THE HINDU EDITORIAL : JANUARY 9, 2019

Dear Banking Aspirants,

THE HINDU EDITORIAL – January 8, 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) Reinstated, conditionally: on CBI Director’s return

Supreme Court rejects the Centre’s contention in the CBI Director’s case, but softens the blow

In setting aside the orders divesting Alok Verma of his functions and duties as Director of the CBI, the Supreme Court has strengthened the principle that the head of the agency should be insulated against any form of interference. The court took up the matter in the midst of an unseemly tussle for supremacy between Mr. Verma and Special Director Rakesh Asthana, with corruption charges being traded. However, the court’s interim order asking for a time-bound inquiry into the charges against Mr. Verma is now of no avail, as the Bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, has chosen to deal only with the major question of law involved. The decision has gone against the government, with the court holding that the action taken against Mr. Verma amounted to a ‘transfer’, something that cannot be done by any authority except the high-powered selection committee headed by the Prime Minister in terms of the 2003 amendments to the law. It has rejected the government’s contention that stripping the CBI Director of his duties did not amount to a transfer, but only a measure to deal with an extraordinary situation. It has gone into the legislative intent behind the amendments to the Central Vigilance Commission Act in 2003, which included changes to the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act before coming up with its finding.

The Bench has noted that the amendments flow from the principles laid down by the Supreme Court in 1997 in Vineet Narain to protect the agency, especially its Director, from external interference. As the law is clear that any transfer of the Director can only be made by the selection committee, and there being no provision for any other interim measure, the only way the government can divest the head of the agency of his powers is to let the same committee make the decision. The court has been mindful of the fact that an officer could be stripped of his power without being formally transferred to another position, thereby achieving the objective of interfering with the agency’s functioning by oblique means. Its decision will further strengthen the CBI’s independence. However, it is intriguing that the court passed a consequential order to the selection committee to meet within a week and consider Mr. Verma’s powers and authority. Until then, he has been restrained from making any policy decisions. Having set aside the orders of the government divesting Mr. Verma of his powers, as well as the CVC’s order recommending the action, the court could have reinstated him unconditionally. What it has done, instead, is to soften the blow it had dealt the government by giving it an opportunity to achieve through the committee route what it could not do successfully through its midnight ‘coup’.


B) Quota questions: on 10% reservations

Moves for reservations on economic grounds are more about politics than social justice

Rattled by the erosion in upper caste votes in the recent Assembly elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, the BJP government has attempted to recover this traditional vote base through an unapologetic political manoeuvre. It has sought to provide a 10% quota for economically weaker sections in public employment and educational institutions. That this is more an election-time signal to upper castes than a genuine attempt to revisit social justice policy is clear for at least two reasons. The 124th Constitution Amendment Bill will have to be passed by two-thirds of the MPs present and voting, and the challenge will be to drum up the numbers in both Houses. And, it is doubtful if it will stand judicial scrutiny. If enacted, the 50% limit on total reservation laid down by the Supreme Court will be breached. (The court did allow for a higher percentage in extraordinary situations, but it does not apply in this case.) Even if it is arguable that such a move will create deserving opportunities to those outside the purview of caste-based reservations, in Indira Sawhney a nine-judge bench had struck down a provision that earmarked 10% for the economically backward on the ground that economic criteria cannot be the sole basis to determine backwardness. Any attempt to amend the Constitution to extend what is limited to the “socially and educationally backward” to those economically weak is problematic.

If the amendment is challenged, a question that will arise is whether financial incapacity warrants special treatment. With the income ceiling for eligibility likely to be fixed at ₹8 lakh a year — the same as the ‘creamy layer’ limit above which OBC candidates now enjoying reservations become ineligible — an uneasy parity has been created between socially and educationally backward classes with limited means and those who are socially and educationally advanced with the same limitation. The other issue that has come up frequently when quotas are increased by State governments is that exceeding the 50% limit offends the equality norm. In Nagaraj (2006), a Constitution Bench ruled that equality is part of the basic structure of the Constitution. It said the 50% ceiling, among other things, was a constitutional requirement without which the structure of equality of opportunity would collapse. There has been a string of judgments against reservations that breach the 50% limit. Another issue is whether reservations can go to a section that is already adequately represented in public employment. It is not clear if the government has quantifiable data to show that people from lower income groups are under-represented in its service. Reservations have been traditionally provided to undo historical injustice and social exclusion suffered over a period of time, and the question is whether they should be extended to those with social and educational capital solely on the basis of what they earn.


