Reading Comprehension Passage Exercises

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    Reading Comprehension passage

    Reading Comprehension Passage Solved Examples.

    Reading Comprehension Passage:

    Reading Comprehension Passage constitutes a major part of English syllabus in all Government/ Banking exams. Almost 30% questions in English section are Reading Comprehension Passages and remaining 70% questions cover the rest of English section syllabus.

    Topic Questions
    Reading Comprehension Passage 10-15
    Fill in the Blanks 5-10
    Sentence Correction/ Spotting Error 5-10
    Para Jumbles 5-10
    Synonyms/ Antonyms 5-10

    What Is Reading Comprehension Passage?

    • Reading Comprehension is basically the act of understanding the passage you are reading. We can simply define what Reading Comprehension is? but it is up to that how much you practice and learn.
    • Reading Comprehension process is a willful, active and mutual process that occurs before, during and after a person read the particular piece of Passage writing.

    Important points to remember while solving Reading Comprehension Passage:

    • Since any and every reading that you do involves comprehending and connecting to the author of the reading comprehension passage, in order to become a good reader you need to understand the process through which a good writer goes while writing any piece—(be it as short as a paragraph long to a passage of 1000 words to a full-length book).
    • The closer your skeleton/map is to what the author must have formulated, the more comprehensive will be your understanding of the passage you are reading.
    • As you must have understood, your ability to solve these questions depends directly on the extensiveness of your reading habits and how often and in what form of usage you have seen the word earlier.
    • A closer look at other question types on Verbal Ability will further bear out this fact that—strong reading exposure, habits, and skills are a must in order to solve questions of Verbal Ability.
    • In our experience, based on their reading exposure levels, students might be classified under four categories:
      • The Poor Reader: If you think you belong to the poor reader category, your initial reading should start off with editorials of good quality national level newspapers (like The Hindu, The Hindustan Times, The Deccan Herald, The Times of India, The Pioneer, The Indian Express, etc.), analysis based articles in these newspapers and analytical articles in national level current issues magazines (like India Today, Frontline, Week, etc.). You can also graduate to books written in simple English (both fictional and nonfictional).
      • The Average Reader: If you think you belong to the average reader category, your reading scheme should start off with reading editorials from newspapers mentioned above, as also from Economic newspapers and should also include higher level magazines which use good quality English in their writing (like Time, Fortune and Economist).
      • The Good Reader: If you belong to the good reader category, your objective should be to raise fair level through consistently reading material that challenges your comprehension. Magazines like Time & Economist & articles/books on Philosophy, advanced Scientific texts etc. should from your daily reading scheme.
      • The Excellent Reader: This category of the reader has gone beyond the levels required to connect to any of the above three extracts. He/she has typically read a lot of diverse topics and at varying levels of language usage. All you need to do is to continue your good work and further expand your level of exposure and increase the coverage of topics with which you are familiar.
    • Why Speed Reading Does Not Work, and in Fact is not Needed
      • There are a lot of books and trainers around who talk about speed reading, promising inexperienced readers a never before and almost magical jump in their reading abilities.
      • However, in our experience of training thousands of students, we have seen the futility of speed reading techniques. The fact that the ‘magic’ wears off the moment you try to read anything outside the provided exercises has been a constant in our years of experience of having trained students.
      • In fact, the moment a ‘speed reading trained student’ is confronted with something remotely heavy, the speed reading techniques stop working.
      • The basic reason why these reading techniques do not work under the examination reading conditions is that these techniques are designed for sparse and easy reading materials. (Speed reading is typically defined for ordinary, nontechnical matter).
      • On the contrary, the reading comprehension passage and extracts used in the Bank, Govt and other competition exams are dense in terms of their content. They contain too much information and any attempt at skimming and scanning (which are recommended speed reading techniques) result in a loss of comprehension. Sometimes, missing on a crucial sentence might just end up making you lose your connection with the author totally.
      • We suggest you work on your reading speed but try not to skim or scan material, try to focus on whole reading comprehension passage.

    The following seven Reading comprehension passage are a reproduction of the Reading Comprehension(RC) section of various bank and competitive exams. The first three Reading Comprehension passage belong to difficulty level beginner, then next four belong to Intermediate level.

    Reading Comprehension Passage(Difficulty level – Beginner):

    READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGE 1:

    We can see that a child’s education gets kick-started in the early years of his/her life, within a few months after being born, as the child starts realizing the use of his/her sense organs. Early childhood generally refers to the period from birth to the age of five, during which the child’s cognitive development starts, which includes building skills such as pre-reading, language, vocabulary, numeracy and awareness.

    Developmental scientists claim that the brain acquires a plethora of information about language in the first year of life even before infants can speak. By the time babies utter or understand their first words, their brains can comprehend which is particularly sounds that their language uses, what sounds can be combined to create words, and the tempo and rhythm of words and phrases. Their gibberish chatters, highly entertaining, slowly verbalize into distinct articulation.

    There is a strong connection between the development a child undergoes early in life and the level of success that the child will experience later. Infants exposed to the continual use of their visual, auditory, olfactory, tactile and sensory organs are more perceptive to concepts in their later years of life.

