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English Quizzes, for SBI/IBPS PO Mains 2022 – 1st January

Directions (1-5): Read the following passage and answer the following questions based on the given passage.

Seldom in the recent past has the impact of one month meant more in Indian foreign policy than the present one. And rarely have meetings on the sidelines around one summit carried as much import on India’s future policies as the G-20 summit in Osaka , where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold bilateral meetings with at least eight world leaders, and participate in two parallel trilaterals, the Russia-India-China (RIC) and Japan-U.S.-India (JAI). Two weeks ago, in June, he also held a bilateral meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Bishkek.

In a few months, he will meet the three world leaders again for more substantive meetings: with a visit to Vladivostok, a possible dash to Washington during the UN General Assembly, again in September, and the Wuhan return-visit by Mr. Xi to India in October. Between these two sets of meetings, Mr. Modi has his work cut out on a number of issues, each of which represents a fork in the road, depending on India’s decision on them: a fork where the U.S. holds one prong and the Russia-China axis holds the other.

On trade, the tussle is evident. Many in India had rejoiced when the U.S. first declared a trade war on China, given India’s long-standing concerns about China’s unfair trade practices. However, as Mr. Trump trained his guns on India next, the joy evaporated, and choices for the Modi government changed. At Osaka, Mr. Modi will meet Mr. Trump in an effort to give trade issues another try, but he also plans to attend the RIC trilateral as well as a meeting with leaders of BRICS, both of which will focus on countering the U.S.’s “unilateralism” on trade. In the months ahead, New Delhi must make another choice, on whether to sign up for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), a trade grouping that has taken Centre stage after the U.S. walked out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. If trade issues with the U.S., India’s largest trading partner, remain intractable, it is not hard to see that the RCEP bloc, with China in it, will become more prominent in India’s trade book.

The choice on energy, and in particular on Iran, comes next. When the Trump administration pulled out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear agreement in May 2018, but granted India and a few other countries a waiver to continue oil imports, the government had assumed it could muddle through the Iran-U.S. confrontation. Instead, it has lost on both principle and profit. After accepting U.S. sanctions on oil imports, India’s intake of cheaper, better Iranian crude will dip from about 23.5 million tonnes in 2018-19 to zero in 2019-20. The waiver for Chabahar port turned out to be a red herring as banks, shipping and insurance companies have declined to support India-Afghan trade through the Iranian port for fear of sanctions affecting their other businesses. What follows now will be more difficult for New Delhi, as the U.S. has sanctioned the top rungs of Iran’s government and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. Having meekly submitted to U.S. sanctions, will India now also abjure contact with the Iranian leadership or reject the U.S.’s demand? And where will India’s investments and its dreams of larger connectivity via Chabahar and the Russian-led International North-South Transport Corridor go, in the event of a full-scale confrontation between the U.S. and Iran? Willy-nilly, the forks in the road are presenting themselves and choices must be made.

In order to avoid such situations, it is necessary to reject the “tactical transactionalism” that has currency today for a more idealistic view of the world that India wishes to shape in the future. It would be a mistake, as Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said recently, if we become “nothing more than the sum of our deals”. It would be a greater misfortune, however, to be trapped in the ‘zero sum’ of our deals.

Q1. As per the context of the passage, which of the following statement(s) support(s) the fact, ‘Seldom in the recent …………. in Indian foreign policy than the present one.’?
(a) New Delhi will be forced to make a choice on telecommunications and building its 5G network
(b) Conundrum faced by India to choose between US and Russia-China on number of issues
(c) black-or-white decision on the Russian S-400 missile system
(d) Problem of China’s encroachment in sub continental waters.
(e) None of these.

Q2. Which of the following statement(s) is/are true in context of the passage?
(a) India has failed to successfully deal with Iran – US confrontation
(b) The Russia-China bond today is firmer than it has been at any point since the 1950s
(c) Chabahar port waiver has intensified the trade and business in the region
(d) Both (b) and (c)
(e) None of these

Q3. As per the passage what are the possible solutions suggested in the passage to deal with current conundrum issues faced by India?
(a) It is necessary to stay rooted in India’s own geographical moorings within Asia
(b) India needs its own list of “asks” from its relationships with big powers.
(c) India needs to re-embrace non-alignment as it was envisioned
(d) Both (a) and (c)
(e) None of these.

