They have some background strong

I’m trying to understand the meaning of the expression “background strong”. The line in the title is quoted from a movie, “Dying to survive”. Here is some frame: an indian oil shop owner wants to import from India a cheap copycat medicine for CML (which is a form of leukemia) and therefore he holds talks … Read more

Meaning of “textbook Launch” in given sentence?

In a post-launch address from the Sriharikota launch port, K. Sivan, Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO), hailed the event as a textbook launch of a very important and complex satellite. Answer I’d imagine that in Indian English textbook launch means the same as it does in British or American English. In this context, … Read more

What does the word “Stone” mean in this context

A book by Salman Rushdie (“Shame”), Hindu–Islamic tensed relations are described. So there are several words starting/containing the word Stone Stonewasher Stone-gang Stone-godly ‘The one-godly went to these cinemas and the washers of stone gods to those; movie-fåns had been partitioned already, in advance of the tired old land. The stone-godly ran the movie business, … Read more

Is “I” an alphabet or a letter?

I came across this sentence, "Modi understands only one alphabet, and that is the capital I" in the Indian writer Dr. Shashi Tharoor’s recently published book "The Paradoxical Prime Minister". When I looked the word ‘alphabet’ up in dictionaries, I get the definition as ‘a set of letters or symbols in a fixed order used … Read more

What is the origin of “prepone” in Indian English?

As Merriam-Webster notes, to prepone meaning “to move to an earlier time” is widely used by India’s English speakers, but largely unheard outside the subcontinent. Interestingly, the term was used as far back as the early 1500s with a slightly different meaning, “to place in front of, to set before,” according to the Oxford English … Read more

Is it OK to use two consecutive ‘that’ in a sentence?

Is the usage of 2 consecutive ‘that’ in the following sentence correct, because it looks a bit odd? Should these be separated by comma perhaps? “While I agree that strength and size definitely gives an advantage but I don’t believe that that advantage holds up against a highly skilled fighter!” Answer One of the first … Read more

Why do Americans prefer to use the term grade instead of class?

I have noticed that Americans ask kids ” Which grade are you in?” while Indians ask “Which class are you studying in?” . The typical Indian reply would be say for example :” I am a 12th class student” while I guess an American student would reply :” I am currently in my 12 th … Read more

Gerund, participle, or present continuous verb

In the following sentence, I did quite well in the examination, without having to burn the midnight oil. What is “having” — a gerund, a participle, or just a present continuous verb? I tried Wren & Martin, but without luck. Answer I did quite well in the examination, without having to burn the midnight oil. … Read more