava:

Since the A2A is from Arman Gill, let us make him the protagonist of this answer.

Arman gets into the Indian Foreign Service (IFS) right after his post-graduation. After his short training at LBSNAA in Mussoorie, he goes for specialised training at the Foreign Service Institute (FSI) in New Delhi. He has completed only about three months of training at FSI when he gets his first opportunity as an IFS officer to travel abroad. He goes for on-site training to Bangladesh for a few days and then to Bhutan. In both places, he sees how the Indian Mission works. Arman’s score is 2.

While undergoing training at FSI, Arman gets Spanish as his Compulsory Foreign Language (CFL). After the training at FSI gets completed, Arman is deployed in the United Nations Political Division (Department in other countries) of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) for getting trained in work of the Ministry. Arman learns multilateral work and his boss is pleased with his progress. So when an opportunity comes, Arman’s boss sends him to New York along with a delegation to the United Nations. Arman’s score is 3.

Arman completes his training in MEA and heads to Madrid to do his CFL training. He slogs for three months learning his CFL and then his university closes for winter vacation. Arman takes this opportunity to visit France. After the vacation, his CFL training goes on for another six-months. He takes his CFL exam in summer and then takes a week’s break. He flies to Scandinavia and does a quick tour of Norway and Sweden. He returns and is given full-time work at the Embassy. After some time, his CFL exam results are declared. He passes and then works for two years in Madrid. Arman’s score is 7.

Arman is in love with Madrid and wants to stay there forever. But his three years get over and he gets transferred to Bogota. Arman is amazed at how beautiful Bogota is. He is now fluent in Spanish and is enjoying his life and work in Colombia. During his three years in Bogota, he pays two official visits to Peru and Cuba to assist the Indian Missions there during high-level visits. He is married now. His wife’s dream has been to visit Brazil and Mexico. So, in the three years in Bogota, Arman takes two breaks of a week each to visit these countries. Arman’s score is 12.

Six years abroad at a stretch has made Arman nostalgic. So, he is glad to get his transfer orders to MEA. Arman gets deployed in the Multilateral Economic Relations (MER) Division. He has to travel abroad at least once in two months. In the two years that Arman has been in MER Division, he travels to 15 countries. Arman is getting tired of frequent travelling. And just in time his transfer orders come. His score is 27.

After Bogota, Arman wanted a posting closer home. He goes to Dubai. His work load is heavy. He sometimes gets to travel within UAE but not to other countries. His score is 28.

Arman gets posted to London from Dubai. During the summer vacations of his child, the family goes on a European tour. They visit 5 countries. Arman also visits Prague on official work. Arman’s score is 35.

Back to home again after the stint in the UK. Arman now heads the Latin America Division in MEA. In his three years, he visits 6 Latin American countries on official tour. His score is 41.

The next three consecutive postings are as Ambassador to Argentina, Spain and Turkey. In Argentina, Arman is concurrently accredited to Uruguay and Paraguay. While in Turkey, he attends the regional conference of Ambassadors in Hungary and Cyprus. His score is 47.

Arman comes back to Headquarters for the third and final time. He is now an Additional Secretary. He soon gets promoted as Secretary. He is in charge of over 70 Missions abroad. He is out of the country every next week. He covers 26 countries (some countries require several visits). His score is 73.

Arman is just one step away from reaching the top most post – Foreign Secretary of India. If he gets that post, it will again mean a lot of travel but he would mostly visit countries he has already been to. If he does not, he might get posted as Ambassador to a neighbouring country or to a P-5 country.

We do not know what happens next. What we know is that when Arman retires, he has a score of 80.

How many countries can an IFS officer visit in his career?

Posted in Blogosphere

What is Quora’s “Be Nice, Be Respectful” policy?

Amazingly articulated Quora's BNBR policy | Wish we apply it in so many other situations as well

What is Quora's "Be Nice, Be Respectful" policy? by Quora

Answer by Quora:

This is an official Quora policy. Last updated May 26, 2015.


A core Quora principle ("Be Nice, Be Respectful") requires that people treat other people on the site with civility, respect, and consideration. Assume that others on the site are also trying to make it a great resource. Respect opposing or differing opinions, beliefs and conclusions. Try to listen to and understand others you may disagree with. Encourage others on the site to also be welcoming and respectful.

Attacking people or content

Personal attacks are not allowed on Quora, nor are disrespectful or insulting attacks directed at other people's content. People should be civil and respectful in disagreement with others and should not (1) make attacks or otherwise disparage other people, (2) refer to other people's content with insulting or disrespectful language, (3) harass others on the site or (4) advocate self-harm, even in a joking manner. These behaviors hurt the Quora community and deter users from helping to create a better resource.

Do your best to see the world from the perspective of the person who posted the question (the original poster ["OP"]) or answer. It is often not helpful to criticize or challenge the fundamental beliefs of the OP (in an answer) or answerer (in a comment). For example, in responding to the question "Is it OK to only go to church on Easter?", the following answer would be considered disrespectful and is not allowed: "There is no God and religious rituals are a waste of time." Use good judgement and be empathetic. Answers and comments that challenge the fundamental beliefs of an OP or answerer will be held to a very high standard re: Be Nice, Be Respectful.

Comment threads & how to disagree in comments

In general, comment threads on Quora are interactions among strangers. Given that another person on the site may be new to Quora and/or doesn't know you, we require a higher level of politeness than other interactive platforms where users know one another and/or where more adversarial social norms are established and tolerated. A key goal of the Be Nice, Be Respectful policy is ensure that comments do not discourage or intimidate other people on Quora.

