The Comet 2 NCERT Solutions for Class 8 English It So Happened Chapter 10
The Comet 2 NCERT Text Book Questions and Answers
The Comet 2 Comprehension check – I
“For a moment James wondered if he had done his sums right. ” Why was James doubtful about his sums and calculations?
James was doubtful about his sums and calculations because if they were correct, it would mean that the Earth was going to be hit by a comet. He could not believe that this was possible, especially when the sky appeared quite peaceful as it did that day.
What did the scientists at the conference say about James s “sums ”?
The scientists checked and rechecked James’ calculations with the latest observations of Comet Dutta. They later agreed that his predictions were absolutely correct.
Immediate action was needed, the scientists decided. Give one example each of ‘defensive ’ and “offensive ” action mentioned in the text.
The “defensive” action suggested by the scientists was that all earthlings should go and live in underground bunkers. The “offensive” action that was decided upon was to deflect Comet Dutta from its path by giving it a push. The scientists were going to place the nuclear payload in a spaceship, and send it to intercept the approaching comet. Then they would detonate it by remote control.
“I am not buying any Christmas presents till December 15. ” What did Sir John mean by that?
December 15 was predicted to be the date when Comet Dutta would hit the Earth and destroy it. Sir John was not confident that the Earth and earthlings would survive the collision. So, he did not want to buy Christmas presents before the Earth survived that day.
The Comet 2 Comprehension check – II
What is Duttada expected to do on his return from London?
Duttada is expected to perform a yajna on his return from London so that the comet that he has discovered does not cause any ill effects on Earth.
What is his reaction to the proposal?
He is full of anger that his family could be so superstitious. He says that it was futile for him to explain anything about comets to them, as they had never even read the elementary books on science.
i. What does “Project Light Brigade” refer to?
“Project Light Brigade” refers to the operation of preventing Comet Dutta from colliding with the Earth.
ii. What does Sir John say about the Project in his letter to Duttada in October?
Sir John includes a secret message about the Project in his letter to Duttada in October. He tells him in his secret code that the project had begun.
Did Sir John buy Christmas presents on December 15? How didDuttada get to know about it?
Yes, Sir John bought Christmas presents on December 15. Duttada got to know about it through an urgent telex message sent by Sir John and brought to him by a special messenger on a scooter from the British Council. It was Sir John’s message that he was confident about buying Christmas presents on December 15.
Why, according to Indrani Debi, had the comet not been disastrous? Do you agree with her?
According to Indrani Debi, the comet had not been disastrous because Duttada’s grandson, Khoka, had performed the yajna on his behalf to avert the side-effects of the comet.
Encourage the students to share their own opinions. No, I do not agree with her. The disaster was averted because of the efforts put in by the scientists, and not because of the yajna.
Is Duttada’s general outlook
Choose the right word. Say why you think it right.
Duttada’s general outlook is rational because he does not believe that performing the yajna had stopped the disastrous effects of the comet.
The Comet 2 Exercise Question and Answer
Discuss the following topics in small groups. Write your answers afterwards.
Encourage the students to use their creativity to formulate their individual answers.
Should a scientist s findings be suppressed if they seem disturbing? Give reasons for and against the topic.
A scientist’s findings should be repressed for the larger good and to protect the larger interests of mankind. For example, if a scientific finding can create panic among the masses, it is best to suppress such a finding. However, if the information safeguards the interests of political parties, lobbyists and only some sections of the society, it is best to bring the issue to light. The findings ought to be published if they serve mankind in any way and pave a better future for us.
Do you think ours is a traditional society? What are some of the things we do to be called traditional? Do you find these things useless or useful?
Yes, India is a traditional society. We worship idols and even the moon. Our forms of worship resonate with an ancient belief system. Yajnas and poojas are still performed to pacify deities. Many people still believe in astrology and think that stars in the sky affect our behaviours and personalities. A majority of these things do not have any logic behind them, and are remnants of a superstitious society that was largely uneducated. So, most of them are highly useless.
Give two or three examples to show how science has been useful to us.
Science has given us many gifts and has made our lives easier. The advancement of science and medicine has helped us to find cures to diseases that were thought to be incurable such as jaundice, tuberculosis and even cancer. Science has given us many miracles.
Also, it is science that has made transport and communication easier. Today it is possible to travel large distances in a very short time. We have so many modes of travel today to choose from. For example, superfast trains, metros and aeroplanes are all gifts of science.
Give one example to show that science has been misused, and as a result been harmful to us.
The invention of nuclear bombs is one way that science has proved to be harmful to mankind. It has destroyed whole cities and can be blamed to have taken away countless human lives. The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki during the World War is one example of a negative effect of scientific progress.
Similarly, it has become very easy to make bombs nowadays. For this reason, terrorism is on the rise and has entered the common parlance. It is a curse that has befallen on mankind, and science has made it possible.