I. SHORT ANSWER TYPE QUESTIONS
Q1. Who is Stephen Hawking?
Ans. Stephen Hawking is a great scientist, an astrophysicist. But he is disabled. He has written a book 'A Brief History of Time'. He can express himself only through a computer.
Q2. What took the author Firdaus to England? Why did he wish to see Hawking?
Ans. Firdaus Kanga visited Britain in order to write a book about his travels. He himself could move only in a wheel-chair. On the advice of his guide, Kanga planned to meet the most brilliant and completely paralysed astrophysicist (Hawking) in Cambridge.
Q3. How did Kanga fix the interview with Hawking?
Ans. Kanga phoned Hawking and requested the scientist’s assistant to arrange the interview. He asked for ten minutes but he got half an hour.
Q4. What advice do people usually give to the disabled? Was Hawking brave by choice?
Ans. The people generally advise the disabled to be brave. Hawking admitted truthfully that he hadn’t been brave. In fact, he had had no choice.
Q5. What advice does the scientist give to the handicapped?
Ans. He advises the disabled people to concentrate on what they are good at. They should not try to copy the normal people.
II. LONG ANSWER TYPE QUESTIONS
Q1. Write about Stephen Hawking and Firdaus Kanga.
Ans. Both of them are disabled people. Stephen Hawking is one of the greatest scientists of our time. He suffers from paralysis that confines him to a wheelchair, and allows him to ‘speak’ only by punching buttons on a computer, which speaks for him in a machine like voice.
Firdaus Kanga is a writer and journalist. He lives and works in Mumbai. He was born with ‘brittle bones’ that tended to break easily when he was a child. Like Hawking, Kanga moves around in a wheelchair.
Q2. Why did the writer feel guilty talking to Stephen Hawking?
Ans. The writer felt guilty every time he spoke to Stephen Hawking because by doing this he forced him to respond. There he (Hawking) was, tapping at the little switch in his hand, trying to find the words on his computer with the only bit of movement left to him, his long, pale fingers. His eyes would often shut in frustrated exhaustion. The writer could feel his anguish but he had no option. He had gone to his house to talk to him on certain points.