The Hindu Editorial : February 23, 2019

Dear Banking Aspirants,

THE HINDU EDITORIAL – February 23, 2018, is one of the must-read section for the competitive exams like  NIACL AO Prelims Exam, IBPS SO Mains Exam. These topics are widely expected to be asked in the reading comprehension, Cloze Test or Error Detection in the forthcoming exams. So gear up your Exam preparation and learn new words daily.

A) Missed target: on India refusing visa to Pakistani competitors

In sending a strong message to Pakistan, India should not shoot itself in the foot

The decision of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to revoke Tokyo 2020 Olympics qualification status for the men’s 25-metre rapid fire pistol event from the New Delhi shooting World Cup is a controversy Indian sport could have done without. This has come after India refused visas to two Pakistani competitors, in the backdrop of heightened bilateral tensions after the terror attack in Pulwama. The IOC has declared that this is against the Olympic Charter’s principles, of which non-discrimination, equal treatment of all athletes and sporting delegations and political non-interference are supreme. It is clear that in the clamour to send Pakistan what it perceives to be the right message, India has shot itself in the foot. In the short term, the scrapping of two out of 16 quota places will deny three Indian shooters, including 16-year-old Anish Bhanwala who won the gold in the event at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, an opportunity to make the Olympic grade at home. While the National Rifle Association of India has thanked the IOC for sparing the 14 other places by restricting the withdrawal of recognition to just one event, three Indian shooters, for no fault of theirs, have ended up as collateral damage.

The long-term consequences, however, could be more severe. The IOC, in a strongly worded statement, said that it has decided to “suspend all discussions with the Indian National Olympic Committees and government regarding the potential applications for hosting future sports and Olympic-related events until clear written guarantees are obtained…to ensure the entry of all participants.” This means negotiations regarding India’s potential bids for the 2026 Youth Olympics, 2030 Asian Games and 2032 Olympics are set to go into cold storage. While it is true that the IOC’s record in dealing with the overlapping worlds of geopolitics and sports is uneven, there have been precedents of strong action in similar cases. Ahead of the 2016 Rio Olympics, the Asian Shooting Championship in Kuwait had its qualification status removed after an Israeli delegate wasn’t granted a visa. Less than a month ago, Malaysia was stripped of the World Para Swimming Championship for turning down visa requests from Israeli participants. The entire episode has also played out at a time when sections of the BCCI, egged on by a few yesteryear greats, seemingly mulled over the option of calling for a complete ban on Pakistan from the upcoming ICC World Cup in England. Going by experience, beyond feeding into a certain kind of atmospherics, such bans on sportspersons and interactions in international sports events will have no meaningful effect.

B) Mixed optics: Saudi Crown Prince’s India visit

The Saudi Crown Prince’s visit highlighted the complexities in bilateral ties

As a standalone visit, the day-long trip of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud (MBS) to New Delhi will be regarded as a diplomatic success, given the numerous outcomes. After talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the two sides announced measures to upgrade the defence partnership, create a “Strategic Partnership Council” to coordinate on security issues, and institute regular talks between the two national security advisers to discuss counter-terrorism, intelligence-sharing and maritime security. Saudi Arabia has also expressed its interest in investing in infrastructure projects worth about $26 billion. This is beyond its already committed investments in India of $44 billion for the existing joint venture with the public sector oil undertakings and public fund investments of $10 billion. The language on terrorism in the joint statement was something of a dampener for those who would have hoped there would be stronger condemnation of the terror attack in Pulwama. But it was significant that the Saudi government agreed to insert an extra clause calling on states to renounce the “use of terrorism as an instrument of state policy”. It also acknowledged that disputes between India and Pakistan must be resolved bilaterally. At the leadership level, Mr. Modi extended more than a personal touch to the visit by going to the airport and embracing the Crown Prince on landing. The prince repaid the compliment, agreeing to increase Haj quotas and release 850 Indians from Saudi jails after a plea from Mr. Modi.

These announcements and gestures would have been far more significant had it not been for the fact that MBS’s trip came on the heels of his visit to Pakistan just after the Pulwama attack. As a result, his India visit is being measured against the statements made during his Pakistan visit, where he praised Islamabad for its fight against terrorism.He also announced $20 billion worth of investments, in addition to previously announced aid of $6 billion in cash and reserves. While such comparisons may be unwarranted, the visit to Delhi would have benefited in terms of optics if it hadn’t been preceded so closely by the one to Islamabad. The Modi government also overplayed its expectations from the visit by billing it as part of a diplomatic offensive aimed at ‘isolating’ Pakistan in order to hold it to account for Pulwama. India and Saudi Arabia have steadily built bilateral relations and taken great care over the past two decades to ‘de-hyphenate’ them from ties between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. India-Saudi Arabia ties were strengthened into a strategic partnership announced in 2010 in the Riyadh Declaration when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh paid a visit, and were bolstered by King Salman’s visit in February 2014 and Mr. Modi’s 2016 trip to Saudi Arabia. Point-scoring with Pakistan, or attempting to compare the outcomes of the two visits, now only undermines the carefully built compact between New Delhi and Riyadh.


1) revoke

Meaning : officially cancel (a decree, decision, or promise)(v).

Tamil Meaning : திரும்பப்பெற

Synonyms : abolish

Antonyms : affirm

Example : “the men appealed and the sentence was revoked”

2) controversy

Meaning : prolonged public disagreement or heated discussion(n).

Tamil Meaning : சர்ச்சை

Synonyms : discussion

Antonyms : agreement

Example : “the design of the building has caused controversy”

3) perceives

Meaning : become aware or conscious of (something); come to realize or understand(v).

