The Hindu Review 26 January 2019 | (Current + English Article + Vocab)| Download PDF

♠The Hindu Review♠

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♦  Pranab Mukherjee, Nanaji Deshmukh, Bhupen Hazarika awarded Bharat Ratna

  • On the eve of the 70th Republic Day, former President Pranab Mukherjee, social activist Nanaji Deshmukh and musician Dr. Bhupen Hazarika have been awarded the Bharat Ratna.
  • Mr. Deshmukh and Dr. Hazarika have been bestowed the nation’s highest civilian honour posthumously.
  • “The President has been pleased to award Bharat Ratna to Shri Nanaji Deshmukh (posthumously), Dr Bhupen Hazarika (posthumously) and Shri Pranab Mukherjee,” the Rashtrapati Bhavan said in a circular. Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian award instituted in 1954, is given in recognition of exceptional service, performance of the highest order in any field of human endeavour. Any person without distinction of race, occupation, position or sex is eligible for this award. The recommendations for Bharat Ratna are made by the Prime Minister to the President. The number of annual awards is restricted to a maximum of three in a particular year.

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♦  Sultan Abdullah named new Malaysian King

  • Malaysia on Thursday named Sultan Abdullah Ibni Sultan Ahmad Shah as the country’s 16th King.
  • In a statement from the Keeper of the Ruler’s Seal, Sultan Abdullah will officially take over as King or Yang di-Pertuan Agong on January 31, replacing his predecessor Sultan Muhammad V of Kelantan state who resigned on January 6, reports Xinhua news agency.
  • The 59-year-old Abdullah became Sultan of the Malaysian state of Pahang, succeeding his father Sultan Ahmad Shah, 88, who abdicated on January 11 due to ill health.
  • Mr. Abdullah is heavily involved in sports and is a council member of the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) and a council member of FIFA, the international football governing body.
  • He was the president of the Football Association of Malaysia.
  • Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy, with nine sultans or rulers, who head their respective state and act as the religious leader, taking turns to serve as king for a five-year term.

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♦  Govt launches new norms for Jan Shikshan Sansthans

  • “JSS guidelines have been reformed keeping in mind the diverse stake-holders engaged in running these institutions, and will bring in greater flexibility, transparency and uniformity,” Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said at the launch.
  • He observed that the centres can play an important role in bridging information asymmetry between skill training and market opportunities thereby giving an impetus to the creation of a workforce equipped in technology-driven skills, including in areas like health & well-ness, tourism, e-commerce, retail and trade.
  • The new norms are expected to help identify and promote traditional skills in the district through skilling / upskilling; create livelihood linkages and boost training of trainers to develop the capacity through National Skills Training Institutes.
  • “The launch of these strategic guidelines is an attempt by the MSDE to re-energize and reinvigorate the Jan Shikshan Sansthans. By aligning JSSs to the National Skill Framework, the government aims to provide standardised training across sectors,” an official statement said.

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♦  PM Modi, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa hold talks on bilateral, regional & global issues of mutual interest

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa held talks on bilateral, regional and global issues of mutual interest. In his press statement, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that, visit of the South African President is crucial.
  • He said, all bilateral issues including trade and investment were discussed. The Prime Minister said India is partner in South Africa’s skill development programme.
  • He added that India and South Africa have agreed to take the relationship to a newer level. Mr Modi highlighted that India and South Africa are partners in several international fora like BRICS and IBSA.
  • He said it is a matter of pride for India that Ramaphosa will witness the Republic Day parade on Saturday.In his press statement, Ramaphosa said India is a strategic partner for South Africa.
  • He said, South Africa attaches highest importance to its relations with India and considerable scope exist to deepen bilateral relations at an economic level.
  • He said trade relations should reach higher level between the two countries.
  • Ramaphosa reached New Delhi this morning on a two-day visit to India. Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri had received the visiting dignitary upon his arrival.
  • President Ramaphosa was accorded ceremonial reception at forecourts of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
  • Talking to media in New Delhi, the South African President said, he is happy to be in India as the two countries enjoy age old linkages.
  •  Cyril Ramaphosa will be the Chief Guest at the Republic Day Parade on Saturday.