    Therefore, no sooner the child learns to walk than he/she is exposed to the new environment of early schooling. The pre-school curriculum comprises various activity-based play methods oriented at enabling the child to imbibe the concepts related to recognition of objects, colors, shapes, sizes. It requires immense patience encompassed with utmost care and affection to infuse the kids with these concepts.

    Since the finger muscles are soft and supple, the kids are first exposed to smooth crayons and the world of coloring, followed by strokes and curves. The child’s first writing of alphabet and the number is an achievement in itself, and a pride for the parents and teachers. The most significant aspect of this early childhood education is instilling confidence in these kids. Oral recitation of rhymes, songs, stories is an activity which enthralls children and rejuvenates their energy levels to a new scale and sows the seeds of confidence simultaneously.

    Kudos to the preschool teachers for their undaunted priceless efforts in performing this herculean task of giving the first shape to the clay. The effort of the preschool teachers is highly commendable and praiseworthy and requires utmost recognition and unanimous gratitude from the society.

    Q.1) Why is a child made to recite songs stories and rhymes, in early childhood?

    1. It instills confidence in him.
    2. It makes them more energetic.
    3. They find such activities exciting.
    1.  Only A
    2.  Only B
    3.  Only C
    4.  Only B and C
    5.  All of the above are the reasons.

    Q.2) According to the passage, how do circumstances in which the child spends early years of his life, affect his life later?

    1. The child never changes the concept he learns during this stage.
    2. It shapes his personality and attitude.
    3. It determines the level of success he achieves.
    4. It determines whether the child will be able to socialize well or not.
    5. They do not affect the child’s life in any possible way.

    Q.3) From which stage of his life, does the child start receiving the education?

    1. All of his adulthood and old age
    2. During his adulthood
    3. After his childhood
    4. A few months after taking birth
    5. Not clearly mentioned in the passage

    Q.4) Which of the following is/are FALSE according to the passage?

    1. The effort put in by preschool teachers is priceless.
    2. The child goes to school after he starts walking.
    3. The mind of children gathers information only when the child starts speaking.
    4. Duration from birth to age of five years is called early childhood.
    5. All of the above

    Q.5) Why do preschool teachers deserve a lot of respect and gratitude?

    1. They are the first people who help children start education and form primary concepts.
    2. They receive a higher salary than the ones who teach students of other standards.
    3. They need to have loveable nature and passion of teaching which makes them worthy of respect.
    4. Their qualification and experience remain very high.
    5. Not mentioned in the passage

    Q.6) Pre school curriculum does not remain based, on which of the following?

    1. Shapes
    2. Critique
    3. Objects
    4. Colours
    5. Sizes

    Q.7) Choose the word most  SIMILAR in meaning to the word printed in bold, as used in the passage.

    Imbibe

    1. Learn
    2. Indulge
    3. Feast
    4. Rejoice
    5. Forge

    Q.8) Choose the word most SIMILAR in meaning to the word printed in bold, as used in the passage.

    Herculean

    1. Directed
    2. Formidable
    3. Prohibitive
    4. Creativity
    5. Challenging

    Q.9) Choose the word which is most nearly the OPPOSITE in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Comprehend

    1. Measure
    2. Incorporate
    3. Confuse
    4. Acknowledge
    5. Liberalize

    Q.10) Choose the word which is most nearly the OPPOSITE in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Gibberish

    1. Threatening
    2. Sensible
    3. Bulky
    4. Mysterious
    5. Miraculous

    Reading comprehension passage Answers:

    Question Answer
    1 e
    2 c
    3 d
    4 c
    5 a
    6 b
    7 a
    8 e
    9 c
    10 b

    READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGE 2:

    The world is full of warring people: brothers, sisters, spouses, communities, nations-no one is free from this affliction. The meanings of words such as brother or spouse have become defunct, now referring to a mere biological/legal connection rather than the deeper relationships of love, companionship, and friendship. The cause of the warring? Old rivalries, grudges, misunderstandings and conflicting value systems. The last goes to the root of it all.

    Many would like to believe that people are inherently deceptive, scheming, selfish or aggressive. However, this is not true. What is intrinsic to people is their value system-hierarchical structures of things they value most in their lives. This may be money, power, adventure, security, health, career, studies, fame, the opposite sex, friends, family or even things like food, sports, dancing, partying and sometimes something much deeper, such as philanthropy, social work or God. Any one of these can take precedence over all others if it is at the top of a person value system.

    Understanding that other people don’t always share the same value systems as we do, is the first and most crucial step towards creating friendship or resolving strife.It makes it easier for us to let go more often. Too many discussions on trivial matters such as the distance from Mumbai to Delhi end up in argument and bitter exchanges. Learn to laugh and change the topic or just agree or keep quiet. Talk about subjects which interest others, not yourself, even if those subjects are truly boring. Remember, they mean a lot in the value system of the other person. Ask them how they got involved in the subject and about their experiences and opinions.

    The more people you show interest in, the more friends you’ll have. But remember, do not assume that friends are primarily for helping you. That may be disastrous. That thought represents your value system. In serious matters, however, all individuals should enter a mutual, written agreement in the company of witnesses from both sides: even in dealings with one’s father, brother, sister, wife, son or best friend.

