NIOS Political Science 317 Solved Paper’ October 2017, NIOS Senior Secondary Solved Papers

NIOS Political Science 317 Solved Paper’ October 2017

NIOS Senior Secondary Solved Papers

1. What does practical politics imply?                    2

Ans. Practical politics

a) matter for concrete action as distinguished from theoretical discussion.

b) Political intrigue, scheming, or action involving dishonourable or dishonest dealings.

2. Explain the Marxist concept of the State.                        2

Ans. Marxism underestimated the importance of the state. To say that the Sate is a class institution and therefore, an oppressive and exploitative one is to oversimplify things.

3. What is meant by the word ‘socialist’ in the Indian context?                          2

Ans. Socialist means commitment to attain ideals like removal of inequalities, provision of minimum basic necessities to all, equal pay for equal work.

4. Mention any two discretionary powers of the Governor of a State.                1×2=2

Ans. Governor may exercise his discretionary powers to meet political exigencies in the following cases

(1) Appointing the Chief Minister when no party has acquired clear cut majority in the State  Legislative Assembly and when the Chief Minister dies when in office.

(2) Dismissal of the Council of the Minsters when they loos the confidence of The  confident of the State Legislative Assembly.

5. How can Gram Sabhas ensure active participation of the people in the rural self-government?   2

Ans. Generally, two meetings of Gram Sabha are held every year. In these meetings, the Gram Sabha as the general body of the people hear annual statement of accounts, audit or administrative report of Panchayats. It also recommends new development projects to be undertaken by Panchayats. It also helps in identifying poor people of the village so that they may be given economic assistance.

6. Identify any two rights which make the people of India political sovereign.          1×2=2

Ans. Sovereignty is the supreme power by which the state commands and exerts political obedience from its people. A state must be internally supreme and free from external control. Thus sovereignty has two aspects, internal and external. Internal sovereignty is the state’s monopoly of authority inside its boundaries. This authority cannot be shared with any other state. The state is independent and its will is unaffected by the will o any other external authority.

7. Highlight any two techniques of campaigning before an election.               1×2=2

Ans. Two techniques of campaigning before election

(a) Holding of public meetings.

(b) Distribution of handbills, highlighting the main issues of their election manifesto (election manifesto is a document issued by apolitical party).

8. Mention any two initiatives taken by India to come closer to China.            1×2=2

Ans. India tried its best to come close to china:-

(1) It was the first no-communist country to recognise communist china in 1949.

(2) It also acknowledged China’s claim over Formosa (Taiwan). It refused to be a party to peace treaty with Japan without China.

9. How far did the Shimla Pact of 1972 between India and Pakistan prove to be successful? Assess.  2

Ans. Shimla pact 1972: This Shimla agreement however bears important significance as the two countries agreed to seek the settlement of all bilateral problems, including Kashmir, mutually without the intervention of any third party. Thus under the Shimla Pact, the Kashmir issue cannot be raised in international or any other forum, although Pakistan has not hesitated to ignore the spirit of the agreement. The agreement also talked about the return of Prisoners of war (POW). Though Pakistan’s territory in India’s possession was returned, a new cease-fire line (in place of the old cease-fine line of 1948-49) was drawn, which is known as the LOC, Pakistan found ways other than open war to destabilise India by encouraging and assisting terrorism in Punjab, and the state-sponsored militancy in Jammu and Kashmir since the mid 1980s.

10. Explain any five points of distinction between State and other associations.           1×5=5

Ans. State as an association is different from other associations:-

a) All the associations, including even the state, consist of people. But while the membership of the state is compulsory, that of the other associations is voluntary.

b) A person is member of one state at one time, he/she cannot be a member of two or three states at the same time. But a person may be, a member of numerous associations at the same time.

c) All associations function on territory. But while for a state as an association, territory has to be definite, the other associations do not have permanent territory.

d) All association, including the state, exist to perform and achieve certain ends. While for the state, the purpose is always general (maintenance of law and order for example) for the other associations, the purpose is usually specific, particular.

e) The character of the state is national. The character of other associations may be local, provincial, national and even international.

11. Examine any five features of liberalism.               1×5=5

Ans. We may identity certain characteristics of liberalism. These characteristic/features are:

(1) Individual Liberty:- Liberalism is essentially an ideology of liberty. Its love for individual liberty is unquestionable. It has become libertarianism.

(2) Individual-centred theory:- Liberalism begins and ends with individual. For liberals, individual is the centre of all activities, the focal point, individual is the end while all other associations, including the state, are the means, which exist for the individual.

