Strong Roots – Notes for HS Students, WBCHSE, West Bengal, Very Important Descriptive Questions & Answers for HS Exam

Strong Roots – Notes. Dear students, Prepare these notes (descriptive type questions with answers) very well to do a good result in HS Final exam. These questions are very important for the Final Exam. Hope you will do an attractive result. Important Questions with their answers. Important notes. Important Questions answers from “Strong Roots” by APJ Abdul Kalam.

We have made these answers with much care and effort. The answers are prepared in accordance with the new and revised syllabus of the West Bengal Council of Higher Secondary Education. The students will definitely be benefited.

1. “We lived in our ancestral house,” – Who is the speaker? When was the house built? What kind of house was it? How did the inmates of the house lead their lives in the house?

Ans: A.P.J. Kalam in “Strong Roots” is the speaker here.

The house was built in the middle of the 19th century.

The house was a fairly large pucca house, made of limestone and brick, on the Mosque Street in Rameswaram. The house was about a ten-minutes walk from the famous Shiva Temple.

APJ Abdul Kalam took birth in a middle class Tamil family in the town of Rameswaram. He lived in their ancestral house with his parents. His mother, Ashiamma, fed many outsiders daily along with his family members.

2 “Our locality was predominantly Muslim” – Who said this? How does the speaker describe the locality? Give the picture of communal harmony in this description.

Text Analysis of “Strong Roots” – Click here.


Give the picture of the locality.

Ans: The speaker of the quoted line is APJ Abdul Kalam in the autobiographical sketch “Strong Roots”.

The locality Kalam lived was predominantly Muslim. There was a famous Shiva temple in the locality. Many Hindu families also lived in the locality. There was amiable relationship among the people. People lived in amity and peace. There was also an old mosque in the locality. People of all religions paid visit to the mosque and asked for the blessings of Kalam’s father.

We get a good picture of communal harmony in the locality where Kalam lived. The locality was predominantly Muslim. There lived a lot of Hindu families too. There prevailed a good relationship among the people. Kalam’s father was an intimate friend of the head priest of Rameshwaram, Pakshi Lakshmana Sastry. They both discussed complex spiritual matters. With his father Kalam visited a very old mosque for evening prayers. Irrespective of religion the people gathered outside the mosque to get the blessings of Kalam’s father to cure the invalids. Many people got cured and came to thank Kalam’s father. Thus people lived in peace and harmony.

3 “This is not a correct approach at all” –  Who is the speaker? What does the ‘approach’ refer to? Why is the approach not correct?

The above quoted line is said by APJ Abdul Kalam’s father Jainulabdeen. Here the speaker is Kalam’s father Jainulabdeen in “Strong Roots”.

Here the ‘approach’ refers to the way in which agonized people try to satisfy the demonic forces with prayers and offerings.

The sorrowful people consider their anguish as an expression of anger of the demonic forces. To appease/reduce the demonic forces, Jainulabdeen takes a very special role.

According to Jainulabdeen, such type of approach is not correct because it is the outcome of fear ridden vision of destiny. According to him, the correct approach is to find out the enemy of fulfilment within oneself.

Bengali Meaning of “Strong Roots” – Click here.

4 “We lived in our ancestral house”- who said this? When was the house built? What kind of house was it? How did the inmates of the house lead their lives in the house?

APJ Abdul Kalam, the writer of the piece “Strong Roots” said this.

The house was built in the middle of the 19th century.

The house was a fairly large pucca house. It was made of limestone and brick. It was on the Mosque Street of Rameshwaram.

The persons who lived in the house led their lives very simply without any kind of unnecessary luxury comfort. They were given all kinds of essential things like food, medicine and clothes. They were secured both materially and emotionally.

SAQ Type Short Questions from “Strong Roots” – Click here.