    Remember, they may not all subscribe to the same value system as you. Or, their value systems might change in the future.When young, many people subscribe to the value all for one and one for all. Later, after many thankless experiences, they furiously switch over to every man for himself. So, if a person refuses to enter into such a written agreement with you, make some excuse and just call off the plan. Even if it sours relations a little, it won’t sour them as much as it will years later. The master formula is: to get a friend, be a friend. But please choose your friends carefully. Their value system will determine their destiny. Associating with them may determine yours too.

    Q.1) Why is it that blood relations are also not at normal terms with each other?

    1. because everyone wants to win the race
    2. because the amity bond within family members is not stronger these days
    3. because they try to supersede each other
    4. because everyone is living with a sense of insecurity
    5. None of these

    Q.2) What would make the meanings of words such as brother or spouse functional?

    1. understanding these terms with a commercial purpose
    2. making all the members of a family live under one roof
    3. promoting the idea of giving and take
    4. promoting caring attitude towards each other
    5. None of these

    Q.3) What has been mentioned as the root cause behind warring?

    1. difference and conflict in priority areas of people
    2. dependence on each other in the society
    3. jealousy and hatred
    4. unsatisfied ego problem of some people
    5. None of these

    Q.4) What is the most crucial step for resolving a dispute?

    1. Bilateral talks
    2. going to the core of the problem
    3. It must be learned that different persons may have different areas of priority.
    4. taking punitive action against the guilty
    5. None of these

    Q.5) Why does the author suggest to talk about subjects which interest others, not yourself?

    1. to avoid confrontation
    2. to keep the debate going on
    3. to engage other people in the discussion
    4. to win the heart of others
    5. None of these

    Q.6) Why has it been suggested that in serious matters all individuals should enter a mutual, written agreement in the company  of witnesses from both sides?

    1. because it is hard to trust anyone in this world today
    2. because value systems may differ from person to person
    3. because it is better to avoid risk in such matters
    4. because in any serious issue proof is vital
    5. None of these

    Q.7) What do you make out of the expression-all for one and one for all as used in the passage?

    1. working in proximity with each other
    2. a strong family bond
    3. showing exemplary courage in dealing with tough matters
    4. sacrificing one’s goal for others
    5. None of these

    Q.8) Which of the following is false in the context of the passage?

    1. Today even members of a family are not in good terms with one another.
    2. Preference areas of people may differ from one another.
    3. Conflicting value systems is the root cause behind warring.
    4. Friends are always to help you in times of trouble.
    5. None of these

    Q.9) What message does the author want to convey through this passage?

    1. The world is full of conflicts.
    2. Make friends, not enemies.
    3. The difference in priority areas generates conflicts.
    4. Nothing is permanent in this world.
    5. None of these

    Q.10) Choose the word which is same in meaning as the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    AFFLICTION

    1. distress
    2. disease
    3. malady
    4. malaise
    5. hazard

    Q.11) Choose the word which is same in meaning as the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    DECEPTIVE

    1. rubbish
    2. haunting
    3. fearsome
    4. misleading
    5. selfish

    Q.12) Choose the word which is same in meaning as the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    STRIFE

    1. furor
    2. conflict
    3. chaos
    4. mystery
    5. deadlock

    Q.13) Choose the word which is opposite in meaning of the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    PRECEDENCE

    1. sideline
    2. subsidiary
    3. backseat
    4. neglect
    5. boundary

    Q.14) Choose the word which is opposite in meaning of the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    BITTER

    1. sour
    2. rewarding
    3. fruitful
    4. deserving
    5. pleasant

    Q.15) Choose the word which is opposite in meaning of the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    SUBSCRIBE

    1. return
    2. disagree
    3. force
    4. revolt
    5. sell

    Reading comprehension passage Answers:

    Question Answer
    1 b
    2 d
    3 a
    4 c
    5 d
    6 b
    7 e
    8 d
    9 c
    10 a
    11 d
    12 b
    13 c
    14 e
    15 b

    READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGE 3:

    The subject “Good Governance” is both topical and timely. It is an axiom of political science that a State comes into being for life but it exists for good life. The duty of the state is not only to protect life and liberty but goes further, to enable the people to live in a measure of physical and mental comfort.

    Democracy is a government by the citizens themselves. The people should realize that they are responsible for choosing the right and proper persons to represent them in national affairs. In colonial administration, the government was different from the people. Those governments ruled but without the consent and concurrence of the people. This old concept still persists in the masses today. They do not realize that the general election is the occasion for them to choose a government for themselves. On the contrary, the masses feel that the franchise is a patronage to be conferred on their kith and kin, or the local candidate, or one of their caste and religious fraternity.

    In mature democracies, a person who changes his party affiliation or crosses the floor seldom gets re-elected by the electorate. They do not trust him to stand firm by the policies and programs proposed by him. In India, a person who was in the Congress Government and immediately thereafter in the Janata Government and then in Chandrashekhar Government was re-elected and came once again into the Congress Government!

