Sample Model Papers For History CBSE Board for students online

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Model Paper: 1


Q.1 Discuss the role of Saiyid Brothers. (5 Marks)

Ans. 1
The predominate role of Saiyid Brothers surfaced in the later Mughal history at the end of the inglorious reign of Jahandar Shah in 1713. 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 1 What were the causes and consequences of the Battle of Plassey?

The Battle Of Plassey was fought in 1757 A.D. The forces of English East India Company defeated Siraj-ud-daulah, the Nawab of Bengal in a battle on the field of Plassey,about 30 km from Murshidabad.
The Company had secured valuable privileges in 1717 under a royal farman by the Mughal Emperor whereby they could export or import their goods in Bengal without paying taxes and the right to issue passes or dastaks for the movement of such goods. This farman was a perpetual source of conflict between the Company and the Nawabs of Bengal.

Matters came to head when the quick-tempered Siraj -ud - daulah succeeded the throne of Bengal. He demanded of English 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 Nawab in Siraj-ud-daulah's place.

The Battle of Plassey resulted in consolidation of British mastery in Bengal. This enhanced their prestige and enabled them to cherish their future imperial designs in India. The revenues of Bengal helped them to reorganize their army and meet the expenditure incurred in the subsequent wars with the other states. It strengthened the British against French resulting in the latter's final elimination from India.

Q.2 In which way Nadir Shah's Invasion exposed the hollowness of the Mughal Empire? (4 Marks)

The obvious weakness of the Mughal Empire invited Nadir Shah's descent upon the plains of northern India for plunder and spoil. For years the defenses of the northwest frontier had been neglected. Nadir captured Ghazni and Kabul, crossed the Indus at Attack (December 1738), and occupied Lahore virtually unopposed. Hurried preparations were then made to defend Delhi, but the faction-ridden nobles could not agree on a strategy. Nadir defeated the Mughals at Karnal, took Emperor Muhammad Shah prisoner, and marched to Delhi. The invader left Delhi in May laden with a booty estimated at 70 crores (700 million rupees). His plunder included the famous Koh-i-noor diamond and the jewel-studded Peacock Throne of Shah Jahan. He compelled Muhammad Shah to cede to him the province of Kabul.

The Iranian invasion paralyzed Muhammad Shah and his court. The emperor was compelled to appoint the Maratha peshwa,Balaji Baji Rao, as governor of Malwa. The province of Katehar (Rohilkhand) was seized by an adventurer, 'Ali Muhammad Khan Ruhela, who could not be suppressed by the feeble government of Delhi. The loss of Kabul opened the empire to the threat of invasions from the northwest; a vital line of defense had disappeared. Punjab was again invaded, this time by Ahmad Shah Abdali, an Afghan lieutenant of Nadir Shah, who became king of Kabul after Nadir's death (June 1747); Abdali sacked Lahore, and, even though a Delhi army compelled him to retreat, his repeated invasions eventually devastated the empire.


Q 2 What was the Dual System of administration and what were its effects?

The main consequence of the Battle of Buxar in 1764 was that it made the East India Company the real master of Bengal.
The sole control of the army and the supreme political power was in its hands. The Nawab on the other hand depended for his internal and external security on the British.

The Company had the right to directly collect the revenues, and control the police and the judicial powers. This arrangement is known as the "Dual System of Government". It had great advantage for the British. They had all the power with them with no attached responsibility for the welfare of the people of Bengal. On the other hand the Nawab and his officials had the responsibility of administration but not the power to discharge it. The logical consequence of this system was that neither the British nor the Nawab cared for the welfare of the people.

The ill effects of this system were to be reflected in the fact that the Company's servants had full freedom to oppress the people of Bengal. They set out to amass personal fortunes and thereby drained Bengal of its wealth. . In the years 1766,1767 and 1768, nearly 5.7 million pounds were drained from Bengal. The abuses of this Dual System and the drain of wealth led to the impoverishment of that province .

