THE HINDU EDITORIAL : JANUARY 24, 2019
THE HINDU EDITORIAL : JANUARY 24, 2019
Dear Banking Aspirants,
THE HINDU EDITORIAL – January 24, 2018, is one of the must-read section for the competitive exams like IBPS Clerk 2018 Mains Exam, Canara Bank PO – PGDBF 2018 and IBPS SO 2018. 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) The gap within: on inter-State disparities
We need to address the issue of slower growth in our poorer States
India, as the world’s fastest-growing major economy, may well be catching 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 found 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 fastest-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 subsequent 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 boosted 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.
B) A reckless experiment: on gene-edited babies
Editing the ‘human germline’ is an exercise fraught with unknown risks
The saga of the Chinese scientist who created the world’s first gene-edited babies last November has forced researchers everywhere to take a hard look at the ethics of gene-editing. Chinese authorities have since condemned the researcher, He Jiankui, with a government report this week saying he violated both ethics and laws. But though Mr. He’s actions drew international outrage, they weren’t revolutionary in technological terms. Editing DNA to correct disease mutations has been possible for a while now, which means others can also do what Mr. He did. The promises of such gene-editing are boundless; over a dozen clinical trials are currently on to treat diseases like HIV, multiple myeloma and other forms of cancer, using the Crispr-Cas9 editing system. But none of them involve editing the so-called human germ-line; instead, they have restricted themselves to fixing genetic flaws in sick adults. In contrast, Mr. He deactivated a gene in two human embryos, which means that the changes he made could be inherited by the next generation. In doing so, he violated the widely held ethical consensus that it is too early for germline editing, for we simply don’t know enough yet about the risks of such fiddling.
One pitfall of embryo gene-editing is that it is not as precise as we need it to be today. Studies have shown that the technology can result in unintended mutations, which in turn can cause cancers. Then there is the danger of mosaicism, in which some cells inherit the target mutation, while others don’t. To be sure, the error-rates of Crispr are falling with each passing year. But we aren’t in the clear yet. What is more, even when gene-editing becomes fool-proof, the decision to edit embryos will still be a weighty one. This is because, today, scientists are far from understanding how exactly individual genes influence phenotypes, or the visible traits of people. Every gene likely influences multiple traits, depending on the environment it interacts with. This makes it hard to predict the ultimate outcome of an embryo-editing exercise without decades of follow-up. This uncertainty became evident in Mr. He’s experiment, in which he sought to immunise a pair of twins from HIV by tinkering with a gene called CCR5. The problem is that while protecting against HIV, a deactivated CCR5 gene can also make people more susceptible to West-Nile Fever. Every gene influences such trade-offs, which scientists barely understand today. This is why several scientific societies have advised abundant caution while fiddling with the human germline. In a 2017 report, the U.S.’s National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine said such an intervention would be defensible only in very rare situations, where no alternative exists. The He Jiankui incident shows it is time to translate these advisories into regulations. Unless this happens, the Crispr revolution could well go awry.
Meaning : the process or state of converging.
Synonyms : mingle
Antonyms : disperse
Example : “the convergence of lines in the distance”
Meaning : a great difference.
Tamil Meaning : வேற்றுமைகளுக்கு
Synonyms : distinction
Antonyms : agreement
Example : “economic disparities between different regions of the country”
Meaning : form an idea of the amount, number, or value of; assess.
Tamil Meaning : மதிப்பீடு
Synonyms : calculate
Antonyms : neglect
Example : “the study will assist in evaluating the impact of recent changes”
Meaning : continuing for an extended period or without interruption.
Tamil Meaning : நீடித்த
Synonyms : constant
Antonyms : ending
Example : “several years of sustained economic growth”
Meaning : an example or single occurrence of something.
Tamil Meaning : உதாரணமாக
Synonyms : precedent
Antonyms : hide
Example : “a serious instance of corruption”
Meaning : coming after something in time; following.
Synonyms : ensuing
Antonyms : anteceent
Example : “the theory was developed subsequent to the earthquake of 1906″
Meaning : the process or state of diverging.
Tamil Meaning : விலகுதல்
Synonyms : disparity
Antonyms : sameness
Example : “the divergence between primates and other groups”
Meaning : used to indicate one’s preference in a particular matter.
Tamil Meaning : மாறாக
Synonyms : relatively
Antonyms : extremely
Example : “would you like some wine or would you rather stick to sherry?”
Meaning : begin to grow or increase rapidly; flourish.
Tamil Meaning : அரும்பும்
Synonyms : sprout
Antonyms : decrease
Example : “manufacturers are keen to cash in on the burgeoning demand”
Meaning : make a gap in and break through (a wall, barrier, or defence).
Tamil Meaning : மீறப்படுகின்றன
Synonyms : contravene
Antonyms : give
Example : “the river breached its bank”
Meaning : an excess of expenditure or liabilities over income or assets in a given period.
Tamil Meaning : பற்றாக்குறை
Synonyms : shortfall
Antonyms : enough
Example : “an annual operating deficit”
Meaning : the action of one object coming forcibly into contact with another.