    The electorate votes for a criminal or a corrupt candidate and bemoans that the country has a bad government. The electorate does not realize that even as it contributes to its own household expenditure, it has to contribute to the country’s governance. It is easily misled by the unscrupulous promises of political parties of free food, free clothes, free electricity, free everything. Even enlightened people plead for tax concessions, subsidies and incentives oblivious of the fact that they are met by borrowings which in turn impose burdens indirectly on themselves.

    Besides, in a true democracy, the people voluntarily observe the laws, rules, and regulations as they are forged by themselves in the interest of good governance. It is only because 90% of the people abide by the laws and 10% transgress them that the state is able to maintain order and harmony. If the situation were reversed with 90% transgressing the law and 10% abiding by it, there can be no organized society, no peace, and harmony. Some of the advanced countries, notably Switzerland, have perhaps the highest degree of compliance. A mere board stating that the road is closed will be complied with by almost 100% of the people.

    Q.1) Which of the following is supposed to be the most relevant duty of the state?

    1. to ensure the sovereignty of the region
    2. to ensure the prosperity of the region
    3. to look after the welfare of its people
    4. to develop better terms with other nations
    5. None of these

    Q.2) What is the basic difference between democracy and colonial rule?

    1. In a democracy, people’s will prevails whereas in a colonial rule ruler’s will prevails.
    2. Democracy is a rule by different parties whereas a colonial rule is a single-party rule.
    3. Democracy can be opposed by the people but such is not the case with colonial rule
    4. A colonial rule can be converted into a democracy but the same can not happen with a democracy.
    5. None of these

    Q.3) If the people want to have a responsible government in a democracy

    1. they must call for free and fair elections.
    2. they should take charge of the elections.
    3. they should elect educated and experienced representatives.
    4. they should look for the single-party rule.
    5. they should elect desirable candidates.

    Q.4) Why does a person changing his party find it hard to get re-elected in mature democracies?

    1. because political parties suspect his fidelity
    2. because he losses his image in the political circle
    3. because his eligibility for fighting elections gets questioned
    4. because he has to depend upon the stand of his new party
    5. None of these

    Q.5) In a country like India who is mainly responsible for good or bad governance?

    1. the system of electing our representatives
    2. the political parties
    3. the voters
    4. the political party in power
    5. None of these

    Q.6) Which of the following is true in the context of the passage?

    1. Good governance is related to the welfare of the people.
    2. We have a mature democracy in India.
    3. The leaders who change parties faces hurdles in getting re-elected in our country.
    4. Colonial rule was much better than the present democracy.
    5. None of these

    Q.7) What makes Switzerland a successful democracy?

    1. clear instructions regarding public
    2. concerns marked on boards even on roadsides
    3. high rate of literacy among the populace of law-abiding citizens
    4. governance with a mission
    5. None of these

    Q.8) Which of the following suggestions may not be necessary to make India a mature democracy?

    1. The voters should elect candidates with the clean image.
    2. The voters should not entertain candidates who frequently change their party and ideology.
    3. The voters should shun their narrow interests while voting for their candidates.
    4. The people should respect the law of the land.
    5. None of these

    Q.9) Choose the word which is the same in meaning as the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    CONCURRENCE

    1. satisfaction
    2. agreement
    3. participation
    4. loyalty
    5. dependence

    Q.10) Choose the word which is opposite in meaning of the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    SELDOM

    1. hardly
    2. unopposed
    3. generally
    4. majority
    5. convincingly

    Reading comprehension passage Answers:

    Question Answer
    1 c
    2 a
    3 e
    4 e
    5 c
    6 a
    7 c
    8 e
    9 b
    10 c

    Reading Comprehension Passages(Difficulty level – Intermediate):

    READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGE 1:

     

    By the mid nineteen the century, the educated Indian had become sufficiently aware of both his rich historical heritage and the abject state of his current existence. Nostalgia and a sense of racial identity grew as Indians gradually perceived the oppressiveness of alien rule. In the early nineteenth century Orientalist scholars associated with the Fort William College, Kolkata, helped considerably to unearth several obscure Indian texts and traditions, thereby also creating a new awareness and sensitivity among Indians about their cultural heritage.

    In the first half of the nineteenth century, particularly in Bengal , patriotism was not grossly inconsistent with an undisguised support for the consistent continuation of the British rule. Bengali writers of this period made repeated references to how the British has ‘rescued’ India from many centuries of ‘tyrannical’ and unprogressive’ Muslim rule. Many people of this time, in fact, made an important distinction between the pragmatic gains to be made from a short term tutelage under the British rule and a long€“ term objective of securing independence from it. Though such thoughts ultimately proved to be naive and over-optimistic, in the 1820s and 1830s the advantages of the British rule seemed to outweigh its disadvantages. In a letter written in 1823 to Governor General Lord Amherst, Raja Rammohan Roy (1774-1833) opposed an official move to open a Sanskrit College on the ground that it would produce no positive or progressive influence on the educated Hindu. He felt rather than indulging themselves in abstract metaphysical speculation as was likely to be the result of a purely Sanskritic education, Indians would profit far more by imbibing the best of modern European civilization pragmatism and a rational, scientific outlook. Social usefulness, more than anything else, was now to be the true measure of things. Rammohan’s emphasis on rationality and a commonsense approach to religion led some of his friends and admirers to call him a ‘religious utilitarian’.