(3) Capitalistic Economy:- Liberalism advocates free-market economy, i.e., the capitalistic mode of economy. It believes in private property system, regarding property rights as sacrosanct, maximum profit as the only motive, capitalistic mode of production and distribution as the only essence, the market forces as the controlling means of economy.

(4) Limited State:- Liberalism advocates the concept of limited state. The liberals view the state as a means for attaining the good of the individual.

(5) Opposed to Traditions/Superstitions:- As liberalism rose as a reaction against traditions/superstitions, it is, by its nature, opposed to all reactionary measures.

12. What do Directive Principles of State Policy mean? The Constitution of which country inspired to include DPSP into our Constitution and why?                 2+1+2=5

Ans. Directive Principles of State Policy are in the form of instructions/guidelines to the governments at the centre as well as states. Though these principles are non-justifiable, they are fundamental in the governance of the country.

The idea of Directive Principles of State Policy has been taken from the Irish Republic.

They were incorporated in our Constitution in order to provide economic justice and to avoid concentration of wealth in the hands of a few people. Therefore, no government can afford to ignore them. They are in-fact, the directives to the future governments to incorporate them in the decisions and policies to be formulated by them.

Also Read:


April 2013

April 2014

April 2015

April 2016

April 2017

April 2018

April 2019

October 2015

October 2016

October 2017

NIOS Secondary and Senior Secondary Solved Question Papers

13. Bring out any five similarities between Vidhan Sabha and Vidhan Parishad.                 1×5=5

Ans. The following are the similarities between Vidhan Sabha and Vidhan Parishad:-

In order to become a Member of Vidhan Sabha / Vidhan Parishad:-

(a) A person must be a citizen of India.

(b) His/her name must be in voters’ list.

(c) Must not hold any office of profit i.e. should not be a government servant.

(d) Both Vidhan Sabha and Vidhan Parishad together makes Vidhan Sangha.

(e) Vidhan Sabha or legislative assembly is the lower house of state government or legislature in the different states of India whereas Vidhan Parishad or legislative council is the upper house of any state government.

14. Justify the policy of reservation in India as an instance of protective discrimination.          5

Ans. The special provisions are in the form of protective discrimination. The policy of reservation is an instance of protective discrimination. The policy of reservation is based on the principle of protective discrimination. Protective discrimination in favour of the backward classes was felt necessary by the constitution makers because of the realization that equality of opportunity alone would not suffice to bring the backward classes at par with the rest of the society. Equality of opportunity in absence of equality of conditions would result in deepening of inequality instead of promoting equality. One most note here that the provision of protective discrimination is not an exception to but integral to the Right to Equality.

15. How is growing population becoming a problem not only for the natural environment but for other aspects of environment also?                 5

Ans. Population growth means more people to eat and breathe, and putting an excessive pressure on land and forest, and ultimately disturbing the ecological balance.

Our growing population is putting pressure on land, leading to poor quality of productivity, deforestation (the loss of forest land so necessary for ecological balance and extinction of wild life leading to imbalance in the ecological order, loss of wild life heritage and ultimately dwindling of several species. The growing population is not only a problem for the natural environment; it is a problem for any other aspect of environment, say, for example social, economic, political etc.

16. Describe the major landmarks in the development of Human Rights.                  5

Ans. Major Landmarks in the Development of Human Rights:- incorporation of a Bill of Rights in some early national charters and constitutions in Europe indicates that the concept is not of recent origin.

Early European charters supporting the idea of certain fundamental freedoms were the Magna Carta of 1215, the Union of Utrecht in 1579 (Netherlands), and the British bill of Rights in 1689.

These charters specified certain freedoms that one could claim if one held a particular status and were not all- encompassing, but rather conferred upon an individual. Over the next few centuries, the idea of liberty gradually separated from status and was viewed as a right pertaining to all human beings.

This was also the time when the British colonies in North America strove for independence and drew up their own Declaration of Independence in 1776, based on the idea of universal equality, and the existence of certain inalienable rights. These documents were eventually incorporated into the American  Bill of Rights which is a part of the U.S. Constitution. The international growth of the concept can be demonstrated by the French Declaration of the Rights of man in 1789.

17. Why has use of Article 356 to impose President’s rule in a State become very controversial? Examine the recommendations of the Sarkaria Commission to improve Centre-State relations. 2+6=8

Ans. Article 356 has become very controversial. In spite of the safeguards provided by the 44th Amendment Act, this provision has been alleged to be misused by the Union Government. That is why; there is a demand either for its deletion or making provision in the Constitution to restrict the misuse of this Article.

