IBPS Specialist Officer English 2012 Exam

Reading Comprehension

Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given below it. Certain words/phrases have been printed in bold to help you locate them while answering some of the questions.

In India, innovation is emerging as one of the most important rubrics in the discourse on how to bring about greater and more consistent economic and social development. One observes steadily growing investments in R & D across the country, the setting up of national and state innovation bodies, as well as the introduction of government-sponsored innovation funds. There have also been several conferences and debates on innovation and how to best promote and accomplish it in India, and a number of articles on the subject, written for newspapers and magazines, as well as more informal platforms like online forums and blogs.

Academic engagement and Indian authorship on the subject have also exploded in the last five years. Despite widespread agreement on the importance of innovation in India, there are wide gulfs between different conceptions of innovation and the path India should take towards securing benefits through investments in innovation.

Many Indian conversations around innovation begin by talking about jugaad, that uniquely Indian approach to a temporary fix when something complex, like an automobile or a steam engine stops working. However, many observers have pointed out that while jugaad is certainly innovative, it is a response to the lack of an innovation culture – more a survival or coping mechanism at a time of need than a systematic methodology to effectively address a wide-ranging, complex set of problems.

Another specifically Indian approach to innovation that has entered into wide currency of late is so-called `frugal innovation,’ deemed by many to be the most appropriate for the Indian context. In its midterm assessment of the 11th five-year plan, the Planning Commission stressed the need for innovation in India in order to accelerate its growth and to make growth more inclusive as well as environmentally sustainable. The document went on to say that India needs more frugal innovation that produces more frugal cost products and services that are affordable by people at low levels of incomes without compromising the safety, efficiency and utility of the products. The country also needs processes of innovation that are frugal in the resources required to produce the innovations. The products and processes must also have frugal impact on the Earth’s resources.

Two people formulated a similar theory called the More-from-Less-for-More (MLM theory of innovation) theory of Innovation, which advocates a focus on innovations that allow for more production using fewer resources but benefit more people. Under this rubric come products that are more affordable versions of existing technologies. While both frugal innovation and the MLM theory are certainly valuable in terms of bringing affordable products and services to a greater number of people and may even be considered a necessary first step on India’s innovation path, they barely graze the surface of what innovation can accomplish. That is, innovation is capable of bringing about complete paradigm-shifts and redefining the way we perceive and interact with the world.

Take the cell phone, for example : it revolutionized communication in a previously inconceivable way, provided consumers with a product of unprecedented value and created an entirely new market. The cell phone was a result of years of directed, intentional innovation efforts and large investments, and would not have ever been created if the people responsible simply set out to make the existing telephone cheaper and more accessible to all.

While jugaad and frugal innovation may be indicative of the Indian potential for innovativeness, this potential is not utilised or given opportunity to flourish due to the lack of an enabling culture.

India’s many diverse and complex needs can be met only through systematic innovation and major shifts have to first take place in our educational institutions, government policies and commercial firms in order for such an innovation-enabling culture to come about.

The one thing that India’s innovation theorists have not said is that the absence of a culture of innovation is intrinsically linked to many of the most intractable problems facing India as a nation. These include poor delivery of government services, inadequate systems of personal identification and the absence of widely available financial services for rural poor, health and sanitation failures. This list can go on. Cumulatively, the inability of India as a nation, society and economy to adequately provide for its own population no longer reflects a failure of implementation, but rather of a failure of innovation, for there are not immediately-available off-the-shelf solutions that would make it possible for these grand challenges facing India to be redressed. Rather, we need to look at these intractable problems from the more sophisticated and empowering lens of innovation, for them to begin to be solved.

Passage based Questions:

  1. Which of the following best describes the MLM theory of innovation?
    1. Maximise output by using least number of resources and benefiting a small number of people
    2. Maximise resource utilisation and cost thereby benefit maximum number of people
    3. Minimise output and resource utilisation, yet benefit the maximum number of people
    4. Benefit most number of people through least usage of resources and maximum output
    5. Benefit most number of people through maximum usage of resources and minimising cost
  2. Which of the following is possibly the most appropriate title for the passage?
    1. Innovation At Its Best
    2. India And The Elixir Called Innovation
    3. Innovation Around The World vis-a-vis India And Other Neighbouring Countries
    4. Worldwide Developments In Innovation
    5. Innovation – The History
  3. What tone is the author employing in the entire passage to get his message across?
    1. Pessimistic
    2. Sarcastic
    3. Urgent
    4. Informative
    5. Dubious
  4. Why, according to the author, is India unable to adequately provide for its people?
    1. Failure to implement schemes and initiatives meant for the Indian populace
    2. Absence of regulatory authorities to oversee the implementation process
    3. Failure to innovate in order to find solutions
    4. Lack of governmental schemes and initiatives to redress the challenges faced by India
    5. Hesitance of the Indian people in trying out different schemes provided by the Government for upliftment
  5. Why, according to some people, is `jugaad’ not the answer to India’s problems?
    1. Many a times this methodology backfires leading to further complications
    2. Vugaad’ provides only cheap solutions to all problems
    3. It is reactive and not a proactive and organized method of finding solutions to problems
    4. It can provide solutions to only simple problems and not complex ones
    5. None of the above
  6. What does the author mean by ‘frugal impact on the Earth’s resources’ as given in the passage?
    1. The damage to the environment should be assessable
    2. More consumption of natural resources as compared to manmade ones
    3. Minimum impact on the environment in terms of pollution
    4. The impact on the environment should be such that it is reversible
    5. Minimum usage of Earth’s natural resources

Q7.Which of the following depict/s the growing importance of innovation in India?

