GS – 1 Model Answers – 2023


1. Explain the role of geographical factors towards the development of Ancient India? (150 Words) 10 Marks

The physical characteristics of a nation heavily influence both its history and the way of life of its citizens. History is considered to have two eyes, one of which is chronology and the other of which is geography.

Geographical Features that shaped our Ancient Indian History

  1. Climate and Agriculture: India’s diverse climate zones supported the cultivation of different crops, such as rice in the east and wheat in the northwest, leading to agricultural diversity and surplus production.
  2. River Systems: The Indus and Ganges river systems were vital for the development of early Indian civilizations. They provided a source of water for irrigation, facilitated trade and transportation, and contributed to the fertility of the surrounding lands.
  3. Natural Barriers: The Himalayas to the north and the Indian Ocean to the south acted as natural barriers, protecting India from invasions and fostering a degree of isolation that allowed for unique cultural and political developments.
  4. Mineral Resources: India’s rich deposits of minerals like copper, iron, and precious stones facilitated the growth of metallurgy, trade, and craftsmanship, contributing to economic prosperity and cultural advancement.
  5. Monsoon Winds: The seasonal monsoon winds, with their predictable patterns, were crucial for agriculture. Properly timed monsoons ensured bountiful harvests, while erratic monsoons could lead to famines and economic hardships.
  6. Trade Routes: Such as uttarapatha and dakshinapatha including the Silk Road, facilitated the exchange of goods, ideas, and cultural influences with other ancient civilizations.

India’s geography had a profound impact on its historical development, shaping its agriculture, culture, economy, and interactions with neighboring regions. These geographical factors, combined with human ingenuity, contributed to the rich tapestry of ancient Indian civilization.

2. What was the difference between Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore in their approach towards education and nationalism? (150 Words) 10 Marks

Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore were two prominent figures during India’s struggle for independence from British rule. While both of them were committed to the cause of nationalism, they had differing approaches towards education.

Gandhi believed in a practical approach towards education, where education should be aimed at developing skills that would help people in their daily lives. He emphasized the importance of education in rural areas and believed that education should be accessible to everyone, regardless of their social status.

On the other hand, Tagore believed in a more holistic approach towards education, where education should focus on developing a person’s creativity and imagination. He emphasized the importance of art and literature in education and believed that education should be a means of self-expression.

In terms of their approach towards nationalism, Gandhi believed in non-violent resistance and civil disobedience, while Tagore believed in the power of cultural exchange and cooperation between nations.

Overall, both Gandhi and Tagore had their unique perspectives on education and nationalism, and their contributions continue to inspire people today.

Accordion Item 3 Title3. Bring out the socio-economic effects of the introduction of railways in different countries of the world. (150 Words) 10 Marks

The introduction of railways brought about significant socio-economic effects in various countries around the world.

In Europe, railways facilitated the transportation of goods and people, leading to economic growth and urbanization. The railway industry created jobs and stimulated industrialization, as factories could now transport their products faster and more efficiently.

In India, the railway system played a crucial role in unifying the country and connecting remote regions. It also brought about social changes, as people could travel freely and experience different cultures. The railway industry in India created jobs and contributed to the country’s economic growth.

In the United States, railways contributed to the westward expansion and the growth of cities. The railway industry created thousands of jobs and stimulated the economy by transporting goods and people across the country.

However, the introduction of railways also had negative effects, such as the displacement of indigenous populations and the destruction of natural habitats. 

4. Discuss the consequences of climate change on the food security in tropical countries. (150 Words) 10 Marks

Climate change has far-reaching consequences, and one of the most significant impacts is on food security in tropical countries. The rising temperature, changes in rainfall patterns, and extreme weather events such as droughts and floods have made it difficult for farmers to grow crops and raise livestock. This has led to a decline in agricultural productivity, resulting in food shortages and increased food prices.

Tropical countries are especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change due to their high dependence on agriculture as a primary source of income and food. The lack of adequate resources, such as irrigation systems and infrastructure, further exacerbates the problem.

As a result of food insecurity, malnutrition rates have increased in many tropical countries, particularly among children and women. The situation is further complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has disrupted food supply chains, increased food prices, and worsened the economic situation in many countries.

To address the consequences of climate change on food security in tropical countries, there is a need for increased investment in climate-resilient agriculture, improved access to technology, and better infrastructure. Governments and international organizations must work together to support small-scale farmers and vulnerable communities to ensure food security for all.

