English Language Practice Questions | IBPS 2017

Mentor for Bank Exams
English Language Practice Questions | IBPS 2017
Dear Aspirants,
Welcome to Mentor for Bank Exams English Quiz Section. The following Quiz covers Reading Comprehension (8 Questions), Cloze Test (5 Questions), Phrase Connectors (5 Questions), Synonyms / Antonyms (2 Questions). All the best for upcoming IBPS Exams 2017.
Directions (1 – 10): Read the following passage and answer the questions given beside.
In a significant ruling last week, a World Trade Organisation (WTO) panel found that the domestic content requirement imposed under India’s national solar programme is inconsistent with its treaty obligations under the global trading regime. The ruling has been described as yet another instance of archaic trade rules trumping important climate imperatives. However, this criticism is not entirely justified.
India’s national solar programme, which was launched in 2010, aims to “establish India as a global leader in solar energy, by creating the policy conditions for its diffusion across the country as quickly as possible”. To incentivise the production of solar energy within the country, the government under the programme agrees to enter into long-term power purchase agreements with solar power producers, effectively “guaranteeing” the sale of the energy produced and the price that such a solar power producer could obtain. Thereafter, it would sell such energy through distribution utilities to the ultimate consumer. However, a solar power producer, to be eligible to participate under the programme, is required compulsorily to use certain domestically sourced inputs, namely solar cells and modules for certain types of solar projects. In other words, unless a solar power producer satisfies this domestic content requirement, the government will not ‘guarantee’ the purchase of the energy produced.
In 2013, the U.S. brought a complaint before the WTO arguing that the domestic content requirement imposed under India’s national solar programme is in violation of the global trading rules. Specifically, it said, India has violated its “national treatment” obligation by unfavourably discriminating against imported solar cells and modules. In other words, India was discriminating between solar cells and modules which were otherwise identical on the basis of the national ‘origin’ of the cells and modules, a clear violation of its trade commitment. India principally relied on the ‘government procurement’ justification, which permitted countries to derogate from their national treatment obligation provided that the measure was related to “the procurement by governmental agencies of products purchased for governmental purposes and not with a view to commercial resale or use in production of goods for commercial sale”. India also argued that the measure was justified under the general exceptions since it was necessary to secure compliance with its domestic and international law obligations relating to ecologically sustainable development and climate change.
The panel, in its 140-page report, examined in detail the submission of the parties and rightly concluded that India, by imposing a mandatory domestic content requirement, had violated its national treatment obligation. In so far as the government procurement derogation was concerned, the panel found that the product being subject to the domestic content requirement was solar cells and modules, but the product that was ultimately procured or purchased by the government was electricity. The domestic content requirement was therefore not an instance of “government procurement”. Finally, the panel found that since India failed to point out any specific obligation having “direct effect in India” or “forming part of its domestic legal system”, which “obligated” India to impose the particular domestic content requirement, the general exception was not available to the Indian government in the instant case.
The ruling, however, has come under intense criticism, particularly from environmentalists, as undermining India’s efforts towards promoting the use of clean energy. However, there appears to be no rational basis for how mandatory local content requirements contribute towards promoting the use of clean energy. If the objective is to produce more clean energy, then solar power producers should be free to choose energy-generation equipment on the basis of price and quality, irrespective of whether they are manufactured locally or not. In fact, by mandatorily requiring solar power producers to buy locally, the government is imposing an additional cost, usually passed on to the ultimate consumer, for the production of clean energy. The decision may therefore stand to benefit the interest of the ultimate consumer. It is entirely possible to give preferential treatment to clean energies (in the form of tax rebates for solar power producers and so on) without requiring mandatory local content. Perhaps, what is even more instructive is the fact that India during its submissions before the WTO did not invoke the general exceptions under article XX(b) or (g) of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade typically relied upon in trade disputes by parties seeking to protect their domestic regulations on ‘environmental’ or ‘health’ grounds. India therefore did not itself believe that the local content requirement under the programme was imposed for the ‘conservation’ of ‘clean air’.
The panel ruling, however, is not final and reports indicate that India will prefer an appeal to the appellate body. Simultaneously, India may be exploring the option of filing a counter complaint against the U.S., with several states in the U.S. such as Michigan, Texas and California having also reportedly been accused of employing mandatory local content requirements in the renewable energies sector.
Nevertheless, amidst the cacophony of the Prime Minister’s ‘Make in India’ campaign, India must resist the temptation of adopting protectionist measures such as domestic content requirements which are inconsistent with its international obligations. Domestic content measures, despite their immediate political gains, have a tendency to skew competition. Manufacturers must remain free to select inputs based solely on quality and price, irrespective of the origin. The Modi government must continue working towards building a business and regulatory environment which is conducive to manufacturing. This would require systemic changes in the form of simpler, transparent and consistent laws and effective dispute resolution mechanisms.