Q4. What does the phrase, ‘Trained his guns’ means as highlighted in the passage?
(a) Trump warned of waging war against India next
(b) Trump changed his strategy for India as he did in case of China
(c) Trump focused his attention on India after waging trade war against China
(d) Trump set his top bureaucrats against India after introducing high tariffs on Chinese imports
(e) None of these.

Q5. Which of the following is most similar in meaning to the word ‘ABJURE’ as highlighted in the passage?
(a) Retain
(b) Perpetuate
(c) Benefactor
(d) Relinquish
(e) None of these.

Directions (6-10): Read the following passage and answer the following questions based on the given passage.

The recent crash of an AN-32, which was on an air maintenance sortie to the Mechuka Advanced Landing Ground in Arunachal Pradesh, has raised questions on flight safety in the Indian Air Force despite accident rates having declined exponentially over the past few decades. The IAF flies 38 different types of aircraft and has the most varied fleet among modern air forces. Its fleet comprises aircraft like the MiG-21 and the Avro that hardly fly anywhere else. Seven of these have not had a major accident in the last five years. The long-serving IL-76 has had an accident-free innings in the IAF, a fact that is missed by most.

There is constant criticism as regards the slow phasing-out of the older variants of the MiG-21 and the MiG-27 fleets, which merits reflection. That these aircraft have no business continuing to fly is a proposition upheld even by senior IAF leadership. However, further investigation reveals a complex web of operational necessities that have forced the IAF to stretch their life and manage the ensuing risks. For the IAF to remain combat ready for full-spectrum operations, it needs a continuously trained cockpit-to-crew ratio of between 1:1.75 to 1:2 that can undertake operations and seamlessly manage the switch to more advanced platforms as they get inducted into service. Currently, the ratios can barely sustain a limited conflict, leave alone extended ones.

The MiG-21s and MiG-27s were supposed to have been replaced by Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) and Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA), a process that is unfolding at a snail’s pace. Hypothetically, had all the MiG-21s and MiG-27s been phased out without replacement, there was no scope to increase the flying of other fleets to feed the residual pilots, due to maintenance and budgetary constraints. The IAF would then have been down to 25 squadrons and saddled with large numbers of fighter pilots without operational continuity. It would then have been tough to induct advanced platforms like the LCA and Rafale, which need pilots who are current and proficient.

The IAF had very little choice in the matter and the bottom line is that the risks are rising and must be addressed with greater urgency. The way out is simple — an accelerated LCA production, no hiccups in the ongoing Rafale induction and a fast-tracking of the new deal for 114 fighter jets. As far as other flying accidents are concerned, human error is responsible for around 50% of them while issues revolving around technical, environmental and miscellaneous factors are responsible for the rest. One of the major reasons for human error is training deficiencies due to a shortage of training aircraft.

The non-availability of the HTT-40 to complement the reliable Pilatus, a delayed induction of the Intermediate Jet Trainer and a lack of clarity within the Ministry of Defence about the IAF’s proposal to buy additional Pilatus aircraft means that the IAF has to keep the 40-year-old Kiran fly-worthy and compromise on training quality and future operational proficiency. The IAF flies air maintenance sorties to support the Indian Army and conducts humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions in the most inclement of weather conditions and highly varied and inhospitable terrain. Several weather- and terrain-related accidents on helicopter and transport aircraft like the MiG-17 and AN-32 are caused due to the non-availability of on-board equipment like Ground Proximity Warning Systems and Terrain Following Radar that allow such missions to be conducted in near-blind conditions. The recent accident may never have happened had there been a fleet of medium-lift aircraft with such systems.

Q6. Which of the following is/are the possible reason(s) for the frequent crashes, as highlighted in the passage?
(a) absence of modern training simulators
(b) Unavailability of flight assistance equipment
(c) Exhaustive list of aircrafts
(d) Both (b) and (c)
(e) None of these.

Q7. Which of the following statement(s) is/are false in context of the passage?
(a) There is sense of lucidity in the MoD regarding IAF proposal
(b) The IAF conducts humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions in difficult terrains.
(c) Shortage of trainers in IAF is leading to increased crashes
(d) Both (a) and (c)
(e) None of these.