5. What role did Kalam’s father play as a mediator in helping the distressed people?

Kalam wanted to know from his father why he did not tell the people who came to him to ask for help and advice in distress that adversity always brings the opportunity for introspection. In reply to this question, Jainulabdeen told Kalam that when someone is in distress or finds himself alone, he seeks company and help from others. Each and every pain or distress has a special helper. He should find out the relevance of suffering. He told Kalam that he was just playing the role of a mediator in appeasing the demonic forces in a person through prayers and offerings, though he also said that it was not a correct approach and even this should not be followed. But he helped them out of sympathy and love.

6. “His answer filled me with a strange energy and enthusiasm.” – Who is the speaker? Whose answer is being referred to here? What was the answer?

Answer: Here the speaker of the above-quoted line is A P J Abdul Kalam, the writer of “Strong Roots”.

The answer of Jainulabdeen, the father of APJ Abdul Kalam, is referred to here.

Jainulabdeen, the father of APJ Abdul Kalam, answered in a low, deep voice. He spoke that whenever human beings find themselves alone, they start looking for company, whenever they are in trouble, they look for someone to help them. To the distressed persons, he was only a  medium to reduce demonic forces with prayers and offerings. His father worked only as a mediator not to solve their problems but to show them the way out so that they themselves could solve their problems.

7. “His answer filled me with a strange energy and enthusiasm.” – What was the question? What answer is referred to here? Why did the answer fill the speaker with energy and enthusiasm?

Kalam asked his father why he didn’t tell the visitors that God manifests Himself in every human being and so, one should not be afraid of sufferings.

kalam’s father answered that whenever people feel lonely, distressed or trapped in ‘impasse’, they find someone to show them the way out. He also adds that every recurrent anguish, longing and desire finds its own special helper. He affirms (নিশ্চিত করে বলা) that this is not the correct approach to seek solution (সমাধান) from one’s crisis. But he still serves as a ‘mediator’ to drive out the demonic forces with prayers and offerings.

Kalam was highly impressed by this answer because it revealed Jainulabdeen’s rational approach to spirituality and empathy.

নোটটির বাংলা মানে:

এখানে উদ্ধৃত লাইনটির বক্তা হলেন এপিজে আব্দুল কালাম, “স্ট্রং রুটস্” – এর লেখক।

এপিজে আব্দুল কালামের বাবা, জয়নুল আবদিনের উত্তরের উল্লেখ করা হয়েছে এখানে।

 এপিজে আব্দুল কালামের বাবা জয়নুল আবদিন উত্তর দিয়েছিল ধীরে ধীরে গম্ভীর কণ্ঠে। তিনি বলেছিলে যে যখন মনুষ্যসমাজ নিজেদেরকে একা মনে করে, তখন তারা সঙ্গ খোঁজে, যখনই তারা সমস্যার মধ্যে পড়ে, তখন কাউকে খুঁজে যে তাদেরকে সাহায্য করতে পারে। পীড়িত মানুষদের কাছে, তিনি ছিলেন কেবলমাত্র একটি মাধ্যম, তার প্রার্থনা এবং অঞ্জলি দিয়ে দানবীয় শক্তি কমানোর। তার বাবা কাজ করতেন কেবলমাত্র একজন মধ্যস্থতাকারী হিসেবে তাদের সমস্যা সমাধানের জন্য নয় কিন্তু তাদেরকে বেরিয়ে আসার পথ দেখানোর জন্য যাতে করে তারা নিজেরাই তাদের সমস্যার সমাধান করতে  পারে।

7. “I normally ate with my mother.” –  Who ate with his mother? Name his mother. Where did he eat with his mother? What did he eat with his mother?

APJ Abdul Kalam, the author of “Strong roots”, ate with his mother.

The name of his mother was Ashiamma.

He normally ate with his mother sitting on the floor of their kitchen.

His mother Ashiamma would place a banana leaf before him. Then she ladled rice and aromatic sambar, a variety of sharp, home-made pickle and a dollop of fresh coconut chutney. He ate these items with his mother.

8. “Why don’t you say this to the people who come to you for help and advice?” – Who said this and to whom? What is referred to by the word ‘this’? Why do people come to the person spoken to?

Ans: In the autobiography “Strong Roots”, APJ Abdul Kalam said this to his father, Jainulabdeen.

