Story Based Passage for IBPS Clerk Prelims 2017


Story Based Passage for IBPS Clerk Prelims 2017

Directions (Q. 1-10): Read the passage carefully and answer the questions given below it. Certain words/phrases are given in bold to help you locate them while answering some of the questions.
Uddalaka, a great sage and teacher of Vedanta, had a disciple named Kagola, who was virtuous and devoted but had not great learning. So, the other disciples used to laugh and mock at him. Uddalaka, however, attached no great weight to his disciple’s lack of erudition but really appreciated his virtues, devotion and good conduct and gave his daughter Sujata in marriage to him.
The couple was blessed with a son. A child generally inherits the characteristics of both the parents, but fortunately the grandson of Uddalaka took after his grandfather rather than his father and knew the Vedas even while he was in his mother’s womb. When Kagola made mistakes, as he often did in reciting the Vedas, the child in the womb would twist his body with pain, and so it came to pass that he had eight crooks in his body when he was born. These crooks earned him the name of Ashtavakra, which means “Eight-crooks.”
Kagola, one ill-fated day, provoked a polemical context with Vandi, the court scholar of Mithila, and having been defeated, was made to drown himself.
Meanwhile Ashtavakra grew up to be a towering scholar even in his boyhood, and at the age of twelve he had already completed his study of the Vedas and the Vedanta.
One day, Ashtavakra learnt that Janaka, the king of Mithila, was performing a great sacrifice, in the course of which the assembled scholars would, as usual, debate on the shastras.
Ashtavakra set out for Mithila, accompanied by his uncle Swetaketu.
On their way to the place of sacrifice at Mithila, they came across the king and his retinue. The attendants of the king marched in front, shouting “Move away. Make way for the King.” Ashtavakra instead of moving out of the way said to the retainers:
“O royal attendants, even the king, if he is righteous, has to move and make way for the blind, the deformed, the fair sex, the person bearing loads and the Brahmanas learned in the Vedas. This is the rule enjoined by the scriptures.”
The king, surprised at these wise words of the Brahmana boy, accepted the justness of the rebuke and made way, observing to his attendants: “What this Brahmana stripling says is true. Fire is fire, whether it is tiny or big, and it has the power to burn.”
Ashtavakra and Swetaketu entered the sacrificial hall. The gate-keeper stopped them and said: “Boys cannot go in. Only old men learned in the Vedas may go into the sacrificial hall.”
Ashtavakra replied: “We are not mere boys. We have observed the necessary vows and have learnt the Vedas. Those who have mastered the truths of the Vedanta will not judge another on mere considerations of age or appearance.”
The gate-deeper said: “Stop. Have done with your idle brag. How can you, a mere boy, have learnt and realised the Vedanta?”
The boy said: “You mean I am not big like an over-grown gourd with no substance in it? Size is no indication of knowledge or worth, nor is age. A very tall old man may be a tall old fool. Let me pass.”
The gate-keeper said: “You are certainly not old, nor tall, though you talk like all the hoary sages. Get out.”
Ashtavakra replied: “Gate-keeper, grey hairs do not prove the ripeness of the soul. The really mature man is the one who has learnt the Vedas and the Vedangas, mastered their gist and realised their essence. I am here to meet the court pandit Vandi. Inform King Janaka of my desire.”
At that moment the king himself came there and easily recognised Ashtavakra, the precociously wise boy he had met before.
1. What did Ashtavakra reply when the gate-keeper asked him to get out?
        1) Gray hair proves the ripeness of soul, not body.
        2) Size is no indication of knowledge or worth.
        3) It is age which determines one’s maturity.
        4) Knowledge of Veda and Vedanga are the signs of maturity, not grey hair.
        5) All the above
2. Which of the following is not true about Ashtavakra?
        1) He was the son of Sujata and Kagola.
        2) In learning he resembled his father.
        3) He had eight crooks in his body.
        4) At the age of twelve he completed his study of Veda and Vedanta.
        5) All the above are true
3. What argument(s) did Ashtavakra place when he was asked by the attendant to move away?
        (A) The guests should be honoured without taking into consideration their status.
        (B) The king himself has to move if there is a person in his way bearing loads.
        (C) The boy should be treated at par with grown up.
        1) Only A              
        2) Only B              
        3) Both A and B
        4) Both B and C 
        5) All A, B and C
4. By saying “Fire is fire, whether it is tiny or big, and has the power to burn”, what did the king want to say?
        1) Veda and Vedanta are full of fiery statements.
        2) Whatever may the size of scholars be, they are as good as fire.
        3) The size of the body is not the determinant of one’s being a scholar.
        4) The Brahmanas are another from of fire.
        5) None of these
5. Which of the following is/are incorrect about Kagola?
        1) He was virtuous and devoted.
        2) He was a man of great learning.
        3) Sujata was his wife.
        4) Only 1) and 2)
        5) Only 1) and 3)
Directions (Q. 6-8): Choose the word/group of words which is MOST SIMILAR in meaning to the word/group of words printed in bold as used in the passage.
6. Crooks
        1) robber                2) deformity         3) hook
        4) zigzag                5) awry
7. Essence
        1) perfume            2) element             3) matter
        4) gist                     5) pith
8. Stripling
        1) lad                      2) band                  3) twin
        4) man                   5) seed
Directions (Q. 9-10): Choose the word/group of words which is MOST OPPOSITE in meaning of the word/group of words printed in bold as used in the passage.
9. Hoary
        1) scholar              2) stubborn           3) young
        4) angry                 5) polite
10. Precociously
        1) premature         2) advanced         3) intelligent
       4) outdated        5) grown-up


  1. 4
  2. 2
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 2
  6. 2
  7. 4
  8. 1
  9. 3
  10. 5
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