Disagreement and debate on Quora is encouraged and is often important to making the page more helpful. It is OK to disagree as long as your comments are civil, respectful, and polite, and as long as you give the impression of assuming good will on the part of the person you are disagreeing with. A good way of framing this test is: "If I am new to Quora and / or don't know you, would it be reasonable for me to perceive your comment as hostile or disrespectful toward me or what I've written?" The answer should be no.

In multi-comment threads where there is significant disagreement among people, a person should stop commenting on the thread before creating the reasonable impression that they are harassing, attacking, and/or bullying another person.


Examples of behaviors that violate the "Be Nice, Be Respectful" policy include:

  • Personal attacks, including hurtful, insulting, or hostile comments.
  • Making unjustified accusations against other user(s).
  • Engaging in a pattern of behaviour that constitutes harassment of a targeted person or persons, e.g., by making threats, repeated annoying and unwanted contacts, repeated personal attacks, or posting personal information.
  • Racial, sexual, homophobic, ageist, religious, political, ethnic, or other epithets directed against another contributor.
  • Using someone's affiliations as a means of dismissing or discrediting their views (this does not include pointing out a conflict of interest of relevance to the discussion at hand).
  • Speculating on the real life identity of an anonymous user.


Harassment is defined as offensive behavior that appears to a reasonable observer to have the purpose of adversely affecting a targeted person or persons. The intended outcome may be to make using Quora unpleasant for the target, to undermine them, or to discourage them from editing and using the site. Examples of harassment include (but are not limited to): (1) making threats, (2) repeated annoying and unwanted contacts, (3) posting the personal information of another person, (4) using sexually explicit, profane, adversarial, or flirtatious language toward another person if such language would likely make the person uncomfortable.

Hate speech

Users are not allowed to post content or adopt a tone that would be interpreted by a reasonable observer as a form of hate speech, particularly toward a race, gender, religion, nationality, ethnicity, political group, sexual orientation or another similar characteristic. Questions and question details about generalizations in these topics should be phrased as neutrally and respectfully as possible.

Retaliation is not OK

It is never OK to violate the Be Nice, Be Respectful policy, even in response to another person who has violated the policy.

Please note that the Be Nice, Be Respectful policy also pertains to content posted by users who no longer use Quora.

Racial and ethnic slurs

Using any of the words on Wikipedia's list of ethnic slurs is not allowed in questions, answers, or comments, unless the purpose is to ask a sincere question about the usage/background of the word.


The Be Nice, Be Respectful policy applies to Messages on Quora.


  • Content that violates this policy may be reported to and removed by admins, and violations of this policy can result in a warning, comment blocking, an edit-block, or a ban.
  • Depending on the severity of the Be Nice, Be Respectful violation, a user may be banned immediately (i.e., without waiting for content warnings or edit-blocks). People who appear to be using Quora for the primary purpose of harassing others may be banned without warning.

Block first before reporting violations

If you feel that another person is violating this policy with respect to you or your content, you should block them in addition to reporting them to moderation.

Banning users in terrorist groups

Quora will ban and delete all the content of any user who is a confirmed and/or declared member of any group on the U.S. State Department list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations.

What is Quora's "Be Nice, Be Respectful" policy?

Posted in Blogosphere

What was your most shocking experience as a doctor?

What was your most shocking experience as a doctor? by @tinynair

Answer by Tiny Nair:

The patient came and sat down.

“Sir, my problem is related to smoking; I want to stop it and I need your help and treatment”

“Don’t worry. Once you are motivated we can certainly do it”, I said emphatically”.

“Sir, it is a long history. 10 years back, I was consulting Prof. XXX with chronic cough and he told me ‘if you continue smoking you will get bronchitis’ but I didn't listen. Unfortunately Prof XXX died 2006”. (Prof XXX was my teacher in medical college)

After that I thought of consulting Dr YYY. He too said that heavy smoking may cause lung cancer, but sir, I continued to smoke. Dr YYY was so nice to me but he suddenly died. (Dr YYY was a very respected Physician in Trivandrum)

Then since 2012 I was seeing Dr ZZZ, he also warned me that if I continue smoking I might get a stroke or a heart attack. I think you know sir that after retiring from Govt. service Dr ZZZ died two months back in sleep; people say it was a stroke sir. (Dr ZZZ had a sudden cardiac arrest)

“You are my only hope sir please help me”

I knew, my time has come.

What was your most shocking experience as a doctor?

Posted in Blogosphere

What are the biggest ironies in India?

What are the biggest ironies in India? by Veda Malika

Answer by Veda Malika:

  1. Priyanka Chopra earned more money by playing the role of Mary Kom than Mary Kom earned in her entire career.

2. We consider rivers as sacred and then we pollute them.

3. Indian parents would spend more money to their daughter’s marriage rather than her education.

4. People who build our homes are homeless.

5. We will bargain with a poor street vendor but not gonna do in a supermarket.

5. Saraswathi and kali are considered as Hindu goddess in India and is preached by millions while the same ‘millions’ hate conceiving a girl child.

6. Radha and krishna are worshipped but their daughter can’t have a boyfriend.

7. Parents order girls to stay at home to prevent rape rather than teaching their sons to behave.

8. The worst movies earn the most.

9. Seeing Policeman makes us nervous rather than feeling safe.

10. One can’t spend time with family but can spend hours on social media.

11. People will speak against dowry but ask for dowry on their son’s marriage.

EDIT : This post is not to hurt anyone’s feelings and is written by collectively considering everything.

EDIT 2: If you think point no: 6 is odd or something please read my answer under Rahul Bansal’s comment to make things more unambiguous. I don’t have any intention to stab sociopolitical economic or cultural intention of readers.

What are the biggest ironies in India?