VOCABULARY

1) divesting

Meaning : deprive someone of (power, rights, or possessions)(v).

Tamil Meaning : திறன்மிக்க

Synonyms : deprive

Antonyms : offer

Example : “men are unlikely to be divested of power without a struggle”

2) insulated

Meaning : protected by interposing material that prevents the loss of heat or the intrusion of sound(adj).

Tamil Meaning : தனிமைப்பட்ட

Synonyms : isolate

Antonyms : mingle

Example : “an insulated loft”

3) midst

Meaning : the middle part or point(n).

Synonyms : center

Antonyms : exterior

Example : “he left his flat in the midst of a rainstorm”

4) tussle

Meaning : a vigorous struggle or scuffle, typically in order to obtain or achieve something(n).

Tamil Meaning : மோதல்

Synonyms : strife

Antonyms : harmony

Example : “there was a tussle for the ball”

5) interim

Meaning : the intervening time.

Tamil Meaning : இடைக்கால

Synonyms : provisional

Antonyms : finished

Example : “in the interim I’ll just keep my fingers crossed”

6) avail

Meaning : help or benefit(v).

Tamil Meaning :

Synonyms : fitness

Antonyms : afflict

Example : “no amount of struggle availed Charles”

7) stripping

Meaning : remove all coverings from(v).

Synonyms : disrobe

Example : “they stripped the bed”

8) intent

Meaning : intention or purpose(n).

Tamil Meaning : நோக்கம்

Synonyms : decided

Antonyms : flexible

Example : “with alarm she realized his intent”

9) provision

Meaning : the action of providing or supplying something for use(n).

Synonyms : plan

Antonyms : removal

Example : “new contracts for the provision of services”

10) intriguing

Meaning : arousing one’s curiosity or interest; fascinating(adj).

Tamil Meaning : புதிரான

Synonyms : alluring

Antonyms : boring

Example : “an intriguing story”

11) restrained

Meaning : characterized by reserve or moderation; unemotional or dispassionate.

Tamil Meaning : கட்டுப்படுத்தும்

Synonyms : discreet

Antonyms : extroverted

Example : “his restrained, gentlemanly voice”

12) reinstated

Meaning : restore (someone or something) to their former position or state(v).

Synonyms : restored

Antonyms : displaced

Example : “the union threatened strike action if Owen was not reinstated”

13) dealt

Meaning : distribute (cards) in an orderly rotation to players for a game or round(v).

Synonyms : handle

Antonyms : agree

Example : “the cards were dealt for the last hand”

14) Rattled

Meaning : make or cause to make a rapid succession of short, sharp knocking sounds(v).

Synonyms : shatter

Antonyms : appease

Example : “the roof rattled with little gusts of wind”

15) sought

Meaning : make or cause to make a rapid succession of short, sharp knocking sounds(v).

Synonyms : desired

Antonyms : outcast

Example : “the roof rattled with little gusts of wind”

16) scrutiny

Meaning : critical observation or examination.

Synonyms : analysis

Antonyms : glance

Example : “every aspect of local government was placed under scrutiny

17) enacted

Meaning : make (a bill or other proposal) law(v).

Tamil Meaning : இயற்றப்பட்டது

Synonyms : achieve

Antonyms : hinder

Example : “legislation was enacted to attract international companies”

18) breached

Meaning : make a gap in and break through (a wall, barrier, or defence)(v).

Tamil Meaning : மீறப்படுகின்றன

Synonyms : contravene

Antonyms : receive

Example : “the river breached its bank”

19) earmarked

Meaning : designate (funds or resources) for a particular purpose(v).

