Reading Comprehension Set 74

Directions (Qs. 1-10): Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given after the passage. Certain words/phrases have been printed in bold to help you locate them while answering some of the questions.
It was not just the Prime Minister who applauded ShashiTharoor’s demand from Britain for reparations for colonialism at an Oxford University debate last month, but the entire social media and press too. Ironically, a public sphere otherwise marked by petty and superficial political battles and a base form of majoritarianism which strangles any form of dissenting opinion, unites to make Tharoor’s speech “viral”.

What the speech and its reception demonstrate is a staggering application of different moral standards when it comes to the question of reparations. If India deserves reparations for the injuries inflicted during colonialism, why not the Dalits, who have suffered centuries of caste oppression and in addition, slavery in regions like Kerala? Slaves, who have suffered the grossest form of violations have a bigger moral claim to reparations than Indians. Why is it that we continue to plunder, pillage and oppress Dalits and Adivasis without a moral dilemma while believing that they do not even deserve reservations? The same upper caste, educated classes who are enthusiastically affirming the demand of reparations to correct a historical wrong are the ones who symbolically protested against reservations by mimicking “degraded” occupations like sweeping the floor or shining the shoes. While the prime minister affirms the patriotism of the reparations demand, his government refuses to publish the caste data from the socioeconomic census. One kind of exploitation demands reparations, but not the other; the logic of this differentiation is merely that in the first, the oppressor is external, and in the second, internal. The first is morally repugnant and the second is not. This is what Frantz Fanon had warned about: postcolonial national consciousness, instead of being an “all-embracing crystallisation of the innermost hopes of the whole people” becoming “only an empty shell, a crude and fragile travesty of what it might have been”.

In India, this is more complex as it has to contend with the unique nature of caste oppression. That is why the binary of India versus Britain is hardly enough to understand colonialism or the issue of reparations. JyotiraoPhule, Ambedkar and a whole range of anti-caste revolutionaries have seen British colonialism in a different light from that of the nationalists and even the Left which critiqued the nation from the point of view of class, but ignored caste. For them Brahminical colonialism is a bigger colonialism than that of the British. As Ambedkar famously told Gandhi, “Mahtamaji, I have no country.”
Q1.Which of the following statements is true.
I.  upper caste citizens are fine with sweeping floors or shining shoses.
II. There are two types of colonialism viz internal and external
III.Govt has published the caste data
A.Only I
B.Only II
D.All of the above
E None of the statements is true
Q2.Why did Ambedkar say “Mahatmaji, I have no country”?
A.He did not know which country he was born in
B.He belonged to dalit caste
C.He studied in England, so people did not consider him Indian anymore
D.He alongwith his caste was not treated at par with people from other castes
E.None of the above
Q3.Which of the following statements is true?
I.  Shashi Tharoor debated at Oxford
II. Jyotirao Phule was an anti-cast revolutionary
III.Prime Minister along with media and other ministers applauded Shashi Tharoor’s demand
c.All of the above
D.Only I
E.Only III
Q4.Why reparations should be given to Dalits?
A.They have helped India achieve independence
B.They are the working class and deserve more salaries
C.They have suffered from caste oppression , slavery and violations at the hands of others
D.England used them as workers which shined shoes and swept floors, reparations must be paid
E.All of the above
Q5.What historical wrong is being discussed here by the author in second paragraph?
A.England did not pay reparations to Indians
B.Oppression of Dalits at the hands of High Caste people
C.India being enslaved and  made a colony of British
D.ShashiTharoor’s speech gone viral was historical
E.Prime Minister should not have applauded ShashiTharoor’s speech.
Directions (6 to 8): Choose the word which is most SIMILAR in meaning of the word printed in bold as used in the passage.
Directions (9 to 10): Choose the word which is most OPPOSITE in meaning of the word printed in bold as used in the passage.


1.  e
2.  d
3.  c
4.  c
5.  a
6.  a
7.  c
8.  a
9.  a

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