1. Argument: The measure taken by India was justified under the general exceptions since it was necessary to secure compliance with its domestic and international law obligations relating to ecologically sustainable development and climate change.
What can be said about the given argument on the basis of the reading of the passage?
a) Strong
b) Weak
c) May be strong but no supporting evidence is given
d) Irrelevant
e) Judgmental
2. Which of the following statements is true in the context of the passage?
a) The USA was unjust to complain before the WTO arguing that the domestic content requirement imposed under India’s national solar programme is in violation of the global trading rules.
b) A solar power producer, to be eligible to participate under the National Solar programme, is required compulsorily to use certain domestically sourced inputs, namely solar cells and modules as they are not identical across the globe.
c) The panel ruling by the WTO is final and cannot be appealed to the appellate body.
d) All are true
e) None is true
3. What is the tone of the author in the paragraph that starts with ‘The ruling, however, has come under intense criticism, particularly from environmentalists …’?
a) Ponderous
b) Argumentative
c) Contrasting
d) Submissive
e) Pessimistic
4. Which of the following inferences can be drawn from the passage?
I. The USA itself is employing mandatory local content requirements in the renewable energies sector.
II. The ‘Make in India’ campaign has proved to be a bubble.
III. The government is imposing an additional cost on to the end use by mandatorily requiring solar power producers to buy locally.
a) Only I
b) Only II
c) Only III
d) I and II
e) None of these
5. Which statement is not true regarding the information given in the passage?
a) India’s national solar programme was launched with an aim to establishing India as a global leader in solar energy gradually.
b) The WTO panel examined the case in detail and rightly concluded that India, by imposing a mandatory domestic content requirement, had violated its national treatment obligation.
c) India may file a counter complaint against the U.S., with several American states having been accused of employing mandatory local content requirements in the renewable energies sector.
d) All are false
e) None of these
6. What is the writer’s purpose of writing the passage?
a) To showcase the biasness the WTO and the west possess towards India regarding the domestic content requirement imposed under India’s national solar programme.
b) To surface the anomalies present in India’s national solar programme.
c) To compare the India’s national solar programme with that of the USA with a view to discussing measures that need to be taken to improve the functioning of the programme in India.
d) To present an argumentative viewpoint on why the WTO is right in the solar panel dispute.
e) None of these
7. What measures should be taken to avoid such an unfavorable ruling as discussed in the passage with respect to India’s national solar programme?
a) India must desist from adopting protectionist measures such as domestic content requirements which are inconsistent with its international obligations.
b) The government must continue working towards building a business and regulatory environment which is conducive to manufacturing.
c) The country needs to bring systemic changes in the form of simpler, transparent and consistent laws that ensure that the buyers comply with guidelines regarding the purchase of the energy produced.
d) Only A and B
e) All A, B and C
8. Solar power producers or manufacturers must remain free to select inputs based on –
I. Quality
II. Price
III. Origin
a) Only I
b) Only II
c) I and III
d) I and II
e) All of these
Directions (9 – 13): In the following passage, some of the words have been left out, each of which is indicated by a letter. Find the suitable word from the options given against each letter and fill up the blanks with appropriate words to make the paragraph meaningful.
The key to removing corruption is transparency of political funding. That would end – first misuse of the state ____ 9 ____ by the politician to raise funds, second ____ 10 ____ in the services of civil servants and third ____ 11 ____ both accountability and integrity of the administration. So long as people need cash for bribes, they would withdraw cash and a transaction cost would not deter them.
Moreover, the RBI can pass on the potential savings from reduced cash handling to lower the cost of electronic transactions. So can the government. ____ 12 ____ from the RBI and the government, in tandem with competition to Visa and MasterCard from RuPay, should make digital payments ____ 13 ____ costless for merchants and consumers.
9. a) devices b) gadget c) government d) machinery e) apparatus
10. a) adhering b) roping c) releasing d) luring e) chaining
11. a) distrusting b) negating c) undermining d) offending e) sabotaging
12. a) outlays b) income c) payment d) addition e) sum
13. a) never b) ever c) little d) highly e) virtually
Directions (14 – 18): Select the phrase/connector out of three phrases/connectors given as (a), (b) and (c) which can be used in the beginning (to start the sentence) to form a single sentence from the two or three statements given while implying the same meaning as expressed in the statement sentences.
14. I. The long queues in the outpatient clinics at medical colleges and general hospitals are often the first indicator of the beginning of the epidemic season in Kerala.