Q 3 What was the difference between the Subsidiary Alliance and the Subsidiary Treaty? (2 Marks)

Under the Subsidiary Alliance system, the ruler of the allying Indian State was compelled to accept the permanent stationing of a British force within his territory. He was also to pay a subsidy for its maintenance. This was allegedly, done for the protection of the Indian ruler. The "Subsidiary Treaty" provided that the Indian ruler would agree to have a British resident posted at his court, that he would not employ any European in his service without the approval of the British; he would not negotiate with any other Indian ruler without consulting the Governor-General. In return, the British undertook to protect the ruler from his enemies and also promised non-interference in the internal affairs of the allied state, which in reality never happened.

Q 4 Write a brief note on the "Drain of Wealth". (2 Marks)

The commercial policy of the East India Company after 1813 was guided by the needs of British Industry. It adopted a policy of free trade or unrestricted entry of British goods. The main aim of the company was to tr
Ansform India into a consumer of British manufactures and a supplier of raw materials. Hence the 'Economic Drain' was peculiar to British rule, which meant that the British drained India's wealth and resources for which India got no adequate economic or material return.

Q.5 Which indirect methods did the British adopt for bringing the Indian states under its control before 1857? (8 Marks)

.The British relied on two methods: the system of "Subsidiary Alliances" and "Doctrine of Lapse" for bringing the Indian states under their control before 1857.

Under the Subsidiary Alliance system, initiated by Lord Wellesley, the ruler of the allying Indian state was compelled to keep a British force permanently within the domains of his territory. He had to pay a subsidy for its maintenance. All this was done for his protection as promised by the English. However, in reality it was a way in which the Indian ruler paid tribute to the company.
There were also instances when the ruler ceded part of his territory instead of paying an annual tribute. In this reference the "Subsidiary Treaty" played an important role. Here the Indian ruler was to agree to keep a British resident posted at his court, that he would not agree to employ any European in his service without the approval of the British, and that he would not negotiate with any other Indian ruler without consulting the Governor-General. In reality by signing the Subsidiary Alliance the Indian ruler gave away his independence. Lord Wellesley signed subsidiary treaties with the Nina of Hydria in 1798 and 1800.The Nawab of Awadh was forced to sign a Subsidiary Treaty in 1801. He dealt with Mysore, Carnatic , Tanjore and Surat even more sternly.

Another instrument through which the British annexed Indian states was "Doctrine of Lapse". Its was initiated by Lord Dalhousie. Under this doctrine, when the ruler of a protected state died without leaving a natural heir, his state was not to pass to an adopted heir as sanctioned by the age-old tradition. It was to pass on to the British Empire and be part of it unless the adoption was cleared and approved by the British authorities. States, which were annexed under this Doctrine, were Satara in 1848, Nagpur and Jh
Ansi in 1854.


Q 5 What were the causes for the outbreak of the Revolt of 1857?
(8 Marks)

The revolt of 1857 was an epoch -making event of Indian history. It was the first revolt of its kind, which threatened the British rule in India .The revolt, did not take place suddenly. It should be understood as an accumulated discontent among Indi
Ans in various parts of India due to various political, economic and social reasons.

The British East India Company destroyed Indian handicraft industry and trade by imposing high tariff on the Indian Exports. On the other hand, the imports of British goods were duty free. This disrupted both, the industries as well as the trade. Britishers forced the peasantry to grow indigo and other cash crops and sold them to British at very low price.

The princely states were discontented with Britishers who interfered in their rule. Dalhousie's doctrine of lapse created bitter enemies for them in form of Rani Jh
Ansi, Bahadur Shah , Nawab of Awadh . Another major cause of discontent was the corrupt officials, Police; lower officials and courts were ill reputed for corruption. The judicial system was inadequate. The British government in India was unpopular being a foreign one. It lacked a clear understanding of Indian governance.