    Q.1) Bengali writers in the first half of the nineteenth century

    1. started appreciating the work of Raja Rammohan Roy
    2. appreciated the British rule for rescuing India from the Muslim rule
    3. proclaimed themselves as patriotic writers who can save India from cultural aggression
    4. realized the importance of the careful and systematic study of ancient Indian texts.
    5. None of these

    Q.2) Choose the words which are most opposite in meaning to the word abject as used in the passage.

    1. exalted
    2. absolute
    3. scarce
    4. negative
    5. virtual

    Q.3) Which thoughts, according to the passage, proved imprudent and over optimistic?

    1. British rule was advantageous to India in the shorter
    2. making a distinction between short- term and long-term objectives
    3. patriotism is a natural instinct among people
    4. Indians would profit more by modern European Civilization
    5. None of these

    Q.4) Which awareness had dawned on Indians by the mid nineteenth century?

    1. the long-term advantage of British rule
    2. the secondary citizenship of Indian masses
    3. glorious state of their existence
    4. rationalistic attitude towards living
    5. rich historical heritage

    Q.5) Which of the following was opposed by Raja Rammohan Roy?

    1. the tradition of Sati€ and child marriage
    2. interference of the Britishers in Indian cultural traditions
    3. official move to open a Sanskrit College
    4. rapid growth of English as a principal medium of instruction
    5. Orientalist scholars joining Fort William College.

    Q.6) Choose the word which is similar in meaning to the word €˜tutelage™ as used in the passage.

    1. protection
    2. remedy
    3. planning
    4. contribution
    5. strategy

    Q.7) What did Raja Rammohan Roy feel about pure Sanskrit education?

    1. it will imbibe the best of spiritual Indian civilization
    2. it will create awareness of our true cultural heritage
    3. it will generate nostalgia and strong racial identity
    4. it will enhance patriotism among people.
    5. it will spread abstract metaphysical speculation

    Q.8) What was the contribution of early nineteenth century Orientalist scholars?

    1. making the study of Sanskrit popular
    2. emphasizing the importance of the study of Indian
    3. texts and traditions
    4. encouraging students to get admission in Fort William College.
    5. creating awareness of and sensitivity to cultural heritage

    Q.9) Which factor brought a sense of racial identity among the Indians?

    1. increasing understanding of the Indian education system
    2. economic inequality among the people
    3. growing harshness of the British rule
    4. regional imbalance within the country
    5. growing religious fundamentalism among the people

    Q.10) Choose the word which is most opposite in meaning to the word naive as used in the passage.

    1. abstract
    2. speculative
    3. hypothetical
    4. wise
    5. lasting

    Reading comprehension passage Answers:

    Question Answer
    1 b
    2 a
    3 b
    4 e
    5 c
    6 a
    7 e
    8 e
    9 c
    10 d

    READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGE 2:

    One of the first declarations of the newly elected government in June was a proposal to ban unhealthy or junk food (defined as food high on fat, sugar and salt) in school canteens across the country. This was followed up with an increase in the prices of soft drinks in the recent budget.

    This has been part of a long-standing demand of child rights activists, nutritionists and public health experts to discourage the availability of fast food and other food items containing unhealthy ingredients. This includes a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) plea in the Delhi High Court demanding a ban on junk food and carbonated drinks in schools and on their sale within a radius of 500 yards.

    There is no disagreement among health and nutrition experts that the ‘developed’ world is in the grip of an obesity epidemic and ‘developing’ countries like India are fast following suit. The World Health Organisation (WHO) warns that more than 40 million children under the age of five were overweight or obese in 2012 If left unchecked, this figure would rise to 70 million by 2015

    While underweight continues to be a crucial problem in terms of burden of disease in developing countries, obesity is fast catching up and can hardly be ignored. In developing countries, the prevalence of childhood obesity in preschool children is in excess of 30 per cent. Thus, countries like India carry the ‘€˜double burden’ of high levels of malnutrition caused by food insecurity and growing levels of obesity caused by diets high in sugar, oil and salt along with sedentary lifestyle.

    Obese children experience breathing difficulties, increased risk of fractures, hypertension, early markers of cardiovascular diseases, insulin resistance and psychological effects, and the resultant non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, strokes and heart disease are already contributing significantly to adult mortality. What is critical is that in countries like India, it diverts family resources from nutritious food to the empty calories of highly processed foods.

    According to World Health Organization (WHO), effective population-based childhood obesity prevention strategies include restrictions on marketing of unhealthy food (biscuits and potato chips, for instance) and non-alcoholic beverages (soft/carbonated drinks) to children.

    Further, the issue of conflict of interest in allowing the junk food industry to participate in policy-making has been continuously raised by civil society, and partially addressed by WHO in its documents. The WHO states that ‘concerns have been raised regarding the influence of for-profit companies — particularly from the food industry — on the priorities of obesity prevention interventions and the selection of strategies.

