PARAGRAPH,WORDS AND MEANINGS

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PM Modi’s New Council

There Is A Clear Realignment Of Power In The Second Modi Government


His self-assurance boosted by a massive popular mandate, Prime Minister Narendra Modi constituted a 58-member Council of Ministers, with more than 20 fresh faces, on Thursday. In a group far outshone by its leader, analysing individual talent is not easy, and may be irrelevant too. Mr. Modi, characteristically, sees to it that his imprimatur on all executive decisions is unmistakable. Still, the composition of the council throws light on Mr. Modi’s thinking. The induction of his long-time lieutenant and BJP president Amit Shah as Home Minister not only fortifies the Prime Minister’s authority, it might be the precursor to further changes in the party organisation and the national security architecture. While Mr. Shah’s entry into the Cabinet was expected, the surprise induction of former Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar as the External Affairs Minister is evidently meant to deal with the choppy international waters that rock India’s sailing. Mr. Jaishankar has been a close confidant of Mr. Modi. He has his task cut out, as India faces challenges with its most important international partner, the U.S. The spillover effects impact the country’s interests in multiple ways, including its objectives of economic and technological advancement. By placing the two confidants in critical Ministries, Mr. Modi appears to loosen the grip of his own office on the government; the effects will be felt by National Security Adviser Ajit Doval if he continues into a second term, as is widely expected. The triumvirate of Mr. Modi, Mr. Shah and Mr. Jaishankar will form the centre of power.

Rajnath Singh as Defence Minister and Nirmala Sitharaman as Finance Minister are next in the pecking order. While the top layer of the Council is infused with fresh talent and is expected to generate new momentum, its representative character is skewed. It has only six women, one less than the previous one; the majority community and the Hindi heartland States have disproportionate representation. While Mr. Modi rewarded the upper caste groups that supported him wholeheartedly, the OBCs and Dalits who shifted to his party significantly in 2019 have had to be content with lower representation, at least for now. There is an argument that it is healthy that Mr. Modi does not bargain with caste, linguistic and region-oriented interests groups. Apna Dal leader Anupriya Patel from Uttar Pradesh was dropped; the Janata Dal (United) from Bihar was offered only one berth, which it refused to accept; and the Shiv Sena wanted at least three but has had to be content with one. As equations change, Mr. Modi might have to rethink these positions and there is scope to expand. A Council more representative in nature, in terms of gender, social and linguistic backgrounds and religion, will better reflect the mosaic that is India.

MEANINGS AND WORDS

  1. realignment

Meaning: the action of changing or restoring something to a different or former position or state.

Tamil Meaning: மறுசீரமைப்பிற்கும்

Synonyms: Changeover, Conversion

Antonyms: Decline, Decrease

Example Sentence: “the scheme will require the realignment of local roads”

  1. assurance

Meaning: a positive declaration intended to give confidence; a promise.

Tamil Meaning: உத்தரவாதம்

Synonyms: word of honour, word, guarantee, promise, pledge

Antonyms: self-doubt, nervousness

Example Sentence: “he gave an assurance that work would begin on Monday”

  1. boosted

Meaning: help or encourage (something) to increase or improve.

Tamil Meaning: உயர்த்தப்படுகிறது

Synonyms: Improve, raise, uplift, increase, augment

Antonyms: Decrease, hinder

Example Sentence: “a range of measures to boost tourism”

  1. mandate

Meaning: an official order or commission to do something.

Tamil Meaning: ஆணை

Synonyms: Instruction, directive, direction, decree, command, order

Antonyms: Breach, Break, Denial

Example Sentence: “a mandate from the UN was necessary”

  1. outshone

Meaning: shine more brightly than.

Tamil Meaning: மிஞ்சு

Synonyms: Surpass, be superior to, overshadow, eclipse

Antonyms: Aid, Be inferior, Fail, Fall Behind

Example Sentence: “a supernova would outshine all the other stars in its galaxy”

  1. irrelevant

Meaning: not connected with or relevant to something.

