ENGLISHEnglish Grammar

QUESTION TAGS FOR COMPETITIVE EXAMS

QUESTION TAGS FOR COMPETITIVE EXAMS 

Here are rules of Question Tags with illustrative examples sentences for each type of question tags, which a candidate of any competitive exam should understand to crack an exam with good marks. They will be very useful for the competitive exams of the Staff Selection Commission (SSC) or Grade-II DASS Exam of the DSSSB, and other similar exams:

1. Combined Graduate Level (CGL) Exam Tier-I & Tier-II

2. Combined Higher Secondary (10+2) Exam (CHSL) Tier-I

3. SI in Delhi Police and CPO Exam Paper-I & Paper-II

4. Stenographers Exam

5. Grade-II DASS Exam conducted by Delhi Staff Subordinate Services (DSSSB)

CHAPTER 26: QUESTION TAGS

A) What a QUESTION TAG IS?

A question tag is a short phrase that is added to the end of a statement to ask whether or not someone agrees with it, e.g.

Question Tag एक short phrase होता है जो दी हुई किसी statement के end में ये जानने के लिए add किया जाता है कि कोई व्यक्ति दी हुई statement से agree करता है अथवा नहीं. इस sentenceको देखिये

In the sentence It’s green, isn’t it?”, ‘isn’t it’ is a question tag.

B) Features of a QUESTION TAG

1. The subject of the question tag is always a pronoun, never a noun.
2. Remember ( ‘s ) = is or has, and ( ‘d )= had or would; e.g.

a) Aman’s got a car, hasn’t he?
b) He’s in the library, isn’t he?

3. The tense of both the statement and the question tag is always the same.

4. If the helping verb of the question tag is in the negative, it must be contracted; e.g.

INCORRECT: Vishal lives here, does not he?
CORRECT: Vishal lives here, doesn’t he?

5. Sometimes general rules are found to be altered, especially in imperative sentences, as it depends on the intention of the speaker what type of confirmation (positive or negative) he wants.

अब इनको एक एक करके हिंदी में समझते हैं

1. पहली बात है कि किसी भी Question Tag का subject हमेशा कोई pronoun होती है. इसका subject कोई noun हो ही नहीं सकती. इस sentence को देखिये

INCORRECT: Ritu has a watch, hasn’t Ritu?
CORRECT: Ritu has a watch, hasn’t she?

इसमें पहले sentence के Question Tag का subject Ritu noun है, इसलिए ये गलत है, दूसरे sentence के Question Tag का subject She pronoun है, इसलिए ये सही हैl

2. ध्यान रखिये ( ‘s ) = is अथवा has, और ( ‘d ) = had अथवा would होता है; e.g.

a) Aman’s written the letter, hasn’t he?

इस sentence में main verb WRITTEN क्योंकि verb की 3rd form है इसलिए (‘s) का मतलब HAS हैl यहाँ इसका मतलब would नहीं हो सकता क्योंकि WOULD के साथ हमेशा main verb कि 1st form का use होता है

b) He’s in the library, isn’t he?

इस sentence में (‘s) के अलावा कोई verb ही नहीं है इसलिए (‘s) का मतलब has भी हो सकता है और  is भी लेकिन हम समझ सकते हैं कि इसका मतलब यहाँ is है.

3. दी गयी statement और question tag का tense हमेशा एक ही होता है, इस point को यहाँ clear करने की आवश्यकता नहीं, आगे आने वाले sentences में आप ये सब देखेंगे.

4. यदि किसी question tag कि helping verb negative हो तो उस helping verb की form contracted form (short form) होनी चाहिए, ये आवश्यक है जैसे

INCORRECT: Vishal lives here, does he not?
CORRECT: Vishal lives here, doesn’t he?

 

RULES OF QUESTION TAGS

1. When the first clause is a statement

If the clause is affirmative; the question in tag is negative; and if the clause is negative, the question in tag is affirmative.

Question Tag का sentence अगर एक statement हो, और वह statement अगर affirmative हो तो Question Tag negative होता है, और sentence अगर negative हो तो Question Tag affirmative होता है, जैसे

यह sentence देखिये

a) Mohan ran very fast in the race, didn’t he?

