1. Which of the following statements regarding the ‘Summary Settlement’ of 1856 are correct? (1) It was introduced in the Awadh region. (2) It was based on the assumption that the taluqdars had a permanent stake in the land, but they had established their hold over land through force and fraud. (3) It proceeded to remove the taluqdars wherever possible. Select the correct answer using the code given below: (a) 1 and 2 only (b) 1 and 3 only (c) 2 and 3 only (d) 1, 2 and 3 Answer: (b) Explanation: The annexation of Awadh displaced not just the Nawab. It also dispossessed the taluqdars of the region. The countryside of Awadh was dotted with the estates and forts of taluqdars who for many generations had controlled land and power in the countryside. Before the coming of the British, taluqdars maintained armed retainers, built forts, and enjoyed a degree of autonomy, as long as they accepted the suzerainty of the Nawab and paid the revenue of their taluqs. The British were unwilling to tolerate the power of the taluqdars. Immediately after the annexation, the taluqdars were disarmed and their forts destroyed. The British land revenue policy further undermined the position and authority of the taluqdars. After annexation, the first British revenue settlement, known as the Summary Settlement of 1856 (Thus, statement 1 is correct), was based on the assumption that the taluqdars were interlopers with no permanent stakes in the land (Thus, statement 2 is incorrect) they had established their hold over land through force and fraud. The Summary Settlement proceeded to remove the taluqdars wherever possible. (Thus, statement 3 is correct) British land revenue officers believed that by removing taluqdars, they would be able to settle the land with the actual owners of the soil and thus reduce the level of exploitation of peasants while increasing revenue returns for the state. But this did not happen in practice: revenue flows for the state increased, but the burden of demand on the peasants did not decline. Officials soon found that large areas of Awadh were heavily over assessed: the increase of revenue demand in some places was from 30 to 70 per cent. Thus neither taluqdars nor peasants had any reasons to be happy with the annexation. Source: Themes in Indian History – Part 3, Theme 11, Page 298.
2. The Permanent Settlement of Bengal was brought into effect by the East India Company headed by the Governor-General Lord Cornwallis in 1793. Which of the following objectives did the British want to achieve by introducing this revenue system? (1) Encouraging investment in agriculture. (2) Securing regular flow of revenue. (3) Ensuring surety of profit on investment to entrepreneurs. (4) Building a new class of rich landowners who would be loyal to the Company. Select the correct answer using the code given below: (a) 1, 2 and 3 only (b) 2, 3 and 4 only (c) 2 and 4 only (d) 1, 2, 3 and 4 Answer: (d) Explanation: In introducing the Permanent Settlement, British officials hoped to resolve the problems they had been facing since the conquest of Bengal, i.e. crisis in the rural economy, recurrent famines and declining agricultural output. Officials felt that agriculture, trade and the revenue resources of the state could all be developed by encouraging investment in agriculture. This could be done by securing rights of property and permanently fixing the rates of revenue demand. If the revenue demand of the state was permanently fixed, then the Company could look forward to a regular flow of revenue, while entrepreneurs could feel sure of earning a profit from their investment, since the state would not syphon it off by increasing its claim. The process, officials hoped, would lead to the emergence of a class of yeomen farmers and rich landowners who would have the capital and enterprise to improve agriculture. Nurtured by the British, this class would also be loyal to the Company. Hence, all the statements are correct. Source: Source – Themes in Indian History – Part 3, Theme 10 Page 258
3. In the context of the Revolt of 1857, what is the importance of ‘Azamgarh Proclamation’ of 25 August 1857? (a) Through this Proclamation, the British disposed the Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah II. (b) The Proclamation declared the Mutiny to be against Islam by Muslim loyalists. (c) It stated the demand of the rebels and was addressed to the civilian population. (d) It declared Queen Victoria as the Queen of India. Answer: (c) Explanation: Azamgarh Proclamation was a remarkable document which was published in the town of Azamgarh in Eastern Uttar Pradesh during the Revolt. This declaration was issued (most probably) by Firoz Shah, a grandson of the Mughal Emperor who fought in Awadh and aims to set out a manifesto for what the rebels were fighting for. This Proclamation, also called ishtahar, was secular and largely democratic in tone, appealing to “both Hindoos and Mahommedans” who were “being ruined under the tyranny and oppression of the infidel and treacherous English”. Moreover, its main appeal was to economic sentiment, laying out in great details how the British had ruined each class of citizen - zamindar, merchant, civil servants, soldiers, artisans and even the clergy - and promised them a better deal after the revolution.