  1. Increased investment in research.
  2. Initiation of Govt. backed funds for innovation.
  3. Increase in number of conferences arranged and articles written on innovation.

Answer choice

  1. Only A and B
  2. Only B and C
  3. Only B
  4. only C
  5. All of these

Q8. Which of the following is/are true about the cell phone?

  1. The innovation of the cell phone required investment of huge capital.
  2. The cell phone, when invented was meant to be affordable to all.
  3. The cell phone was made available to the public in a very short time from its ideation.

Answer choices

  1. only A
  2. only A and B
  3. only B and C
  4. only B
  5. All of them

Give Synonyms

    1. addressed
    2. equalised
    3. restored
    4. redone
    5. rearranged
    1. notes
    2. usage
    3. money
    4. cash
    5. value
    1. internally
    2. whole-heartedly
    3. fundamentally
    4. virtually
    5. unavoidably
    1. causative
    2. forthcoming
    3. verbal
    4. abstract
    5. suggestive
    1. co-operating with
    2. reducing the quality
    3. hampering the progress
    4. conciliating in order to
    5. adjusting for the better

Give Antonyms

  1. LACK (give opposite)
    1. presence
    2. sufficiency
    3. charisma
    4. adequacy
    5. dearth
  2. INCONCEIVABLE (give opposite)
    1. visible
    2. truthful
    3. incredible
    4. apparent
    5. complex

Sentence Arrangement

Rearrange the following six sentences (A), (B), (C), (D), (E) and (F) in the proper sequence to form a meaningful paragraph; then answer the questions given below them.

  1. It is no wonder that a majority of these excluded and low-achievers come from the most deprived sections of society.
  2. They are precisely those who are supposed to be empowered through education.
  3. With heightened political consciousness about the plight of these to-be-empowered people, never in the history of India has the demand for inclusive education been as fervent as today.
  4. They either never enroll or they drop out of schools at different stages during these eight years.
  5. Of the nearly 200 million children in the age grout between 6 and 14 years, more than half do not complete eight years of elementary education.
  6. Of those who do complete eight years of schooling, the achievement levels of a large percentage, in language and mathematics, is unacceptably low.


  1. Which of the following should be the THIRD sentence after rearrangement?
    1. A
    2. B
    3. C
    4. D
    5. F
  2. Which of the following should be the FIRST sentence after rearrangement?
    1. A
    2. B
    3. C
    4. D
    5. E
  3. Which of the following should be the SECOND sentence after rearrangement?
    1. F
    2. E
    3. D
    4. C
    5. B
  4. Which of the following should be the FOURTH sentence after rearrangement?
    1. A
    2. B
    3. C
    4. D
    5. E
  5. Which of the following should be the FIFTH sentence after rearrangement?
    1. F
    2. E
    3. D
    4. B
    5. A

Sentence Correction

Read each sentence to find out whether there is any grammatical error or idiomatic error in it. The error, if any, will be in one part of the sentence. The number of that part is the answer. If there is ‘No error’, the answer is (5). (Ignore errors of punctuation, if any).

  1. The third season of (1)/ the popular television show will ends (2)/ on a grand note with (3)/ celebrities dancing and having fun. (4)/ No error (5)
  2. The website, which does not (1)/ accept advertisements and is funded (2)/ entirely by donations, describes itself (3)/ as the fifth most popular website on the planet. (4)/ No error(5)
  3. As sharing crime statistics for (1)/ the year 2011, the Commissioner admitted that (2)/ there had been an undue delay in (3)/ the setting up of an anti-narcotics cell. (4)/ No error (5)
  4. The Moon may be the best place (1)/ to look for aliens as their (2)/ footprints on their surface would (3)/ last far longer than radio signals. (4)/ No error (5)
  5. The judge advised the government to (1)/ have metered autorickshaws across the state while (2)/ recounting his personal experience where an autorickshaw driver (3)/ made him to wait and also demanded 100. (4)/ No error (5)
  6. The Company aims (1)/ to nearly double (2)/ its revenues on the back (3)/ of a strongest product pipeline. (4)/ No error (5)
  7. The woman that had (1)/ kidnapped a child has now (2)/ been apprehended and is being (3)/ held in the city’s jail. (4)/ No error (5)
  8. Rose growers in (1)/ the city are waking up (2)/ to the benefits (3)/ of collective action. (4)/ No error (5)
  9. The Minister will have (1)/ a tough task on his hands (2)/ where three different recommendations (3)/ for this year’s rate reach his desk. (4)/ No error (5)
  10. The current economic scenario (1)/ could possibly undo (2)/ the growth that followed (3)/ the economic liberalisation of 1991. (4)/ No error (5)
  11. In a first of its kind study, (1)/ a team of scientists have tried to (2)/ ‘grow’ new stem cells in (3)/ the ear that get damage with age. (4)/ No error (5)
  12. If successful, the research could (1)/ pave the way towards (2)/ the prevention in untimely deaths (3)/ due to fatal illnesses. (4)/ No error (5)
  13. The Ministry has directed Bank (1)/ to do away with their (2)/ separate promotion policies, a move (3)/ strongly opposed by the officers’s unions. (4)/ No error (5)
  14. After a complaint was filed, (1)/ police teams was given the photograph (2)/ of the accused from the CCTV footage (3)/ recorded at the hotel. (4)/ No error (5)
  15. Activists opposing the rail project said (1)/ that the eleven new flyovers to be built (2)/ would practically ring (3)/ the death knell for the city. (4)/ No error (5)

