Archive for the ‘History’ Category

Geography-1999-Set I

Q1) Give three points of distinction between a Gorge and a Rift valley by giving suitable examples from India. (Marks 3)
Ans1) A Gorge is a deep, narrow valley with almost vertical steep walls. It is formed due to down cutting or rising of river banks and lowering of river bed. It is linked with compressional forces. In India an example of Gorge could be Indus Gorge.
Rift Valley are formed by sinking of land between two roughly parallel faults. These valley are elongated and narrow. They are linked with tensional forces. Narmada, Damodar and Tapi rift valleys could be the Indian examples.

Q2) ‘ The western part of Rajasthan remains almost dry during the South-West Monsoon Season’. Give three important reasons in support of this statement. (Marks 3)
Ans2) The Western part of Rajasthan remains almost dry during South West Monsoon Season because of the following reasons:
a) Arabian Sea Branch goes parallel to the Aravallis.
b) This region is affected by Temperature inversion.
c) Bay of Bengal branch has shed most of its moisture by the time it reaches this region.

Q3) Which state is the leading producer of cotton in India? Mention four geographical conditions necessary for the production of cotton. (Marks 1+2=3)
Ans3) Maharashtra is the leading producer of cotton in India
The four geographical conditions necessary for the production of cotton are:-
a) Temperature ranging from 20o to 30o C.
b) Rainfall varying from 50 to 100 cm.
c) At least 200 frost free days in a year are required for its successful cultivation (Frost is detrimental to this plant).
d) It requires well drained deep soils. Black soil is most suitable for its growth.

Q4) What is meant by an economic region? Why is the formation of economic regions called a dynamic process? Give two important reasons. (Marks 1+2=3)
Ans4) Economic region is a segment of the territory representing the national economy.
Formation of economic region is a dynamic process because economic activities are dynamic in nature. They do not remain same for a long period of time. These change with development of resources, change in demand of the products and improvement in the skills.

Q5) Explain three differences between main worker and marginal worker. (Marks 3×1=3)
Ans5) If an individual is engaged in any economically gainful activity for a period of 183 days in a year, he is called a Main Worker. Those who put in lesser number of days than 183 in a year are called Marginal Workers. Main workers are generally involved in secondary and tertiary occupation whereas Marginal workers are generally engaged in agriculture related activities specially agriculture labourers. Higher proportion of main workers indicated a developed economy whereas Higher proportion of marginal workers indicates the presence of a backward economy.

Geography-1999-Set II

Q6) The Damodar Valley region is called ‘ The Ruhr of India.’ Elaborate this statement with three suitable examples.
Ans6) Damodar valley of India is compared to Ruhr of Germany because Damodar valley has maximum coal deposit in India. It has about 60% of country’s reserves of Medium grade coal so has Ruhr in Germany. It produces about half the output of coal in India. Ruhr also has a significant share. Damodar valley’s coal deposits contribute significantly in the industrial development of the region. So does Ruler in Germany.

Q11) What is meant by a rural settlement? Explain the three factors that determine the types of rural settlements in India. (Marks 1+3=4)
Ans11) Rural settlements are the dwelling places of people who are directly or indirectly dependent upon land. The factors which determine their type are:-
1) Physical Factors – Various physical factors including relief, attitude, climate, drainage, depth of underground water level, soil etc. play an important role in determining the type and spacing of settlements.
2) Ethnic and cultural factors – Factors such as tribe, caste and communal identity play an important role in determining the morphology of the settlement.
3) Historical Factors – Security factors particularly during periods of turmoil have played an important role in determining the layout of the settlements.

Q12) Divide the Himalayan Mountain Complex into five regions of second order and describe three main characteristics of Eastern Himalayan.
Ans12) The five regions of second order of the Himalayan Mountain Complex are:-
a) Kashmir
b) Karakoram Ladakh & Baltistan
c) Himachal and Kumaon
d) Eastern Himalayas
e) Purvanchal Hills.
Three main characteristics of Eastern Himalayas are:-
a) East of 88oE longitude, the Eastern Himalayas are extended in Sikkim and Assam between the river Tista and river Brahmaputra.
b) They are exposed to strong monsoonal current from Bay of Bengal.
c) The rich growth of tropical wet evergreen forests distinguishes them from the western Himalayas.

