The Hindu Editorial with Vocabulary : The idea that used to be Bangalore

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The Hindu Editorial with Vocabulary. Welcome to the letsstudytogether.co online Editorial Vocabulary section. Here we are presenting you Vocabulary from The Hindu Editorial from The Hindu Newspaper’s Editorial. This will help you to sail and score good marks in English Language section.


The Hindu Editorial with Vocabulary

The idea that used to be Bangalore


A city is more than a place to live, it embodies a dream and the possibilities of a dream. Sometimes a city acquires the status of a myth, becomes a character in a novel. Many great cities have been characters in novels. Moscow, Paris, London, Delhi have all shared the sense of being novelesque, capturing in their character a sense of hope, a sense of the future. Their decay signals in a sense a death of a world, a paradise lost. Bombay and Calcutta have smelt of that slow decay, a period where the city grows like a cancer, explodes like an epidemic corroding the dreams of millions of its migrants. Yet if one city showed hope in India, expressed its cosmopolitan dreams and its intellectual inventiveness, it was Bangalore. Bangalore was myth and metaphor for modern India, a flag we could wave in the global world. Yet today one senses the myth is dying. There is a sense of loss, a silence of mourning which no amount of political bluster and brand bravura can conceal. One senses that the myth of Bangalore as the cutting edge Indian city is dying. Myths are like signs that have to be read like symptoms by the shamans of the city. Today Bangalore is a desiccated myth. This essay is written as an almost futuristic plea asking for the renewal of the myth. Myth has to be restored symbolically. One needs an event that creates a new grammar, a new vision of storytelling.

Back to Visvesvaraya

Modern Bangalore as a creation myth goes back to the iconicity of one man, the dewan of development, the patriarch of Indian planning, M. Visvesvaraya. No technocrat is as much a part of folklore, subject to immediate recall and celebration as the ectomorphic Visvesvaraya. He conveyed a sense of hybridity, of being Indian and more, a man who believed that character building, dam building and nation building went together. His iconicity stands up to Gandhi. If one wrote, “industrialise and perish”, the other replied, “industrialise or perish”. Their contrasts were stark but each was home grown. Visvesvaraya was one of the great icons of modernity and his style, his integrity invoked the myth of Bangalore. His urge to create the motor car industry, his vision of planning, his ideas of dam building, his integrity were all the stuff of legend. He balanced in himself, the public and private, the national and, the scientific and the managerial. His life helped create the mythic Bangalore.

The institutions established in the fifties and sixties, the aircraft and space industries, the biotechnology labs, supplemented the legend of the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and Raman Research Institute. Bangalore was India’s premier science city and the scientific leadership of Satish Dhawan, Sivaraj Ramaseshan, Amulya Reddy, Roddam Narasimha nursed this image with care. They were outstanding scientists who had a wider vision of society. They were institution builders who conveyed the idea that this city worked and innovated, yet there was a complementarity we must recognise.


Bangalore was not only a modern city, a haven for science. It was also the seat of a great creative imagination, where a Bangalorean could be as proud of Kannada literature as of Bangalore’s science. The vernacular and the cosmopolitan combined in a miraculous way in the lives of Shivaram Karanth, A.K. Ramanujan, U.R. Ananthamurthy and others. It was a world where ‘Hindustan’ aircraft and the literary world of Hegudu, with its visions of theatre, could combine creatively. There was no sense of dualism because dualism had become dialectic, a dizzy list of creative combinations. Anchoring all this were shrewd politicians like Devaraj Urs and Ramakrishna Hegde, who made electoral democracy a part of Bangalore’s creativity. Bangalore was modern, hopeful, liveable, scientific, local, cosmopolitan, a retired person’s dream and a professional’s first choice. IT added to the lustre and created the myth of Bangalore as India’s Silicon Valley. Firms like Infosys attracted other firms and Bangalore had its new legends of technocracy and entrepreneurship in N.R. Narayana Murthy, Nandan Nilekani and in Biocon’s Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw. Yet it was IT as it tended to outgrow itself that created the first cracks in the myth.

Onward to IT

IT reasserted the dualism between science and technology and created a tension between playful freedom and technological productivity. A C.V. Raman in his heyday could assert that he was more interested in the properties of a diamond than worry about its industrial uses. But decades later, Mr. Narayana Murthy was challenging IISc to name one its inventions that had made a difference. The technocrat, the manager and the entrepreneur were edging out a more cosmopolitan world of science. Earlier, the pursuit of science was seen as a public good, an attempt to create a public culture. Today scientific research without a technological catchment was seen as unproductive. What Narayana Murthy mounted as a challenge was read as obvious by the Modi government which wanted Big Science to be a money spinning enterprise, what in business folklore was called a paisa vasool regime. Worse, IT became cocky , overconfident about its powers convinced that what was good for IT should be good for Bangalore. It tried to substitute technocratic ideas for the creativity of politics. There was a managerial hubris at the centre of it, symptomised in the tragedy of the Aadhaar card, which not only created a split between technocracy and politics but a fissure between the formal and informal economy destroying a sense of the openness and availability of citizenship, confusing identity with identification. The halo around such half-thought-out projects ate into the imagination of democracy, where those who battle for the Right to Information now struggled against the hubris of the Aadhaar card. Suddenly the wisdom of the whole seemed less than the creativity of the parts. IT lacked the wisdom of institutions like IISc which were nursed by leaders who had a sense of the state, the polity, the people.