Tamil Meaning : கருதுகிற

Synonyms : discern

Antonyms : disbelieve

Example : “his mouth fell open as he perceived the truth”

4) scrapping

Meaning : discard or remove from service (a redundant, old, or inoperative vehicle, vessel, or machine), especially so as to convert it to scrap metal(v).

Tamil Meaning : குறைத்துள்ளது

Synonyms : discard

Antonyms : accept

Example : “a bold decision was taken to scrap existing plant”

5) deny

Meaning : state that one refuses to admit the truth or existence of(v).

Tamil Meaning : மறுக்க

Synonyms : rebuff

Antonyms : accept

Example : “both firms deny any responsibility for the tragedy”

6) recognition

Meaning : identification of someone or something or person from previous encounters or knowledge(n).

Tamil Meaning : அங்கீகாரம்

Synonyms : acceptance

Antonyms : denial

Example : “she saw him pass by without a sign of recognition”

7) ensure

Meaning : make certain that (something) will occur or be the case(v).

Tamil Meaning : உறுதி

Synonyms : assure

Antonyms : endanger

Example : “the client must ensure that accurate records are kept”

8) bids

Meaning : offer (a certain price) for something, especially at an auction(v).

Synonyms : advance

Antonyms : withdrawal

Example : “a consortium of dealers bid a world record price for a snuff box”

9) precedents

Meaning : an earlier event or action that is regarded as an example or guide to be considered in subsequent similar circumstances(n).

Synonyms : criterion

Example : “there are substantial precedents for using interactive media in training”

10) delegate

Meaning : a person sent or authorized to represent others, in particular an elected representative sent to a conference(n).

Synonyms : envoy

Antonyms : discharge

Example : “congress delegates rejected the proposals”

11) stripped

Meaning : remove all coverings from(v).

Tamil Meaning : பறிக்கப்பட்டது

Synonyms : deprived

Antonyms : garnished

Example : “they stripped the bed”

12) mulled

Meaning : think about (a fact, proposal, or request) deeply and at length(v).

Synonyms : deliberate

Antonyms : forget

Example : “she began to mull over the various possibilities”

13) diplomatic

Meaning : of or concerning diplomacy(adj).

Tamil Meaning : தூதரக

Synonyms : gracious

Antonyms : impolite

Example : “diplomatic relations with Britain were broken”

14) venture

Meaning : a risky or daring journey or undertaking(n).

Synonyms : endeavor

Antonyms : idleness

Example : “pioneering ventures into little-known waters”

15) dampener

Meaning : a thing that has a restraining or subduing effect(n).

Tamil Meaning : முடிவதில்லை

Synonyms : moaner

Antonyms : arouser

Example : “television and booze, those twin dampeners of the revolutionary spirit”

16) condemnation

Meaning : the expression of very strong disapproval; censure(n).

Tamil Meaning : கண்டனம்

Synonyms : censure

Antonyms : approval

Example : “there was strong international condemnation of the attack”

17) renounce

Meaning : formally declare one’s abandonment of (a claim, right, or possession)(v).

Tamil Meaning : நிராகரிக்க

Synonyms : deny

Antonyms : admit

Example : “Isabella offered to renounce her son’s claim to the French Crown”

18) disputes

Meaning : a disagreement or argument(n).

Tamil Meaning : சர்ச்சை

Synonyms : conflict

Antonyms : agreement

Example : “a territorial dispute between the two countries”

19) resolved

Meaning : firmly determined to do something.

Tamil Meaning : தீர்க்கப்பட

Synonyms : settle

Antonyms : begin

Example :”Constance was resolved not to cry”

20) embracing

Meaning : hold (someone) closely in one’s arms, especially as a sign of affection(v).

Tamil Meaning : தழுவிய

Synonyms : grasp

Antonyms : give

Example : “Aunt Sophie embraced her warmly”

21) gestures

Meaning : a movement of part of the body, especially a hand or the head, to express an idea or meaning(n).

Synonyms : expression

Antonyms : speech

Example : “Alex made a gesture of apology”

22) heels

Meaning : fit or renew a heel on (a shoe or boot)(v).

Synonyms : attend

Example : “they were soling and heeling heavy working boots”

23) offensive

Meaning : causing someone to feel resentful, upset, or annoyed(adj).

Tamil Meaning : தாக்குதல்

Synonyms : annoying

Antonyms : agreeable

Example : “the allegations made are deeply offensive to us”

24) undermines

Meaning : erode the base or foundation of (a rock formation)(v).

Synonyms : blunt

Antonyms : aid

Example : “the flow of water had undermined pillars supporting the roof”

25) discrimination

Meaning : recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another(n).

Tamil Meaning : பாகுபாடு

Synonyms : intolerance

Antonyms : equity

Example : “discrimination between right and wrong”

26) collateral

Meaning : something pledged as security for repayment of a loan, to be forfeited in the event of a default(n).

Synonyms : ancillary

Antonyms : different

Example : “she put her house up as collateral for the bank loan”

27) declared

Meaning : openly or formally asserted or announced(adj).

Synonyms : affirmed

Example : “despite the company’s declared good intentions, some remained sceptical”

28) negotiations

Meaning : discussion aimed at reaching an agreement(n).

Synonyms : arbitration

Antonyms : disagreement

Example : “a worldwide ban is currently under negotiation

29) compact

Meaning : closely and neatly packed together; dense(adj).

Synonyms : solid

Antonyms : empty

Example : “a compact cluster of houses”

30) bilateral

Meaning : having or relating to two sides; affecting both sides(adj).

Synonyms : mutual

Antonyms : multilateral

Example : “bilateral hearing is essential for sound location”