Tamil Meaning: பொருத்தமற்ற

Synonyms: beside the point, not to the point, immaterial, not pertinent

Antonyms: Relevant

Example Sentence: “an irrelevant comment”

  1. imprimatur

Meaning: a person’s authoritative approval.

Tamil Meaning: அங்கீகாரத்துடனும்

Example Sentence: “the original LP enjoyed the imprimatur of the composer”

  1. throws light

Meaning: To reveal information or details about something; to clarify or help people understand something.

Synonym: Clarify, Construe, Decipher, Depict

Antonym: Confuse, Disbelieve

Example Sentence: We’ve hired a private investigator to help throw light on the clandestine dealings of the baron.

  1. induction

Meaning: the action or process of inducting someone to a post or organization.

Synonyms: Inauguration, Introduction

Antonyms: End, Finish

Example Sentence: “induction into membership of a Masonic brotherhood”

  1. fortifies

Meaning: provide (a place) with defensive works as protection against attack.

Tamil Meaning: பலப்படுத்துகிறது

Synonyms: Build defences round, strengthen with defensive works, secure

Antonyms: Weaken

Example Sentence: “the whole town was heavily fortified”

  1. precursor

Meaning: a person or thing that comes before another of the same kind; a forerunner.

Tamil Meaning: முன்னோடி

Synonyms: Forerunner, predecessor, forefather, father

Example Sentence: “a three-stringed precursor of the violin”

  1. bargain

Meaning: an agreement between two or more people or groups as to what each will do for the other.

Tamil Meaning: பேரம்

Synonyms: Agreement, arrangement, understanding, deal; contract

Antonyms: Disagreement, Misunderstanding

Example Sentence: “bargains between political parties supporting the government”

  1. choppy

Meaning: (of a sea, lake, or river) having many small waves.

Tamil Meaning: மாறி

Synonyms: rough, full of waves, turbulent, heavy, heaving, storm-tossed

Antonyms: Calm, smooth

Example Sentence: “sea conditions are often very choppy”

  1. confidant

Meaning: a person with whom one shares a secret or private matter, trusting them not to repeat it to others.

Tamil Meaning: நம்பிக்கைக்குரியவரான

Synonyms: close friend, bosom friend, best friend, close associate

Antonyms: Enemy, Foe, Stranger

Example Sentence: “a close confidante of the princess”

  1. cut out

Meaning: (of a motor or engine) suddenly stop operating.

Tamil Meaning: வெட்டு

Synonyms: Stop working, cease to function, stop, fail

Antonyms: Add, Put In, Include

Example Sentence:

  1. spillover

Meaning: an instance of overflowing or spreading into another area.

Tamil Meaning: மிகை வழிதல்

Synonyms: Deluge, Flash Flood, Torrent

Antonyms: Discouragement, Lack, Insufficiency

Example Sentence: “there has been a spillover into state schools of the ethos of independent schools”

  1. triumvirate

Meaning: a group of three powerful or notable people or things / (in ancient Rome) a group of three men holding power, in particular ( the First Triumvirate ) the unofficial coalition of Julius Caesar, Pompey, and Crassus in 60 BC and ( the Second Triumvirate ) a coalition formed by Antony, Lepidus, and Octavian in 43 BC.

Example Sentence: “a triumvirate of three executive vice presidents”

  1. skewed

Meaning: suddenly change direction or position.

Tamil Meaning: திரித்துக் கூறப்பட்ட

Synonyms: Alter, Bias, Misrepresent, Slant

Antonyms: Maintain, Straighten

Example Sentence: “the car had skewed across the track”

  1. pecking

Meaning: (of a horse) pitch forward or stumble as a result of striking the ground with the front rather than the flat of the hoof.

Tamil Meaning: கொத்திக்

Example Sentence: “part of a wall was pecked down and carted away”

  1. disproportionate

Meaning: too large or too small in comparison with something else.

Tamil Meaning: சமமற்ற

Synonyms: out of proportion to, not in proportion to, not appropriate to

Antonyms: proportional

Example Sentence: “people on lower incomes spend a disproportionate amount of their income on fuel”