The social reforms introduced by British, which included abolition of, sat and child infanticide hurt the religious sentiments of the Indi
Ans. The Indian soldiers were discontented due to ill treatment meted out to them by the Britishers. They could not rise higher than the rank of subehdar. The greased cartiges used in the Enfield rifles by the soldiers became the immediate cause of the revolt as it provided a spark to the growing discontent of the masses.

Q.6 What were the effects of the Land Revenue policy of the British Government? (5 Marks)

In 1765, the East India Company acquired the Diwani, or control over the revenues, of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa. Warren Hastings auctioned the right to collect revenue to highest bidders. But the experiment did not succeed. It was at this stage that the idea first emerged of fixing the land revenue at a permanent amount. Finally the Permanent Settlement was introduced in Bengal and Bihar in 1783 by Lord Cornwallis, which forced the landlords to deposit a fixed amount of money in the state treasury. In return they were recognised as hereditary owners of the land. The landlord thus extracted maximum labor from the peasant who was subjected to forced labor. The permanent settlement policy had two special features. Firstly, the Zamindars and revenue collectors were converted into landlords. They became the owners of the entire land in their Zamindaris and collected land revenues. On the other hand, the cultivators were reduced to the low status of mere tenants and were deprived of long-standing rights to the soil and other customary rights. The tenants of Bengal and Bihar were left entirely at the mercy of the zamindars.

The Ryotwari System, which was introduced in south and Southwest India, recognised the peasant as the direct owner of the land. The peasant, instead of benefiting, suffered huge losses, as they had to part with half of their produce in form of taxes. They had to pay taxes even on the failure of the crops. The Government realized land revenue with severity.
The fixation of revenue was arbitrary. The attempt of the officials was to secure the maximum amount. Between 1765-6 and 1793, land revenue demand nearly doubled.

One of the major effects of the new land revenue policy was though the Zamindars were landlords over the tenant, yet they themselves were subordinated to the state. In fact they were reduced virtually to the status of a tenant of the East India Company, paying 10/11th of his income from the land as tax. Falling to pay the required land revenue the landlord could be turned out of the land unceremoniously and his estate sold if he failed to pay the revenue in time. The Government went on increasing land revenue considerably but spent very little on the improvement of agriculture. It auctioned the land of the peasant who was unable to pay rent due to him. In order to escape such circumstances, the peasant himself pawned or sold a part of his land to pay rent.


Q 6"The Indian Civil Service has been called the Steel Frame which reared and sustained the British rule in India". Discuss (5 marks)

The pivotal position which the Indian Civil Service occupied in the British scheme of things was underscored by Prime Minister Lloyd George in a speech delivered in the House of Commons in 1922: ''They are the steel frame of the whole structure. I do not care what you build on it if you take the steel frame out, the fabric will collapse.

Lord Cornwallis brought the Civil Service into existence. Cornwallis, who came to India as governor-general in 1786, was determined to purify the administration by making it efficient and honest. He emphasised more on elimination of corruption among the British officials, for which, the salaries were increased. The same was not directed towards the Indian officials .A special feature of the Indian Civil Service since the days of Cornwallis was the rigid and complete exclusion of Indi
Ans from it. The Indian Civil Service gradually developed into one of the most efficient and powerful Civil Services in the world. Its members exercised vast power and often participated in the making of the policy. They developed certain traditions of independence, integrity and hardwork, though these qualities obviously served the British and not Indian interests. They came to believe that they had an almost divine right to rule India.

Q.7 Describe the restrictions imposed on the press by the British.
(5 Marks)
7The chief instrument through which the nationalist-minded Indi
Ans spread the message of patriotism and modern economic, social and political ideas, and created an all-India consciousness was the press. The newspapers criticized the official policies of the British Government. The British Government thought that it is essential to curb the freedom of Indian press otherwise it may be a major cause of their downfall.

