UPSC CDS II Exam 2019 – English Paper (Answer Key)

UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) conduct the CDS (Combined Defence Services) II Exam – 2019. CDS II 2019 Paper held on 08 September 2019. This paper is English Section. CDS II 2019 English Paper Answer Key available here.

Exam  – CDS II 2019
Organized by – UPSC
Subject – English
Date of Exam – 08 September, 2019
Number of Question  –

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Directions : In this section, you have few short passages. After each passage, you will find some items based on the passage. First, read a passage and answer the items based on it. You are required to select your answers based on the contents of the passage and opinion of the author only.

Passage – 1

Mankind’s experience of various evolutionary changes from primitive time to the present day has been extensive and varied. However, man’s problems were never before as they seem to be today. Man’s economic activity centres primarily around production. Labour is said to be the primary factor of production; its role, therefore, has been given a lot of importance. It should be useful to have an overall view of the economic history of man-from the modern factory system and study its relevance to the various labour problems of today.

Initially, man passed through ‘the hunting and fishing stage’. During this period, his basic needs were adequately met by Nature. Wild animals, birds and fruits satisfied his hunger, and his thirst was quenched by the waters of springs and rivers. Caves gave him shelter and barks of trees were used as clothing. During this stage of man’s progress, labour problems did not exist because of the absence of any economic, political and social systems.

Then came ‘the pastoral stage’, which was marked by a certain amount of economic activity. The nomadic and migratory nature of man persisted, and, together with his goats and cattle, he moved on to fresh pastures and meadows. Some conflicts would sometimes take place among herd-owners, for, during this period, the institution of nominal private property ownership was not known.

This stage paves the way for ‘the agricultural stage’, during which the class system began to develop. There was a small artisan class mostly self-employed; and there were also landed proprietors or Zamindars as well as slaves. Thus, arose the feudal system. During the fourth stage of these developments, ‘the handicrafts stage’, a number of social and economic changes took place which marked the beginning of the labour problem in the world. The self-sufficient economy of the villas underwent a drastic change. The community of traders and merchants emerged.

1. Humanity’s evolution from primitive stage to the present has been
(a) static and smooth
(b) huge and diversified
(c) always violent
(d) always peaceful

2. …“man’s problems were never before as complicated as they seem to be today” means
(a) the present times are the best times of humanity
(b) the present times are the crucial period humanity
(c) the present times pose much more challenges to humans than the previous time
(d) the present times provide much more facilities than the previous times

3. Why does the author say that labour problems did not exist during ‘the hunting and fishing stage’?
(a) There was no nation existing at that time
(b) There were no economic, political and social systems
(c) There was no capitalism and market
(d) There was no labour law

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Answer – (B)

4. “The pastoral stage was marked by a certain amount of economic activity.” How?
(a) Humans started migrating and held goat-herds
(b) Humans started owning land
(c) Conflicts started as humans owned goats
(d) Humans started doing agriculture

5. Which word in the passage means ‘surfaced’?
(a) Quenched
(b) Emerged
(c) Nomadic
(d) Adequately

Passage – II

Ever since independence, land reforms have been a major instrument of State policy to promote both equity and agricultural investment. Unfortunately, progress on land reforms has been slow, reflecting the resilience of structures of power that gave rise to the problem in the first place.

The main instrument for realizing more equitable distribution of land is the land ceiling laws. There laws were enacted by several States during the late 1950s and 1960s, and the early 1970s saw more stringent amendments in the laws to plug loopholes in the earlier laws. But the record of implementation has not been satisfactory. Around 3 million hectares of land has been declared surplus so far, which is hardly 2 percent of net sown area in India. About 30 percent of this land has not yet been distributed as it is caught up in the litigations. Besides, a number of Benami and clandestine transactions have resulted in illegal possession of significant amounts of land above ceiling limits. There are widespread reports of allotment of inferior, unproductive, barren and wasteland to landless household, many of whom have been forced to sell it off, in the absence of resources to make it productive. In many instances, lands allotted to the rural poor under the ceiling laws are not in their possession. In some cases, Pattas were issued to the beneficiaries, but possession of land show in the Pattas was not given, or corresponding changes were not made in the records of right.

The balance of power in rural India is so heavily weighed against the landless and the poor that implementing land ceiling laws is difficult. It is clear that without massive mobilization of the rural poor and depending on democratic governance in rural India, very little can be achieved in this direction.

Although half of India’s population continues to depend on agriculture as its primary source of livelihood, 83 percent of farmers operate holdings of less than 2 hectares in size, and the average holding size is only 1.23 hectares. This is often in fragments and unirrigated. There are also those who are entirely landless, although agriculture is their main source of livelihood. They have inadequate financial resources to purchase and often depend on leasing in small plots, on insecure terms, for short periods, sometimes only for one season. Hence, many face insecurity of tenure and the growing threat of land alienation and pressure from urbanization, industrialization and powerful interest.

