Chapter 1 – Challenges of Nation Building Questions and Answers: NCERT Solutions for Class 12 Political Science (Politics In India Since Independence)

Class 12 Political Science (Politics In India Since Independence) NCERT book solutions for Chapter 1 - Challenges of Nation Building Questions and Answers.


1. Which among the following statements
about the partition is incorrect?
(a) Partition of India was the outcome of the “two-nation theory”.
(b) Punjab and Bengal were the two provinces divided on the basis of religion.
(c) East Pakistan and West Pakistan were not contiguous.
(d) The scheme of Partition included a plan for transfer of population across the border.

Answer: (d) The scheme of partition included a plan for transfer of population across the border.

2. Match the principles with instances:

Answer: (a)-(ii), (b)-(iv), (c)-(i), (d)-(iii)

3. Take a current political map of India (showing outlines of states) and mark the location of the following Princely States,
(a) Junagadh (b) Manipur
(c) Mysore (d) Gwalior.

Answer: Please see the Map attached at the end of the chapter. The places are marked as 3(a), 3(b), 3(c) and 3(d).

4. Here are two opinions:
Bismay: “The merger with the Indian State was an extension of democracy to the people of the Princely States.” Inderpreet: “I am not so sure, there was force being used. Democracy comes by creating consensus. ”
What is your opinion in the light of accession of Princely States and the responses of the people in these parts?

Answer: Accession of Princely States and merger with Indian union was to expand democracy all over the country because princely states never enjoyed their political rights. Indian government central government used force to extend democracy to some extent as this was mandatory to have a uniform base in the country.

5. Read the following very different statements made in August 1947: “Today you have worn on your heads a crown of thorns. The seat of power is a nasty thing. You have to remain ever wakeful on that seat… you have to he more humble and forbearing… now there will be no end to your being tested. ”
-M.K, Gandhi “India will awake to a life of freedom…. we step out from, the old to the new…. we end, today a period of ill fortune and India discovers herself again. The achievement we celebrate today is but a step, an opening of opportunity …”,
-Jawaharlal Nehru Spell out the agenda of nation building that flows from these two statements. Which one appeals more to you and why?

Answer: These two statements focus on the agenda of secularism, democracy, sovereignty and freedom. It focuses on the path which will lead to the real development and prosperity of our country. The first statement appeals to me more than the second one because it invokes the countrymen to remain awake, alert and conscious as it is not the end of our struggle. The time to build the nation initiates now.

6. What are the reasons being used by Nehru for keeping India secular? Do you think these reasons were only ethical and sentimental? Or were there some prudential reasons as well?

Answer: Reasons for keeping India secular:
1. All the Muslims did not leave India during participation, some muslims stayed in India as a minority and Jawaharlal Nehru wanted to deal with them in a very civilised and dignified manner.
2. He advocated security and democratic rights of Muslims as a citizen of India.
No, these reasons were not only ethical and sentimental, but there were some prudential reasons also as:
1. India’s secular nature cherished its long term goals and principles
like socialism, equality, liberty and fraternity.
2. Secularism stops any single faith to become superior and inferior to those who practicised another religion. Hence it considers all citizens equal irrespective of religious affiliation.

7. Bring out two major differences between the challenge of nation building for eastern and western regions of the country at the time of Independence.

Answer: The two major differences between eastern (Bengal) and Western (Punjab) regions can be summed up as follows:
1. These regions were the muslim majority provinces to be joined. Hence, it was decided that new country Pakistan will comprise two territories i.e. West and East Pakistan.
2. Secondly, there was a problem of minorities on both sides of border (East and West). Lakhs of Hindus and Sikhs in areas of Pakistan and Muslims on the Indian side of Punjab and Bengal found themselves trapped with no option except to leave their homes.

8. What was the task of the States Reorganisation Commission? What was its most salient recommendation?

Answer: The State Reorganisation Commission was set up in 1953 by central government to look into the matter of redrawing of boundaries of state:
1. The commission evolved that states’ boundaries should reflect the boundaries of different languages to accommodate linguistic diversity.
2. The State Reorganisation Act was passed in 1956 which resulted the creation of 14 states and 6 union territories.
3. Its most salient recommendation was the formation of linguistic states i.e. to reorganise states on the basis of accommodation of their languages to prepare a uniform base for the nation.

9. It is said that the nation is to large extent an “imagined community” held together by common beliefs, history, political aspirations and imaginations. Identify the features that make India a nation.

Answer: India proved herself through all stages of three challenges at the time of nation building like:
1. India is a secular country where people speak different languages and follow different cultures and religions to be recognised as a nation of unity in diversity with common faith and beliefs.
2. Political aspiration ensures demo¬cratic setup based on parliamentary form of government creating political competition in a democratic framework.
3. India’s imaginations established a welfare state on the principle of equality and special protection to socially disadvantaged groups and religions as well as cultural communities.

10. Read the following passage and answer the questions below:
“In the history of nation-building only the Soviet experiment bears comparison with the Indian. There too, a sense of unity had to be forged between many diverse ethnic groups, religious, linguistic communities and social classes. The scale-geographic as well as demographic was comparably massive. The raw material the state had to work with was equally unpropitious: a people divided by faith and driven by debt and disease.”
—Ramachandra Guha
(a) List the commonalities that the author mentions between India and Soviet Union and give one example for each of these from India.
(b) The author does not talk about dissimilarities between the two experiments. Can you mention two dissimilarities?
(c) In retrospect which of these two experiments worked better and why?