The governor-general Lord Lytton (1877-1880) introduced the Vernacular Press Act (1878) to impose restrictions on the freedom of Indian press. This Act made restrictions on the vernacular press, which was responsible for spread nationalist ideas in much of India. This Act armed the government with uncontrolled power to make a wholesale censor in the newspapers in vernacular languages and to confiscate the security deposit arbitrarily. No newspaper in vernacular language could exist after it. The most invidious aspect of the law was that though it put serious restrictions on the freedom of Indian language newspapers yet it spared the English newspapers from its purview.


Discuss the policies followed by the British Government to foster communalism and other forces of disunity. (5 Marks)
The Hindus and the Muslims had fought the revolt of 1857 but after the suppression of the revolt, the British officials took vindictive attitude towards the Muslims, hanging 27,000 Muslims in Delhi alone .The Muslims were looked at with suspicion after the revolt. But this attitude of the British changed after 1870's. To check the growth of a united national feeling in the country, they decided to follow more actively the policy of 'Divide and rule' and to divide the people on religious lines, in other words to encourage communal and separatist tendencies in Indian politics .They started instigating one section of the Indian people against the other, one religion against the other and one race against the other. For this purpose they came decided to come out as champions of Muslim rights. The colonial government treated Hindus and Muslims as separate communities now and encouraged the propagation of virulent communal ideas and communal hatred through the press, pamphlets and public platform. The British histori
Ans attacked the composite culture of India by propagating that in medieval period, all Muslims were rulers and non-Muslims were ruled. Due to British policy of divide and rule, modern education spread relatively late among Muslim sections.

The Government Act of 1935 went a step forward in perpetuating the communal cleavage between the Muslims and the non-Muslim communities, by prescribing separate electorates on the basis of the 'communal award' .
The act of 1935, it should be noted, provided separate representation not only for the Muslims, but for the Sikhs, the Europe
Ans, Indian Christi
Ans and Anglo-Indi
Ans and thus created a serious hurdle in the way of the building up of national unity, which the makers of the constitution found it almost insurmountable to overcome even after the Muslims had partitioned for a separate state.

Q 8 Discuss the main features of development of modern industries in India. How did British rule hamper it?
Ans. 8
The Indian economy was based on handicraft industries and agriculture before the Britishers came in India. Much of the production was based on cottage and small-scale industries. The works of Indian goldsmiths, blacksmiths, cotton weavers, silk weavers were in great demand not only in India but also abroad. The 18th century witnessed the emergence of industrial revolution in Britain. The industrial revolution created the need for Indian raw material but it ruined the handicraft industry as the British manufactured goods now flooded Indian markets at much lower costs. On the other hand, the demand for the Indian handicraft was strategically barred by imposing high tariff duties on Indian exports such as manufactured silk and cotton cloth apparels.

The modern industries, which were opened in India, were controlled and financed by the Britishers to cater to their own needs. India lacked heavy industries such as metallurgy, machine, fertilisers etc. which made Indi
Ans import it from Abroad. The government did not give any economic support to the development of such industries.

In conclusion, industrial progress in India was exceedingly slow. In terms of production as well as economic development, the modern industrial development was paltry as compared to the developments of the other countries or for that matter with India's economic needs. This was precisely because Britain hampered its growth at each point of time, not providing enough opportunities for growth, which if at all it happened was a stunted and lop-sided growth.


Discuss the main objectives of the Indian National Movement upto 1905?

By 1850's Indian nationalism had gathered enough strength and momentum to appear as a major force on the Indian political scene. This is evident from the fact that the British Indian Association was formed in Bengal to represent Indian grievances to the British government in 1851. In 1876, Surendranath Banerjea founded the Indian Association in Bengal. But the Indian National Congress, founded in December 1885, was the first organized expression of the Indian national movement on an all-India scale.

