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IAS Prelims Exam: Modern History NCERT Questions: UNDERSTANDING PARTITION

For the aspirants of IAS Prelims Exam 2016, following Multiple Choice Questions of Modern Indian History would be very helpful for their IAS Prelims Exam Preparation. Civil Service requires good understanding of NCERT Books.

Feb 26, 2016 18:18 IST
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Questions asked from Modern Indian History section in IAS Prelims Exam are quite easy but the aspirants need to memorise well before appearing in the exam. The IAS Exam aspirants should have balanced preparation of overall three sections of the History and its chronology is one of the most important parts of the subject history which enable candidates to memorise well every important aspects of history.

Following Multiple Choice Questions of Modern Indian History would help students in understanding the nature of questions asked in IAS Prelims Exam:

Q1. Consider the following statements regarding the partition of British India:
I.    Several hundred thousand people were killed and innumerable women raped and abducted.
II.    Millions were uprooted, transformed into refugees in alien lands.
III.    Probably, some 15 million had to move across hastily constructed frontiers separating India and Pakistan.

Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
A.    Only I
B.    I and II
C.    I and III
D.    All of the above

Answer: D

Explanation: Several hundred thousand people were killed and innumerable women raped and abducted. Millions were uprooted, transformed into refugees in alien lands. It is impossible to arrive at any accurate estimate of casualties: informed and scholarly guesses vary from 200,000 to 500,000 people. In all probability, some 15 million had to move across hastily constructed frontiers separating India and Pakistan. As they stumbled across these “shadow lines” – the boundaries between the two new states were not officially known until two days after formal independence – they were rendered homeless, having suddenly lost all their immovable property and most of their movable assets, separated from many of their relatives and friends as well, torn asunder from their moorings, from their houses, fields and fortunes, from their childhood memories.

Q2. Consider the following statements regarding the partition of India:
I.    Some historians, both Indian and Pakistani, suggest that Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s theory that the Hindus and Muslims in colonial India constituted two separate nations can be projected back into medieval history.
II.    Some scholars see Partition as a culmination of a communal politics that started developing in the opening decades of the twentieth century.
III.    The separate electorates for Muslims, created by the colonial government in 1909 and expanded in 1919, crucially shaped the nature of communal politics.

Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
A.    Only I
B.    I and II
C.    I and III
D.    All of the above

Answer: D

Explanation: Some historians, both Indian and Pakistani, suggest that Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s theory that the Hindus and Muslims in colonial India constituted two separate nations can be projected back into medieval history. They emphasise that the events of 1947 were intimately connected to the long history of Hindu-Muslim conflict throughout medieval and modern times. Some scholars see Partition as a culmination of a communal politics that started developing in the opening decades of the twentieth century. They suggest that separate electorates for Muslims, created by the colonial government in 1909 and expanded in 1919, crucially shaped the nature of communal politics. Separate electorates meant that Muslims could now elect their own representatives in designated constituencies.

Q3. Which of the following statements is incorrect regarding the term ‘communalism’?
A.    Communalism refers to a politics that seeks to unify one community around a religious identity in hostile opposition to another community.
B.    Communalism refers to a politics that seeks to divide one community around a religious identity in hostile opposition to another community.
C.    Communalism attempts to consolidate this identity and present it as natural – as if people were born into the identity, as if the identities do not evolve through history over time.
D.    Communalism is a particular kind of politicisation of religious identity, an ideology that seeks to promote conflict between religious communities.

Answer: B

Explanation: Communalism refers to a politics that seeks to unify one community around a religious identity in hostile opposition to another community. It seeks to define this community identity as fundamental and fixed. It attempts to consolidate this identity and present it as natural – as if people were born into the identity, as if the identities do not evolve through history over time. In order to unify the community, communalism suppresses distinctions within the community and emphasises the essential unity of the community against other communities. One could say communalism nurtures a politics of hatred for an identified “other”– “Hindus” in the case of Muslim communalism, and “Muslims” in the case of Hindu communalism. This hatred feeds a politics of violence. Communalism, then, is a particular kind of politicisation of religious identity, an ideology that seeks to promote conflict between religious communities. In the context of a multi-religious country, the phrase “religious nationalism” can come to acquire a similar meaning.

Q4. In which of the following year, elections to the provincial legislatures were held for the first time?
A.    1906
B.    1918
C.    1937
D.    1947

Answer: C

Explanation: In 1937, elections to the provincial legislatures were held for the first time. Only about 10 to 12 per cent of the population enjoyed the right to vote. The Congress did well in the elections, winning an absolute majority in five out of eleven provinces and forming governments in seven of them.

