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General Instructions:
(i) This paper is divided into three sections: A, B and C. All the sections are compulsory.
(ii) Separate instructions are given with each section and question, wherever necessary. Read these instructions very carefully and follow them faithfully.
(iii) Do not exceed the prescribed word limit while answering the questions.
Question 1
  • Q1

    Read the passage given below carefully :

    1. For four days, I walked through the narrow lanes of the old city, enjoying the romance of being in a city where history still lives - in its cobblestone streets and in its people riding asses, carrying vine leaves and palm as they once did during the time of Christ.

    2. This is Jerusalem, home to the sacred sites of Christianity, Islam and Judaism. This is the place that houses the church of the Holy Sepulchre, the place where Jesus was finally laid to rest. This is also the site of Christ's crucifixion, burial and resurrection.

    3. Built by the Roman Emperor Constantine at the site of an earlier temple to Aphrodite, it is the most venerated Christian shrine in the world. And justifiably so. Here, within the church, are the last five stations of the cross, the 10th station where Jesus was stripped of his clothes, the 11th where he was nailed to the cross, the 12th where he died on the cross, the 13th where the body was removed from the cross, and the 14th, his tomb.

    4. For all this weighty tradition the approach and entrance to the church is non-descript. You have to ask for directions. Even to the devout Christian pilgrims walking along the Via Dolorosa - the Way of Sorrows - first nine stations look clueless. Then a courtyard appears, hemmed in by other buildings and a doorway to one side. This leads to a vast area of huge stone architecture.

    5. Immediately inside the entrance is your first stop. It's the stone of anointing: this is the place, according to Greek tradition, where Christ was removed from the cross. The Roman Catholics, however, believe it to be the spot where Jesus' body was prepared for burial by Joseph.

    6. What happened next ? Jesus was buried. He was taken to a place outside the city of Jerusalem where other graves existed and there, he was buried in a cave. However, all that is along gone, destroyed by continued attacks and rebuilding; what remains is the massive - and impressive - Rotunda (a round building with a dome) that Emperor Constantine built. Under this, and right in the centre of the Rotunda. is the structure that contains the Holy Sepulchre.

    7. "How do you know that this is Jesus' tomb ?" I asked one of the pilgrims standing next to me. He was clueless, more interested, like the rest of them, in the novelty of it all and in photographing it, then in its history or tradition.

    8. At the start of the first century, the place was a disused quarry outside the city walls. According to the gospels, Jesus' crucifixion occurred 'at a place outside the city walls with graves nearby.....'. Archaeologists have discovered tombs from that era, so the site is compatible with the biblical period.

    9. The structure at the site is a marble tomb built over the original burial chamber. It has two rooms, and you enter four at a time into the first of these, the Chapel of the Angel. Here the angel is supposed to have sat on a stone to recount Christ's resurrection. A low door made of white marble, party worn away be pilgrims' hands, leads to a smaller chamber inside. This is the 'room of the tomb', the place where Jesus was buried.

    10. We entered in single file. On my right was a large marble slab that covered the original rock bench on which the body of Jesus was laid. A woman knelt and prayed. Her eyes were wet with tears. She pressed her face against the slab to hide them, but it only made it worse.

    On the basis of your understanding of this passage answer the following questions with the help of given options:

    (a) How does Jerusalem still retain the charm of ancient era?
    (i) There are narrow lanes.
    (ii) Roads are paved with cobblestones.
    (iii) People can be seen riding asses
    (iv) All of the above

    (b) Holy Sepulchre is sacred to _________.
    (i) Christianity
    (ii) Islam
    (iii) Judaism
    (iv) Both (i) and (iii)

    (c) Why does one have to constantly ask for directions to the church?
    (i) Its lanes are narrow.
    (ii) Entrance to the church is non-descript.
    (iii) People are not tourist-friendly.
    (iv) Everyone is lost in enjoying the romance of the place.

    (d) Where was Jesus buried?
    (i) In a cave
    (ii) At a place outside the city
    (iii) In the Holy Sepulchre
    (iv) Both (i) and (ii)

    Answer the following questions briefly:
    (e) What is the Greek belief about the 'stone of anointing'?
    (f) Why did Emperor Constantine build the Rotunda?
    (g) What is the general attitude of the pilgrims?
    (h) How is the site compatible with the biblical period?
    (i) Why did the pilgrims enter the room of the tomb in a single file?
    (j) Why did 'a woman' try to hide her tears?
    (k) Find words from the passage which mean the same as:
    (i) A large grave (para 3)
    (ii) Having no interesting features/dull (para 4) 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q2

    Read the passage carefully.

    1. We often make all things around us the way we want them. Even during our pilgrimages we have begun to look whatever makes our heart happy, gives comfort to our body and peace to the mind. It is as if external solutions will fulfil our needs, and we do not want to make any special efforts even in our spiritual search. Our mind is resourceful − it works to find shortcuts in simple and easy ways.

    2. Even pilgrimages have been converted into tourism opportunities. Instead, we must awaken our conscience and souls and understand the truth. Let us not tamper with either our own nature or that of the Supreme.