II. Usually, dengue cases begin to peak with the arrival of the southwest monsoon.
a. As long as the long queues ………
b. Though, usually, dengue cases ……….
c. Surpassing the beginning of ……….
a) Only C
b) Only B
c) A and B
d) B and C
e) None of these
15. I. The Line of Actual Control continues to be subject to conflicting interpretations by both India and China and the scene of intermittent transgression.
II. The two countries have remained conflict-free.
a. While the border areas between ………
b. To keep the border areas between …….
c. Despite the border areas between ………
a) Only a
b) a and b
c) b and c
d) a and c
e) All a, b and c
16. I. Punjab is noticeably more well off today than most of the rest of the country from a development perspective.
II. The roads throughout the State are largely paved and smooth, even in the villages, and power cutshave basically become a thing of the past.
a. In spite of some economic stagnation …….
b. With instances of infrastructure building like …….
c. In addition to some economic stagnation ……..
a) only b
b) only a
c) a and b
d) all a, b and c
e) none of these
17. I. The Cabinet has decided to raise salaries and pensions for more than one crore government employees and pensioners by implementing the Seventh Pay Commission’s recommendations.
 II. It will impart a fillip to consumption demand and economic growth.
a. With a view to …….
b. The Cabinet’s decision …….
c. Whereas the decision ……
a) only b
b) only a
c) a and b
d) all a, b and c
e) none of these
18. I. The land belonging to your father does not satisfy the exclusion criteria stated in the definition of capital asset.
II. The gain arising from the sale of the agricultural land by your father would be taxable.
a. As though the gain …….
b. Assuming that the land …….
c. As soon as the gain ……..
a) only a
b) only b
c) only c
d) a and b
e) all a, b and c
Directions (19 – 20): In each these questions, one word is given in the question and five words given in the options. Find the word which is most nearly the same or opposite in meaning to the given word.
19. Fracas
a) Agreement
b) Compulsion
c) Discourtesy
d) Independence
e) Aberration
20. Unctuous
a) Philanthropic
b) Philandering
c) Normal
d) Sycophantic
e) Misleading
Solutions:
1. B) 5th paragraph, 2nd sentence
“However, there appears to be no rational basis for how mandatory local content requirements contribute towards promoting the use of clean energy.”
The sentence taken above as reference clearly asserts that the argument presented by Indian government regarding the context of the passage is weak.
2. E) 1st paragraph, first sentence
In a significant ruling last week, a World Trade Organisation (WTO) panel found that the domestic content requirement imposed under India’s national solar programme is inconsistent with its treaty obligations under the global trading regime. …
3rd paragraph, 3rd sentence
In other words, India was discriminating between solar cells and modules which were otherwise identical on the basis of the national ‘origin’ of the cells and modules, a clear violation of its trade commitment.
6th paragraph, first sentence
The panel ruling, however, is not final and reports indicate that India will prefer an appeal to the appellate body.
From the sentences above, we can clearly infer that all the statements have been somewhat distorted and hence none stays valid in the context of the passage.
3. B) The ruling, however, has come under intense criticism, particularly from environmentalists, as undermining India’s efforts towards promoting the use of clean energy. However, there appears to be no rational basis for how mandatory local content requirements contribute towards promoting the use of clean energy. If the objective is to produce more clean energy, then solar power producers should be free to choose energy-generation equipment on the basis of price and quality, irrespective of whether they are manufactured locally or not. In fact, by mandatorily requiring solar power producers to buy locally, the government is imposing an additional cost, usually passed on to the ultimate consumer, for the production of clean energy.
Clearly, the author here uses the argumentative style of writing as he or she presents his or her viewpoint with his or her chain of reasoning, evidence or suggestions.
4. C) 6th paragraph, 2nd sentence
several states in the U.S. such as Michigan, Texas and California having also reportedly been accused ofemploying mandatory local content requirements in the renewable energies sector.
It can be inferred from the above sentence that US was accused of and not actually employing mandatory local content requirements in the renewable energies sector. Statement I is hence invalid.
Moreover, nothing has been mentioned about the ‘Make in India’ programme and thus statement II can’t be inferred from the passage.
5th paragraph, 4th sentence
In fact, by mandatorily requiring solar power producers to buy locally, the government is imposing an additional cost, usually passed on to the ultimate consumer, for the production of clean energy.
The sentence above taken as reference clearly validates what is stated in statement III. Clearly, statement III can be inferred here.
5. A) 2nd paragraph, 1st sentence
India’s national solar programme, which was launched in 2010, aims to “establish India as a global leader in solar energy, by creating the policy conditions for its diffusion across the country as quickly as possible”.
The sentence taken above as reference clearly states that India’s national solar programme aims to establish India as global leader in solar energy ‘as quickly as possible’ while in the statement given as option A specifically mentions that it wants to achieve the aim ‘gradually’ or ‘slowly’.
