CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi

Time allowed : 3 hours
Maximum marks: 80

General Instructions:

  • Answer all the questions. Some questions have internal choice. Marks are indicated against each question.
  • Answer to questions no. 1 to 3 carrying 2 marks should not exceed 30 words each.
  • Answer to questions no. 4 to 9 carrying 4 marks should not exceed 100 words each.
  • Answer to questions no. 10 to 12 carrying 8 marks should not exceed 350 words each.
  • Questions no. 13 to 15 are source based questions.
  • Question no. 16 is a Map question that includes identification and location of significant test items. Attach the map with the answer-book.

CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi Set – I

Part – A

Question 1.
Mention any two features of the administration system of the Mauryan Empire. [2]

  1. The Mauryan Empire had1 five major political centres. The capital Pataliputra and the provincial centres of Taxila, Ujjayaini, Tosali and Suvarnagiri.
  2. The adminstrative ‘control’ was very strong in regions around the capital and the provincial centres.

Question 2.
“By the eleventh century Sufism evolved into a well developed movement.” Give any two examples. [2]

  1. By the 11th century Sufism evolved into a well developed movement with a body of literature on Sufi practices and Quranic studies.
  2. The Sufis began to organise commuitifies around the hospice or Khanqah. It was controlled by shaikh, pir or murshid.

Question 3.
Why was the colonial government keen on mapping of Indian cities from the early years ? Give any two reasons. [2]

  1. The colonial government felt that maps were essential to understand the landscape and know the topography.
  2. This knowledge of mapping would allow better control over the region. The maps provided various important information.

Part – B

Question 4.
How did architectural features of Mohenjodaro indicate planning ? Support with suitable examples. [5]

  1. The most unique feature of the Harappan .civilization was the development of Urban centers. Harappan settlement is divided into two sections. Archaeologists designate these as the citadel and the lower town respectively.
  2. The settlement was first planned and then implemented as per the plan other signs of planning comprise bricks, which, whether sun-dried or baked, were of a standardised ratio. Such bricks were used at all Harappan settlements.
  3. One of the most distinctive features of Harappan cities was the carefully planned drainage system. Roads and streets were lid out along an used to be savior of British in earlier peasant and tribal revolts.
  4. There was a lot of Hindu-Muslim unity and British could not divide them despite many efforts approximate ‘grid’ pattern, intersecting at right angles.
  5. The Great Bath was a large rectangular tank in a courtyard surrounded by a planned corridor on all four sides. There were rooms on three sides. The uniqueness of the structure has led scholars to suggest that it was meant for some kind of special ritual bath.

Question 5.
Who composed the original story of Mahabharata in oral form ? Explain any four elements considered by the historians while analyzing the Mahabharata. [1 + 4 = 5]
There is no concrete proof about who was composer of original story of text of the Mahabharata. Historians speculate that the original story was composed by charioteerbards known as sutas who generally accompained Kshatriya warriors to the battlefield and composed poems celebrating their victories and other achievements. These compositions circulated orally.
The following elements are considered by historians :

  1. Language and content: They looked for what kind of language is used and when was it prevalent. E.g., Mahabharata is written in Prakrit language which was a language of common use.
  2. Search for convergence : Since Mahabharata mentions many forests, palaces and battles, historians look for these evidences. E.g., Kurukshetra war is supposed to happen in present day Kurukshetra and historians do the archaeological digging to ascertain this.
  3. They look for similarity between traditions depicted in Mahabharata and other texts of that time.
  4. Since Mahabharata was composed over a long period, the historians search for original contents and other inscriptional evidences such as inscription of chariot during war at many places.

Question 6.
“Buddha laid stress on right conduct and values.” In the light of the above message, explain his technique on life. [5]
According to Buddha, the world is transient (anicca) and constantly changing.

  1. It is also soulless (anatta) as there is nothing permanent or eternal in it. Within this transient world sorrow (dukkha) is intrinsic to human existence.
  2. The path of moderation between severe penance and self indulgence that human beings can rise above these worldly troubles. He advised kings and gahapatis to be humane and ethical. As Buddha regarded the social world as the creation of humans rather than of divine origin.
  3. The Buddha emphasized individual agency and righteous action as the means to escape from the cycle of rebirth and attain self-realisation and nibbana, literally the extinguishing of the ego and desire. According to Buddha, thus end the cycle of suffering for those who renounced the world.
  4. His last words to his followers were, “Be lamps into yourselves as all of you must work out your own liberation.”

