Indian Civil Services Examination Handbook/Modern Indian history
Mid-18th century to 1947 - significant events, personalities, issues
- History of Modern India, Bipan Chandra
- India's Struggle for Independence, Bipan Chandra et al
- Gandhi, Nehru, Tagore and Other Eminent Personalities of Modern India, Spectrum Editorial Board
- NCERT Class 12 Themes in Indian History Part III
- NCERT Class 10 Social Science, India and the Contemporary World - II, Chapter III
- NCERT Class 8 Social Studies Our Past - III
Previous years questions
“In many ways, Lord Daihousie was the founder of modern India.” Elaborate. (200 words) 
The Third battle of Panipat was fought in 1761. Why were so many empire-shaking battles fought at Panipat? (150 words) 
Examine critically the various facets of economic policies of the British in India from mid-eighteenth century till independence. (150 words) 
Despite the fact that Muslims and Hindus fought together against the British in the Revolt of 1857, a separatist movement started soon after, resulting into the partition of India. In the light of this statement, review briefly the origin and development of Muslim Separatist Movement culminating into the creation of Pakistan in 1947. (Not more than 200 words)
Relation between Religion and Politics has been a subject of controversy since long. What are the views of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru of this issue? (Not more than 130 words)
Give an account of the legislative measure passed during 1856-1956 for the uplift of women. Why was a new Act prohibiting Sati passed recently? (About 150 words)
Explain the contributions of the following to the social life of India ? (One sentence for each) (i) Ela Bhatt (ii) M.G. Ranade (iii) Acharya Narendra Dev (iv) Madan Mohan Malaviya (v) Narayana Guru (vi) Birsa Munda (vii) Baba Amte (viii) Malati Devi Chowdhury (ix) Dr. Zakir Hussain (x) C.N. Annadurai
Explain the significance of the following in the socio-religious context: (About 50 words for each) (i) The Alavar Saints (ii) Faraizi Movement (iii) Kuka Movement
what do you know about the following movements? (i) Rahnumai Mazda Yasnam (ii) The Bhagat Movement (iii) The Wahabi Movement
Trace the progress of women’s education from the early days of British rule to the year 1947? 150 words
Give a critical account of the Ramakrishna Mission with special reference to the role Played by Swami Vivekananda
What do you know about the following movements? (i) Farazi Movement (ii) Suddhi Movement (iii) The Young Bengal Movement
Trace the growth and development of University education till 1919. (About 150 words each)
How far was Tagore a poet of Mankind?
Discuss the role of the Theosophical Society in the history of religious movement in India.
'The railways did in India what they did elsewhere from handicraft to mechanical industry by transport situation.' Discuss. (About 150 words)
Write a short history of the Local Self-Government till the Reforms of 1919.
How far the labour legislations of the British Government were meant to ameliorate the condition of the working class.
What were the contributions of the Arya Samaj to social and religious movement of India?
Discuss Tagore's concept on education. How far was it a departure from conventional system of education? (About 50 words)
What were the basic differences between the conservative and the liberal schools of administrators in the latter of the 19th century?
Explain Rabindranath Tagore's Plan of village reconstruction.
Discuss the British policy towards Tibet from the end of the nineteenth century to the Viceroyalty of Lord Curzon. (About 150 words)
Why did Tagore emphasize on the primacy of the social over the political order? (About 75 words)
What do you know about the following? (i) Tana Bhagat Movement (ii) Satyashodak Movement (i) Khilafat Movement
Why have the following become famous? (i) N.G.Ranga (ii) C.Y. Chintamani (iii) Sir William Wedderburn (iv) Narendra Dev (v) M.R. Jayakar (vi) Madan Lal Dhingra
Do you think that the Partition of India was inevitable? Discuss the attitudes of Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Nehru and Maulana Azad towards the crucial question of Partition.
When was the system of open competitive examination in the Indian Civil Services introduced? Analyse the growth of the Indian Civil Service till the passing of the Government of India Act, 1919.
Tagore’s humanism is a blending of his faith in god man. Comment
Discuss the various aspects of social legislation introduced by the East India Company in the first half of the nineteenth century.
Assess the growth and development of Technical Education during the British rule.
'Swami Vivekananda might well be called the father of Indian nationalism.' Elucidate.
How far was Gurudev Rabindranath tagore's concept of religion wedded to his love of nature?
What do you know about the following? (i) Aligarh Movement (ii) Shuddhi Movement (iii) Brahmo Movement
Why have the following becomes famous? (i) Bhai Parmanand (ii) Dr. Satyapal (iii) Vasudeo Balwant Phadke (iv) George Yule (v) N.C. Kelkar (vi) C.F.Andrews
Tagore's emphasis on internationalism and humanism was ahead of his times. Explain. (About 75 words)
Discuss Gandhi’s concept of basic education. How far was it a departure from conventional system of education?