6. Why does the land reform prove to be slow?
(a) Because of the disparity in power structure
(b) Because of the power of the government
(c) Because States have different laws
(d) Because of the scarcity of land in the country

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Answer – (A)

7. Which of the following statements is/are correct?
1. Land ceiling laws have proved to be unsatisfactory.
2. The democratic structure of the government cannot provide solution to the problem of land reforms.
3. The owners of land have abundant natural resources.
4 Identified land for distribution has not been distributed due to court cases against it.
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1 and 4
(b) 1 only
(c) 3 and 4
(d) 2 and 4

8. One of the reasons of selling off the lands by the allottees is that the lands were
(a) unproductive and barren
(b) salty, not getting water
(c) fertile, but uncultivable
(d) with the powerful people

9. Which word/group of words in the passage means ‘lawsuit’?
(a) Amendments
(b) Litigations
(c) Illegal possession
(d) Fragments

10. According to the author, what is the primary source of livelihood of majority of India’s population?
(a) Industry
(b) Forest
(c) Agriculture
(d) None

11. “There are also those who are entirely landless, although agriculture is their main source of livelihood” means
(a) they do not have money to buy lands
(b) they have sold off their lands to others
(c) most of them are agriculture labourers
(d) they are migrant labourers from other places

Passage – III

Despite downsizings, workers’ overall job satisfaction actually improved between 1988 and 1994. Some reasons, given were improved work flow, better cooperation between departments, and increased fairness in supervision. Many firms today rely on attitude surveys to monitor how employees feel about working in their firms.

The use of employee attitude surveys had grown since 1944 when the National Industrial Conference Board “had difficulty finding fifty companies that had conducted opinion surveys”. Today, most companies are aware of the need for employees’ anonymity, the impact of both the design of the questions and their sequence, the importance of effective communication, including knowing the purpose of the survey before it is taken and getting feedback to the employees after it is completed. Computerization of surveys can provide anonymity, if there is no audit trail to the user, especially for short answers that are entered rather than written or typed on an identifiable machine.

Survey software packages are available that generate questions for a number of standard topics and can be customized by modifying existing questions or by adding questions. If the survey is computerized, reports can be generated with ease to provide snapshots of a given period of time, trend analysis, and breakdowns according to various demographics. You may be interested in responses by age, sex, job categories, departments, division, functions or geography.

The survey can be conducted by placing microcomputers in several locations convenient for employees’ use. Employees are advised where the computers will be, for how long, and when the data will be collected (for instance, daily at 5:00 p.m. for three weeks). The screens should not be viewable to supervisors or passers-by. While there may be some risk that employees will take the survey more than once, there are comparable risks with other methods too.

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Managers may be interested in knowing how they are perceived by their peers and subordinates. Packages are available that can be customized, which allow the manager to complete a self-assessment tool used to compare self-perceptions to the anonymous opinions of others. This comparison may assist in the development of a more effective manager.

12. Which one of the following is not the reason for improved job satisfaction of employees?
(a) Improved work flow
(b) Better cooperation between departments
(c) Supervisors’ fairness
(d) Increased remuneration in the

13. Companies feel that it is necessary to
(a) maintain anonymity of the employees and to have effective design and sequence of questions and effective communication
(b) maintain the fairness of the managers to be part of the surveys
(c) conduct surveys from their employees
(d) maintain anonymity of the employees and not to have effective design and sequence of questions and effective communication

14. One major benefit of using survey software packages is
(a) reports can be generated easily
(b) privacy of a person is exposed to the supervisors
(c) employees would like to take up the test on computer
(d) employer can get to know the information immediately

15. Which word in the passage means ‘tendency’?
(a) Trend
(b) Breakdowns
(c) Convenientes
(d) Perceptions

16. “The screens should not be viewable to supervisors or passers-by”
(a) To maintain the secrecy of a person
(b) The main problem is to enable everyone to participate
(c) The manager has to be fair enough
(d) To maintain the problems faced by women in job market

17. What does the word ‘customized’ mean here?
(a) Adapted
(b) Take as it is
(c) Fixed
(d) Mass produced


Directions : Each of the following items in this section consists of a sentence, the parts of which have been jumbled. These parts have been labelled as, P, Q, R and S. Given below each sentence are four sequences namely (a), (b), (c) and (d). You are required to rearrange the jumbled parts of the sentence and mark your response on the Answer Sheet accordingly.

18. the company are often asked (P) / the form the formal or informal interviews (Q) / employees who are leaving (R) / for their opinions during (S)
(a) RPSQ
(b) RQPS
(c) PSQR
(d) PQSR

19. a hailstorm activity in the evenings (P) / there is a possibility of (Q) / while there could be (R) / heavy rain towards the weekend (S)
(a) SQPR
(b) QSRP
(c) QRPS
(d) SPRQ

20. has been below normal since last week (P) / the minimum temperature (Q) / in some part of the city (R) / when rain and hailstorm activity recorded (S)
(a) RSPQ
(b) SPRQ
(c) QPSR
(d) PSQR

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