Kuntal managed(a) to jump out(b) of the window before the police could trace(c) where he was(d) hiding. No error(e)

The given answer is (a) while I thought (e) is correct one. I'm thinking the correct structure should be "Had managed". Is my assumption correct or should it be something else?

1 Answer 1


The past tense is quite reasonable here. There is no need for the past perfect just because the word "before" has been used.

You could also use the past perfect. The choice would depend on how this sentence fits into the larger narrative. It is nearly impossible to write sentences that require the past perfect to be grammatically correct.

However clearly the educational point here is that when one event occurs "before" the time that the narrative is describing, then the past perfect may be used.

  • So (e) isn't necessarily incorrect? As there are no added sentences or paragraphs.
    – eefar
    Commented Jul 20, 2021 at 7:14
  • 1
    Yes. there is not necessarily an error here.
    – James K
    Commented Jul 20, 2021 at 7:22
  • @eefar I don't know where you got it. But this type of questions are asked in exams in India. Even for writing a correct answer you will be marked in red. Just like this one. Here only one answer is not possible. Commented Jul 20, 2021 at 12:50
  • Yes this is from a test in India. could you kindly elaborate how one answer is not possible?
    – eefar
    Commented Jul 20, 2021 at 16:09
  • @eefar James in his answer clearly states that either (a) or (e) is correct. Commented Jul 20, 2021 at 17:26

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