Question 7.
“Domingo Paes has called the Mahanavami Dibba of Vijaynagar Empire as The House of Victory’.” Justify. [5]

  1. Some of the more distinctive structures in the area have been given names based on the form of the buildings as well as their functions. The “King’s palace” is the largest of enclosures.
  2. It has two of the most impressive platforms, usually called the “Audience Hall” and the “Mahanavami Dibba”.
  3. Domingo Paes called the “Audieryce Hall” and the “Mahanavami Dibba” the “House of victory”. The “Mahanavami Dibba” is situated on one of the highest points in the city and is a massive platform,
  4. Paes maintained that in this “House of Victory” the king has a room made of cloth. Where the idol has a shrine and in the middle is placed a dais on which stands a throne of state.

Question 8.
Describe the life led by the forest dwellers during the Mughal era in 16th-17th centuries. [5]

  1. Forest dwellers were termed jangli in contemporary texts. However, the term jangli did not mean an absence of “civilisation”.
  2. The term used for those whose livelihood came from the hunting and shifting agriculture and gathering of forest produce. These activities were season specific.
  3. This sequence presumed and perpetuated mobility, which was a significant feature of tribes inhabiting these forests. On the other hand for the state, the ‘forest was a place’ of refuge (mawas) for trouble makers.
  4. For example, among the Bhils spring was reserved for collecting forest produce, summer for fishing, monsoon for cultivation, and winter and autumn for hunting.

Question 9.
Critically examine the policies adopted by the Britishers to control Paharias. [5]

  1. Intensely irritated colonial officials tried desperately to control and subdue the Paharias, but this task was very difficult. To control the Paharias the British embarked on a brutal policy of extermination in the 1770s.
  2. By the 1780s, Augustus Cleveland, the Collector of Bhagalpur suggested a policy of pacification.
  3. Paharias Chiefs were given a yearly allowance and made responsible for the proper conduct of pacification.
  4. They were expected to keep order in their areas and discipline their own people. Due to pacification campaigns, the Paharias withdrew deep into the mountains, separating themselves from hostile forces.

Question 10.
How did British dispossess Taluqdars of Awadh during 1857 ? Explain with examples. [5]

  1. The annexation of Awadh not only displaced the Nawab but also dispossessed the taluqdars of the region.
  2. In Pre-British times, taluqdars kept armed retainers, built forts and enjoyed sufficient autonomy as long as they accepted the suzerainty of the Nawab and paid the revenue of their taluq.
  3. The British did not want to tolerate the power of the taluqdars. The taluqdars of Awadh were disarmed and their forts smashed just after the annexation.
  4. The land revenue policy of the British further undermined the position and authority of the taluqdars. The summary settlement proceeded to remove the taluqdars. Data show that before the arrival of the British, taluqdars had held 67% of the total number of villages in Awadh, by the summary settlement this number had come down to 38%.

Part – C

Question 11.
(11.1) “The colonial cities provided new opportunities for women during the 19th century.” Give two examples.
(11.2) Explain any three values encouraged women for their empowerment. [5]

  1. Middle-class women sought to express themselves through the medium of journals, autobiographies and books.
  2. However, now they became more visible in public as they entered new professions in the city as domestic and factory workers, teachers and theatre and film actresses.


  1. After independence, women got equal rights in every walk of fife. Spread of education created awareness among women and they began to choose different professions.
  2. Social, economic, political and cultural awareness ‘ created a new favourable environment that generated
    new confidence and empowerment among women.
  3. Our rich culture and traditions of respecting women were revived by the freedom fighters and said that low status of women was not original culture. This gave a boost to empowerment of women.

Question 12.
Explain the role of Panchayats in the Mughal rural Indian society during 16th-17th centuries. [10]
Explain how Akbar maintained harmonious relations with different ethnic and religious communities.
The role of Panchayats in the Mughal rural Indian society during 16th-17th centuries:
(i) Structure : The village panchayats were an assembly of elders,.usually important people of the village with hereditary rights over their property. However, in mixed-caste villages the panchayats were usually a heterogeneous body. The panchayats were headed by a headman known as muquaddam or mandal. Headmen used to hold their respective offices as long as they enjoyed the confidence of the village elders, failing which they could be dismissed by them. The chief function of the headman was to supervise the preparation of village accounts, assisted by the accountant or patwari of the panchayat.

