Ethics Questions

Let me present the scenario first. The time is about 8.30am and I am driving my good old M-800 to work. Already a bit late to work, I am revving the engine to its max. The moment I reached the main entrance of KBR park and headed towards the checkpost/Jubilee hills area (just to give you Hyderabadis a picture), I noticed that my car engine temperature is almost hitting the top. I slowed down and realized that the car is due for servicing. I pulled over into one of the empty parking lots of the KBR park. Mine is the lone vehicle there and the only other person in the parking bay is the guard in the security post.

Once I opened the hood, I found that the coolant tank has open lid and the leftover coolant from last top-up evaporated due to hot weather. I found a spare water bottle in my car and put the remaining water from it in the coolant tank. The tank started fuming from the hot steam from the engine fan. I needed more water to fill the engine fan, but ran out of water in my bottle. I gave an apologetic and requesting smile to the security guard who has been watching the whole fiasco. I told to him that I needed more water. he pointed me to the gardener who is watering the lawns with a rubber hose a couple of hundred yards from me.

Now comes the challenge. The gate to the fence between the parking and the lawns is already locked. The time now is about 8.35am and the gates close at 8.30am. I walked up to the gate, saw the lock and ended up in a dilemma. There is no shop in the next mile or so where I can buy a bottle of water. Leaving the car there and fetching it in the evening is an impractical solution. So I decided to jump over the gate and get water. I put my hands on the gate and gave another inquisitive look at the security guard. He understood the situation and gave a nod. My childhood skills from the countryside helped me hop over the gate. I reached the gardener, got water and filled the coolant tank. After a few thank-yous to the gardener and the security guard, I am back on the road, retrospecting on the whole episode.

Ethically, in that particular scenario:

  • Is it okay for me to consume a couple of liters of water from the park in that situation, from the hose that uses a few thousand liters a day to water the lawn?
  • Is it okay for me to jump over the gate when it is locked, barely 5-10 minutes after the visitors hours, despite getting the nod from the guard?

What do you think?

By Raju Alluri

Blogging on my personal site since 2006, I try to cover both personal and work related events and thoughts in this blog. You can reach me on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.

2 comments

  1. Raju,

    I don’t any ethical issues here. There was ‘no harm, no foul’ on your part to anyone or thing. I would have done exactly the same (well, maybe checked my coolant before the start of hot weather!) as you did.

  2. Fetching water or taking the water was perfectly fine, but jumping the gate to go and get it was not correct – security guard is at much bigger fault here and he is ethically wrong here as he allowed you to breach security before his eyes, he did not question your intention because it appeared very obvious but in such a high security area like KBR park anything can go wrong – what if there was a terrorist trying to plant something in the park or trying to leave the car behind and escape?
    So ethically according to me the security guy is at fault Raju, not you 🙂

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