82. Reading Skills Comprehension: World Leaders

By | July 10, 2021
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World Leaders

Read the passages given below and answer the questions that follow them:       

Tenth May dawned bright and clear. For the past few days, I had been pleasantly besieged by dignitaries and world leaders who were coming to pay their respects before the inauguration. The inauguration would be the largest gathering ever of international leaders on South African soil.

 The ceremonies took place in the lovely sandstone amphitheatre formed by the Union Buildings in Pretoria. For decades this had been the seat of white supremacy, and now it was the site of a rainbow gathering of different colours and nations for the installation of South Africa’s first democratic, non-racial government.

On that lovely autumn day, I was accompanied by my daughter Zenani. On the podium, Mr de Klerk was first sworn in as second deputy president. Then Thabo Mbeki was sworn in as first deputy president. When it was my turn, I pledged to obey and uphold the Constitution and to devote myself to the well-being of the Republic and its people. To the assembled guests and the watching world, I said:

 Today, all of us do, by our presence here… confer glory and hope to newborn liberty. Out of the experience of an extraordinary human disaster that lasted too long, must be born a society of which all humanity will be proud.

We, who were outlaws not so long ago, have today been given the rare privilege to be host to the nations of the world on our own soil. We thank all of our distinguished international guests for having come to take possession with the people of our country of what is, after all, a common victory for justice, for peace, for human dignity.

We have, at last, achieved our political emancipation. We pledge ourselves to liberate all our people from the continuing bondage of poverty, deprivation, suffering, gender and other discrimination.

Never, never, and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another.

The sun shall never get on so glorious a human achievement.

 Let freedom reign. God bless Africa!

 Word-Meaning: (To be) besieged by— to be surrounded closely by नजदीक से घिरा होना  Supremacy(here) more powerful अधिक शक्तिशाली   Installation(here) putting in power, सत्तारूढ़ होना Disaster— rum, बर्बादी Outlaws— bandits कानून भंग करने बाले   Emancipation— freedom, मुक्ति Deprivation— denial, वंचित Discrimination— being treated differently or unfavourably, भेदभाव


1. Why was the tenth of May so important?

2. What kind of gathering was expected in the inauguration?

3. What was so special regarding the inauguration ceremony in the amphitheatre?

4. Who accompanied the narrator on that historical day?

5. Who were considered outlaws not so long ago?

6. Why does the narrator call the occasion as ‘a common victory’?

7. What will South Africa never experience again?

8. What have the people of South Africa achieved at last?


1. On the tenth of May, a new regime in South Africa was going to be installed.

2. The inauguration ceremony could expect the largest gathering ever of international leaders on South African soil.

3. The inauguration ceremony in the amphitheatre was special as the first non-racial government in South Africa was going to be installed.

4. The narrator’s daughter Zenani accompanied him on that historical day.

5. The blacks of South Africa were considered outlaws not so long ago by the whites.

6. The narrator calls the occasion as ‘a common victory’ for justice, for peace and human dignity.

7. South Africa will never experience the oppression of man by a man again.

8. The people of South Africa have achieved, at last, their political emancipation.

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