2023 Ethics Case Study You are working as an executive in a nationalized bank for several years. One day one of your close colleagues tells you that her father is suffering from heart disease and needs surgery immediately to survive. She also tells you that she has no insurance and the operation will cost about Rs. 10 lakh. You are also aware of the fact that her husband is no more and that she is from a lower middle class family. You are empathetic about her situation. However, apart from expressing your sympathy, you do not have the resources to fund her. A few weeks later, you ask her about the well-being of her father and she informs you about his successful surgery and that he is recovering. She then confides in you that the bank manager was kind enough to facilitate the release of Rs. 10 lakh from a dormant recount of someone to pay for the operation with a promise that it should be confidential and be repaid at the earliest. She has already started paying it back and will continue to do no until it is all returned. (a) What are the ethical issues involved ? (b) Evaluate the behavior or the bank manager from an ethical point of view. (c) How would you react to the situation ? (Answer in 250 words)20

Answer – 

Facts of case 

  • The case study involves a colleague whose father requires emergent surgery for heart problems, which costs Rs. 10 lakh and is uninsured.
  • The bank manager cleared Rs. 10 lakh from a dormant account to pay for the operation, promising to keep it discreet and repay it quickly.
  • The colleague is repaying the money and will continue to do so.
  • The nationalized bank executive sympathized with the colleague but did not utilize personal influence or resources to release money from a dormant account.

A) The ethical issues involved in this case study are:

  • Confidentiality: The confidentiality of bank transactions is an ethical issue that should be respected.
  • Fairness: The colleague received financial assistance from the bank manager, while other customers may not have access to such assistance. This raises questions about fairness and equal treatment of customers.
  • Integrity: The bank manager may have violated the bank’s policies and procedures by facilitating the release of funds from a dormant account. This raises questions about the integrity of the bank manager.

B) Behavior of the bank manager from an ethical point of view

  • A bank manager in this case study may have acted unethically. The bank manager may have breached bank policy by releasing money from a dormant account, which violates transaction secrecy. The bank manager’s credibility is questioned. 
  • Banks and financial institutions need a code of ethics to guide their behavior and decisions. 
  • Empathy and compassion must be balanced with ethics and procedure. Banks and financial institutions need clear ethical and regulatory norms.

C) In this circumstance, ethics and bank policies must be followed. Here are some options:

  • Show empathy for the colleague’s plight, but don’t use personal power to release funds from a dormant account.
  • Suggest philanthropic or non-governmental assistance.
  • Maintain bank transactions confidentially and don’t discuss the colleague’s condition.
  • Report complaints about the bank manager’s behavior to bank authorities.
  • Make sure all acts follow the bank’s code of conduct, ethics, and relevant laws and regulations.

Empathy and compassion must be balanced with ethics and procedure. The bank can aid others while keeping its image.

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