The Sarkaria Commission which was appointed to review the Centre-State relations also recommended that Article 356 should be used only as a last resort. The Commission also suggested that the State Legislative Assembly should not be dissolved unless the proclamation is approved by the Parliament. It further suggested that all possibilities of forming an alternative government should be fully explored before the Centre imposes emergency in a State on grounds of breakdown of Constitutional machinery. The Supreme Court held in the Bombay case that the Assembly may not be dissolved till the Proclamation is approved by the Parliament. On a few occasions such as when Gujrat Government recommended use of Article 356 in Uttar Pradesh, the President returned the recommendation for reconsideration.

The Union Government took the hint and dropped the proposal. 


Do you agree with the statement that the Constitution of India establishes a strong centre? Give any four suitable arguments to support your answer.                   2×4=8

18. Explain the legislative and the executive functions of the Parliament of India.           4+4=8

Ans. Legislative Functions:- There are three lists-Union List, State List and the Concurrent List. Only Parliament can make laws on the subjects mentioned in the Union List. We know that  Union List has 97 subjects. Along with the State Legislatures, the Parliament is empowered to make laws on the Concurrent List. In case, both the Centre as well as the States make a law on the subject mentioned in the Concurrent List then the central law prevails upon the state law if there is a clash between the two. Any subject not mentioned in any list i.e., residuary powers are vested with the Parliament.

The Executive Functions:- In a parliamentary system of government there is a close relationship between the legislature and the executive. And the executive is responsible to the legislature for all its acts. The Prime Minister and his Council of Minister are responsible to the Parliament individually as well collectively. The Parliament can dislodge a ministry by passing a vote of no-confidence or by refusing to endorse a confidence motion.  In India this has happened several times. This happened in 1999 when the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Government lost the confidence motion in the Lok Sabha by just one vote and resigned.


How is the President of India elected and by whom? Explain.                       6+2=8

Ans. The President is elected by an Electoral College consisting of the elected members of both Houses of Parliament i.e. Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha and of the State Legislative Assemblies (Vidhan Sabhas). Nominated members of Parliament and members of State Legislative Councils are not members of the Electoral College. The election is held by means of single transferable vote system of proportional representation. The voting is done by secret ballot.

The framers of the Constitution were keen to obtain parity between the votes of the elected members of Parliament on one side sand elected members of Legislative Assemblies of all the States on the other. They devised a system to determine the value of vote of each Member of Parliament and Legislative Assembly, so as to ensure equality.

The value of vote of each member of Legislative Assembly of a state is determined by the formula as given below:-

                =                             Total population of the State                                        

                            Number of elected members of State Legislative Assembly

In simple words the total population of the State is divided by the number of elected members of the State Legislative Assembly, and the quotient is divided by 1000.

Example: Let us suppose that the population of Punjab is 1,35,51,000 and the number of elected members of the State Vidhan Sabha is 104. The votes which each Legislature is entitled to cast will be:-

                1,35,51,000 / 1000


                = 130.29

19. Evaluate the role of Communist Parties in Indian politics since Independence.              8

Ans. Role of Communist Parties:-  The CPI failed to inspire and mobilise the people and play an effective role for two basic reasons. The CPI did not extend the national question to properly embrace the various national minorities other than the Muslim religious minority. The CPI depended too much, almost entirely, on Congress-League unity as the outcome of the national minority question and thereby left that question in real terms in the hands of those who were already divided quite decisively as communal parties of the upper and middle class Hindu and Muslim communities respectively.

Thus they failed to inspire the religious, ethnic, linguistic and other minorities, as well as the schedule castes (untouchables) among the Hindus, in identifying their specific interests and to fight for them within the framework of their struggle for independence.

The failure of the CPI was disastrous because they could open separate dialogues with Jinnah and the Sikhs and others on the question of national minorities. But instead, they pursued a policy of uniting the hands of Gandhi and Jinnah as leaders of the two most important and dominated religious Communities and depended in a ridiculous manner on the prospect of a Congress-League understanding under the given conditions. It is because of a wrong analysis of the Indian national question and this failure of policy that the communist movement in India suffered a terrible setback from which it has not yet been able to recover.


Suggest any four measures to correct or reduce regional imbalance in India.           2×4=8

Ans. Regionalism has been an important aspect of Indian politics. Sometimes, it has posed threat to the unity of the country. Hence it is necessary to take steps to reduce such tendencies. Some such measures can be

1) To promote even development of the hitherto neglected areas so that they feel a part of the national mainstream.

2) The central government must not interfere in the affairs of the State unless it is unavoidable for national interest.

3) Problems of people must be solved in a peaceful and constitutional manner. Politicians must not be allowed to misuse the issue of regional demands.