आप देख रहे हैं कि यह sentence ‘MOHAN RAN VERY FAST IN THE RACE’ एक statement है, और ये statement affirmative है, ऊपर बताये गये rule के अनुसार इसलिए इसका Question Tag ‘DIDN’T HE’ negative है.

b) Aman wasn’t there, was he?

आप देख रहे हैं कि यह sentence AMAN WASN’T THERE एक statement है, और ये statement negative है, ऊपर बताये गये rule के अनुसार इसलिए इसका Question Tag ‘WAS HE’ affirmative है.

ऐसे ही कुछ और example

a) You did not write the letter, did you?
b) Reenaa can’t climb a tree, can she?
c) That isn’t Rahul, is it?

2. If the statement has BE (is/am/are/was/were) as the main verb or helping verb, we use a form of BE in the tag; e.g.

किसी sentence की verb अगर BE (is/am/are/was/were) हो, चाहे ये main verb हो या फिर helping verb, तो question tag की helping verb, verb BE की ही कोई form होती है, अर्थात is/am/are/was/were में से ही कोई होती है, जैसे

a) You are from China, aren’t you?
b) Reshma is here, isn’t she?
c) I am not surprised, am I?
d) Mohan and Sohan aren’t rich, are they?
e) That isn’t Raman, is it?
f) Mohan is reading a book now, isn’t he?

NOTE:  If ‘I AM’ is in the first clause, the question tag is ‘AREN’T I’. And if ‘I AM NOT’ is there in the first clause, the question tag is ‘AM I’; e.g.

a) i) I am your friend, aren’t I?
ii) I am not your friend, am I?

b) i) I’m typing your document, aren’t I?
ii) I’m not typing your document, am I?

Passive Voice में भी ऐसा ही होता है, जैसे

a) I am liked, aren’t I?
b) I am not liked, am I?

3. If the main verb of the statement is HAS or HAVE, the verb in the question tags can either be HAS/HAVE or DOES/DO; e.g.

किसी sentence की verb अगर HAVE (has/have) हो तो question tag की helping verb, do/does होती है, जैसे

a) They have a garden, haven’t they? Or don’t they?
b) I have two cars, haven’t I? Or don’t I
c) She has a nice dog, hasn’t she? Or doesn’t she?
d) Reena doesn’t have a car, does she?

4. ‘HAVE TO’ is considered Simple Present and ‘HAD TO’ is considered Simple Past. Therefore the verb of the question tag for HAVE TO is DOES/DO, and for HAD TO is DID; e.g.

Question Tag में ‘HAVE TO’ की helping verb do/does और ‘HAD TO’ की helping verb DID होती है; जैसे

a) My mother has to see the doctor in the evening, doesn’t she?
b) Ram and Mohan don’t have to come early, do they?
c) We had to arrange some chairs for the visitors, didn’t we?
d) They didn’t have to attend the classes today, did they?

5. If the statement has a modal verb, it is repeated in the question tag; e.g.

किसी sentence में अगर कोई modal verb हो तो question tag की helping verb भी वही modal verb होती है, जैसे

a) You should obey your parents, shouldn’t you?
b) You wouldn’t go there, would you?
c) We must help him read this paper, mustn’t we?

6. If WILL/WILL NOT is the helping verb in the clause, we usually use WILL/WON’T in the question tag, however we can also use SHALL/SHAN’T when the subject is the first person.

यदि किसी sentence की helping verb WILL/WILL NOT हो तो उस sentence के question tag helping verb आमतौर पर WILL/WILL NOT ही होती है, लेकिन question tag का subject agar first person में हो तो की question tag की helping verb WILL/WILL NOT भी हो सकती है अथवा SHALL/SHAN’T भी, जैसे

He will help you, won’t he?

I will clean the room, won’t I?
= I will clean the room, shan’t I?

NOTE: If the helping verb is SHALL, we can use either SHALL or WILL in the question tag.

I shall clean the room, won’t I?
= I shall clean the room, shan’t I?