(ii) Collection of funds : The panchayat derived its funds form contributions made by individuals to a common financial pool. These funds were used for meeting the costs of entertaining revenue officials who visited the village from time to time. Expenses for community welfare activities such as tiding over natural calamities were also met from these funds. The funds were also deployed in construction of a bund or digging a canal which peasants usually could not afford to do on their own.

(iii) Regarding caste boundaries : One of the important functions of the panchayat was to ensure that caste boundaries among the various communities inhabiting the village were upheld. In eastern India all marriages were held in the presence of the mandal. The duty of the village headman was to observe the conduct of the members of village community so as to prevent any offence against their caste.

(iv) Authority to levy fines : The panchayats had the authority to levy fines and inflict more serious forms of punishment like expulsion from the community. These meant that the person was forced to leave the village and become an out caste and he lost the right to practise his profession. Such a measure was taken as a violation of caste norms.
Mughal chronicles present the empire during Akbar as comprising many different ethnic and religious communities—Hindus, Jainas, Zoroastrians and Muslims.

  1. As the source of all peace and stability the emperor stood above all religious and ethnic groups, mediated among them, and ensured that justice and peace prevailed.
  2. Abul Fazl describes the ideal of Sulh-i-Kul as the cornerstone of enlightened rule.
  3. In Sulh-i-Kul all religions and schools of thought had freedom of expression but on condition that they did not undermine the authority of the state or fight among themselves.
  4. The nobility under the Mughals was a composite one comprising Iranis, Turanis, Afghans, Rajputs, Deccanis — all of whom were given positions and awards purely on the basis of their service and loyalty to the king. Akbar abolished the tax on pilgrimage in 1563 and Jizya in 1564 as the two were based on religious discrimination.

Question 13.
“In the history of nationalism Gandhiji is often identified with the making of a nation.” Describe his role in the freedom struggle of India. [10]
Describe the harrowing experiences of ordinary people during the period of partition of India.
The period 1915-48 saw the emergence of Gandhi and his activities as a nationalist leader. Gandhi transformed the national movement by making it into a mass struggle. Under his leadership the freedom struggle acquired a multi-class umbrella character.
By taking up the cause of peasants at Champaran and Kheda, textile workers at Ahmedabad and later launching of the Khilafat Non-Cooperation Movement (1920), Civil Disobedience Movement (1930) and Quit India Movement (1942) Gandhi transformed the national movement. The national movement was no longer a movement limited to professionals and intellectuals but a movement representative of Indian people as a whole. Peasants, workers, artisans, tribals, women and students played an active role. The Non-Cooperation Movement was the hallmark of Hindu-Muslim unity.

Gandhian ideology played a key role in transformation. Satyagraha based on the concepts of truth, non-violence and passive resistance formed the basis of mass mobilisation and mass participation. The non-violent national struggle was based on the courage, strength self-confidence and self-sacrificing spirit of the masses. It enabled participation of mass people who could not have participated in a violent struggle example women. It was based on moral force and posed the best challenge to the mighty British rule, while defining Gandhian principle of means and ends.

The national struggle had a clear pragmatic dimension. It involved politics of press and compromise based on the strategy of struggle, truce, struggle. It had two facets. The was based on the strength of the masses. The 2nd facet was withdrawal marked by extensive constructive work, at the grass-root level.

Examples : Non-Cooperation Movement and ‘ Civil Disobedience Movement. Satyagraha involved peaceful violation of laws, courting arrest, marches, combined with readiness for negotiation and compromise. It represented a breakthrough for a, freedom struggle which had previously oscillated between moderate techniques of prayer and petition and individual, terrorism of the revolutionary terrorists. The national movement under Gandhi not only drew masses but also kept masses under strict control.

A significant parallel development of the national movement under Gandhi was Gandhian constructive programme which focused on community unity, removal of untouchability, peasant uplift, economic and social uplift, promotion of self-reliance through use of charkha to spin khadi and village industries. Moreover, the personal charisma and peasant appeal of Gandhi, played a significant role in transforming the national movement into a mass movement. The simple attire, (dhoti, speaking Hindi, spinning charkha, all ensured Gandhi did not stand apart from ordinary folk. For the poor, Gandhi was Mahatma, a saviour who would restore dignity, honour autonomy to their lives. Thus Gandhi’s arrival transformed the national movement into a non-violent struggle. However, it is important to understand that India’s freedom movement was historical process not an event led by a single individual.
Buried under the debris of the violence and pain of partition is the harrowing experience for ordinary people. Scholars have written about the experience of ordinary people mainly women in those violent times as follows :