It played an extremely significant role in the early stages of the growth of the Indian nationalist movement of Indian politics helped to put the nationalist movement on sound foundations. This phase of the movement lasted till 1905.
Perhaps the most important part of the early nationalists' political work was their economic critique of imperialism. They took note of all the three forms of contemporary colonial economic exploitation, namely, through trade, industry and finance. They clearly grasped that the essence of British economic imperialism lay in the sub-ordination of the Indian economy to the British economy. The early nationalists complained of India's growing poverty and economic backwardness and the failure of modern industry and agriculture to grow, and they put the blame on British economic exploitation of India. The nationalists complained that India's wealth was being drained to England, and demanded this drain be stopped. From 1885 to 1892 they demanded the exp
Ansion and reform of the Legislative Council. The British Government was forced by their agitation to pass the Indian Councils Act of 1892.

Q 9 What was the role of Sayyid Ahmad Khan in modernizing the Muslim community? (5 Marks)
Ans. 9
In 19th century, Sir Syyed Ahmed Khan emerged as the most outstanding reformer among the Muslim population. Sir Sayyed Ahmed Khan introduced several reforms for the promotion of Muslims. He interpreted this holy text in the light of intellectualism and science. He inspired the Muslims to become liberal and free from social evils. He gave top priority to western education. In 1875, he founded Muhammedan Anglo - Oriental School at Aligarh which, in 1920, expanded, to become the Aligarh Muslim University.
Movements for religious reform were late in emerging among the Muslims. The Muslim upper classes had tended to avoid contact with western education and culture, and it was mainly after the Revolt of 1857 that modern ideas of religious reform began to appear. Though the Muhammedan Literary Society (1863) encouraged the upper and middle class Muslims to take to western education but the most important reformer among the Muslims was Sayyid Ahmad Khan.

Sayyid Ahmad Khan was a great believer in religious tolerance. He believed that all religions had a certain underlying unity, which could be called practical morality. Believing that a person's religion was his or her private affair, he roundly condemned any sign of religious bigotry in personal relations. Sayyid Ahmad's reformist zeal also embarrassed the social sphere. He urged Muslims to give up medieval customs and ways of thought and behaviour. In particular he wrote in favor of raising women's status in society and advocated removal of purdah and spread of education among women. He also condemned the customs of polygamy and easy divorce.


Q 9 Why was the attack on the caste system formed a major component of the reform movements? (5 marks)
The caste system was a major target of attack for the social reform movement. The Hindus at this time were divided into numerous castes. The caste into which a man was born determined large areas of his life. Moreover the castes were carefully graded into a hierarchy of status. At the bottom of the ladder came the untouchables and the Schedule castes that formed about 20 percent of the Hindu population. The untouchables suffered from numerous severe and numerous disabilities and restrictions, which varied from place to place.

In modern times caste became a major obstacle in the growth of a united national feeling and the spread of democracy. British rule released many forces that undermined the caste system like the equality before law, modern industries, and new modes of tr
Ansport and communication, which made the beginning for diluting the rigidities of the caste distinctions. Logically, the impact of these developments instilled spirit rationalistic and democratic beliefs in the Indian social reformers and they started a tirade against the caste system. Such reform movements were the Brahmo Samaj, the Prarthana Samaj, the Arya Samaj, the Ramakrishna Mission, the Theosophists, and the Social Conference etc., who attacked the caste system vehemently.

Q 10 Describe the significance of the Lahore Session of the Congress in the history of the Indian National Movement. (5 Marks)
Ans. 10
The Lahore Session of the Congress gave voice to the new, militant spirit. The first step was to reconcile the militant left wing of the Congress. Jawaharlal Nehru was made the President of the Congress at the historic session at Lahore in 1929. It passed a resolution declaring Poorna Swaraj (Complete Independence) to be the Congress objective. On December 31,1929 the newly adopted tri-colour flag of freedom was hoisted.26 January 1930 was fixed as the first Independence Day, which was to be so celebrated every year.

