IAS Mains History Paper 2013

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Section –A

Q.1 Identify the following places marked on the outline map in the Question-cum-Answer Booklet supplied to you and write short notes of about 30 words on each of them in the space provided in the Booket. Locational hints for each of the places marked on the map are given below seriatim :

(i) A Palaeolithic and Mesolithic site.

(ii) A Mesolithic site.

(iii) An important halting place.

(iv) A Pre-Harappan site.

(v) An important Harappan site.

(vi) Site of important fossils.

(vii) A Sea-port.

(viii) A Palaeolithic site

(ix) A Neolithic, Megalithic and Chalcolithic site.

(x) A Harappan site.

(xi) A Palaeolithic site.

(xii) A Neolithic site.

(xiii) A Chalcolithic site.

(xiv) A Chalcolithic site

(xv) A site of Buddhist Monastery.

(xvi) Painted Grey Ware site.

(xvii) Site related to a famous Indian Philosopher.

(xviii) Historiacal Rock-cut caves.

(xix) Famous Fort.

(xx) Capital of famous Kingdom.


(a) Evaluate various views regarding human settlements as gleaned from the Vedic sources.

(b) Discuss the water management and its conservation planning in the Harappan (Indus-Saraswati) cities.

(c) In the absence of a written script Chalcolithic pottery gives us a fascinating insight into the culture and life styles of the people of those times. Comment critically.


(a) On the basis of contemporary sources assess the nature of banking and usuary in ancient India.

(b) Social norms for women in the Dharmasastra and Arthasastra tradition were framed in accordance with the Varnashrama tradition. Evaluate critically.

(c) “The varna concept may always have been largely a theoretical model and never an actual description of society.” Comment in the context of Ancient India.


(a) Evaluate the contribution of the Puranas in disseminating secular knowledge among the masses in ancient India.

(b) Evaluate the ownership of land in ancient India on the basis of literary and epigraphic sources.

(c) Explain as to know the early Buddhist Stupa art, while using folk motifs and narratives and common cultural symbols, succeeded in transforming these themes for expounding the Buddhist ideals.

Section –B

Q.5 Write short notes in not more than 150 words on each of the following :-

(a) Evaluate the Malfuzat texts as sources of medieval history.

(b) Discuss the state of society and economy of the Bahmani Kingdom as gleaned from historical sources.

(c) Give a sketch of Indian trade with Europe during the Mughal period.

(d) Analyze the steps taken by Razia Sultan to strengthen her position as an independent ruler despite the various obstacles.

(e) Bhakti and mysticism of Lal Ded emerged as a social force in Kashmir. Comment.


(a) Evaluate the conditions of industries in India from 1200-1500 CE.

(b) On the basis of contemporary sources evaluate the system of agriculture and irrigation of the Vijayanagar kingdom.

(c) Critically evaluate the educational development during the Sultanate period.


(a) On the basis of the accounts of Europeans bring out the agrarian crisis of the 17th century CE India.

(b) Evaluate critically the conditions of labour from 1200-1500 CE on the basis of historical sources.

(c) Discuss and evaluate critically various trends in the historiography of bhakti.


(a) Analyze how the political process of state formation of Mewar from th – 15 th century CE was challenged in the 16th century CE y the imperialist policy of Akbar.

(b) Assess the as an important source for evaluating the society and economy of the thirteenth century CE with special reference to Gujarat.

(c) Assess the development of Science and Technology in the Mughal period.


Section –A

(Modern India)

Q.1 Critically examine the following statements in about 150 words each :

(a) “Dupleix made a cardinal blunder in looking for the key o India in Madras : Clive sought and found it in Bengal.”

(b) Swami Vivekananda opined that “We should give our ancient spirituality and culture and get in return Western science, technology, methods of raising the standard of life, business integrity and technique of collective effort.”

(c) “Ryotwari falls into three stages – early, middle and late, and the only description common to all is that it is a mode of settlement with small farmers, so small, indeed, that their average holding is, on recent figures, only about acres.”

(d) “Many of us who worked for the Congress programme lived in a kind of intoxication during the year 1921. We were full of excitement and optimism…. We had a sense of freedom and a pride in that freedom.”

(e) “Gandhi’s body is in jail but his soul is with yoy, India’s prestige is in your hands, you must not use any violence under any circumstances. You will be beaten but you must not resist; you must raise a hand to ward off blows.”


(a) “Weaving”, says R. C. Dutt, “was the national industry of the people and spinning was the pursuit of millions of women.” Indian textiles went to England and other parts of Europe, to Chine and Japan and Burma and Arabia and Persia and parts of Africa. Elucidate.

(b) “The first point to note is the continuing importance of religion and philosophy as vital ingredients in the modern Indian Renaissance. Indeed, there is as much reason for regarding it as a reformation as there is for treating it as a Renaissance.” Critically examine.


(a) “At the dawn o the twentieth century Lord Curzon, the Viceroy of India, was full of hostility towards the Indian National Congrass and he confidentially reported to the Secretary of State in November 1900 : My own belief is that the Congess is tottering to its fall, and one of my greatest ambitions while in India is to assist it to a peaceful demise.” Examine.

(b) “Though the Act of 1919 was superseded by that of 1935, the preamble to the former was not repealed – the preservation of the smile of the Cheshire cat after its disappearance, and the latter said nothing about Dominion Status.” Elucidate.


(a) “Notwithstanding the quest for modernity and the antagonism that guided Nehru’s attitude towards the inequalities inherent in the social structure in rural India, the Congress Party did not carry out a concerted campaign against discrimination based on caste. Nehru’s own perception was that industrial growth was bound to break the stranglehold of this feudal remnant. This, however, did not happen in India. ” Examine.

(b) “The reorganization resulted in rationalizing the political map of India without seriously weakening its unity. If anything, its result has been functional, in as much as it removed what had been a major source of discord, and created homogeneous political units which could be administered through a medium that the vast majority of the population understood. Indeed, it can be said with the benefit of hindsight that language, rather than being a force for division, has proved a cementing and integrating influence.” Examine.

Section –B

Q.5 Critically examine the following statements in about 150 words each :

(a) “For Kant, Englightenment is mankind’s final coming of age, the emancipation of the human consciousness from an immature state of ignorance and error.”

(b) “Six hundred thousand men had died. The Union was preserved, the slaves freed. A nation ‘conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are crated equal ’ had survived its most terrible ordeal.”

(c) “Colonialism not only deprives a society of its freedom and its wealth, but of its very character, leaving its people intellectually and morally disoriented.”

(d) “If the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution in Russia (that resulted in the creation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics or Soviet Union) inaugurated an international competition for the hearts and minds of people all over the globe, the Chinese Revolution raised the stakes of that struggle.”

(e) “Decolonization has finished. It definitely belongs to the past. Yet somehow it has refused to become history.”


(a) “In spite of the careful farming of the Charter, the role of UNO as peacekeeper and international mediator has been somewhat lackluster and muted and that continue to be so even after the end of Cold War.” Elucidate.

(b) “Change in Britain came comparatively peacefully through democratic process in the first half of the nineteenth century and a model of a functioning democracy through ballot box was successfully put in place.” Elaborate.


(a) “New imperialism was a nationalistic, not an economic phenomena.” Critically examine.

(b) “By the 1980s, the Communist system of the Soviet Union was incapable of maintaining the country’s role as a Superpower.” Elucidate.


(a) “The European Union is the new sick man of Europe.” Critically evaluate.

(b) “There must be an end to white monopoly on political and economic system to ensure that the inequalities of apartheid are addressed and our society thoroughly democratized.” Discuss.

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