History-1996-Set I

Q.1 Mention any two social legislation’s introduced by the British in India before 1857 (2 marks)
Ans.1The two social legislations introduced by the British in India before revolt of 1857 were :-
The abolition of Girl infanticide under the reform passed by Lord Bentinck in 1829 AD This reform was followed by another reform passed under Lord Bentinck which declared the hineous practice of sati illegal in 1829 AD

Q.2. Describe the causes of the rivalries and conflicts among the European countries in India in the Eighteenth Century. How were they finally resolved? (5 marks)
Ans.2 Eighteenth Century witnessed the growth and expansion of Europe. Nations like Britain, Portugal, France, Italy and Germany were exploring new lands, which could be colonised and used for incurring wealth and power. The Portuguese were the first to establish their colony in Goa in 1510. Soon the Dutch East India Company expanded its hold on West India, establishing centres in Surat, Patna, Cochin, followed them. The English, in order to have their trade dealings with India, established the East India Company in 1600A.D. They soon ousted both the Portuguese and the Dutch.The British ports were created at Surat, Ahmedabad,Broach, Bombay, Calcutta etc.

The French were not far behind. They also established their trading company in 1664 AD and son after, established factories in Masulipatnam and Pondicherry. Later on, the other factories were opened at Chander Nagar, Qassim Bazar, Balassore, Mahe and Karikal. As a result of this, their confrontation with the English became inevitable. The three Carnatic wars or the Anglo French struggle for hegemony ensued from1746 till 1763 AD. They resulted in the defeat of the French and the victory of the British. The British succeeded in retaining their hold in India and ousting the other European powers because of their better financial position and full support of their government. Their strong army and naval fleet were able to destruct the trading posts of the Dutch and the Portuguese, who were unpopular among Indians. In the end , the British emergeged as the paramount power in India.

History-1996-Set II

Q.1. What is meant by the term ’succession states’ in the context of the history of India in the 18th century? How did their rise affect the Mughal Empire? (5 marks)
Ans. With the gradual weakening of the Mughal Empire, local and regional political and economic forces began to arise and assert themselves and politics began to undergo major changes from the late 17th century onwards. During the 18th century, on the debris of the Mughal Empire, arose a large number of independent and semi-independent states such as Bengal, Awadh, Hydrabad, Mysore and the Maratha kingdom. Some of these states may be characterized as succession states. They arose as a result of assertion of autonomy by governors of the Mughal provinces with the decline of the central power, earlier controlled by the Mughals. The rulers of these newly found states in the 18th century tried to legitimize their position by acknowledging the nominal supremacy of the Mughal Emperor and by seeking his approval. Nearly all of them adopted the methods of governance similar to the Mughals. The establishment of these states certainly diminished the hold of the Mughals.


Q. Explain the reasons for the failure of the Marathas to get the support of other Indian rulers in the third battle of Panipat.
Ans. The third battle of Panipat was fought between Ahmad Shah Abdali and the Marathas. The two forces met at Panipat on January 14, 1761 to fight for the control over Northern India. The Maratha army was completely routed in the battle. They lost the cream of their army in the battle and their political prestige suffered a big blow. The main reason for the failure of Marathas were the lack of allies. Though their infantry was based on European style contingent, they failed to woo allies in North India. Their earlier behavior and their political ambitions which led them to loot and plunder, had antagonized all the powers. They had interfered in the internal affairs of the Rajputana states and levied heavy taxes and huge fines on them. They had also made huge territorial and monetary claims upon Awadh. Their raids in the Sikh territory had angered the Sikh chiefs. Similarly the Jat chiefs, on whom also they had imposed heavy fines, did not trust them. They had, therefore, to fight their enemies alone, except for the weak support of Imad -ul-Mulk. Moreover, the senior Maratha chiefs constantly bickered with one another. Each one of them had ambitions of carving out their independent states and had no interest in fighting against a common enemy.