7. With USED TO, we use DIDN’T in the tag.

अगर किसी sentence की helping verb ‘USED TO’ हो तो उस sentence के question tag की helping verb DIDN’T होती है, जैसे

You used to work here, didn’t you?

8. OUGHT tag questions are not very common for the difficulty of using oughtn’t; so we can use should / shouldn’t also; e.g.

अगर किसी sentence की helping verb OUGHT हो तो उस sentence के question tag की helping verb OUGHTN’T भी हो सकती है और SHOULDN’T भी, जैसे

I ought to clean the room, oughtn’t I?
= I ought to clean the room, shouldn’t I?

9. MUST forms questions tags with both MUST and HAVE TO. Also, where MUST means obligation, questions tags can be formed with both SHOULD and OUGHT.

अगर किसी sentence की helping verb MUST हो तो उस sentence के question tag की helping verb MUST अथवा ‘HAVE TO’ में से कोई भी हो सकती है, लेकिन MUST का अर्थ जब obligation (duty)  हो तो question tag की helping verb SHOULD अथवा OUGHT होती है, जैसे

a) I must clean the room, mustn’t I?
= I must clean the room, have to I?

b) I must obey my elder brother, shouldn’t I?
= I must obey my elder brother, oughtn’t I?

NOTE: But for DON’T HAVE TO the question tag is formed with DO; e.g.

a) I don’t have to do anything, do I?
b) He doesn’t have to do anything, does he?

10. Where MAY means permission, MAYN’T is used for the tag. Where MAY means probability, MIGHTN’T is usually used for the tag.

अगर किसी sentence की helping verb MAY हो और इसका अर्थ permission हो तो उस sentence के question tag की helping verb MAYN’T होती है, लेकिन MAY का अर्थ जब probability हो तो question tag की helping verb MIGHTN’T होती है, जैसे

a) I may use your book, mayn’t I? (request for permission)
b) I may not use your book, may I?
c) I may reach the station in time, mightn’t I? (= possibility— it’s probable that the train may be delayed.)
d) I may not reach the station in time, might I? (= possibility—-it’s probable that the train is left by the time I reach at the station.)

11. Imperatives are often tagged with WILL, WON’T, WOULD, CAN, CAN’T, COULD depending on the intention of the speaker, and the subject of the question tag is always YOU; e.g.

किसी भी Imperative Sentence के question tag की helping verb इनमें से कोई भी हो सकती है, ये affirmative  भी हो सकती है और negative भी, ये हमारी मरजी होती है: WILL, WON’T, WOULD, CAN, CAN’T, COULD. और question tag का subject हमेशा YOU होता है, जैसे

a) Bring me your notebooks, will you?
b) Give me your pen, will you?
c) Hurry up, won’t you?
d) Close the window, would you?
e) Give him a lift, can you?
f) Keep quiet, can’t you?
g) Lend me your hat for today, could you?

NOTE: But a negative imperative is normally followed by WILL YOU; e.g.

लेकिन Imperative Sentence अगर negative है तो question tag में helping verb हमेशा WILL  होती है, जैसे

Don’t make a noise, will you?

12. We use an affirmative question tag after a sentence containing a negative word such as:

किसी sentence में अगर कोई negative word हो तो उस sentence के question tag की helping verb हमेशा affirmative  होती है, जैसे

Never Seldom Hardly Hardly ever Rarely Barely
Scarcely Nobody No one None Nothing No

a) Nobody goes to her for help, do they?
b) You have never come on time, have you?
c) We can hardly hear your song, can we?
d) It makes no sense, does it?
e) No-one came to see me at the station, did they?
f) None of them can help, can they?

13. When the subject of the first clause is any of the following, we use IT in the question tag:

अगर किसी sentence का subject निम्नलिखित में से कोई हो तो उस sentence के question tag का subject हमेशा IT होता है, जैसे

It That Anything Singular/Uncountable non-living thing
This Everything Nothing

a) All the day has been wasted, hasn’t it? (ALL THE DAY is singular)
b) Everything has been completed, hasn’t it?
c) Nothing is different, is it?
d) That is the sort of problem we can’t solve, isn’t it? (not ISN’T THAT?)

