Reading Comprehension - Solved Examples


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Passage

Influence is a very powerful effect that plays a crucial role to guide our actions and development and when an individual affects the behavior of the masses, it becomes essential to know what makes that person so different from the rest. Let’s go through the profiles of these three people who rose from humble beginnings to occupy great positions in the society.

The appointment of Google’s new CEO, Sundar Pichai, an IITian from India, created history and influenced billions this year. Pichai grew up in Chennai. He was a shy lad who did his engineering from IIT Kharagpur and then took a flight to Stanford on scholarship with a plan to get a PhD in Materials Science and Semiconductor Physics. However, his destiny too had some plans different than he aspired. Hence, he dropped out of the program and joined Google in 2004 via Silicon Valley and McKinsey. In Google, he drew attention with his thrilling idea to build Google’s own browser. Apart from Chrome, Pichai had led the innovative efforts for many other Google’s products including Chrome OS, which became a huge success. Pichai also supervised Google’s other core efforts like Gmail, Google Maps and Google Drive. As a CEO, he is self-deprecating, supportive and graceful at navigating political minefields which influence not only his fans but his rivals equally.

With the increasing level of violence across the globe, the entire mankind is in search of a peaceful corner today. It seems that the whole world is sitting on the brink of a constant war. With his arduous efforts, our next personality is spreading peace and trying to demolish violence. LhamoThondup, the 14the Dalai Lama, makes his modest effort to awaken us with a message, “Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help others, at least don’t hurt them”. After, he got his heart injured by China’s Invasion on Tibet in 1950, he along with his large number of followers migrated to Dharmsala, India where he established a monastery and started taking actions with the hope to establish an autonomous Tibetan state within the People’s Republic of China. A part of his humanitarian efforts, he has conducted many conferences, workshops and lecturers across the world. In 1989, he was conferred on the Nobel Peace Prize for his endeavors. Kenneth H. Blanchard rightly states, “The key to successful leadership is influence, not authority”, and that is what is the objective of this colossal religious figure.

It could not have been easy for Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, to step into the immense shadow cast by the late Apple co-founder, Steve Jobs. But with elegance and courage and an unabashed willingness to be his own man, Tim has shoved Apple to implausible profitability — and greater social responsibility. A new standard for what business can do in the world has been set by him. Tim’s commitment to renewable energy is also making our planet cleaner and greener, especially for the generations yet to come. Most importantly, he has proved that profitability and integrity are interwoven. He has proved that even the well-tuned companies can and should be judged by more than just their bottom line.

Born in the exquisite Swat Valley of Pakistan in 1997 and started realizing the grave condition of girls’ education in the area at a very young age, Malala Yousafzai, emerged as one of the most prominent figures striving for children’s rights across the world. Despite the continuous threats of Taliban to deny her education, Malala bravely gave voice to her revolutionary thoughts at the age of only 13 from the ramparts of Peshawar, Pakistan in 2008. The platform was constantly growing to support her activism and she too continued demanding for her as well as for the other women, the right to education. Her efforts resulted in her being nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize in 2011. Moreover, she was awarded the Pakistan’s National Youth Peace Prize the same year.

But her increasing activism proved exasperating for Taliban, therefore, on Oct. 9, 2012, a gunman shot on Malala’s head when she was on her way home from school. She got critically injured and was taken to Peshawar and then Birmingham, England for multiple brain surgeries. After struggling for life for some days in coma, she woke up and continued her contribution for the betterment of women. For her bold efforts, she was recognized by the European Parliament and was awarded the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought followed by the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014.

(Directions: Questions 1—4) Find the word most similar in meaning to the words as used in the passage:

Q 1 − Arduous

A - Confusing

B - Grueling

C - Unsupportive

D - Uncaring

Answer - B

Explanation

Arduous means some grueling work or difficult work.


Answer - C

Explanation

Endeavors means to put an effort or to attempt.


Answer - D

Explanation

Implausible means something that has less chances of happening or being done.


Answer - A

Explanation

Humanitarian means someone who does good for others.


(Directions: Questions 5—7) Find the word most dissimilar in meaning to the words as used in the passage:

Q 5 − Activism

A - Action

B - Method

C - Policy

D - Passivity

Answer - D

Explanation

Activism means participating in an activity for a social cause, passivity means inaction.


Answer - A

Explanation

Exquisite means something that’s beautiful, ugly is the opposite of that.


Answer - D

Explanation

Interwoven means processed with one another, disparate means completely independent of one another.


Answer - D

Explanation

Bottom-line means profit margin, well-tuned means well-connected and profiting.


Answer - C

Explanation

In the passage, the following sentence — “The platform was constantly growing to support her activism and she too continued demanding for her as well as for the other women, the right to education” explains this point.


Answer - B

Explanation

In the passage, the line “Kenneth H. Blanchard rightly states, “The key to successful leadership is influence, not authority”, and that is what is the objective of this colossal religious figure.” explains this.



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