    There have been numerous reports of conflict of interest related to the presence of big-food giants in decision-making bodies of Pan American Health Organisation (an office related to WHO); Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement, comprising governments, civil society, the United Nations, donors, businesses and scientists; and GAIN (Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition) which statedly supports market-based solutions for malnutrition and partners with UNICEF on numerous projects. Many of these relationships have been subsequently sanitized as a result of public protest.

    On its part, the Indian government has stayed fairly clear from such associations and is not currently a part of the SUN Alliance. In fact, it made a statement at the recent World Health Assembly on the agenda item related to engaging with non-state actors, cautioning about indirect funding from the processed food industry.

    The mention of ready-to-eat foods, it is feared, leaves the door open for food industries to step up their attempts to capture the large potential market of the public food schemes (mid-day meals and food delivered through the an gan wadis).

    Public pressure had resulted in the removal of stringent standards for micronutrient content of the food to be served to children from Schedule II of the Act. This was on the grounds that while quality standards are required and desirable, village women or self-help groups cooking/preparing these meals would not be able to demonstrate these standards since labeling and testing would not be available to them. A case was also made that additional micro-nutrient requirements are being met through national programs run by the Ministry of Health, such as the Vitamin A and Iron supplementation programs, and we need not meddle with the entire process of food production and distribution to meet these requirements. However, these stringent standards have been brought back through the draft rules that have been put up recently by the Ministry of Women and Child Development.

    The problem of junk and processed, packaged food in India is reaching dramatic proportions with every tiny village shop laden with packets of potato chips and namkeen and carbonated drinks. Junk food is far cheaper and more immediately filling than the high-quality protein and micro-nutrient sources. Any practitioner with field experience would know that biscuits are used as the commonest complementary food in slums and suburban areas since they are convenient for working women to hand out to children through the day.

    It behooves the government to recognize conflicts of interest, eschew these ‘partnerships’ and focus on stringent regulation and accountability instead of validating junk food companies by accepting their money and proudly proclaiming them as allies. Similarly, a visible public-policy support is required for the public food programs that clearly favor the use of fresh, culturally appropriate food with sufficiency and diversity, using local resources.

    If we allow the dangerous global trends towards unhealthy, processed and packaged foods to overwhelm the food culture in India, the direct and indirect public cost is likely to be enormous. Let us choose to save our children while we still have the chance.

    Q.1) The author has expressed negative consequences of which of the following, in the passage?

    1. Interaction of parents with the children
    2. Changing habits of children
    3. Processed and packaged food
    4. The rising inflation level in India
    5. Diverse food choices in India

    Q.2) Why is India said to have been carrying the ‘double burden’?

    1. The food in India is expensive yet more and more children are becoming obese
    2. It has to deal with the problems of malnutrition and obesity at the same time.
    3. Indian food has less demand as compared to processed food provided by international food giants.
    4. Only 1 and 3
    5. Not mentioned in the passage

    Q.3) What is meant by ‘indirect public cost’ as mentioned in the passage?

    1. The overhead expenses are borne by the individuals to buy food
    2. The government aid provided to ensure availability of food
    3. The price paid for food in terms of taxes
    4. The health related problems caused by consuming junk food.
    5. All of the above

    Q.4) Why do people prefer junk food to the food made locally?

    1. It is not expensive and satiates hunger immediately.
    2. Junk food is delivered at home whereas this facility is not available with most of locally- made food.
    3. Junk food has the aroma that attracts most of the people.
    4. Locally made food is considered unhygienic.
    5. Not mentioned in the passage.

    Q.5) Which of the following is/are TRUE in the context of the passage?

    1. The ready-to-eat food industry could capture the large potential market of the public food schemes.
    2. The Indian government has willingly become a part of the SUN Alliance
    3. Child rights activists, nutritionists, and public health experts have been raising their voice against fast food and other food items containing unhealthy ingredients.
    4. Carbonated drinks are said to have high nutritional value.
    1. Only B
    2. Only A and C
    3. Only B and D
    4. All except A
    5. All except D

    Q.6) Which of the following is/are public food schemes?

    1. Meals delivered to restaurants
    2. Food delivered through anganwadis
    3. Mid-day meals
    4. Meals provided by canteens of government offices
    1. Only C
    2. Only A and B
    3. Only A and C
    4. Only B and C
    5. None of these

    Q.7) Choose the word most similar in meaning to the word printed in bold, as used in the passage.

    Behoves

    1. Bothers
    2. Castigates
    3. Provokes
    4. Promises
    5. Obligates

    Q.8) Choose the word most similar in meaning to the word printed in bold, as used in the passage.