    3. All our cleverness is rendered ineffective when nature does a dance of destruction. Its fury can and will wash away all imperfections. Indian culture, based on Vedic treatises, assists in human evolution, but we are now using our entire energy in distorting these traditions according to our convenience instead of making efforts to make ourselves worthy of them.

    4. The irony is that humans are not even aware of the complacent attitude they have allowed themselves to sink to. Nature is everyone's Amma and her fierce blows will sooner or later corner us and force us to understand this truth. Earlier, pilgrimages to places of spiritual significance were rituals that were undertaken when people became free from their worldly duties. Even now some seekers take up this pious religious journey as a path to peace and knowledge. Anyone travelling with this attitude feels and travels with only a few essential items that his body can carry. Pilgrims traditionally travelled light, on foot, eating light, dried chickpeas and fruits, or whatever was available. Pilgrims of olden days did not feel the need to stay in special AC bedrooms, or travel by luxury cars or indulge themselves with delicious food and savouries.

    5. Pilgrims traditionally moved ahead, creating a feeling of belonging towards all, conveying a message of brotherhood among all they came across whether in small caves, ashrams or local settlements. They received the blessings and congregations of yogis and mahatmas in return while conducting the dharma of their pilgrimage. A pilgrimage is like penance or sadhana to stay near nature and to experience a feeling of oneness with it, to keep the body healthy and fulfilled with the amount of food, while seeking freedom from attachments and yet remaining happy while staying away from relatives and associates.

    6. This is how a pilgrimage should be rather than making it like a picnic by taking a large group along and living in comfort, packing in entertainment, and tampering with environment. What is worse is giving a boost to the ego of having had a special darshan. Now alms are distributed, charity done while they brag about their spiritual experiences!

    7. We must embark on our spiritual journey by first understanding the grace and significance of a pilgrimage and following it up with the prescribed rules and rituals − this is what translates into the ultimate and beautiful medium of spiritual evolution. There is no justification for tampering with nature.

    8. A pilgrimage is symbolic of contemplation and meditation and acceptance, and is a metaphor for the constant growth or movement and love for nature that we should hold in our hearts.

    9. This is the truth!

    On the basis of your understanding of the above passage answer the questions that follow with the help of the given options :

    (a) How can a pilgrim keep his body healthy?
    (i) By travelling light
    (ii) By eating small amount of food
    (iii) By keeping free from attachments
    (iv) Both (i) and (ii)

    (b) How do we satisfy our ego?
    (i) By having a special darshan
    (ii) By distributing alms
    (iii) By treating it like a picnic
    (iv) Both (i) and (ii)

    Answer the following as briefly as possible :

    (c) What change has taken place in our attitude towards pilgrimages?
    (d) What happens when pilgrimages are turned into picnics?
    (e) Why are we complacent in our spiritual efforts?
    (f) How does nature respond when we try to be clever with it?
    (g) In olden days with what attitude did people go on a pilgrimage?
    (h) What message does the passage convey to the pilgrims?
    (i) Find words from the passage which mean the same as the following :

    (i) made/turned (para 3)
    (ii) very satisfied (para 4) 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q3

    Read the passage given below:

    It is surprising that sometimes we don't listen to what people say to us. We hear them, but we don't listen to them. I was curious to know how hearing is different from listening. I had thought both were synonyms, but gradually, I realised there is a big difference between the two words.

    Hearing is a physical phenomenon. Whenever somebody speaks, the sound waves generated reach you, and you definitely hear whatever is said to you. However, even if you hear something, it doesn't always mean that you actually understand whatever is being said. Paying attention to whatever you hear means you are really listening. Consciously using your mind to understand whatever is being said is listening.

    Diving deeper, I found that listening is not only hearing with attention, but is much more that that. Listening is hearing with full attention, and applying our mind. Most of the time, we listen to someone, but our minds are full of needless chatter and there doesn't seem to be enough space to accommodate what is being spoken.

    We come with a lot of prejudices and preconceived notions about the speaker or the subject on which he is talking. We pretend to listen to the speaker, but deep inside, we sit in judgement and are dying to pronounce right or wrong, true or false, yes or no. Sometimes, we even come prepared with a negative mindset of proving the speaker wrong. Even if the speaker says nothing harmful, we are ready to pounce on him with our own version of things.

    What we should ideally do is listen first with full awareness. Once we have done that, we can decide whether we want to make a judgement or not. Once we do that, communication will be perfect and our interpersonal relationship will become so much better. Listening well doesn't mean one has to say the right thing at the right moment. In fact, sometimes if words are left unspoken, there is a feeling of tension and negativity. Therefore, it is better to speak out your mind, but do so with awareness after listening to the speaker with full concentration.

    Let's look at this in another way. When you really listen, you imbibe not only what is being spoken, but you also understand what is not spoken as well. Most of the time we don't really listen even to people who really matter to us. That's how misunderstandings grow among families, husbands and wives, brothers and sisters.

    (a) On the basis of your reading of the above passage make notes on it, using heading and sub-headings. Use recognizable abbreviations (wherever necessary − minimum four) and a format you consider suitable. Also supply an appropriate title to it.