History-1996-Set III

Q.2. Explain one major step taken by the East India Company to drain the wealth from Bengal after the Battle of Plassey. (2 marks)
Ans. The Battle of Plassey paved way for the drain of wealth from Bengal to Britain. The East India Company started controlling the economic resources of the rich province of the rich province of Bengal after the defeat of the Nawab. By acquiring the Diwani of Bengal, the company obtained the right to collect revenue against a fixed amount to be given to the Nawab. The Company’s servants amassed unaccountable wealth in form of gifts and bribes from the Nawab of Bengal.

Q.6. Describe the contribution of Raja Rammohan Roy in the field of religious reforms. (5 marks)
Ans. Raja Rammohan Roy was an important social reformer of 19th century . He is rightly called as the great leader of Modern India. He worked hard for bringing reforms in social, religious, intellectual and political sphere. He represented a synthesis of the thought of the east and the west. He is associated with various organizations related to upliftment of the society. RajaRammohan Roy founded the Atmiya Sabha in 1814 in Calcutta. In 1829, he founded a new religious society, the Brahma Sabha, later known as the Brahmo Samaj, whose purpose was to purify Hinduism and to preach monotheism or belief in one God. The new society was to be based on the pillars of reason and Vedas. The Samaj laid emphasis on human dignity, opposed idol worship and criticized such social issues as the practice of sati. There was hardly any aspect of nation building, which he left untouched but the best example of his life -long crusade against social evil was the historic agitation he organized against the inhuman practice of sati.


Explain the religious ideas of Swami Dayanand Saraswati.
Ans. Swami Dayanad Saraswati founded the Arya Samaj in 1875 to reform the Hindu religion. He believed that the selfish and ignorant priests had perverted Hindu religion with the aid of the Puranas which, he said, were full of false teachings. He propagated that the Vedas were infallible, being the inspired word of God , and as a fount of all knowledge. This total dependence on Vedas and their infallibility gave his teachings an orthodox coloring, for infallibility meant that human reason was not to be the final deciding factor. However, his approach had a rationalist aspect , because the Vedas, though revealed, were to be rationally interpreted by him and others . Dayanand Sraswati opposed Hindu orthodoxy. He was opposed to idolatory, ritual and priesthood, and particularly to the prevalent caste practices and popular Hinduism as preached by the Brahmins. He also favored the study of Western Sciences.

History-1997-Set I

Q.1 Explain the inability of the Marathas to establish a strong empire in the 18th century. (5 marks)
Ans. The Maratha kingdom emerged as one of the most important succession states after the decay of the Mughal Empire in the 18th century. It possessed the strength to fill the political vacuum created by the disintegration of the Mughal Empire. But the Maratha sardars lacked unity and program, which were necessary for founding an all -India empire. For instance, a civil war broke out in 1707 at Satara between Shahu and his aunt Tara Bai. The Maratha sardars, each one of whom had a following of soldiers loyal to himself alone, began to side with one or the other contender of the power instead of fighting against a common enemy .

This provided a rift in the process of empire building. Another reason for the weakness of Maratha Empire was their conquest strategy. The conquests outside the Maratha territories was not made by the central army under the control of Peshwas, but by sardars with their own private armies. Later some of these sardars became so powerful and independent that they challenged the Peshwas and did not hesitate to join with the enemies. Some of them carved out their independent states such as the Gaekwads of Baroda and the Bhonsles of Nagpur. The economy of the Maratha Empire was not based on a stable source of revenue from agriculture or trade. Unlike the Mughals, the Marathas depended on loot and plunder to sustain their empire. In the long run, this became a major source of weakness for the Marathas chiefs or the sardars who were assigned to collection of the booty kept the lion’s share for themselves. Due to these reasons, the Marathas were unable to establish a strong empire in the 18th century.

History-1997-Set II

Q. 1 Mention any two humanitarian measures adopted by the British government before 1858. ( 2 marks)
Ans. The abolition of the social practice of sati and the introduction of western education by Lord Macaulay were the two important humanitarian measures adopted by the British government before 1858. These humanitarian measures were attacked by the orthodox Indian sections who saw these measures as an insult to Indian culture and tradition.