    Overwhelm

    1. Stabilize
    2. Discourage
    3. Demonstrate
    4. Promote
    5. Boggle

    Q.9) Choose the word which is most nearly the OPPOSITE in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Sedentary

    1. Lavish
    2. Official
    3. Social
    4. Active
    5. Inspirational

    Q.10) Choose the word which is most nearly the OPPOSITE in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Availability

    1. Capability
    2. Quality
    3. Scarcity
    4. Worth
    5. Transparency

    Reading comprehension passage Answers:

    Question Answer
    1 c
    2 b
    3 d
    4 a
    5 b
    6 d
    7 e
    8 d
    9 d
    10 c

    READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGE 3:

    A variety of reasons has been put forward from time to time for the sharp increase in the value of restructured and non-performing loans of Indian banks over the last couple of years. These range from the holding up of clearances to the slowing economy. If a completed power project is not able to get coal supplies due to Coal India not getting environmental clearances, this ensures the loans given to the power projects turn NPA. Similarly, at a time when slowing demand, both locally as well as overseas, is straining the top line and bottom line, it becomes difficult for firms to service bank loans that, over a period of time, turn NPA. To that extent, any turnaround in the economy’s fortunes is expected to slow down the growth in NPAs; faster clearances of projects by the Cabinet Committee on Investments (CCI) will also have the same impact. Were the government to take certain policy decisions, such as on coal price-pooling, this will also help-in this case, power projects that cannot sell their power as it is too expensive will get welcome relief.

    The problem, however, is that the debt-recovery process isn’t getting better either. Indeed, it could be getting worse, going by data presented in the latest report of the standing committee on finance. The bulk of loan recovery cases, for instance, are now going through the Sarfaesi route since the new law was supposed to be dramatically faster when it came to recovering loans-from 46% in FY10, nearly 60% of all loan recovery cases (by way of the amounts involved) went through this route in FY12. Debt recovery tribunals were also presented as a fast way to recover loans and the value of cases going through this route rose from 31% of all cases in FY10 to 39% in FY12. Yet, the recovery rates have plunged, especially in the case of the debt recovery tribunals, from 32% in FY10 to 17% in FY12. In the Sarfaesi case, the value of recoveries were just 30% of all the cases referred (in terms of value) in FY10 and this fell to 29% in FY12. Given that NPAs and restructured loans have risen to around 12% of all bank loans today, fixing this is something the government needs to give serious thought to.

    Q.1) Which of the following is one of the reasons for the increase in the value of non-performing assets of Indian banks?

    1. Slowing demand
    2. Apathy of government in taking decisions on faster clearances of some policies
    3. Holding up of clearances
    4. Poor debt giving process
    5. Not mentioned in the passage.

    Q.2) What will be the impact of faster clearances of projects by the Cabinet Committee on Investments (CCI)?

    1. Power projects will get some relief
    2. It will become difficult for firms to repay bank loans
    3. The bulk of loans would turn to NPA
    4. It is expected that there would be a slow down in the growth of NPA
    5. All of the above

    Q.3) What does the latest report of the standing committee on finance project about NPAs?

    1. Most of the cases of loan recovery are going through the Sarfaesi Act.
    2. Debt recovery tribunals have lowered NPAs from 32% to 17%.
    3. The Debt recovery process can get worse as per the data presented in the latest report.
    1. Only B
    2. Only A
    3. Only B and C
    4. Only A and B
    5. Only C

    Q.4) Which of the following is TRUE in the context of the passage?

    1. The value of debt-recovery cases going through debt recovery tribunals rose to 39% in the Financial year 2012.
    2. The recovery rates of loans through Debt recovery tribunals fell to 17% in FY12.
    3. The value of recoveries of all debt recovery cases dealt under the Sarfaesi Act fell by 1% in 2012
    1. Only A
    2. Only C
    3. Only B
    4. All A, B, C
    5. None of these

    Q.5) Which of the following is NOT TRUE in the context of the passage?

    1. There has been a sharp increase in the value of restructured and non-performing loans of   Indian banks last year (2012).
    2. The value of debt-recovery cases going through debts recovery tribunal rose 8% from FY 2010-2012.
    3. The NPAs and restructured loans have risen to around 12% of all bank loans in the present time.
    1. Only A
    2. Only C
    3. A and C
    4. B and C
    5. Only B

    Q.6) Which of the following can be a suitable TITLE for the passage?

    1. Recovering loans
    2. NonPerforming Assets
    3. DRT vs Sarfaesi
    4. Bank loans turning NPAs every day
    5. A relief to banks in recovering NPAs

    Q.7) Choose the word which is most nearly the SAME in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Plunged

    1. ascended
    2. rose
    3. descended
    4. fallen
    5. tumble

    Q.8) Choose the word which is most nearly the SAME in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Fixing

    1. concluding
    2. corrected
    3. focusing on
    4. rebuilding
    5. restoring

    Q.9) Choose the word which is most nearly the OPPOSITE in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Holding up

    1. hinder
    2. continuing
    3. pause
    4. interrupt
    5. forward

    Q.10) Choose the word which is most nearly the OPPOSITE in meaning as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

    Straining

    1. worrying
    2. struggling
    3. controlling
    4. helping
    5. not bothering

    Reading comprehension passage Answers:

    Question Answer
    1 c
    2 d
    3 e
    4 e
    5 a
    6 b
    7 b
    8 c
    9 b
    10 e

    READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGE 4:

    It is an old dictum of political science that the state comes into being for life (protection of life and security) but it exists for good life. The transition to modern democracies from merely providing security from external aggression and internal disturbances and disorder to a welfare state providing the citizen social security schemes from the cradle to the grave is a familiar phenomenon of the 20th century. India is no exception to the rule. In fact, the Indian concept of justice Dharma is far older than the concept of law. India had always regarded that peace and security were empty concepts in a system where social, political and economic justice was denied to the people.

