Any kind of mental deformity continues to

CBSE Board Class 12 English Un-Solved Passages

Chapter – 1  Reading Comprehension (Factual Passages)

Read the following passage carefully:

1. Any kind of mental deformity continues to be a subject of extreme social disgrace and trauma in India When a child is diagnosed with such disorders, the parents are at first staggered, shocked, numbed, and thus spend a considerable period in this bewilderment. Then comes the gradual acceptance of facts a they stand. This brings forth a fiercely combative approach, making parents extremely defensive, and anxious to protect their children from harassment. More often than not, the child’s education takes a back seat in this web of perplexity and despair. The tag of abnormality that the child is labelled with aadly, even in the subconscious minds of parents, ruthlessly strikes out the route to an educated life that heabe otherwise would have led. For all our claims on the celebration of linguistic and cultural diversities, the differently-abled among us still continue to be called the ‘disabled”, to be looked upon with disdainful pity and worse still, made the bulk of all jokes.

2. But you can make a difference in the lives of such children by opting for a career in teaching the differently-abled. Think mental disability and there is a string of visuals that come to mind. Amir Khan’s worthy attempt in Tare Zameen Par, Russell Crowe’s Oscar Winning Act in A Beautiful Mind Rani Mukherjee’s deaf, dumb and blind role in ‘Black’ would probably hover in, though it is nowhere in the purview of a mental disorder. Dig a bit deeper into memory, and you will probably come up with hazy images of Ajay Devgan helping a limping child with severe speech impairment. This is the aggravatingly cumulative picture that these films have registered in the minds of the average viewer How many of us remember that Amir Khan’s unfortunate student in TZP suffered from dyslexia.

3. All attempts at bringing such anomalies to public awareness have failed to imbibe the minor intricacies of these disorders in people’s minds. With the result that the populace is largely ignorant about the existence of disorders like the aspergar syndrome, autism, and the downs syndrome and more importantly, how each demands a different treatment and approach. This article attempts to bring to light one such disorders – autism..

4. According to Merry Barnah, Chairperson, Action for Autism, “In law terms, it is a neurological disorder that affects the way the child reacts to people and the environment, bonds, socially, learns a language or communicates needs. The key point is that it is not a short term illness, but a disorder.” The characteristics are generally apparent by age three.

5. According to WHO reports, typically about 20 in a population of 10,000 people will be autistic or have autistic symptoms; 80 per cent of those affected by autism are boys. Over 20 lakhs people are living with autism in India. Over the last five years, the number of diagnosed cases has increased by almost 35 percent. Current research indicates that anything that can produce structural or functional damage to the central nervous system can also produce the condition of autism.

6. Being a developmental disorder, autistic individuals have difficulty in performing acts which come naturally to others. “Basic behavioral actions like the way we stand, neck movements, motor skills, and the understanding of special areas like social skills, speech and communication are different in autistic people. Hence the basic criterion for diagnosis is the observation of behavior”, Baruah. explains

7. According to Matily Chari, Founder and Director, Indian Institute for Intervention Services, (IRIS), “Autism, if defined by an educator, can be termed as a learning disability. Children with autism are visual rather than auditory learners. These children display an excellent ability to learn by rote and this is essentially what is required in elementary education. So, often parent put their children into mainstream schools in the early years and they do well. The problems start coming in when approach class IV to V.

8. Some autistic children do not ever develop speech, while others may develop speech, but still have they difficulty using language to communicate. Often, there is an unusual speech pattern, such as etching whatever is said to them, repeating a word over and over, and speaking only to express needs. rather than emotions. “What these children require is essentially, learning by experience, sums up Baruah. Children with autism do have the potential to build up their skills and they can be helped if they receive early, well focused intervention. Depending on the child’s individual skill profile and the appropriateness and intensity of intervention he or she receives, children with autiam can lead relatively independent lives.


A. On the basis of your understanding of the passage answer the questions given below by choosing one of the options that follow:

(i) When a child is diagnosed with any mental deformity, his parents:

(a) immediately accept it without any worry.

(b) first get shocked and gradually leave it to fate.

(c) first get shocked and gradually accept and find ways to protect their child from harassment.

(d) react violently and curse their fate..

(ii) This article is about:

(a) as per gar syndrome

(b) autism

(c) downs syndrome

(d) All of these

(iii) According to the passage, autism:

(a) can be cured within one to two years.

(b) can be cured within five years.

(c) is not cured completely.

(d) can be completely cured in 20-25 years.

(iv) A doctor can diagnose an autistic child:

(a) by observing his/her behavior.

(b) by hearing his/her speech.

(c) by talking with him/her.

(d) by looking at his/her eyes.

(v) Autistic children mostly speak to express:

(a) needs

(b) emotions

(c) needs and emotions

(d) anxiety

B.  Answer the following questions briefly:

(i) How do the parents initially react when their child is diagnosed with mental disorder?

(ii) What is autism? How does it affect the child?

(iii) How are differently-abled children looked upon by the people? (iv) Why do the autistic children perform well at the elementary stage of school education?

(v) What sorts of difficulty do autistic children who develop speech, have in using language to communicate?

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