Fill in the blanks

In the following passage there are numbered blanks. These numbers are printed below the passage and against each, five words are suggested, one of which fits the blank appropriately. Find out the appropriate word in each case.

_1_ over the world, rights related to information technology that are already legally recognized are daily being violated, _2_ in the name of economic advancement, political stability or for personal greed and interests. Violations of these rights have _3_ new problems in human social systems, such as the digital divide, cybercrime, digital security and privacy concerns, all of which have _4_ people’s lives either directly or indirectly.

It is important that countries come up with the guidelines for action to _5_ the incidences of malicious attacks on the confidentiality, integrity and availability of electronic data and systems, computer related crimes, content related offenses and violations of intellectual property rights. _6_ threats to critical infrastructure and national interests arising from the use of the internet for criminal and terrorist activities are of growing _7_. The harm incurred to businesses, governments and individuals in those countries in which the internet is used _8_, is gaining in _9_ and importance, which in other countries, cybercrime threatens the application of information and communication technology for government services, healthcare, trade and banking. As users start losing _10_ in online transactions and business, the opportunity costs may become substantial.

Answer Choices

Q No. Choices
1 (1) Entire (2) Lot (3) Great  (4) All (5) Much
2 (1) scarcely (2) whether (3) and (4) for (5) hardly
3 (1) created (2) bent (3) pressured (4) risen (5) stopped
4 (1) distanced (2) affected (3) exaggerated (4) advanced (5) cropped
5 (1) engage (2) conflict (3) war (4) combat (5) struggle
6 (1) But (2) More (3) Addition (4) Beside (5) Further
7 (1) concern (2) nature (3) pattern (4) important (5) matter
8 (1) really (2) figuratively (3) widely (4) never (5) tandem
9 (1) fear (2) days (3) positivity (4) width (5) scope

(1) tracks (2) measure (3)confidence (4) mind (5) grip


In each of the following sentences, an idiomatic expression or a proverb is highlighted. Select the alternative which best describes its use in the sentence.

  1. Facts spoke louder than words at the Company meeting where the Director tried to paint a rosy picture of the Company’s financial health.
    1. Too many facts related to the good financial health of the Company were presented during the meeting
    2. The Company was not doing well financially despite the Director saying otherwise
    3. The Director was very loud while presenting the facts about the Company’s financial health during the meeting
    4. The facts stated in the meeting supported the Director’s claims of good financial health of the Company
    5. The Company was doing exceptionally well financially, despite the Director saying otherwise
  2. By initiating the fight with Sakshi in office, Kajal had killed the goose that lay the golden egg.
    1. By initiating the fight with Sakshi in office, Kajal had left her speechless
    2. Kajal had ruined her chances of success by picking a fight with Sakshi in office
    3. Kajal had exacted her revenge by picking a fight with Sakshi in office
    4. Kajal had hurt Sakshi by picking a fight with her in office
    5. By initiating the fight with Sakshi in office, Kajal had missed getting the golden egg
  3. I let the chips fall where they may and do not worry too much about what I want to do next.
    1. I take calculated risks
    2. I let others do what they want and do not interfere
    3. I am clumsy
    4. I do not try to control my destiny
    5. I prefer chaos to calm
  4. After trying hard to convince Narendra to change his ways, Raman realised that a leopard cannot change its spots.
    1. Raman realised that Narendra would never change his ways
    2. Raman realised that Narendra was helpless
    3. Raman realised that he was not good at convincing others
    4. Raman realised that Narendra would change his ways soon
    5. Raman realised that someone else was forcing Narendra to act in a certain way
  5. Before starting work on our new project, our mentor told us to not count our chickens before they hatched.
    1. Our mentor warned us against being over-confident about achieving success
    2. Our mentor asked us to meticulously count the chicken first and then the eggs
    3. Our mentor warned us against being over enthusiastic in implementing the project
    4. Our mentor warned us about all the challenges that lay ahead of us
    5. Our mentor informed us about the prizes that we would get on succeeding