  1. Resulted in forced transfer of an estimated 18 to 19 million people between the two countries. Thus, people of both sides displaced from their ancestral homes.
  2. The ensuring religious animosity and communal strife resulted in the deaths of some two million Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs of both countries.
  3. Many Muslim families of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh forced to migrate to Pakistan.
  4. At the time of partition mainly women suffered worse than death.
  5. Women were raped, abducted, sold often many times over.
  6. They were forced to settle down to a new life with strangers in unknown circumstances.
  7. Traumatised when some began to develop new family bonds in their changed circumstances they were torn away from their new bonding.
  8. Governments both Indian and Pakistani were insensitive to the feelings of women and complexities of human relationships. Believing them to be on the wrong side of the border, women were torn away from their new relatives. According to one estimate 30,000 women were recovered overall, 22,000 Muslim women in India and 8000 Hindu and Sikh women in Pakistan in an operation that ended as late as 1954.
  9. Dishonouring women of a community was seen as dishonouring the community itself and as a mode of revenge. For virility it was believed lay in the ability to protect your possession—zan (women) and zamin (land).
  10. Many women were killed under the notion of “saving honour of women.
  11. Women were not allowed to voice their opinion.
  12. Fear that their women would be violated, drove many to force their women to commit suicide.

Part – D

Question 14.
Read the following extracts carefully and answer the questions that follows : Samudragupta In praise of Samudragupta
This is an excerpt from the Prayaga Prashasti :
He was without an antagonist on earth; he, by the overflowing of the multitude of (his) many good qualities adorned by hundreds of good actions, has wiped off the fame of other kings with the soles of (his) feet; (he is) Purusha (the Supreme Being), being the cause of the prosperity of the good and the destruction of the bad (he is) incomprehensible; (he is) one whose tender heart can be captured only by devotion and humility; (he is) possessed of compassion; (he is) the giver of many hundred- thousands of cows; (his) mind has received ceremonial initiation for the uplift of the miserable,, the poor, the forlorn and the suffering; (he is) resplendent and embodied kindness to mankind;, (he is) equal to (the-gods) Kubera (the god of wealth), Varuna (the god of the ocqan), Indra (the god of rains) and Yama (the god of death)…
(14.1) Who wrote the above Prashasti ? State the importance of Prashasti. [3]
(14.2) Mention any three qualities of the ruler described in the excerpt. [3]
(14.3) How far are these values, shown by the rulers, relevant in the contemporary society ? Explain. [2]
Why kinfolk quarreled
This is an excerpt from the Adi Parvan (literally, the first section) of the Sanskrit Mahabharata, describing why conflicts arose amongst the Kauravas and Pandavas : The Kauravas were the … sons of Dhritarashtra, and the Pandavas … were their cousins. Since Dhritarashtra was blind, his younger brother Pandu ascended the throne of Hastinapura, … However, after the premature death of Pandu, Dhritarashtra became king, as the royal princes were still very young. As the princes grew up together, the citizens of Hastinapura began to express their preference for the Pandavas, for they were more capable and virtuous than the Kauravas. This made Duryodhana, the eldest of the Kauravas, jealous. He approached his father and said; “You yourself did not receive the throne, although it fell to you, because of your defect. If the Pandava receives the patrimony from Pandu, his son will surely inherit it in turn, and so will his son, and his. We ourselves with our sons shall be excluded from the royal succession and become of slight regard in the eyes of the world, lord of the earth !”
(14.1) Explain about the worries of Duryodhana that he expressed to his father. [3]
(14.2) Mention the criteria for becoming king as suggested in the excerpt. [3]
(14.3) Why did the citizens of Hastinapur express their preference for the Pandavas ? [2]
(14.1) The Prayaga Prashasti (also known as the “Allahabad Pillar Inscription”) was composed in Sanskrit by Harishena.
This Prashasti said that Samudragupta was without an antagonist on earth and was adorned by hundreds .of good actions.

  1. The ruler should be powerful with plethora of good qualities.
  2. The ruler should bring prosperity.
  3. The ruler should have compassion and should try for the uplift of the miserable, the poor and the forlorn.


  1. The values shown in the above mentioned passage are relevant in the contemporary society to a great extent. The rulers ought to have positive attitude for the welfare of his countrymen.
  2. He should try incessantly to bring prosperity and equality in all walks of life.