What were the circumstances that led to the partition of India in 1947?
What do you understand about ‘drain of wealth’ during British rule? Examine its effects on Indian economy.
The name of RajaRam Mohan Roy stands foremost in the field of religious and social reforms. Elucidate
Where are the following become famous? (i) Shymji Krishnavarma (ii) Rani Gaidinliu (iii) Saifuddin Kitchlew (iv) Dr. Nivedita Bhasin
How did the Policy of free trade hurt Indian textile industry and crafts in the latter half of the 19th century?
Examine the ideas of Rabindranath Tagore on democracy.
How did communalism manifest in Indian political scene? Explain the background of the passing of the momentous Pakistan Resolution.
How far Curzon's policy towards Tibet was influenced by strategic consideration.
Assess the contributions of Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar to the making of modern India.
In what way did Ramakrishna infuse a new vigour and dynamism into Hinduism?
'Tagore's poetry is a written record of his religious experience.' Elucidate.
What do you know about the following? (i) Munda Movement (ii) Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science (iii) Ilbert Bill (iv) Sarda Act (v) Education Despatch of 1854
Write about the following (About 20 words each): (i) Prathana Samaj (ii) Satyashodhak Samaj (iii) D.K. Karve
Write about the following (not exceeding 20 words each): (i) Dharma Sabha (ii) Keshab Chandra Sen (iii) Nivedita (iv) Theodore Beck
Write a note on the Theosophical Society
Write about the following (not exceeding 20 words each): (i) Mirza Haidar (ii) Jadunath Sarkar (iii) Jyotirao Phule
What in your opinion were the positive steps taken by the British to modernize India?
Write about the following not exceeding 20 words each): (a) Calcutta Madrasa (b) Jagat Seth (c) Bhawani Mandir (d)Pandita Ramabai (e) Darul-Uloom
Characterise the main features of Indian Renaissance.
What was the character of social religious reforms in the 19th Century and how did they contribute to the national awakening in India?
The emergence of new classes in British India was the direct consequence of the establishment of new social economy, new state system, administrative machinery and western education. Discuss
British vision of India had no single coherent set of ideas. On the contrary the ideas were shot through with contradictions and inconsistencies. Discuss
Write about the following not exceeding 20 words each): Chouth and Sardeshmukhi
"The foreign power will be withdrawn but for me real freedom will come only when we free ourselves of the dominance of western education, western culture and the western way of living which have been ingrained in us." Comment
"Satan cannot enter till he finds a flaw. ...... A great ocean separates us educated few from the millions in our country." Comment
Write about the following (not exceeding 20 words each): Kiang Nongbah a. 'Marumakkathayam' b. Maski c. Govind Guru d. 'Brahmadeya' e. 'Egmore Faction' f. Haileybury College g. Ijara System h. Taji System i. Gurudwara Reform Movement
"Dalhousie's predecessors had acted on the general principles of avoiding annexations, if these could be avoided. Dalhousie acted on the principles of annexation, if he could do so legitimately. His annexations were both of war and peace." Analyse.
Evaluate the influence of the three important women’s organizations of early 20th century in India on the country’s society and politics. To what extent do you think were the social objectives of these organizations constrained by their political objectives?
1947 onwards till the present - significant events, personalities, issues
- India Since Independence by Bipan Chandra et al
- India After Gandhi: The History of the World's Largest Democracy by Ramachandra Guha
- NCERT Class 12 Political Science, Indian Politics Since Independence
Previous years questions
Critically discuss the objectives of Bhoodan and Gramdan Movements initiated by Acharya Vinoba Bhave and their success. (200 words)
Write a critical note on the evolution and significance of the slogan, ‘Jai Jawan Jai Kisan’. (200 words)
Discuss the contributions of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad to pre- and post- independent India. (200 words)
Analyze the circumstances that led to the Tashkent Agreement in 1966. Discuss the highlights of the Agreement. (200 words)
Critically examine the compulsions which prompted India to play a decisive role in the emergence of Bangladesh. (200 words)
I am convinced that the only key to the solution of the world’s problems and of India’s problems lies in socialism. I see no way of ending the poverty, the vast unemployment, the degradation and the subjection of the Indian people ecept through socialism. In what way did Nehru succeed in achieving the through national Planning?
How did Nehru's plan for modernization make rapid stride during the decade 1951-61?
Was Jawaharlal Nehru justified in adopting the principle of non-alignment as the corner-stone of India's foreign policy?