Answer: (a) Commonalities between India and Soviet Union:
(i) Both the nations shaped the nation on linguistic basis.
(ii) To promote welfare motives, the economic and technological developments took place in India also.
(iii) States were divided on the grounds of geographical boundary and strength of populations also in both the nations.
(b) Dissimilarities:
(i) Soviet Union was divided into 15 independent republics/countries to be disintegrated.
(ii) India maintained its unity and integrity even among diversified nature of states and peoples without any more division.
(c) The Indian experiment worked better to promote linguistic and cultural plurality without affecting unity and integrity of the nation though India adopted some diplomatic measures to make country united.

Very Short Answer Type Questions [1 Mark]

1. Name the leader who played a historic role in negotiating with the rulers of princely states to join the Indian Union.

Answer: Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel

2. What is meant by Two Nation Theory?

Answer: Two Nation Theory was propounded by Muhammad Ali Jinnah to create separate state for Muslims.

3. Mention the main recommendation of the State Reorganisation Commission of 1953.

Answer: The main recommendation of the State Reorganisation Commission was to organise states on language basis and the boundaries of states could also reflect the linguistic aspects.

4. Which two languages were spoken in Bombay state before it was divided in 1960?

Answer: Gujarati and Marathi

5. Name any four princely states that resisted their merger with the Indian Union?

Answer: Junagadh, Hyderabad, Kashmir and Manipur.

6. How many princely states consisted at the time of independence of India?

Answer: 565 princely states.

7. What was meant by princely states?

Answer: Princely states were ruled by princes who employed some form of control over their internal affairs under the supremacy of the British.

8. What was the basis of the report of States Reorganisation Commission?

Answer: States Reorganisation Commission Report was based on the distribution of boundaries of states on language basis to reflect linguistic aspects.

9. Why were the states reorganised on linguistic basis in India in 1956?

Answer: States were reorganised on linguistic basis in India in 1956 to maintain unity and integrity of the nation to avoid violence and conflicts among the people.

10. Whose speech was known as ‘tryst with destiny’?

Answer. ‘Tryst with destiny’ speech was delivered by the first Prime Minister of independent India Pt. Jawahar Lai Nehru while addressing special session of constituent Assembly as the midnight of 14-15 August 1947.

11. Name the states which decided to remain independent in place of joining India.

Answer: Travancore, Junagadh, Hyderabad and Bhopal decided to remain independent.

12. In which Congress Session proposal for linguistic principles of reorganisation was accepted?

Answer: Nagpur Congress Session of 1920.

13. Name the movement which demanded the separate province for Andhra region.

Answer: The Vishalandhra movement demanded that Telugu speaking areas should be separated from Madras Province of which they were a part and be made into a separate Andhra Province.

14. Why did Amritsar and Kolkata become communal zones?

Answer: Amritsar and Kolkata became communal zones because Muslims did not wish to move into area of Hindus and Sikhs majority and on the other hand Hindus and Sikhs also wanted to stay away from the areas of Muslim predominance.

15. Define Globalisation.

Answer: Globalisation refers to integration of an economy with the other country based on interdependence.

16. What is WSF?

Answer: WSF is the World Social Forum, a global platform to bring together a wide coalition of human rights activists, environmentalists and women activists.

Very Short Answer Type Questions [2 Marks]

1. Identify any two consequences of the partition of India in 1947.

Answer: 1. Communal Riots took place as the people of one community were killed and maimed by the people of other community in the name of religion.
2. People went through immense sufferings as they were forced to abandon their homes and to secure temporary shelter in the refugee camps. Thousands of women were abducted on both sides of border.

2. Mention any two challenges that India faced just after independence.

Answer: (i) Challenge to shape a nation
(ii) Challenges to establish democracy.
(iii) Challenge to ensure the development and well being of the entire society.

3. Name the original states from which the following states were carved out.
(a) Meghalaya (b) Gujarat

Answer: (a) Assam (1972) (b) Bombay (1960)

4. Explain the role played by Sardar Patel in the integration of princely states into the Indian Union.

Answer. Sardar Patel negotiated with the rulers of princely states and diplomatically merged most of them into the Indian Union i.e. there were 26 small states in today’s Orissa and 14 big states and 119 small states in today’s Gujarat.

5. Which state got divided on bilingual basis?

Answer: Bombay got divided on bilingual basis consisting of Gujarat and Marathi speaking people. After popular agitation, the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat were created in 1960.

6. Name the leader who advocated separate state of Andhra Pradesh by observing fast unto death and participation in Salt Satyagraha.

Answer: The leader Potti Sriramulu of Madras resigned from government job to participate in Salt Satyagraha and advocated equality in the society and demanded entry of dalits in temples of Madras as well as observed fast unto death since 19 October 1952 to create separate state of Andhra Pradesh

7. What was government’s approach towards the integration of princely states was based on three considerations?

Answer: 1. Most of the princely states willingly wanted to join Indian Union.
2. The government wanted to accommo¬date plurality by adopting flexible approach in dealing with the demand of the region.
3. The central government was so much concerned towards integration and consolidation of territorial boundaries of Indian nation.

8. Which interests were hidden behind the conflicts between Hindus and Muslims at the time of independence?

Answer: Hindu and Muslim communities bear some political interests at the time of independence:
1. Muslim League demanded a separate nation for Muslims to protect the interests of Muslims only.
2. There were some Hindu organisations also which made efforts to look after the interests of Hindus only to make India a ‘Hindu Nation’.

9. “India got independence under very difficult circumstances rather than any other country”. Justify the statement.

Answer: India got independence in 1947 under very difficult circumstances:
1. Freedom came with the partition of the country.
2. The year 1947 became the year of unprecedented violence and trauma.
3. Still our leader faced all these challenges in an appreciable manner by accommodating regional diversities also.