(14.1) Duryodhana was worried that people of Hastinapur were showing preference for Pandavas as rightful kings. He was concerned that in such case, sons of Pandavas and then their sons will inherit the throne of Hastinapur and the Kauravas will be forgotten by the world and there will be less respect for them.
(14.2) The excerpt suggested that the criteria for becoming the king was mostly hereditary and patrilineal that is, the son would inherit the throne from his father and then his son would inherit from him and so on.
(14.3) People of Hastinapur expressed preference for Pandavas because Pandavas were deemed to be more capable and virtuous than Kauravas by the people. Also, people thought Pandavas were rightful heir of the throne after Pandu’s death.

Question 15.
Here is an excerpt from Ibn Battuta’s account of Delhi, often spelt as Delhi in texts of the period :
The city of Dehli covers a wide area and has a large population … The rampart round the city is without parallel. The breadth of its wall is eleven cubits; and inside it are houses for the night sentry and gatekeepers. Inside the ramparts, there are store-houses for storing edibles, magazines, ammunition, ballistas and siege machines. The grains that are stored (in these ramparts) can last for a long time, without rotting … In the interior of the rampart, horseman as well as infantrymen move from one end of the city to another.
CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi 1
The rampart is pierced through by windows which open on the side of the city and it is through these windows that light enters inside. The lower part of the rampart is built of stone; the upper part of bricks. It has many towers close to one another. There are twenty eight gates in this city which are called darwaza, and of these, the Budaun darwaza is the greatest; inside the Mandwi darwaza there is a grain market; adjacent to the Gul darwaza there is an orchard … It (the city of Delhi) lias a fine cemetery in which graves have domes over them, and those that do not have a dome, have an arch, for sure. In the cemetery they sow flowers such as tuberose, jasmine, wild rose, etc., and flowers blossom there in all seasons.
CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi 2
(15.1) Why has Ibn Battuta described Delhi as a vast city ? [3]
(15.2) Mention the measures taken to protect Delhi from the invasion during 14th century. [3]
(15.3) Why was Ibn Battuta impressed with the architectural features of the city ? Explain. [2]
King and Traders
Krishnadeva Raya (ruled 1509-29), the most famous ruler of Vijaynagar, composed a work on statecraft in Telugu known as the Amuktamalyada. About traders he wrote : A king should improve the harbours of his country and so encourage its commerce that horses, elephants, precious gems, sandalwood, pearls and other articles are freely imported … He should arrange that the foreign sailors who land in his country on account of storms, illness and exhaustion are looked after in a suitable manner. … Make the merchants of distant foreign countries who import elephants and good horses be attached to yourself by providing them with daily audience, presents and allowing decent profits. Then those articles will never go to your enemies.
(15.1) Explain the responsibilities of king mentioned by Krishnadeva Raya. [3]
(15.2) In what ways had Krishnadeva Raya protected articles from going to his enemies ? [3]
(15.3) Explain the measures taken by the king to improve the conditions of his country. [2]
(15.1) Ibn Battuta has described Delhi as vast city because of its area and population. There were 28 gates around the city rampart and there are innumerable granaries to store grains etc. The rampart is wide and even infantry can walk on these ramparts. The city is spacious and infantry walks form one end to another. There are markets in the city. Therefore, he sees that the city of Delhi is a vast city.

(15.2) During the 14th century Delhi faced threat from western sides such as Afghanistan, Persia etc. Therefore, vast ramparts were built around the city with strong gates. The wall was made of stones at the bottom so that it is strong. Also there was use of efficient postal system which facilitated the Sultan to get timely information from the spies.

(15.3) Ibn Battuta was impressed by the architectural grandeur of Delhi. He had travelled extensively but nowhere did he find such architectural features such as domes and arches on cemetery The gates of wall were huge and string such as Buland Darwaza. The warehouses for storing the grains were made with such techniques so that there is enough air to keep them fresn yet moisture could not enter these and thus grains were stored for long without rotting. Thus, he was astonished by the rich architecture of Delhi.

  1. A king should improve the harbours of his country.
  2. He should encourage commerce and horses elephants, precious gems, sandalwood, pearls and other articles should also be freely imported.
  3. He should also arrange that the foreign sailors who had to land in his country on account of storms, illness and exhaustion were looked after in a proper manner.


  1. He made the merchants of distant foreign countries who imported elephants and good horses be attached by providing them with daily audience,
  2. He gave precious presents to the merchants and made extensive arrangements so that they could get decent profits.