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♦  Tamil Nadu Global Investors Meet 2019: MoUs worth ₹3 lakh cr. signed, says Edappadi Palaniswami

  • Surpassing the ‘success’ of the first edition of the Global Investors Meet (GIM) held in 2015, the Tamil Nadu government has signed 304 Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) and agreements entailing investments to the tune of over ₹3,00,431 crore in GIM-II, Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami has said.
  • The two-day summit drew to a close on Thursday.
  • The government said that in 2015, when the first edition of the GIM was conducted under then Chief Minister Jayalalithaa’s leadership, 98 MoUs were inked, with potential investments of over ₹2.42 lakh crore.
  • This year, there were investments in relatively new sectors like school education, higher education, office space and tourism. Traditional sectors and MSMEs also received promises of huge investments. Apart from the 304 MoUs, as many as 12,360 Memoranda were signed in the MSME sector, which had attracted investments of over ₹32,206 crore. In 2015, the MSME Department signed 10,073 MoUs during the road shows conducted ahead of the summit.
  • The Chief Minister said these MoUs will, over the next few years, provide job opportunities to over 10 lakh people across the State.

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♦  Venezuela’s military backs Maduro, as standoff hardens with U.S.

  • Venezuela’s powerful military threw its weight behind Nicolas Maduro on Thursday as the US-backed opposition leader Juan Guaido pressed a direct challenge to his authority, and the fate of the crisis-wracked country hung in the balance.
  • As the death toll from days of street protests jumped to 26, a defiant Mr. Maduro announced the closure of Venezuela’s embassy and consulates in the United States, a day after President Donald Trump’s administration declared his regime “illegitimate.”
  • The oil-rich but economically devastated country was plunged into uncertainty Wednesday when Guaido, the 35-year-old head of the National Assembly, proclaimed himself “acting president” — earning swift endorsement from Washington and a dozen regional powers including Brazil, Argentina and Colombia.
  • Mr. Maduro’s reelection last year was contested by the opposition, and criticized internationally — but the socialist leader has until now retained the loyalty of the powerful military, whose response was being keenly watched.
  • Flanked by military top brass, the country’s Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino, himself a general, declared the 56-year-old Maduro “the legitimate president” — and vowed to defend his authority against an attempted “coup d’etat.”

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♦  Rs 400 crore cleared for UDAN scheme bailout

  • The government has put in Rs 400 crore to bail out its flagship regional connectivity scheme called Ude Desh ke Aam Naagrik (UDAN). The bailout from the government was needed after the aviation ministry finalised the third phase of the scheme, which shot up the total subsidy burden by almost double to Rs 1,250 cr per annum.
  • “The government has agreed to pay Rs 400 crore from the dividend payment that AAI makes to them. This should take care of our subsidy payment in the interim,” said a government official, who did not want to be identified.
  • The aviation ministry was in need of money to fund the subsidy and had approached the finance ministry for help. Post the approval for Rs 400 crore, the aviation ministry is set to announce the winners for routes in the third phase.
  • The UDAN, announced in October 2016, is one of the flagship sechmes of the Modi government that offers subsidised flights at Rs 2,500 per hour of flight.

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♦  ISRO tastes first success of 2019, places military satellite Microsat-R in orbit

  • Under a starry night and a waning gibbous moon, ISRO’s PSLV C-44 broke the silence over a brimming Pulicat lake as it lifted off from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, SHAR, to successfully place in orbit military satellite Microsat-R.
  • The mission, with a modified PSLV with just dual strap-on motors (PSLV-DL), marked another first for ISRO – it provided an alternative to its normal six strap-on motors. This will enable the rocket to carry slightly higher payloads than its Core-Alone version.
  • Towards the end of the first stage, the rocket’s plumes were white with its tail end burning bright red even as a large flock of birds passed on the horizon. A second later, as the rocket soared further into the night sky, the second stage ignition burned a bright orange propelling the rocket ahead.

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♦  Hindi author Krishna Sobti dies at 93

  • Eminent Hindi author and essayist Krishna Sobti died in Delhi. She was 93. The author breathed her last in a Delhi hospital this morning, where she was admitted for the last two months.
  • “She was about to complete her 94 years in February, so an age factor was there no doubt. For the last one week she was in the ICU”.
  • “Even after being extremely sick, she was very much aware about her thoughts, about what was happening in the society,”.
  • She was born in 1925, Sobti was known for writing about issues of female identity and sexuality.
  • She received prestigious awards like Sahitya Akademi, Jnanpith awards and was also offered Padma Bhushan, which she had declined.