Synonyms : designate

Antonyms : ignore

Example : “the cash had been earmarked for a big expansion of the programme”

20) determine

Meaning : cause (something) to occur in a particular way or to have a particular nature.

Tamil Meaning : தீர்மானிக்க

Synonyms : complete

Antonyms : commence

Example : “it will be her mental attitude that determines her future”

21) offends

Meaning : commit an illegal act(v).

Synonyms : aggrieve

Antonyms : assuage

Example : “a small hard core of young criminals who offend again and again”

22) exceeding

Meaning : very great(adj).

Tamil Meaning : மேல்

Synonyms : outstrip

Antonyms : fail

Example : “she spoke warmly of his exceeding kindness”

23) limitation

Meaning : a limiting rule or circumstance; a restriction(n).

Tamil Meaning : வரையறை

Synonyms : curb

Antonyms : freedom

Example : “severe limitations on water use”

25) frequently

Meaning : regularly or habitually; often(adv).

Tamil Meaning : அடிக்கடி

Synonyms : often

Antonyms : rarely

Example : “they go abroad frequently”

26) contention

Meaning : heated disagreement(n).

Tamil Meaning : கருத்து

Synonyms : conflict

Antonyms : accord

Example : “the captured territory was the main area of contention between the two countries”

27) consequential

Meaning : following as a result or effect(adj)

Synonyms : substantial

Antonyms : trivial

Example : “a loss of confidence and a consequential withdrawal of funds”

28) traded

Meaning : buy and sell goods and services(v).

Tamil Meaning : வர்த்தகம்

Synonyms : restored

Antonyms : stored

Example : “middlemen trading in luxury goods”

29) involved

Meaning : difficult to understand; complicated(adj).

Tamil Meaning : சம்பந்தப்பட்ட

Synonyms : confusing

Antonyms : simple

Example : “a long, involved conversation”

30) amendments

Meaning : a minor change or addition designed to improve a text, piece of legislation, etc.

Synonyms : reform

Antonyms : harm

Example : “an amendment to existing bail laws”

31) ceiling

Meaning : the upper interior surface of a room or other similar compartment.

Synonyms : roof

Antonyms : floor

Example : “the books were stacked from floor to ceiling”

32) criteria

Meaning : a principle or standard by which something may be judged or decided(n).

Tamil Meaning : அடிப்படை

Synonyms : precedent

Antonyms : conjecture

Example : “they award a green label to products that meet certain environmental criteria”

33) deserving

Meaning : worthy of being treated in a particular way, typically of being given assistance.

Tamil Meaning :

Synonyms : estimable

Antonyms : unworthy

Example : “the deserving poor”

34) collapse

Meaning : (of a structure) suddenly fall down or give way.

Synonyms : debacle

Antonyms : creation

Example : “the roof collapsed on top of me”

35) reservations

Meaning : the action of reserving something(n).

Tamil Meaning : ஒதுக்கீடுகள்

Synonyms : restriction

Antonyms : openness

Example : “the reservation of positions for non-Americans”

36) adequately

Meaning : to a satisfactory or acceptable extent(adv).

Tamil Meaning : போதுமான

Synonyms : decently

Antonyms : unequally

Example : “the resources required to prepare adequately will be extensive”

37) exclusion

Meaning : the process of excluding or the state of being excluded.

Synonyms : discharge

Antonyms : approval

Example : “he had a hand in my exclusion from the committee”

38) solely

Meaning : not involving anyone or anything else; only(adv).

Tamil Meaning : முற்றிலும்

Synonyms : entirely

Antonyms : incompletely

Example : “he is solely responsible for any debts the company may incur”

39) extended

Meaning : made larger; enlarged(adj)

Synonyms : protracted

Antonyms : abridged

Example : “an extended kitchen and new balcony”

40) supremacy

Meaning : the state or condition of being superior to all others in authority, power, or status(n).

Tamil Meaning : மேலாதிக்கத்தை

Synonyms : superiority

Antonyms : inferiority

Example : “the supremacy of the king”



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