5. Why is the world today confronted with a crisis of availability of and access to freshwater resources? (150 Words) 10 Marks

The crisis of availability and access to freshwater resources is a complex problem that has multiple causes. One of the primary reasons for this crisis is the growing global population, which has led to increased demand for freshwater resources for domestic, agricultural, and industrial purposes. Climate change is another significant factor that is exacerbating the crisis by altering precipitation patterns, causing droughts, and leading to the melting of glaciers and ice caps.

Moreover, poor water management practices, including over-extraction and contamination of water sources, are also contributing to the crisis. In many parts of the world, water resources are not being used sustainably, leading to depletion and degradation of freshwater ecosystems.

The crisis of freshwater availability and access has significant social, economic, and environmental implications. It affects the livelihoods of millions of people who depend on freshwater resources for their survival and contributes to poverty, food insecurity, and conflicts over water resources. Addressing this crisis requires a concerted effort from governments, civil society organizations, and the private sector to promote sustainable water management practices, protect freshwater ecosystems, and ensure equitable access to water resources for all.

6. How are the fjords formed? Why do they constitute some of the most picturesque areas of the world? (150 Words) 10 Marks

Fjords are narrow inlets of sea that are surrounded by steep cliffs and are found in areas where glaciers have eroded the land. These geological formations are found in many parts of the world, but some of the most famous fjords are located in Norway, New Zealand, and Alaska.

The formation of fjords starts with the movement of glaciers, which erode the surrounding mountains and valleys. As the glaciers move, they carve out deep valleys that are below sea level. When the glaciers melt, the sea fills up these valleys, creating the fjords that we see today.

Fjords are known for their picturesque beauty because of the dramatic and rugged landscape that surrounds them. The steep cliffs that rise up from the water and the calm, clear waters of the fjords make for a stunning contrast. Additionally, the fjords are home to a diverse range of wildlife, including seals, penguins, and whales.

Fjords are a natural wonder that continues to captivate and inspire people from all around the world. Their unique beauty and geological significance make them a must-see destination for anyone interested in the natural world.

7. Why is the South-West monsoon called ‘Purvaiya’ (easterly) in Bhojpur Region? How has this directional seasonal wind system influenced the cultural ethos of the region? (150 Words) 10 Marks

The South-West monsoon, also known as the Purvaiya or easterly wind, holds a significant place in the cultural ethos of the Bhojpur region. The locals believe that the Purvaiya brings with it the much-needed rain that is essential for the growth of crops and sustenance of life.

The Purvaiya has also influenced the local cuisine, as the arrival of the monsoon marks the beginning of the season for certain dishes like  litti was served with onions, aloo as well as tomato chokha. The people of Bhojpur eagerly await the arrival of the Purvaiya as it brings a sense of relief after the scorching summer heat.

In addition to its impact on agriculture and cuisine, the Purvaiya has also shaped the local traditions and festivals. Many festivals and rituals are tied to the arrival of the monsoon, and the celebration of these events is an important part of the cultural fabric of the region.

Purvaiya holds a special place in the hearts of the people of Bhojpur, not just for its practical significance but also for the cultural and emotional connections it has fostered over the years.

8. Do you think marriage as a sacrament in loosing its value in Modern India? (150 Words) 10 Marks

Marriage has long been considered a sacred and holy union in India, with deep cultural and religious significance. However, in recent years, there has been much debate about whether marriage as a sacrament is losing its value in modern India.

On one hand, there is evidence to suggest that the institution of marriage is becoming less important in the eyes of many young Indians. With more women entering the workforce and greater social acceptance of non-traditional lifestyles, many are choosing to delay marriage or forego it altogether. Additionally, divorce rates have been on the rise, further eroding the perception of marriage as a lifelong commitment.

On the other hand, there are those who argue that marriage in India is still held in high regard, even as societal norms shift. They point to the continued importance of arranged marriages in many communities, as well as the ongoing popularity of traditional wedding ceremonies and rituals.

Ultimately, whether or not marriage as a sacrament is losing its value in modern India is a matter of perspective. While some may view changing attitudes towards marriage as a sign of societal progress, others may see it as a threat to long-held cultural values. Regardless, it is clear that the institution of marriage will continue to be a topic of discussion and debate in India for years to come.