  1. The king should protect borders from his enemies.
  2. He should take all necessary steps to improve economic condition of his countrymen.

Question 16.
Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions that follow :
A Newspaper Report
The following report, titled ‘The ryot and the moneylender’, appeared in the Native Opinion (6 June, 1876), and was quoted in Report of the Native Newspapers of Bombay:
They (the ryots) first place spies on the boundaries of their villages to see if any Government officers come, and to give timely intimation of their arrival to the offenders. They then assemble in a body and go to the houses of their creditors, and demand from them a surrender of their bonds and other documents, and threaten them in case of refusal with assault and plunder. If any Government officer happens to approach the villages where the above is taking place, the spies give intimation to the offenders and the latter disperse in time.
(16.1) Describe how ryots took control over the moneylenders ? [3]
(16.2) Explain the measures taken by the ryots to save themselves. [3]
(16.3) Explain why ryots resorted to robbing the moneylenders. [2]
OR ”
‘We are not just going to copy’
We say that it is our firm and solemn resolve to have an independent sovereign republic. India is bound to be sovereign, it is bound to be independent and it is bound to be a republic … Now, some friends have raised the question : “Why have you not put in the word ‘democratic’ here ?” Well, I told them that it is conceivable, of course, that a republic may not be democratic but the whole of our past is witness to this fact that we stand for democratic institutions. Obviously we are aiming at democracy and nothing less than a democracy. What form of democracy, what shape it might take is another matter. The democracies of the present day, many of them in Europe and elsewhere, have played a great part in the world’s progress. Yet, it may be doubtful if those democracies may not have to change their, shape somewhat before long if they have to remain completely democratic. We are not going just to. copy, I hope, a certain democratic procedure or an institution of a so called democratic country. We may improve upon it. In any event whatever system of government we may establish here must fit in with the temper of our people and be acceptable to them. We stand for democracy. It will be for this House to determine what shape to give to that democracy, the fullest democracy, I hope. The house will notice that in this resolution, although we have not used the word “democratic” because we thought it is obvious that the word “republic” contains that word and we did not want to use unnecessary words and redundant words, but we have done something much more than using the word. We have given the content of democracy in this resolution and not only the content of democracy but the content, if, I may say so, of economic democracy in this resolution. Others might take objection to this resolution on the ground that we have not said that it should be a socialist state. Well, I stand for socialism and, I hope, India will stand for Socialism and that India will go towards the constitution of a socialist State and I do believe that the whole world will have to go that way.
– Constituent Assembly Debates (Cad), Vol. I
(16.1) Explain why Nehru did not mention the word democratic in the resolution.
(16.2) Mention the three basic features of the Constitution given in the above passage.
(16.3) On what kind of socialism did Nehru give stress to ?
(16.1) The ryots used to take control over moneylenders by their numerical strength. Since ryots were large in number, they used to assemble in large number and demand the moneylenders to surrender the bonds and threatened them of assault and plunder.

(16.2.) The ryots had their spies deputed at the outskirts of village who would inform the ryots of arrival of any British officials.
In case the officials were to approach the place where the agitation against moneylenders was taking place, the spies would inform them before hand and the ryots disperse before the coming of officials.

(16.3) Ryots resorted to robbing the moneylenders because ryots were under extreme pressure of paying the rents even though the prices of cotton was very low. The ryots could hardly manage and they used to borrow from moneylenders but now seeing the incapaicity of ryots to pay back, moneylenders refused to lend them. And even if they lent, the moneylenders charged high interest rates and indulged in fraudulent practices.
(16.1) Nehruji made it clear, “the whole of our past is witness to this fact that we stand for democratic institutions. Obviously, we are aiming at democracy and nothing less than democracy.”

  1. The Constitution should have democratic principles.
  2. It should be written and unambiguous.
  3. The Constitution should give equal rights to all the citizens without any discrimination.


  1. Nehruji was an ardent supporter of democratic socialism.
  2. He wanted economic democracy.
  3. He opined that India would go towards the Constitution of a socialist India.

Part – E

Question 17.
(17.1) On the political outline map of India, locate and label the following : [2]
(a) Dholavira
(b) Lumbini
(17.2) On the same outline map of India three places related to the Indian National Movement have been marked as 1, 2 and 3. Identify them and write their correct names on the lines drawn near them.
CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi 3
(17.1) In the above outline map of India Dholavira and Lumbini are located as ‘a’ and b’ and lebel.