Clearly, statement A is not true in the context of the passage. The other two statements, however, are true. Kindly refer to the sentences below.
4th paragraph, 1st sentence
The panel, in its 140-page report, examined in detail the submission of the parties and rightly concluded that India, by imposing a mandatory domestic content requirement, had violated its national treatment obligation. …
And
6th paragraph, 2nd sentence
Simultaneously, India may be exploring the option of filing a counter complaint against the U.S., with several states in the U.S. such as Michigan, Texas and California having also reportedly been accused of employing mandatory local content requirements in the renewable energies sector
Option A is hence the correct answer.
6. D) The writer in the whole passage states various arguments that help us understand that India has indeed violated the global trading rules and why the WTO is right in this whole solar panel dispute.
7. D) Last paragraph, 1st and 4th sentences
Nevertheless, amidst the cacophony of the Prime Minister’s ‘Make in India’ campaign, India must resist the temptation of adopting protectionist measures such as domestic content requirements which are inconsistent with its international obligations. Domestic content measures, despite their immediate political gains, have a tendency to skew competition. Manufacturers must remain free to select inputs based solely on quality and price, irrespective of the origin. The Modi government must continue working towards building a business and regulatory environment which is conducive to manufacturing. This would require systemic changes in the form of simpler, transparent and consistent laws and effective dispute resolution mechanisms.
The underlined parts of the sentences taken above as reference clearly validates what is stated in statement A and B respectively. Whereas the statement C has been distorted and would have been true, had the part ‘… that ensure that the buyers comply with guidelines regarding the purchase of the energy produced.’ not been there.
8. D) Last paragraph, 3rd sentence
Manufacturers must remain free to select inputs based solely on quality and price, irrespective of the origin.
We can clearly infer from the sentence taken as reference that manufacturers must remain free to select inputs based solely on quality and price, and not on the basis the origin.
9. D) Usage of the words ‘devices’, ‘gadget’ or ‘apparatus’ would be illogical in the context of the passage.
Between ‘government’ and ‘machinery’, the word ‘machinery’ fits the blank aptly as the term ‘State machinery’ refers to the allocation of functions to and between departments and other government agencies.
10. B) The usage of preposition ‘in’ right after the blank hints at the idiom ‘roping in’ which means ‘to persuade a person or group to do something’ as a strong pick for the blank.
The verb ‘adhering’ is followed by the preposition ‘to’, ‘releasing’ and ‘luring’ take an object right after them and thus options A, C and D can be eliminated.
Usage of the word ‘chaining’ is making the context absurd and can be eliminated as well.
11. C) Usage of any of ‘distrusting’, ‘negating’, ‘offending’ and ‘sabotaging’ is not going well with the context. The options A, B, D and E hence can be eliminated.
‘Undermining’ which means ‘to lessen the power or effectiveness of’ fits the blank appropriately.
12. A) As the first sentence of the second paragraph talks about the potential use of the expenditure amount saved from reduced cash handling, usage of the word ‘outlays’ which in Economics refers to ‘an amount spent or an expenditure’ is the most appropriate choice out of the given ones.
Usage of either ‘addition’ or ‘sum’ is adding absurdity to the context. Options D and E hence can be eliminated.
Similarly, usage of phrase ‘income from’ or ‘payment from’ in relation to RBI, which is a monetary authority and not a bank or a profit making company doesn’t seem logical and option B and C can be eliminated as well.
13. E) Usage of any the words ‘never’, ‘little’ and ‘highly’ would add contradiction to what is being inferred from the passage. Options A, C and D get eliminated.
‘Ever’ is too strong for an adverb to fit the blank. Option B can be eliminated too.
‘Virtually’ that refers to ‘nearly’ or ‘almost’ would be meaningful and completes the idea being stated.
14. E)   15. D)   16. A)   17. A)   18. C)
19. A) Fracas (Noun): a noisy disturbance or quarrel.
Ex. The incident sparked a full-scale fracas as players from both sides pointed the finger at each other.
Synonyms: disturbance, quarrel, scuffle, brawl, affray, tussle, melee, free-for-all, fight, clash, skirmish, brouhaha, riot, uproar, commotion, etc.
Antonyms: calm, happiness, agreement, peace harmony.
Clearly, among the choices given, the word ‘agreement’ is an antonym of the word ‘fracas’.
20. D) Unctuous (Adjective): excessively flattering or ingratiating; oily.
Ex. "he seemed anxious to please but not in an unctuous way"
Synonymssycophantic, ingratiating, obsequious, fawning, servile, self-abasing, honey-tongued, etc.
Antonyms: blunt, no-nonsense, etc.
Clearly, among the choices given, the word ‘sycophantic’ is a synonym of the word ‘unctuous’.