Source: Themes in Indian History – Part 3, Theme 11, Page 301
4. The ‘Salt March’ of Gandhiji in 1930 had a great importance in the Indian Freedom Movement. Which of the following statements is/are correct regarding the Salt March? (1) It was this event that first brought Mahatma Gandhi to world attention. (2) It was the first nationalist activity in which women participated in large numbers. (3) It was the Salt March which forced upon the British the realisation that their Raj would not last forever, and that they would have to devolve some power to the Indians. Select the correct answer using the code given below: (a) 2 only (b) 1 and 3 only (c) 2 and 3 only (d) 1, 2 and 3 Answer: (d) Explanation: The Salt March began on March 12, 1930, and continued till April 6, 1930. It was a 24-day non-violent march led by Mahatma Gandhi. During that time, the British had prohibited Indians from collecting or selling salt. Indians were also forced to buy the staple diet ingredient from the British, who, not only exercised a monopoly over its manufacture and sale but also levied a heavy salt tax. The salt monopoly was a fourfold curse – 1. It deprived the people of a valuable, easy village industry, 2. It involved wanton destruction of property that nature produces in abundance, 3. The destruction itself means more national expenditure, 4. An unheard-of tax of more than 1,000 per cent is exacted from starving people. The Salt March was a collective beginning of a mass resistance movement against the British tyranny. Upon reaching the seashore in Dandi, Mahatma Gandhi broke the law by producing illegal salt. This later turned into a mass civil disobedience movement throughout India as millions broke salt laws by either making salt or buying illegal salt. The Salt March began with around 80 people, but as more and more people joined in for the 390 km-long journeys, it grew into a strong force of 50,000 people. The Salt March was notable for at least three reasons. First, it was this event that first brought Mahatma Gandhi to world attention. The European and American press widely covered the march (Thus, statement 1 is correct). Second, it was the first nationalist activity in which women participated in large numbers. The socialist activist Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay had persuaded Gandhiji not to restrict the protests to men alone. Kamaladevi was herself one of the numerous women who courted arrest by breaking the salt or liquor laws (Thus, statement 2 is correct). Third, and perhaps most significant, it was the Salt March which forced upon the British the realisation that their Raj would not last forever, and that they would have to devolve some power to the Indians (Thus, statement 3 is correct). Source: Themes in Indian History – Part 3, Theme – 13, Page 360.
5. The Lahore Resolution popularly known as Pakistan Resolution was passed on 23rd March 1940. Which of the following statements regarding the Resolution is/are correct? (1) Sikandar Hayat Khan, the Punjab Premier and leader of the Unionist Party, played a role in drafting the Resolution but he was totally against the idea of Pakistan. (2) The Resolution for the first time formally mentioned the word ‘Pakistan’, the idea which was first stated by Choudhry Rehmat Ali.
Select the correct answer using the code given below: (a) 1 only (b) 2 only (c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2 Answer: (a) Explanation: The name Pakistan or Pak-stan (from Punjab, Afghan, Kashmir, Sind and Baluchistan) was coined by a Punjabi Muslim student at Cambridge, Choudhry Rehmat Ali, who, in pamphlets written in 1933 and 1935, desired a separate national status for this new entity. No one took Rehmat Ali seriously in the 1930s, least of all the League and other Muslim leaders who dismissed his idea merely as a student’s dream. The Lahore Resolution was prepared by the Muslim League Working Committee and was presented by A. K. Fazlul Huq, the Prime Minister of Bengal, was a formal political statement adopted by the All-India Muslim League on the occasion of its three-day general session in Lahore on 22–24 March 1940. On 23 March 1940, the Muslim League moved a resolution demanding a measure of autonomy for the Muslim majority areas of the subcontinent. This ambiguous resolution never mentioned partition or Pakistan (Thus, statement 2 is incorrect). Sikandar Hayat Khan, Punjab Premier and leader of the Unionist Party, played a part in drafting the resolution, declared in a Punjab assembly speech on 1 March 1941 that he was opposed to a Pakistan that would mean “Muslim Raj here and Hindu Raj elsewhere ... If Pakistan means unalloyed Muslim Raj in Punjab, then I will have nothing to do with it.” He reiterated his plea for a loose (United), confederation with considerable autonomy for the confederating units (Thus, statement 1 is correct). Source: Themes in Indian History – Part 3, Theme – 14, Page 386.