    The concept of justice is itself a changing one. It changes with the growth and development of the society and with the philosophy which informs the society at a given time. For instance, slavery was legitimate in certain parts of the world but is no longer so now. An eye for eye and tooth for the tooth was considered just in primitive society but is abhorrent today. In our own lifetime, the right to property was included as a fundamental right in Art 19 (1)(f) of the Constitution. By 1978, it was sought to be removed from the statute books as contrary to the socialist philosophy. All these go to show that human ingenuity does not extend to foreseeing the near or distant future and that no law can be permanent or immutable. Orderly transition and growth of society can be stalled only at the peril of a revolution.

    No Constitution is or can be perfect. Nor can it provide for every contingency that may arise in the future. Besides conditions change or new concepts emerge as a result of changes in the political, social and economic conditions and concepts. According to political science, sovereignty may rest with the Crown in a monarchy or with a dictator in ruthless control over the people. But in a democracy sovereignty rests with the people of the country. If the generation living in 1949 had the authority to frame a Constitution for the nation, the generation living in 2000 AD will have equal right to add, alter, amend, delete, substitute or even to frame a new Constitution, subject to compliance with the conditions and restrictions imposed by the Constitution itself.

    Q.1) According to the theory of political science, survival of a state is related to

    1. The law of the land.
    2. It’s tradition.
    3. The welfare of its people
    4. Its defense strategy.
    5. None of these

    Q.2) In India the main concept of the state is

    1. The body which controls internal disturbances.
    2. The organ which runs governments.
    3. The organ which builds international relations.
    4. The body which supports the social cause.
    5. The body which generates life.

    Q.3) Which of the following statements stands true in the context of the Indian philosophy?

    1. Peace and security emanate from social, political and economic justice.
    2. Peace and security are empty slogans in today’s society.
    3. There is no peace where there is no security.
    4. Social, political and economic justice is a dream for the people.
    5. None of these

    Q.4) What does it imply- An eye for eye and tooth for the tooth was considered just in primitive society but is abhorrent today?

    1. There is no place for the concept of might is right in any society.
    2. What may be legally just today may not be so tomorrow.
    3. There is no give-and-take concept in our society.
    4. He that is down needs fear no fall.
    5. None of these

    Q.5) Which of the following is a feature of law?

    1. The law is a phenomenon which remains unchanged for ages.
    2. The law supports the mighty even today.
    3. Law changes its shape along with time.
    4. Law has become a force in a democracy.
    5. None of these

    Q.6) Which of the following is a unique feature of a democratic set-up?

    1. Democracy and sovereignty are inter-related.
    2. According to the passage, democracy is more efficient than any other system of governance.
    3. In a democracy, people are free to do anything.
    4. There can be no proper Constitution in a democracy.
    5. None of these

    Q.7) What is the Indian concept of Justice and Dharma?

    1. To look after peace and security of the nation
    2. To work for economic upliftment of the masses
    3. To promote the social cause and look after the well-being of its people
    4. to promote social harmony in the world
    5. None of these

    Q.8) What do you mean by the phrase from the cradle to the grave, as used in the passage?

    1. From step to step
    2. From each and every possible means
    3. From darkness to light
    4. From birth to death
    5. None of these

    Q.9) The passage is related to which subject?

    1. Economics
    2. Social Science
    3. History
    4. Constitutional law
    5. None of these

    Q.10) Choose the word which is the same in meaning as the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    DICTUM

    1. philosophy
    2. rule
    3. theory
    4. maxim
    5. policy

    Q.11) Choose the word which is the same in meaning as the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    LEGITIMATE

    1. lawful
    2. accurate
    3. prevalent
    4. basic
    5. demanding

    Q.12) Choose the word which is the same in meaning as the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    ABHORRENT

    1. illegal
    2. disgusting
    3. banned
    4. harmful
    5. irrational

    Q.13) Choose the word which is opposite in meaning to the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    TRANSITION

    1. stubbornness
    2. immutability
    3. complexity
    4. mobility
    5. deadlock

    Q.14) Choose the word which is opposite in meaning to the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    PRIMITIVE

    1. artificial
    2. ancient
    3. scientific
    4. traditional
    5. modern

    Q.15) Choose the word which is opposite in meaning to the word given in bold as used in the passage.

    INGENUITY

    1. farce
    2. detrimental
    3. rigidity
    4. stupidity
    5. negativity

    Reading comprehension passage Answers: 

    Question Answer
    1 c
    2 d
    3 a
    4 b
    5 c
    6 e
    7 c
    8 d
    9 e
    10 d
    11 a
    12 b
    13 b
    14 e
    15 d
    Friends, this is it from our side regarding Reading Comprehension Passage Exercises. If you have any queries/questions, regarding Reading Comprehension Passage, feel free to ask them in the comments section below. We will be glad to answer them for you. 
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