The Congress session also announced the launching of the Civil Disobedience Movement. However, it did not draw up a plan of action. This was left to Gandhiji. The Civil Disobedience Movement was launched on March 12,1930. Once again he came in direct confrontation with the Government. He began to consolidate the Nationalist ranks. The country was again filled with hope and determined to be free.


Q 10 Discuss the Congress attitude to the Second World War.
. 10 The Second World War broke out in September 1939. The Government of India immediately joined the war without consulting the National Congress or the elected members of the central legislature.
The National Congress was in full sympathy with the victims of Fascist aggression. It was willing to help the forces of democracy in their struggle against fascism. However, the point which the Congress leaders raised was that how could an enslaved nation help other country in their fight for freedom? If at all this was to be done, then India must be declared free or alternately effective power be put in Indian hands before it could actively participate in the war. These points, which were raised, were in direct contradiction with the motives of the colonial rule. The British Government refused to accept this demand and tried to pit the religious minorities and Princes against the Congress. The Congress, therefore, asked its ministries to resign.

Q 11 Discuss the reasons for the split in the Congress in 1907.

Ans. The agitation against the partition of Bengal had a deep impact on the Indian National Congress. Also there was much public debate and disagreement between the moderate and the militant nationalists. The militant nationalists wanted to extend the Swadeshi and Boycott movement from Bengal to the rest of the country. They also wanted to extend the Boycott movement to every form of association with the colonial government. The Moderates wanted to confine the Boycott movement to Bengal and even there they wanted to limit it to the boycott of foreign goods.
There was a tussle between the moderates and the militant nationalists for the presidentship of the Congress in the year 1906. However, Dadabhai Naoroji was chosen the President .The differences could not be kept in check for a very long time.
The moderate nationalists lacked a vision for the future. They were not able to see that their methods, which were serving a real purpose earlier, were no longer adequate. The Indian National Movement had advanced to a new stage and the moderates could not keep pace with it. The militant nationalists were on the other hand not prepared to take a step backwards .The split between the two became imminent and was formalised in the Surat session of the Indian National Congress in December 1907, whereby the moderates captured the machinery and weeded the extremist elements out of the Congress.


Q.11. How did the British policies led to the ruin of the artis
Ans and craftsmen?

Ans. 11
The Indian economy was based on handicraft industries and agriculture before the Britishers came in India. Much of the production was based on cottage and small-scale industries. The works of Indian goldsmiths, blacksmiths, cotton weavers, silk weavers were in great demanding not only in India but also abroad .The 18th century witnessed the emergence of industrial revolution in Britain. The industrial revolution created the need for Indian raw material but it ruined the handicraft industry as the British manufactured goods now flooded Indian markets at much lower costs. This was done through the one- way free trade strategy of British in 1813which allowed the invasion of British manufactures in India, in particular cotton textiles.

The Indian goods made with primitive technique s could not compete with goods produced on mass scale by powerful steam -operated machines. The demand for the Indian handicraft was strategically barred by imposing high tariff duties on Indian exports such as manufactured silk and cotton cloth apparels The ruin of Indian Industries, particularly rural handicrafts, proceeded more rapidly once the railways was built .The railways enabled British manufactures to reach and uproot the traditional industries in the remotest villages of the country at far more cheaper prices and attractive colours .The cotton weaving and spinning industry were the worst hit. Silk and woollen textiles fared no better and similar fate overtook the iron, pottery, glass, paper, metal, guns, shipping, tanning and dyeing industries

Q.12. On an outline Map of India mark any five Indian states which were annexed under the "Doctrine of Lapse"? (6 Marks)
Five indian states, which were annexed under the Doctrine of Lapse.
Sambhalpur , Satara, Nagpur, Jh
Ansi, Awadh.



On an outline Map of India mark the following under mentioned where the important events took place.


a. First Congress Session-Bombay
b. First Congress Split-Lucknow
c. Home Rule Movement of Mrs Annie Besant-Madras
d. Commencement of The Revolt of 1857-Meerut
e. Formation of Brahmo Samaj-Calcutta