(17.2) (1) Amritsar
(2) Surat (Dandi)
(3) Muzzafarpur (Champaran).
CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi 4

CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi Set – II

Note : Except for the following questions, all the remaining questions have been asked in previous set.

Part – A

Question 1.
Why were Britishers keen to create the familiar landscape in Bombay ? Give two reasons. [2]
British were keen to make familiar landscape of Bombay because of the following two reasons

  1. They wanted to make European style buildings so that they can feel home in the colony.
  2. The British felt that European styles would best symbolise their superioritv, authority and power.

Question 2.
Who initiated Kabir into Bhakti ? Mention his concept of Ultimate Reality. [2]
He was initiated into bhakti by a guru, Ramananda.
Ultimate Reality is that which is the primal cause of the existence of the universe and all beings. He says that we think of that reality as the God and have different names but we know that God is beyond forms and attributes that we can ascribe to Him.

Part – B

Question 4.
Explain why we call Mahabharata a ‘Dynamic Text’. [5]
We call Mahabharata as dynamic text because of the following reasons :

  1. The growth of the Mahabharata did not stop with the Sanskrit version.
  2. Over the centuries, versions of the epic were written in a variety of languages through an ongoing process of dialogue between peoples, communities, and those who wrote the texts.
  3. Several stories that originated in specific regions or circulated amongst certain people found their way into the epic.
  4. The central story of the epic was often retold in different ways.
  5. Episodes were depicted in sculpture and painting. They also provided themes for a wide range of performing arts—plays, dance and other kinds of narrations.

Question 6.
Describe the different arguments given by the archaeologists over the central authority of Harappa. [5]

  1. Some archaeologists are of the opinion that Harappan society had no rulers and that every body enjoyed equal status.
  2. Others feel there was no single ruler but several, that Mohenjodaro had a separate ruler, Harappa another and so forth.
  3. Yet others argue that there was a single state, given the similarity in artifacts, the evidence for planned settlement, the standardized ratio of brick size and the establishments near sources of raw material.
  4. Of all, the last theory seems the most plausible as it is unlikely that entire communities could have collectively made and implemented such complex decisions.

Question 8.
“Domingo Paes and Abdur Razzaq were highly impressed with the fortification of Vijaynagar Empire.” Justify the statement. [5]
Domingo Paes and Abdur Razzaq were highly impressed with the fortification of Vijaynagar empire as is evident from their descriptions of the fortifications.
According to Abdur, the important feature of the Vijaynagar fortification was its incorporation of the agricultural tracts, because the rulers were well prepared to face the sieges and its consequences.

A second line of fortification went around the inner core of the urban complex and a third line surrounded the royal centre, within which each set of major building was surrounded by its own high walls. The fort was entered through well-guarded gates leading to the major roads. Gateways were with defined architectural features.

The arch on the gateway leading into the fortified settlement as well as the dome over the gate is regarded as typical features of the architecture introduced by the Turkish Sultans.

Paes observed that from the outer wall of fort till the palace there were lots of fields of rice and there was a good irrigation system where water came from two lakes.

Question 9.
Explain how did the rebel leaders propagate their ideas and persuade people to join the revolt of 1857. [5]
Since most of the rebels were sepoys and other leaders who were illiterate so it is difficult to know what the rebels thought but they used different techniques to propagate their ideas.

  1. They issued proclamations and ishtahars (notifications) to propagate their ideas.
  2. They also resorted to prophecy so that people can get involved in hope of early freedom. E.g. the prophecy that British rule will come to end on 100 years of Battle of Plassey of 1857.
  3. The rebels tried to unify Hindus and Muslims and propagated that rebellion is a war in which both Hindus and Muslims had equally to lose or gain.
  4. The ishtahar sharked back to the pre-British Hindu-Muslim past and glorified the coexistence of different communities under the Mughal Empire.
  5. They also used techniques like secret propagation through under-ground workers. For E.g., Distribution of chapatis and lotus flowers as a symbol of revolt.

CBSE Previous Year Question Papers Class 12 History 2014 Delhi Set – III

Note : Except for the following questions, all the remaining questions have been asked in previous set.

Part – A

Question 1.
State any two limitations of inscriptional evidences. [2]
Inscriptional evidences have been used extensively to know about past through digged out text-books, pillars, structures etc. But there are some limitations to what epigraphy can reveal.

  1. Technical limitations such as letters are very faintly engraved, and thus reconstructions are uncertain. Also, inscriptions may be damaged or letters missing.
  2. It is always not easy to be sure about the exact meaning of the words used in inscriptions, some of which may be specific to a particular place or time.