10. Child cuddling is now being replaced by mobile phones. Discuss its impact on the socialization of children. (150 Words) 10 Marks

In today’s age of technology, it is not uncommon to see children spending more time on their mobile phones than engaging in physical activities or socializing with their peers. As a result, the traditional act of child cuddling is slowly being replaced by digital devices. While mobile phones can provide a variety of benefits such as entertainment and educational resources, their overuse can have a detrimental impact on a child’s socialization.

Excessive use of mobile phones can lead to a lack of face-to-face communication skills, which are crucial for developing socialization skills. Children who spend more time on their phones may miss out on important social interactions, such as playing with peers or engaging in group activities. This can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness, which can have long-term impacts on a child’s mental and emotional development.

Furthermore, the overuse of mobile phones can lead to addiction, which can have negative effects on a child’s physical and mental health. It is important for parents to monitor their child’s phone usage and encourage them to engage in physical activities and socializing with peers. By doing so, children can develop important social skills and lead a healthy and balanced lifestyle.

11. What are the main features of Vedic society and religion? Do you think some of the features are still prevailing in Indian society? (250 Words) 15 Marks

Vedic society was characterized by a complex social hierarchy, with the Brahmins (priests) at the top and the Shudras (laborers) at the bottom. The society was based on the principles of Varna and Ashrama, where individuals were categorized into four Varnas (castes) based on their occupation and duties, and four Ashramas (stages of life) based on their age and responsibilities.

Religion played a significant role in Vedic society, with the worship of multiple gods and goddesses, sacrifices, and rituals being an integral part of daily life. The Vedas, the holy scriptures of Hinduism, were the primary source of religious and social norms in Vedic society.

Despite the changes that have taken place in Indian society over the centuries, some of the features of Vedic society and religion are still prevalent today. The caste system, although officially abolished, still plays a significant role in Indian society, particularly in rural areas. The practice of arranged marriages, which was prevalent in Vedic society, is still widespread in India.

Similarly, the worship of multiple gods and goddesses, as well as the performance of various rituals and ceremonies, continue to be an essential aspect of Hinduism. However, there have also been significant changes in Indian society, with the rise of modern education, technology, and globalization leading to a shift in values and beliefs.

Vedic society and religion were characterized by a complex social hierarchy and a strong emphasis on religious practices and rituals. While some of these features are still prevalent in Indian society today, there have also been significant changes over time.

12. What were the major technological changes introduced during the Sultanate period? How did those technological changes influence the Indian society? (250 Words) 15 Marks

During the Sultanate period, there were several significant technological advancements that influenced Indian society. One of the most notable changes was the introduction of the Persian wheel, which allowed for irrigation and cultivation in arid regions. This led to increased agricultural production and economic growth.

Another significant technological advancement was the use of gunpowder in warfare. This led to changes in military tactics and a shift towards centralized power, as rulers who possessed the technology had a distinct advantage over their enemies.

The Sultanate period also saw the introduction of paper-making technology, which allowed for the creation of books and written records. This led to an increase in literacy and the spread of knowledge throughout society.

The use of Arabic and Persian as official languages also brought about changes in literature, architecture, and art. Persian literature and poetry became popular, and Persian architectural styles were adopted in the construction of several monuments and buildings.

Overall, the technological advancements during the Sultanate period had a significant impact on Indian society. They led to changes in agriculture, warfare, education, and culture, which helped shape the country’s development and progress.

13. How did the colonial rule affect the tribals in India and what was the tribal response to the colonial oppression? (250 Words) 15 Marks

The colonial rule in India had a significant impact on the tribal communities. The British colonial authorities viewed the tribal people as primitive and backward, and sought to assimilate them into mainstream society. This led to the displacement of many tribal communities from their traditional lands, loss of livelihoods, and cultural erosion.

The colonial government also introduced laws and policies which greatly affected the tribals. The Forest Acts of 1865 and 1878, for instance, led to the alienation of tribal lands and resources. The introduction of the zamindari system also resulted in the loss of land and other resources for the tribal people.

Despite these challenges, the tribals did not remain passive in the face of colonial oppression. They mounted various forms of resistance, including armed uprisings, non-cooperation movements, and protests. The Santhal Rebellion of 1855-56, for instance, was a major uprising by the Santhal tribe against British rule.

The tribal response to colonial oppression also included the revival of traditional practices and cultural expressions. This was an attempt to resist the cultural erosion and assimilation imposed by the colonial authorities.