    (b) Write a summary of the passage in about 80 words. 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q4

    Your school, Akash Public School, Agra needs a canteen manager. On behalf of the Principal, write an advertisement in about 50 words to be published in the classified columns of a local daily. Mention the educational and professional qualifications, other qualities required in the manager, who to apply to and the last date for the receipt of applications.
     

    OR

    Your club is going to organise an interclass singing competition. Write a notice in about 50 words inviting names of the students who want to participate in it. Give all the necessary details. You are Navtej/Navita, Secretary, Music Club, Akash Public School, Agra. 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q5

    You are Navtej/Navita, Secretary, Environment Club, Akash Public School, Agra. You, along with a group of students, went on a 3-day tour through Corbett National Park. You found how the tourists abuse the available facilities and thus endanger the environment. Write a letter in 120-150 words to the editor of a national daily highlighting the situation. Suggest ways through which the environment of the Park can be saved.
     
    OR

    On Teacher's Day, you read in a newspaper that privately owned and managed schools in small towns or even in the suburbs of metropolitan cities exploit their teachers by paying them just a fraction of their authorised salaries. This affects their performance in the classroom and thus the lives of their students. Write a letter in 120-150 words to the editor of a national daily raising your voice against such exploitation. Suggest ways to solve this problem. You are Navtej/Navita, 112 Taj Road, Agra. 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q6

    Consumerism is increasing day by day. Luxuries of yesterday have become necessities of today. The result is that the more we want the more miserable we become. Write a debate in 150 − 200 words on 'The only way to minimise human suffering and pain is to control our needs.' You are Navtej/Navita.
     

    OR

    Migration from villages to cities has led to the spread of urban  slums. People living in these slums lead a miserable life. Economic disparity leads to the problems of law and order. Write a debate in 150 − 200 words on 'Solution to the problem of misery in the urban slums lies in creating jobs in the villages'. You are Navtej/Navita. 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q7

    Ragging has raised its ugly head again. A recent incident at a prestigious school has shown that this evil has not yet come to an end. Write an article in 150 − 200 words on ' Ragging, an Evil'. You are Navtej/Navita.

    • a practice from the British era
    • original aim, respect for hierarchy
    • enforcing traditions, discipline
    • Prefect − a teacher substitute
    • misuse of authority
    • vulgar aspect
    • fatalities
    • solution
     

    OR

    India is a tourist's dream destination. Give your views on the tourism potential of India in an article in 150 − 200 words. You are Navtej/Navita.

    • places of worship − religious tourism
    • foreigners − places of historical interest
    • the rich − hill stations during summers
                 − the sun-kissed beaches in winters
                 − leisure tourism
    • medical tourism − world class hospitals 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q8

    Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

    and
    looked out at young
    trees sprinting, the merry children spilling
    out of their homes, but after the airport's
    security check, standing a few yards
    away, I looked again at her, wan,
    pale
    as a late winter's moon and felt that
    old
    familiar ache, _ _ _
    (a) How can the trees sprint?
    (b) Why did the poet look at her mother again?
    (c) What did she observe?
    (d) Identify the figure of speech used in these lines.

     
    OR

    On their slag heap, them children
    Wear skins peeped through by bones and spectacles of steel
    With mended glass, like bottle bits on stones
    (a) Who are these children?
    (b) What is their slag heap?
    (c) Why are their bones peeping though their skins?
    (d) What does 'with mended glass' mean? 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q9

    Answer any four of the following in 30 − 40 words each:

    (a) "It is his karam, his destiny." What is Mukesh's family's attitude towards their situation?
    (b) What were the terms of the indigo contract between the British landlords and the Indian peasants?
    (c) How will 'keeping quiet' protect our environment?
    (d) Which objects of nature does Keats mention as sources of joy in his poem, 'A Thing of Beauty'?
    (e) Why did the Tiger King decide to get married?
    (f) What was Sadao's father's dream for him? How did Sadao realise it? 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q10

    Even today so many among us believe in superstitions. An astrologer predicted about 'the Tiger King' that he would be killed by a tiger. He 'killed' one hundred tigers yet was himself 'killed' by a tiger. How did the superstitious belief 'prevail'?

     
    OR

    Dr. Sadao faced a dilemma. Should he use his surgical skills to save the life of a wounded person or hand an escaped American P.O.W. over to the Japanese police? How did he resolve this clash of values? 

    VIEW SOLUTION

  • Q11

    Answer the following question in 120-150 words :
    How did the order from Berlin change the situation in the school ? (The Last Lesson)


    OR

    It is not unusual for a lower middle class girl to dream big. How unrealistic were Sophie's dreams ? 

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  • Q12

    Answer the following question in 120 − 150 words :

    Describe how Silas Marner is betrayed by his friend, William Dane.
     

    OR

    Why and how did Griffin rob the Vicar's house? 

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  • Q13

    Answer the following question in 120-150 words :

    'Evil begets evil.' In the light of this remark, describe the character of Dunstan Cass.

     
    OR

    Attempt a character sketch of Mrs. Hall. 

    VIEW SOLUTION

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