14. When the subject of the first clause is any of the following, we use THEY in the question tag:

अगर किसी sentence का subject निम्नलिखित में से कोई हो तो उस sentence के question tag का subject हमेशा THEY होता है, जैसे

None Somebody/Someone Nobody Countable non-living thing in plural
Each Anybody/Anyone No one Neither
These/Those Everybody/Everyone

a) Everyone wants comfort, don’t they?
b) Nobody is going to be spared, are they?
c) Those were the words he wrote, weren’t they? (not WEREN’T THOSE)
d) The books have not been read yet, have they?
e) Each of the students has done well in the examination, haven’t they?

15. When we use ‘THERE IS’ in structure, the subject of the question tag is THERE itself.

अगर किसी sentence का subject ‘THERE IS’ हो तो उस sentence के question tag का subject हमेशा स्वयं THERE होता है, जैसे

There is a snake in the bucket, isn’t there?

16. With LET’S, the question tag is SHALL WE. (For both affirmative and negative)

अगर किसी sentence की शुरुआत LET’S से हो तो उसके question tag में SHALL WE use होता है चाहे sentence affirmative हो या negative, जैसे

Let’s go to the market, shall we?

17. The following introductory clauses don’t affect the question tags and the verb of the question tag is according to the other clause of the statement. However, if the introductory clause is negative, the verb of the question tag is positive always. 

किसी sentence कि शुरुआत अगर निम्नलिखित में से किसी clause से हो तो इस clause का उस sentence के question tag पर कोई भी प्रभाव नहीं पड़ता है और question tag की helping verb उस sentence के दूसरे clause की helping verb के अनुसार प्रयोग कि जाती है. लेकिन शुरू वाला clause अगर negative हो तो  question tag की helping verb हमेशा positive होती है, जैसे

I am afraid I think I am sure I suppose
I believe I suspect I don’t know It appears that
It seems that It looks as if As far as I remember As far as I can see

a) I suppose she is not serious, is she?
b) I don’t suppose you are serious, are you?
c) I think my mother washed my clothes, didn’t she?
d) I don’t believe you have paid for it yet, have you?
e) I don’t think anyone will help you, will they?
f) I hope he won’t object to our plan, will he?
g) It appears that she is enjoying herself, isn’t she?
h) As far as I can see, Atul is the best, isn’t he?

NOTE: But if the subject of the introductory clause and the other clause is the same the helping verb of the question tag is according to the introductory clause; e.g.

लेकिन शुरू वाले clause और दूसरे clause का subject अगर एक ही हो तो question tag की helping verb शुरू वाले clause के अनुसार प्रयोग की जाती है, जैसे

a) You know that you can do it, don’t you?
b) You know that you cannot do it, do you?
c) She pretends as if she has never in her life, told a lie, doesn’t she?

18. A collective noun may be used both in the singular and plural. If its verb is singular, the subject of the question tag is IT, if in the plural the subject of the question tag is THEY.

When the verb is neither singular or plural, a collective noun takes IT when the group is thought of a single unit. But when individual members of the group are thought of, it’s THEY in the question tag; e.g.

कोई भी collective noun singular में भी प्रयोग कि जा सकती है और plural में भी. किसी collective noun की verb अगर singular दी हुई है तो उसके question tag का subject IT होता है, और इसकी verb अगर  plural दी हुई है तो उसके question tag का subject THEY होता है.

और यदि collective noun  की verb न तो singular है और न ही plural, तो question tag का subject IT होता है यदि collective noun को singular माना गया है और question tag का subject THEY होता है यदि collective noun को plural माना गया है, जैसे

a) The crew has not come yet, has it?
b) The crew were occupied in repairing the ship, weren’t they?
c) The Indian team should fare well, shouldn’t it?

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Maha Gupta

Maha Gupta

Founder of www.examscomp.com and guiding aspirants on SSC exam affairs since 2010 when objective pattern of exams was introduced first in SSC. Also the author of the following books:

1. Maha English Grammar (for Competitive Exams)
2. Maha English Practice Sets (for Competitive Exams)

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