Tamil Meaning : தாக்கம்
Synonyms : brunt
Antonyms : avoidance
Example : “there was the sound of a third impact”
Meaning : a licentious, dissolute person.
Synonyms : operator
Antonyms : uprights
Example : “he is a drunkard and a profligate”
Meaning : estimate or determine the amount, level, or volume of.
Synonyms : degenerate
Antonyms : innocents
Example : “astronomers can gauge the star’s intrinsic brightness”
Meaning : (of a child, animal, or plant) grow or develop well or vigorously.
Tamil Meaning : செழித்து
Synonyms : develop
Antonyms : decrease
Example : “the new baby thrived”
Meaning : decisive or critical, especially in the success or failure of something.
Tamil Meaning : முக்கியமான
Synonyms : decisive
Antonyms : inessential
Example : “negotiations were at a crucial stage”
Meaning : a factor which decisively affects the nature or outcome of something.
Synonyms : impetus
Antonyms : hindrance
Example : “pure force of will was the main determinant of his success”
Meaning : sentenced to a particular punishment, especially death.
Tamil Meaning : கண்டனம்
Synonyms : convicted
Antonyms : morals
Example : “condemned prisoners awaiting execution”
Meaning : an extremely strong reaction of anger, shock, or indignation.
Tamil Meaning : கோபத்தை
Synonyms : shock
Antonyms : benefit
Example : “her voice trembled with outrage”
Meaning : the action or process of mutating.
Synonyms : alteration
Antonyms : stagnation
Example : “the mutation of punk’s angry energy into something more thuggish and mindless”
Meaning : as an alternative or substitute.
Tamil Meaning : பதிலாக
Synonyms : rather
Example : “do not use lotions, but put on a clean dressing instead”
Meaning : the state of being strikingly different from something else in juxtaposition or close association.
Synonyms : comparison
Antonyms : agreement
Example : “the day began cold and blustery, in contrast to almost two weeks of uninterrupted sunshine”
Meaning : annoyingly trivial or petty.
Synonyms : interfere
Antonyms : work
Example : “fiddling little details”
Meaning : not planned or meant.
Tamil Meaning : திட்டமிடப்படாத
Synonyms : unplanned
Antonyms : expected
Example : “the unintended consequences of people’s actions”
Meaning : a distinguishing quality or characteristic, typically one belonging to a person.
Synonyms : attribute
Antonyms : normality
Example : “the traditionally British trait of self-denigration”
Meaning : say or estimate that (a specified thing) will happen in the future or will be a consequence of something.
Synonyms : envision
Antonyms : ignore
Example : “it is too early to predict a result”
Meaning : the state of being uncertain.
Tamil Meaning : நிச்சயமற்ற
Synonyms : concern
Antonyms : assurance
Example : “times of uncertainty and danger”
Meaning : clearly seen or understood; obvious.
Tamil Meaning : தெளிவாக
Synonyms : obvious
Antonyms : dubious
Example : “she ate the biscuits with evident enjoyment”
Meaning : attempt to repair or improve something in a casual or desultory way.
Synonyms : mess
Antonyms : break
Example : “he spent hours tinkering with the car”
Meaning : attempt to find (something).
Tamil Meaning : முயன்று
Synonyms : desired
Example : “they came here to seek shelter from biting winter winds”
Meaning : likely or liable to be influenced or harmed by a particular thing.
Synonyms : affected
Antonyms : unlikely
Example : “patients with liver disease may be susceptible to infection”
Meaning : only just; almost not.
Synonyms : hardly
Example : “she nodded, barely able to speak”
Meaning : existing or available in large quantities; plentiful.
Tamil Meaning : ஏராளமாக
Synonyms : generous
Antonyms : meager
Example : “there was abundant evidence to support the theory”
Meaning : the action or process of intervening.
Tamil Meaning : தலையீடு
Synonyms : arbitration
Example : “a high degree of state intervention in the economy”
Meaning : justifiable by argument.
Tamil Meaning : பாதுகாப்பு
Synonyms : permissible
Antonyms : irrational
Example : “a morally defensible penal system”
Meaning : express the sense of (words or text) in another language.
Tamil Meaning : மொழிபெயர்
Synonyms : convert
Antonyms : remove
Example : “several of his books were translated into English”
Meaning : the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself.
Tamil Meaning : தாக்கங்கள்
Synonyms : force
Antonyms : beginning
Example : “the influence of television violence”
Meaning : marked by exactness and accuracy of expression or detail.
Synonyms : correct
Antonyms : flexible
Example : “precise directions”
Meaning : break or fail to comply with (a rule or formal agreement).
Tamil Meaning : மீறி
Synonyms : disobey
Antonyms : assist
Example : “they violated the terms of a ceasefire”
Meaning : a mark, blemish, or other imperfection which mars a substance or object.
Tamil Meaning : குறைபாடுகள்
Synonyms : blemish
Antonyms : perfection
Example : “a flaw in the glass”