♠Vocabulary (The Hindu)♠

  1. BARREN(ADJECTIVE): arid 🙁अनुर्वर)

Synonyms: desolate, empty     

Antonyms: fruitful, productive

Example: It is a barren land.

  1. NIMBLE(ADJECTIVE): adept 🙁कुशल)

Synonyms: agile, deft    

Antonyms: clumsy, sluggish

Example:  The insect ran with its nimble wings.

  1. BENEVOLENT(ADJECTIVE): benign 🙁उदार)

Synonyms: caring, generous  

Antonyms: miserly, stingy

Example: I appreciate your benevolent presence.

  1. CATASTROPHE(NOUN): calamity 🙁आपत्ति)

Synonyms: adversity, casualty 

  Antonyms: benefit, gain

Example: Floods in Assam is a natural catastrophe.

  1. PENURIOUS(ADJECTIVE): avaricious 🙁कंजूस)

Synonyms: cheap, costive    

Antonyms: generous, giving

Example: Mukesh is a penurious boy.

  1. METICULOUS(ADJECTIVE): careful 🙁अतिसावधान)

Synonyms: particular, conscientious 

Antonyms: careless, inaccurate

Example: He is very meticulous with his assignments.

 

  1. DISSIPATE (VERB): expend: (उड़ाना)

Synonyms: deplete, spend   

 Antonyms: collect, gather

Example: That cooktop dissipates lots of smoke.

  1. BIFURCATE (VERB): divide: (दो शाखाओं में बांटना)

Synonyms: bisect, diverge   

Antonyms: agree, unite

Example:  This road is bifurcated into two suburbs.

Close test Based on The Hindu editorial

The gap within: on inter-State disparities

India, as the world’s fastest-growing major economy, may well be (1) up with the richer economies in terms of absolute size. But economic convergence within the country remains a distant dream as poorer States continue to lag behind the richer ones in economic growth. A report from the rating agency Crisil (2) that the inter-State disparities have widened in recent years even as the larger economy grows in size and influence on the global stage. Many low-income States have experienced isolated years of strong economic growth above the national average. Bihar, in fact, was the (3)-growing State this year among the 17 non-special category States evaluated by the report. But they have still failed to bridge their widening gap with the richer States since they have simply not been able to maintain a healthy growth rate over a sustained period of time. Richer States like Gujarat, for instance, have been able to achieve sustained economic growth and increase their gap over other States. The report found that there was a slight, albeit weak, convergence in the per capita income levels of the poorer and richer States between fiscal years 2008 and 2013, but the trend was reversed in the (4) years. Between fiscal years 2013 and 2018, there has been a significant divergence rather than convergence in the economic fortunes of the poorer and richer States. This was the result of richer States continuing to show strong growth while the poorer States fell behind. In fact, only two of the eight low-income States in 2013 had growth rates above the national average over the next five years. On the other hand, six out of the nine high-income States recorded rates higher than the national average during 2013-18. What explains the divergence in the economic fortunes of States? The report suggests that, at least during fiscal year 2018, government spending may be what (5) gross domestic product growth in the top-performing States, particularly in Bihar and Andhra Pradesh whose double-digit growth rates have come along with a burgeoning fiscal deficit. The impact of greater spending was that 10 of the 17 States breached the 3% fiscal deficit limit set by the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act. Many other big-spending States, however, have not managed to achieve growth above the national average. Punjab and Kerala, which are at the bottom of the growth table, are ranked as profligates by the report. This suggests that the size of public spending is probably not what differentiates the richer States from the poorer ones. Other variables like the strength of State-level institutions, as gauged by their ability to uphold the rule of law and create a free, competitive marketplace for businesses to thrive, and the quality of public spending could be crucial determinants of the long-run growth prospects of States.

Question 1:

A)Catching

B) Covering

C) Reaching

D) Holding

E) None

Question 2:

A)Search

B) Found

C) Decision

D) Published

E) None

Question 3:

A)Fastest

B) Rank one

C) Above

D) Ahead

E) None

Question 4:

A)Previous

B) Ago

C) Continue

D) Subsequent

E) None

Question 5:

A)Right

B) Up

C) Boosted

D) Pushed

E) None

Question 6: Select the word which is most nearly the SAME MEANING as the word printed in bold as used in the passage.

Thrive

A)Stunt

B)Wither

C)Decline

D)Recede

E) Succeed

Answer

1-A

2-B

3-A

4-D

5-C

6-E  Thrive -कामयाब होना

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