Q. 2 Describe the political developments which enabled the English and the French companies in the political affairs of India. ( 5 marks)
Ans. The English East India Company was not alone in putting forward commercial and political claims in India. While it was able to eliminate the Dutch and the Portuguese from South India by the end of 17th century, France had appeared as a new rival. For nearly twenty years from 1744 to 1763 AD the French and the British indulged in bitter warfare for control over the trade, wealth and territory of India. This struggle is famous by the name of the Three Carnatic Wars. The first Carnatic war took place between 1746 -1748 AD, when both the French and the English fought to gain monopoly over Indian trade and territory.

The war that was fought between these two rivals in Europe was now extended in India. The British conquered Madras and the French tried to increase their influence in other parts of South. The second Carnatic war took place from 1749 to 1754 AD. A civil war broke out in south between Nasir Jung and Muzaffar Jung after the death of Nizam of Hydrabad. Also, Chanda sahib began to conspire against the Nawab Anwaruddin in Carnatic. The ambitious French officer Dupleix seized this opportunity to conclude a secret treaty with Chanda sahib and Muzaffar Jang to help them with his well-trained French forces. The three allies soon defeated both, Nasir Jang and Nawab Anwauddin. In return the French received many gifts as well as trading monopoly in South. French influence, they intrigued with Nasir Jang and Muhammad Ali (son of deposed Nawab Anwaruddin) . Muhammad Ali, with the support of British army, attacked Arcot, the capital of Carnatic.

History-1997 -Set III


Q.1. How was the rediscovery of the Indian past significantly connected with the birth of Indian nationalism? What negative features did it produce? ( 8 marks)
Ans. Indian Nationalism was a product of numerous factors. Among these factors, rediscovery of Indian past can be said to be an important feature. Many Indians had fallen so low as to lose confidence in their self-government under the British rule. The British officials and writers had constantly emphasized that Indians had never been able to rule themselves in the past, that Hindus and Muslims had always fought one another, that Indians were destined to rule by foreigners. All this was done to justify the British rule in India. But by the last decade of 19th century, nationalism was surfacing itself in India. The rediscovery of the Indian past played an important role in the rise of nationalist sentiments in India.

The credit for the rediscovery of Indian past goes to the extremist wing of congress as well as the social reformers. Many of the nationalist leaders tried to arouse the self -confidence and self -respect of the people by countering this propaganda. They pointed to the Indian heritage with pride and referred the critics to the political achievements of the rulers like Ashoka, Chandragupta, Vikramaditya and Akbar. They rediscovered India’s national heritage in art, architecture, literature and philosophy. The press played an important role in spreading these ideas. The partition of Bengal was followed by the rise in extremist activities. These extremists revived the Ganapati and Durga festivals to spread the aura of the past.

This revival of the past united the Indians . It gave them a sense of belonging and a sense of pride in their culture and heritage. Through this rediscovery, the western claims that India could develop only through the West came to be challenged. The revival of the past glories of the rulers made the masses realized that the Indian populace could progress on its own. This rediscovery of the past was also accompanied by the growth of negative feelings as it gave birth to communalism. Some of the nationalists went to the extreme and began to glorify India’s past uncritically, ignoring its weaknesses and backwardness. Greta harm was done, in particular, by the tendency to look up only to the heritage of ancient India while ignoring the equally great achievements of the medieval period. A false sense of smugness and pride was introduced which tended to prevent Indians from looking critically at their society.

History-1998 -Set I

Q.1. Why have the Saiyid Brothers been called the ‘kingmakers? (2 marks)
Ans. Mughal emperor Farukh Siyar who ruled in 1713 AD, owed his victory to Saiyid Brothers, Abdullah Khan and Jusain Ali Khan Barahow. The duo helped Farrukh Siyar to defeat Jahandar Shah and in return took up the office of wazir and mir bakshi. The two brothers soon acquired dominant control over the affairs of the state. Farrukh Siyar lacked the capacity to rule but he was not in favor of the two brothers controlling the empire. Thus, there ensued a prolonged struggle for power between the emperor and the Brothers. In the end, in 1919, the Saiyid brothers deposed and killed Farrukh Siyar .In his place they raised to the throne in quick succession two young princes who died of consumption. The princes were replaced by young Muhammad Shah, another puppet emperor under the control of the brothers. Thus, from 1713 until 1720, the Saiyid brothers wielded powers while the real emperor having no control to rule. This gave them the title of being the ‘kingmakers’.