Civic issues, civil society

Democratic politics too has suffered as the city faces a host of civic problems. But here one senses the sadness of civil society and the opening breach between the vernacular and cosmopolitan styles. The Karnataka of today is becoming more local and parochial in its manifestations. There is a desperate need for rethinking the imagination of Bangalore as a city. Today’s protest movements are a gasp of survival than a creative attempt to heal the polity. One has to rework the alchemy, the grammar of the myth that made Bangalore, Bengaluru. The imagination of the city as diverse, open, wise to the ways of the world needs to be reworked and mere technocratic projects cannot be the quick fix for the problem. They, in fact, might be the source of the problem. Oddly, the death of Gauri Lankesh, and the responses, showed that a lot of civil society is sheer nostalgia. It triggered this essay and its list of questions. How does a city revive its dynamism which goes beyond the hype of start-ups? Bangalore has to come up with answers because it embodied a sense of hope of what India could be and should be. The city has to desperately reinvent itself because the idea of India needs an idea of a re-inventive Bengaluru.

Magical Vocabulary from “The Hindu Editorial”


  1. Metaphor (noun) रूपांतर / लक्षण :A figure of speech in which a word or phrase is applied to an object or action to which it is not literally applicable.

Synonyms: Symbol, Trope, Allegory, Emblem, Similitude.

Example: This would be a good metaphor for something, no doubt, if I could only pin it down.

  1. Bravura (noun) कुशलता / दक्षता :Great technical skill and brilliance shown in a performance or activity.

Synonyms: Skill, brilliance, virtuosity, expertise, artistry, talent, ability, flair

Antonyms: Feebleness, Weakness.

Example: It’s another bravura performance by the master of the police procedural.

  1. Shaman (noun) जादूगर / ओझा :A person regarded as having access to, and influence in, the world of good and evil spirits/ a tribal figure that serves as a go-between for the physical and spiritual worlds.

Synonyms: Healer; Witch Doctor, Kahuna, Angekok.

Example: However, one can argue that every research into shamanism and the occult is a dangerous endeavour.

  1. Desiccate (verb) सूखना/झुरना : Lacking interest, passion, or energy.

Synonyms: Exsiccate, Parch, Dry, Devitalize, Wither.

Antonyms: Grow, Sprout, Flourish.

Example: A sprinkle of water helps protect the roots from desiccation .

  1. Vernacular (noun) मातृभाषा / स्थानीय भाषा The language or dialect spoken by the ordinary people in a particular country or region.

Synonyms: Spoken Language, colloquial Speech, Native Speech, language, dialect, regional language, regionalisms, patois, parlance, idiom, slang, jargon.

Antonyms: foreign (language).

Example: As a result, most children in India are fluent in both languages, in addition to the vernacular spoken at home.

  1. Cosmopolitan (adjective) सार्वलौकिक/ सर्वभौम Familiar with and at ease in many different countries and cultures.

Synonyms: Multicultural, multiracial, international, worldwide, global cultivated, sophisticated.

Antonyms: Rustic, Unsophisticated.

Example: The success of this cosmopolitan mollusc has much to do with its prowess as a swash rider.

  1. Dialectic (noun) द्वंद्वात्मक/ तर्कशास्त्र The art of investigating or discussing the truth of opinions.

Synonyms: Discussion, debate, dialogue, logical argument, reasoning, argumentation, polemics, ratiocination

Antonyms: Illogicality, Irrationality.

Example: The classical methodology of rational dialectic is our only road to truth!

  1. Dizzy (adjective) लड़खड़ाने वाला / अस्थिर : Having or involving a sensation of spinning around and losing one’s balance.

Synonyms: Unsteady, Shaky, Wobbly, Off-Balance

Antonyms: Giddy, lightheaded, faint, unsteady, shaky, muzzy, wobbly, woozy.

Example: The targets and justifications for attacking them shift with dizzying rapidity.

  1. Cocky (adjective) अहंकारी /गुस्ताख :Conceited or arrogant, especially in a bold or impudent way.

Synonyms: Arrogant, conceited, overweening, overconfident, cocksure, self-important, egotistical.

Antonyms: Humble, Modest.

Example: I’ll be arrogant to the point of extreme cockiness .

  1. Heyday (noun) आनंद का समय / उमंग का समय The period of a person’s or thing’s greatest success, popularity, activity, or vigor.

Synonyms: Prime, peak, height, pinnacle, summit, apex, acme, zenith, climax, high point, day, time, bloom.

Antonyms: Bottom, Nadir, Low point (of time)

Example: The paper has lost millions of readers since its heyday in 1975 due to allegations of corruption.


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