English: Cloze Test for Upcoming Exams – Set 170

Directions: In the following passage ten blanks are left out labeled with letters A, B, C and so on. You have to choose a set of words that is correct grammatically and contextually in order to fill the blank.

The Union Cabinet has approved a series of changes in foreign direct investment norms as the government prepares to enter the last lap of its economic policy-setting phase ahead of the 2019 election. Key among these was the decision to __ 1 __ up to 49% overseas ownership, including by a foreign airline, in Air India. This comes just a little more than six months after the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs gave its nod for a strategic __ 2 __ of the airline. The relaxation in ownership norms clears the decks for possible bidders such as the Singapore Airlines-Tata combine and Jet Airways — with its overseas equity and route partners — to make a more detailed commercial __ 3 __ of the investment opportunity the state-owned flag carrier presents. For the fiscally constrained government, the __ 4 __ couldn’t have come sooner. With the Union Budget due soon and the government __ 5 __ short of its budgeted strategic disinvestment goal for the current financial year — as of end-November, only 28% of the targeted ?15,000 crore had been realised — the hope must be for an __ 6 __ timetable for the stake sale. Still, the fulfillment of a necessary condition for a strategic sale doesn’t automatically become sufficient grounds for a successful privatisation. Given the carrier’s accumulated debt of about ?50,000 crore and the fact that the interest of potential investors is likely to be focused on Air India’s __ 7__ long-haul international routes and its fleet of more than 40 wide-bodied aircraft, disinvestment will be neither easy nor guaranteed. At the very least, the government needs to set a distinct, __ 8 __ road map for the sale process.

The other reform cleared by the Cabinet was the __ 9__ decision to put 100% FDI in Single Brand Retail Trading under the ‘automatic’ route, accompanied by the long-sought relaxation of mandatory local sourcing norms. This had been a major issue with potential investors including Apple, which had repeatedly urged the government to take a more __ 10 __ view given the level of technological advancement incorporated in its products and the difficulty in finding local sources of supply at the requisite scale.

  1. give away, encash
    allow, permit
    strategise, authorize
    spurn, promote
    All of the above
    Option B


  2. seizure, expropriation
    occupancy, vacancy
    disinvestment, divestment
    destitution, denial
    All of these
    Option C


  3. evaluation, assessment
    opinion, viewpoint
    viability, validity
    aspect, issue
    All of these
    Option A


  4. impact, effect
    verdict, protocol
    decision, conclusion
    negotiation, dialogue
    All of these
    Option C


  5. woefully, extremely
    sure, certain
    fair, definitely
    merely, slightly
    All of these
    Option A


  6. inexpedient, impolitic
    accelerated, increased
    sluggish, gradual
    lethargic, plodding
    All of these
    Option B


  7. potentially, likely
    futile, cost-effective
    pragmatic, realistic
    lucrative, fruitful
    All of these
    Option D


  8. univocal, vague
    unequivocal, unambiguous
    fuzzy, absurd
    clear, short
    All of these
    Option B


  9. eminent, significant
    essential, pivotal
    critical, important
    crucial, vital
    All of these
    Option E


  10. concentrated, focused
    genial, chipper
    benign, mild
    lively, brisky
    All of these
    Option C


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