Here ‘this’ refers to the utterance “Adversity always presents opportunities for introspection” by the father of APJ Abdul Kalam, Jainulabdeen. One should not be worried about troubles  and problems of life. On the other hand, one should try to understand the relevance of one’s sufferings,Instead of being afraid.

According to A P J Abdul Kalam,  people came to Kalam’s father for help and advice when they were in distress and sufferings.

9. “I have endeavoured to understand the fundamental truths revealed to me by my father.” – Who was the father? Who was the son? What are the fundamental (মৌলিক) truths?

Ans: Here in the above-mentioned line, the father is Jainulabdeen and the son is APJ Abdul Kalam.

Here ‘fundamental truths’ (মৌলিক সত্যগুলি) are the basic principles (নীতি) of life. APJ Abdul Kalam acquired (অর্জন করেছিলেন) these basic principles of life from his father’s way of living. Jainulabdeen advised Kalam to look upon sufferings (কষ্ট) as opportunities (সুযোগ) for introspection (আত্মসমীক্ষা). He was advised not to develop the fear-ridden vision of destiny (ভাগ্য). Kalam felt there exists (বিদ্যমান আছে) a divine (স্বর্গীয়) power which lifts us up from the misery and failure. Kalam was also told to go above the bondage (বন্ধন) of mind and body, so that he could enjoy freedom, happiness and peace.

10. What had remained the routine for Abdul Kalam’s father even when he was in his late sixties? What does Abdul Kalam say about his emulation of his father? (H.S. Exam 2016)

Ans: Kalam’s father worked very hard. Even in his late sixties, he used to wake up at 4 am. Then after reading the namaz, he walked to a coconut grove that was four miles away and returned home carrying a dozen of coconuts on his shoulder. Only then he had his breakfast.

Kalam acknowledged that throughout his life he had tried to emulate his father in his own professional field of science and technology. He tried to understand the fundamental truths revealed to him by his father. He felt convinced about the existence of divine power.

11. What did Kalam’s father tell him about the relevance of prayers? (Model Question)

Ans: From his childhood, Kalam found that his father was a deeply religious person. He read the namaz at dawn, prayed in the evening in a mosque, and discussed spiritual matters with his close friend. So, when Kalam grew old enough to ask questions, he asked his father about the relevance of prayer. Kalam’s father explained that there was nothing mysterious about prayer. He told Kalam that when a person prayed he went beyond his bodily existence and became a part of the universe which is devoid of any discriminating attitude towards age, wealth, caste, or creed. In this way, a communion between the spirits of different people was made possible through their prayers.

12. “Whenever they are in trouble they look for someone to help them.” – Who said this? Who are ‘they’? Explain the statement. (1+1+4)

Ans: In the autobiography “Strong Roots” by APJ Abdul Kalam, Kalam’s father, Jainulabdeen said this.

Here in the above-mentioned line, ‘they’ are those people who would come to Kalam’s father for help and advice in their trouble.

Kalam’s father acted as a mediator for those people who would come for his help and advice. According to Kalam’s father, men like to live in peace. Baat adversity presents hindrance before them. They cannot face them boldly or calmly. They lose mental peace. They fear their destiny. Consequently, they look for a special helper. They believe that columns father will help them to overcome this hindrance. Jainulabdeen would pray for them, though he knew very well that people’s approach to religion was not correct at all.

13. Who was Pakshi Lakshmana Sastry? How was he related to Kalam’s family? Why does Kalam mention his name?

Ans: In “Strong Roots” by APJ Abdul Kalam, Pakshi Lakshmana Sastry was the high priest the Shiva temple at Rameshwaram.

He was a close companion of Kalam’s father Jainulabdeen.

In his childhood he would often witness how Sastry, the Hindu priest and Jainulabdeen, the Islamic priest met with each other in traditional dress. They discussed spiritual matters for ours together. Kalam mentions this incident to upload the prevailing secularism in India and the atmosphere of mutual faith and love.

Strong Roots – Notes, Strong Roots – Notes, Strong Roots – Notes

SAQ Type Short Questions from “Strong Roots” – Click here.

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