Question 3.
Who was the preceptor of Mirabai ? Mention any one principle of her philosophy. [2]
Guru Raidas, a low caste leather worker was the preceptor of Mirabai.
One main principle of her philosophy was that one should abandon the comforts of life and devote fully to her God for attainment of peace and salvation.

Part – B

Question 4.
Examine the problems faced by archaeologists in the interpretation of religious practices of ‘ Harappa. [5]
The problems of archaeological interpretation of religious practices are as follows :

  1. Early archaeologists thought that certain objects which seemed unusual or unfamiliar may have had a religious significance. These included terracotta figurines of women, heavily jewelled, some with elaborate head-dresses. These were regarded as mother goddesses. Also structures have been assigned ritual significance such as the Great Bath ‘ and fire altars found at Kalibangan and Lothal.
  2. Archaeologists have examined seals, some of which seem to depict ritual scenes.
  3. Seals with plant motifs, are thought to indicate nature worship.
  4. In some seals, a figure shown seated cross-legged in a yogic posture, sometimes surrounded by animals, has been regarded as a depiction of proto-Shiva,
  5. Conical stone objects have been classified as lingas.
  6. Since archaeologists often move from the known to the unknown. While this is plausible in the case of stone querns and pots, it becomes more speculative when we extend it to religious symbols.
    For e.g., The proto-Shiva seals, there are conflicting interpretations in Rigveda about Shiva and Rudra.

Question 5.
Who were categorised as untouchables ? Describe the duties prescribed for them in Manusmriti r and Shastras. [5]
Shastras define four-varna system i.e.,
Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras. There ‘ was a fifth category who were considered lowly and outside the Varna system. These were treated as untouchables by all other four varnas. The duties are as follows :

  1. Manusmriti was written between 200 BCE to 200 CE. It was the oldest among Smritis. It has laid certain duties for each section of society which was f supposed to be followed by them. These rules were very harsh on chandals.
  2. These were supposed to five outside the town. Normally their entry was restricted to the town.
  3. They were regarded as untouchables. Their appearance in public lift was considered inauspicious.
  4. They were forced to live a life of seclusion. They had to live outside the village and used discarded utensils. They had to wear clothes of the dead and ornaments of iron.

Question 8.
Explain the importance of the sacred centres of Vijaynagar with special emphasis on Gopurams and Mandapas. [5]
The temples and other structural forms such as canals were sacred places in Vijaynagar empire. The temples such as Virupaksha and Vittala temples had large gopurams and mandaps. Mandaps were used for various social and religious purposes. Virupaksha Temple is dedicated to Lord Virupaksha, the guardians diety of the Kingdom, also recognised as a form of Shiva. The hall in front of the main shrine was built by Krishnadeva Raya to mark his accession. This was decorated with delicately carved pillars. He is also credited with the construction of the eastern gopuram. The additions meant that the central shrine came to occupy a relatively small part of the complex.

The Mandaps in the temple were used for a variety of purposes. In some places the images of gods were placed to witness special programmes of music, dance, drama, etc. Others were used to celebrate the marriages of deities, and some other were meant for the deities to swing in special images, distinct from those kept in the small central shrine, were used on these occassions.

Vittala temple too has several halls and a unique shrine disigned as chariot. A characteristic feature of the temple complexes is the chariot streets that extended from the temple gopuram in a straight line. These streets were paved with stone slabs and lined with pillared pavilions in which merchants set up their shops.

Question 9.
“The relationship of the Indian sepoys with their superior white officers underwent a significant change in 1840s and 1850s.” Explain. [5]

  1. Certainly, the relationship of the sepoys with their superior white officers underwent a significant change in the years preceding the uprising of 1857.
  2. In the 1820s, white officers made it a point to keep cordial relations with the sepoys. They would participate in their leisure activities—they wrestled with them, fenced with them and went out hawking with them.
  3. Several white officers could speak and understand Hindustani language fluently. They were also familiar with the local customs and culture.
  4. In the 1840s, this fabric of friendly relationship began to change very fast. The white officers the sepoys as their racial inferiors, riding roughshod over their sensibilities.
  5. Abuse and physical violence became common. In this way, the distance between sepoys and officers became wider. Trust was replaced by doubt. The event of the greased cartridges was a classic example of this increasing suspicion.

CBSE Previous Year Question Papers