Q5. In which of the following year ‘Hindu Mahasabha’ was founded?
A.    1915
B.    1919
C.    1925
D.    1926

Answer: A

Explanation: Founded in 1915, the Hindu Mahasabha was a Hindu party that remained confined to North India. It aimed to unite Hindu society by encouraging the Hindus to transcend the divisions of caste and sect. It sought to define Hindu identity in opposition to Muslim identity.

Q6. Consider the following statements regarding the “Pakistan” Resolution:
I.    On 23 March 1940, the League moved a resolution demanding a measure of autonomy for the Muslim majority areas of the subcontinent.
II.    Sikandar Hayat Khan, Punjab Premier and leader of the Unionist Party, who had drafted 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 ...
III.    The origins of the Pakistan demand have also been traced back to the Urdu poet Mohammad Iqbal, the writer of “Sare Jahan Se Achha Hindustan Hamara”.

Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
A.    Only I
B.    I and II
C.    I and III
D.    All of the above

Answer: D

Explanation: The Pakistan demand was formalised gradually. On 23 March 1940, the 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. In fact Sikandar Hayat Khan, Punjab Premier and leader of the Unionist Party, who had drafted 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 the 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.

Q7. In which of the following day Muslim League announced “Direct Action Day”?
A.    16 August 1945
B.    16 August 1946
C.    16 August 1947
D.    16 August 1948

Answer: B

Explanation: After withdrawing its support to the Cabinet Mission plan, the Muslim League decided on “Direct Action” for winning its Pakistan demand. It announced 16 August 1946 as “Direct Action Day”. On this day, riots broke out in Calcutta, lasting several days and leaving several thousand people dead. By March 1947 violence spread to many parts of northern India.

Q8. Who has given the two nation-theory?
A.    Mahatma Gandhi
B.    Muhammad Ali Jinnah
C.    Sardar Ballabh Bhai Patel
D.    Jawaharlal Nehru

Answer: B

Explanation: The two-nation theory was a founding principle of the Pakistan Movement and the partition of India in 1947. The ideology that religion is the main factor in defining the nationality of Indian Muslims was used by Muhammad Ali Jinnah. He called it 'the awakening of Muslims for the creation of Pakistan'.

Q9. Who is the author of the book ‘The Other Side of Silence’?
A.    Khuswant Rai
B.    Urvashi Butalia
C.    Khushdeva Singh
D.    Mahatma Gandhi

Answer: B

Explanation: At times, therefore, when the men feared that “their” women – wives, daughters, sisters – would be violated by the “enemy”, they killed the women themselves. Urvashi Butalia in her book, The Other Side of Silence, narrates one such gruesome incident in the village of Thoa Khalsa, Rawalpindi district. During Partition, in this Sikh village, ninety women are said to have “voluntarily” jumped into a well rather than fall into “enemy” hands. The migrant refugees from this village still commemorate the event at a gurdwara in Delhi, referring to the deaths as martyrdom, not suicide. They believe that men at that time had to courageously accept the decision of women, and in some cases even persuade the women to kill themselves.

Q10. Who among the following described his relief work in his title Love is Stronger than Hate: A Remembrance of 1947?
A.    Khuswant Rai
B.    Urvashi Butalia
C.    Khushdeva Singh
D.    Mahatma Gandhi

Answer: C

Explanation: Buried under the debris of the violence and pain of Partition is an enormous history of help, humanity and harmony. For instance, the work of Khushdeva Singh, a Sikh doctor specialising in the treatment of tuberculosis, posted at Dharampur in presentday Himachal Pradesh. Immersing himself in his work day and night, the doctor provided that rare healing touch, food, shelter, love and security to numerous migrants, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu alike. We know about the gruelling relief work of this doctor from a memoir he entitled Love is Stronger than Hate: A Remembrance of 1947. Here, Singh describes his work as “humble efforts I made to discharge my duty as a human being to fellow human beings”.

Q11. In which of the following year the name ‘Pakistan’ was coined?
A.    1925
B.    1933
C.    1946
D.    1947

Answer: B

Explanation: The name Pakistan or Pak-stan is coined by a Punjabi Muslim student at Cambridge, Choudhry Rehmat Ali

Q12. In which of the following year Muslim League demanded a measure of autonomy for the Muslim-majority areas?
A.    1925
B.    1933
C.    1940
D.    1947

Answer: C

Explanation: In the year 1940, the Muslim League moves a resolution at Lahore demanding a measure of autonomy for the Muslim-majority areas.

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