Q.2 Describe the conflicts between the English and the French companies in India in the 18th century. What were the causes of these conflicts and how and when were these conflicts finally resolved?
(8 marks)

Ans. The bitter struggle between the British and the French to secure political authority in South India lasted from 1744 to 1763 AD. The central authority had weakened in South India after Auranzeb’s death. This has resulted in politically unsettled conditions and administrative disorganization. These conditions gave the foreigners an opportunity to expand their political influence over the South Indian states. The English East India Company was not alone in putting forward commercial and political claims. While it was able to eliminate the Dutch and the Portuguese from South India by the end of 17th century, France had appeared as a new rival. For nearly twenty years from 1744 to 1763 AD the French and the British indulged in bitter warfare for control over the trade, wealth and territory of India.

History-1998 -Set II


Q.1. What was the impact of Nadir Shah’s invasion on the Mughal Empire? (2 marks)
Ans. Nadir Shah invaded India in 1793. AD. His invasion left a deep impact on Mughal Empire, which was under Muhammad Shah’s control. It destroyed the Mughal army, which gave opportunity to the Marathas and the Sikh to attack the central empire. The Mughal emperor was reduced to a mere shadow as different chiefs started to assert their independence. In short, Nadir Shah’s invasion accelerated the downfall of the Mughal Empire.

Q.3. Describe the developments that led to the battle of Buxar. What were the consequences of this battle. ( 5 marks)
Ans. The battle of Buxar was the most decisive battle of Indian history for it demonstrated the superiority of British arms over the Indian. It firmly established the British as masters of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa. To trace the developments that led to the battle of Buxar, one has to review the developments of later half of 18th century. Bengal had emerged a s the most fertile and richest of the Indian provinces. The British East India Company had secured valuable privileges in 1717 under a royal farman by the Mughal emperor, which had granted the company the freedom to export and import their goods in Bengal without paying taxes and the right to issue passes and dastaks for the movement of such goods.

This Farman was a perpetual source of conflict between the Company and the Nawab of Bengal for it meant loss of revenue to the Bengal government. Also, the Company’s corrupt officers misused the distaffs. Matters came to head when the quick-tempered Siraj -ud – daulah succeeded the throne of Bengal. He demanded of English to that they should trade on the same basis as in the times of Murshid quli Khan. The English refused to do so and instead started building fortification in Calcutta without the permission of the Nawab. The battle of Plassey soon followed in 1757 in which the Nawab was defeated and British placed Mir Zafar, a puppet ruler in his place but in 1760 Mir Zafar was forced to abdicate in favour of his son -in -law Mir Qasim. It was Mir Qasim who belied the hopes of the British and instead of acting according to the British demands, he soon emerged as a major threat to their position and designs in Bengal.He was an able ruler who wanted to free Bengal from foreign rule. He started to replenish the treasury and built a strong army. All this was not to the liking of the British.

Most of all they disliked the Nawabs check on the misuse of the farman and the dastak. British issued these distaffs to their friendly traders who were thereby able to evade taxes. It not only deprived the nawab of revenue but also ruined the honest Indian trader. Mir Qasim took matters under his control by abolishing all duties on internal trade, thus giving his own subjects concessions that the English had seized by force. The British retaliated by war. Mir Qasim was defeated in a series of battle and fled to Awdh in 1763 where he formed an alliance with Shuja-ud-daulah, Nawab of Awadh and Shah Alam. The three allies clashed with the company’s army at battle of Buxar on October 1764 and were thoroughly defeated. The ruling power of Bengal was transferred from the Nawab to the Company. The Company also extracted 15 lakhs rupees from the Nawab as war compensation. The diwani of Bihar, Bengal and Orissa too passed in the British hands. Thus, the company’s control over Bengal was legalised and the revenue of this most prosperous of Indian provinces was placed at its command.

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