The impact of colonial rule on the tribals in India was significant and far-reaching. However, the tribal communities were not passive victims of this oppression, but rather actively resisted and adapted to the changing circumstances.

14. Comment on the resource potentials of the long coastline of India and highlight the status of natural hazard preparedness in these areas. (250 Words) 15 Marks

India boasts one of the longest coastlines in the world, stretching over 7,500 kilometers. This vast coastline is home to a wealth of natural resources including fisheries, minerals, and tourism. However, along with these valuable resources comes the potential for natural hazards such as cyclones, tsunamis, and floods.

Despite the potential for natural disasters, the preparedness of these coastal areas varies greatly. Some regions have taken steps to prepare for such events with early warning systems, evacuation plans, and disaster management strategies in place. However, other areas are still lacking in these essential preparations.

In recent years, India has made significant progress in increasing disaster preparedness along its coastline. For instance, the National Cyclone Risk Mitigation Project was launched in 2016 to improve early warning systems and strengthen cyclone shelters. Additionally, the National Disaster Management Authority has been working to create awareness among coastal communities and provide them with necessary training and resources.

Despite these efforts, much work remains to be done to ensure the safety of coastal communities in the face of natural disasters. Continued investment in disaster preparedness and risk reduction strategies is essential to protect the valuable resources and livelihoods of those living along India’s long coastline.

15. Identify and discuss the factors responsible for diversity of natural vegetation in India. Assess the significance of wildlife sanctuaries in rain forests regions of India. (250 Words) 15 Marks

India is known for its diverse natural vegetation, which is a result of various factors. The country’s varied topography, ranging from high mountains to low-lying coastal areas, plays a crucial role in determining the types of vegetation that grow in different regions. Additionally, India’s tropical and subtropical climate creates a conducive environment for a wide variety of flora and fauna.

Several other factors also contribute to the diversity of natural vegetation in India. These include soil type, rainfall patterns, and human activities such as deforestation and urbanization. The distribution of vegetation in India can be broadly classified into tropical rainforests, tropical deciduous forests, thorn forests, and alpine forests.

Wildlife sanctuaries play a crucial role in the conservation of India’s natural resources, particularly in the rainforest regions. These protected areas provide a safe haven for endangered species and help maintain the delicate balance of the ecosystem. Moreover, they serve as a vital source of income for local communities through eco-tourism, providing a sustainable way of preserving the natural environment.

In conclusion, the diversity of natural vegetation in India is a result of various factors, including topography, climate, soil type, and human activities. Wildlife sanctuaries in the rainforest regions of India are essential for the conservation of endangered species and the preservation of the ecosystem. Their significance cannot be overstated, and it is imperative that we continue to invest in their conservation for the benefit of future generations.

16. Why did human development fail to keep pace with economic development in India? (250 Words) 15 Marks

Human development refers to the improvement of human well-being through the provision of education, healthcare, and other basic necessities. Economic development, on the other hand, refers to the growth of the economy as a whole. While India has made significant strides in economic development over the past few decades, its progress in human development has been slower.

One reason for this is the country’s high levels of inequality. Despite economic growth, many people in India still live in poverty and lack access to basic necessities such as clean water and healthcare. This has contributed to a lack of progress in human development indicators such as life expectancy, literacy rates, and access to education.

Another factor is the country’s focus on economic growth at the expense of social welfare. Policies such as deregulation and privatization have led to economic growth, but they have also had negative impacts on human development. For example, privatization of healthcare has made it more expensive and less accessible to many people, while deregulation of labor laws has led to low wages and poor working conditions for many workers.

Additionally, the country’s caste system has contributed to disparities in human development outcomes. People from lower castes often face discrimination in access to education, healthcare, and other basic services, which has led to persistent inequalities in human development indicators.

To address these issues, India needs to prioritize human development alongside economic growth. This could involve policies such as increased investment in education and healthcare, as well as targeted efforts to reduce inequality and discrimination. By doing so, the country can ensure that economic growth benefits all of its citizens and leads to improved human well-being.

17. From being net food importer in 1960s, India has emerged as a net food exporter to the world. Provide reasons. (250 Words) 15 Marks

India’s journey from being a net food importer to a net food exporter is a remarkable achievement. There are several reasons behind this transformation.

Firstly, India has made significant progress in the field of agriculture. The Green Revolution of the 1960s played a crucial role in boosting agricultural productivity. The introduction of high-yielding variety (HYV) seeds, modern irrigation techniques, and fertilizers led to a significant increase in crop yields. Moreover, the government’s emphasis on research and development in agriculture has resulted in the creation of new varieties of crops that are better suited to Indian soil and climatic conditions.