Q8. Which of the following statement(s) supports the facts that government is also responsible for the crashes?
(a) Glue- footed pace of acquisition of defence aircrafts
(b) Lack of snags in the communication between IAF and defence ministry
(c) Inadequate cockpit to crew ratio
(d) Both (a) and (b)
(e) None of these.

Q9. There is a sentence which has been italicized in the given passage, which may or may not contain some error. Choose the part that contains error as your answer. If there is no error, choose option (e) No error as your answer.
(a) However, further investigation
(b) reveals a complex web of operational
(c) necessities that have forced the IAF
(d) to stretch their life and manage the ensuing risks
(e) No Error

Q10. Which of the following is most similar to the word ‘SORTIE’ as highlighted in the passage?
(a) Feud
(b) Impasse
(c) Expedition
(d) Hike
(e) None of these.

Solutions

S1. Ans. (b)
Sol. The correct answer to the given question can be inferred from the second paragraph of the passage which states, “Between these two sets of meetings, Mr. Modi has his work cut out on a number of issues, each of which represents a fork in the road, depending on India’s decision on them: a fork where the U.S. holds one prong and the Russia-China axis holds the other.” The remaining options seem viable but there is no mention of these in the given passage. Hence, the correct answer choice is option (b).

S2. Ans. (a)
Sol. The correct answer to the given question can be inferred from the fourth paragraph of the passage, which states, ‘the government had assumed it could muddle through the Iran-U.S. confrontation. Instead, it has lost on both principle and profit’. So from the given statement it can be clearly inferred that India failed miserably while dealing in Iran matter. Hence, the correct answer choice would be option (a)

S3. Ans. (e)
Sol. There is no mention of the possible steps to be taken by India in the given passage. Hence, the correct answer choice is option (e)

S4. Ans. (c)
Sol. ‘Trained his guns’ means give close, possibly hostile, attention to something. Hence, from the given options, option (c) is the most appropriate answer choice.

S5. Ans. (d)
Sol. Abjure means solemnly renounce
Retain means keep possession of.
Perpetuate means make (something) continue indefinitely
Benefactor means a person who gives money or other help to a person or cause.
Relinquish means voluntarily cease to keep or claim
Hence, from the given options, only option (d) is the most appropriate answer choice.

S6. Ans. (b)
Sol. The correct answer to the given question can be inferred from the last paragraph of the given passage which states, ‘Several weather- and terrain-related accidents on helicopter and transport aircraft like the MiG-17 and AN-32 are caused due to the non-availability of on-board equipment like Ground Proximity Warning Systems and Terrain’. Apart from this, there is no mention of training simulators in the passage and there is no mention that exhaustive list of aircraft is leading to the crashes. Hence, the correct answer choice would be option (b).

S7. Ans. (d)
Sol. The correct answer to the given question can be inferred from the fourth and fifth paragraph of the passage, which states, ‘One of the major reasons for human error is training deficiencies due to a shortage of training aircraft.’ Here, we can infer that there is no shortage of trainers instead shortage of of training aircrafts. Also, as given in fifth paragraph, ‘lack of clarity within the Ministry of Defence about the IAF’s proposal’, we infer that statement (c) is also incorrect.
Lucidity means the quality of being coherent and intelligible.
Hence, the correct answer choice would be option (d)

S8. Ans. (a)
Sol. The correct answer to the given question can be inferred from the third paragraph of the passage, which states, ‘The MiG-21s and MiG-27s were supposed to have been replaced by Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) and Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA), a process that is unfolding at a snail’s pace.’
Snags mean an unexpected or hidden obstacle or drawback, so looking at the fifth paragraph, which states that, ‘a delayed induction of the Intermediate Jet Trainer and a lack of clarity within the Ministry of Defence about the IAF’s proposal’. So the statement given in option (b) is opposite to the fact stated in the passage. And option (c) fails to support the given fact. Hence, option (a) is the most appropriate answer choice.

S9. Ans. (e)
Sol. The italicized statement is grammatically correct and does not requires any changes. Hence, option (e) is the most suitable answer choice.

S10. Ans. (c)
Sol. Feud means a prolonged and bitter quarrel or dispute.
Impasse means a situation in which no progress is possible
Expedition means a journey undertaken by a group of people with a particular purpose
Hike means a long walk or walking tour.
So, from the given options, only option (c) is most similar in meaning to the given word, hence the answer.

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