Secondly, the government has implemented several policies to support farmers and promote agriculture. The Minimum Support Price (MSP) scheme ensures that farmers get a fair price for their produce. The government also provides subsidies for fertilizers, seeds, and irrigation. Additionally, the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) provides insurance cover to farmers in case of crop failure.

Thirdly, India’s large population provides a ready market for agricultural produce. The growing middle class has increased demand for food items such as fruits, vegetables, and dairy products. Moreover, India’s strategic location makes it an ideal hub for exporting agricultural produce to neighbouring countries.

Lastly, the Indian government has taken several steps to boost agricultural exports. The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) provides support to farmers and exporters in the form of subsidies, training, and marketing assistance. The government has also signed several free trade agreements (FTAs) with other countries, which have opened up new markets for Indian agricultural products.

In conclusion, India’s progress in agriculture, government policies, large population, and government initiatives to promote exports have all contributed to its transformation from a net food importer to a net food exporter.

18. Does urbanization lead to more segregation and/or marginalization of the poor in Indian metropolises? (250 Words) 15 Marks

Urbanization has been a significant trend in India over the past few decades, with many people moving from rural areas to cities in search of better economic opportunities. While this has led to economic growth and development in urban areas, it has also resulted in the marginalization and segregation of the poor.

In Indian metropolises, the poor often struggle to find affordable housing and access to basic amenities such as clean water, healthcare, and education. This has resulted in the formation of slums and informal settlements, where the poor are forced to live in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. These areas are often located on the outskirts of the city and lack proper infrastructure and services.

Moreover, urbanization has also led to the displacement of the poor from their traditional homes and livelihoods. Many urban development projects, such as the construction of highways, malls, and high-rise buildings, have resulted in the forced eviction of the poor from their homes and businesses.

Urbanization has led to the marginalization and segregation of the poor in Indian metropolises. This is a major challenge that needs to be addressed in order to ensure that the benefits of urbanization are shared by all members of society. Policymakers need to focus on creating affordable housing, improving access to basic services, and protecting the rights of the poor. Only then can we build truly inclusive and sustainable cities in India.

19. Why is caste identity in India both fluid and static? (250 Words) 15 Marks

The caste system in India has been present for centuries and has greatly influenced the social structure of the country. While caste identity is often seen as rigid and unchanging, it is also a fluid concept that can vary depending on various factors.

One reason for the fluidity of caste identity is the influence of modernization and urbanization. As India has become more urbanized, people have been exposed to different cultures and ways of life. This exposure has led to a breakdown of traditional caste barriers and an increase in inter-caste marriages, which has created a more fluid caste system.

On the other hand, caste identity can also be static in certain situations. For example, in rural areas where people are more closely tied to their traditional way of life, caste identity can be a defining factor in people’s lives. Additionally, the influence of politics and the reservation system has also reinforced the importance of caste identity in certain contexts.

Overall, the fluidity and static nature of caste identity in India are influenced by a variety of factors, including modernization, urbanization, tradition, and politics. While some may argue that the caste system is outdated and should be abolished, it remains an important aspect of Indian society that cannot be easily ignored or swept away.

20. Discuss the impact of post-liberal economy on ethnic identity and communalism. (250 Words) 15 Marks

The post-liberal economy has had a significant impact on ethnic identity and communalism. With the rise of globalization and the increasing influence of multinational corporations, many traditional industries and ways of life have been disrupted. This has led to a sense of displacement and loss of identity for many ethnic communities.

On the other hand, the post-liberal economy has also created opportunities for some ethnic groups to thrive. For example, the rise of the global fashion industry has allowed for the promotion of traditional textiles and designs from various ethnic communities. This has not only provided economic opportunities but has also helped to preserve and promote cultural heritage.

However, the post-liberal economy has also led to increased communalism and polarization in some societies. Economic disparities between different ethnic groups have widened, leading to resentment and mistrust. This has been exacerbated by the rise of populist movements that exploit people’s fears and insecurities.

The impact of the post-liberal economy on ethnic identity and communalism is complex and multifaceted. While it has provided opportunities for some, it has also created challenges for others. It is important for policymakers to consider the needs and perspectives of all communities in order to create a more inclusive and equitable economy.