4) Changes are necessary in the Central-State relations in favour of the states, and for introducing a system of national education that would help people to overcome regional feelings and develop an attachment towards the nation.

20. Highlight any four concerns in India’s foreign policy in the post-Cold War period.      2×4=8

Ans. The end of cold war in 1989 has brought about significant changes in the international scene and hence new policy problems for the various states in the developing world including India. The new situation is made by greater uncertainty and complexity.

For India, disintegration of the Soviet Union has meant uncertainty on several aspects viz., supply of weapons system, supply of spare parts, diplomatic support on Kashmir and other politico-strategic issues in and outside the United Nations and as a counter weight to US in South Asia.

Militancy in Kashmir has emerged as the foremost challenge to our foreign policy. Pakistan and the Western countries blamed India for violating human rights and denial or rights to self determination. Gradually, India brought the situation under control.

Because of the Kashmir dispute, India’s relations with Pakistan sharply deteriorated. India accused Pakistan of fanning trouble through cross border terrorism in Kashmir and other parts of our country. India conducted nuclear weapon tests in 1998, followed by  Pakistan’s tests. Pakistan resorted to further mischief by secretly sending its soldiers into Kargil in order to cut off the Kashmir valley from the rest of India.

Spread of terrorism to corners beyond Kashmir is a challenge as well as opportunity for our foreign policy now a days. India is interested in forging anti-terrorism coalition with as many countries as possible.


Explain any four factors responsible for cordial relations between India and the Soviet Union. 2×4=8

Ans.:- Both Soviet Union and India shared a cordial relationship during the cold war era. The multi-dimensional proximity can be proved from the following points.

(a) Political:- Soviet Union always supported India’s stance on Kashmir in UNO. Likewise, it supported India in all major conflicts including the 1971 war with Pakistan when USA had threatened to send its seventh fleet in the Indian Ocean. India also has supported the Soviet  Foreign policy in indirect ways.

(b) Economic:- Soviet Union aided India’s public sector companies like the steel plants at Bokaro, Vishakhapatnam and Bhilai and machinery plants like Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd. It even accepted Indian currency when India was short of foreign exchange.

(c) Military:- Soviet Union has been the principal supplier of military equipment and arms to India when very few states wanted to part with their military technology. It even launched several joint military ventures with India.

(d) Cultural:- Indian culture and Hindi films were popular in USSR. A number of Indian artists went to Soviet Union.

21. Although the specialized agencies are part of the UN system, they function independently of the UN organs. Identify any four such agencies.                       ½×4=2

Ans. Four agencies are:-

(1) The General Assembly

(2) The Security Council

(3) The Economic and Social Council

(4) Trusteeship Council.
22. Explain the outcomes of the peace-keeping activities of the United Nations.               5

Ans. The United Nations which came into being on Oct. 24, 1945 has been the most important international organisation since the Second World War.

The formal basis for UN activities is the UN charter. The UN has a vital role in World affairs. For more than fifty years UN has helped to manage relations between states and regulate a broad range of international activities. It has worked to protect the security of people and promote peace and development. one way in which UN has contributed to world peace is by taking up the cause of disarmament India has also contributed immensely to UN’s disarmament efforts.

Disarmament is limitation, reduction and possible elimination of dangerous (like nuclear).

Since independence, India has consistently pursued the objective of global disarmament based on the principles of non-discrimination. Given the destructive capacity of nuclear weapons.

23. Describe any four effects of the bipolar world.                          2×4=8 

Ans. Effects of the Bipolar world:-

1) The end of the Second World War did not signal a return to normality, on the contrary, it resulted in a new conflict. The major European powers that had been at the forefront of the international stage in the 1930s were left exhausted and ruined by the war, setting the scene for the emergence of two new global superpowers.

2) The USSR came out of the war territorially enlarged and with an aura of prestige from having fought Hitler’s Germany. The country was given a new lease of life by its heroic resistance to the enema, exemplified by the victory at Stalingrad.

3) The United States was the great victor of the Second World War. Its human and material losses were relatively low, and even though the US Army was almost completely demobilised a few months after the end of hostilities, the United States remained the world’s leading military power.

4) The conflicts of interest between the new world powers gradually multiplied, and a climate of fear and suspicion reigned. Each country feared the newfound power of the other. The Soviets felt surrounded and threatened by the West and accused the United States of spearheading ‘imperialist expansion’


Describe the composition of the UN Security Council. What steps could it take to restore peace in conflict infested areas?                          2+6=8

Ans. The Security Council is the most powerful decision-making body of the United Nations. It has the main responsibility to maintain international peace and security. The Council is a contrast from the General Assembly, in respect of both its composition and the decision-making procedure. Unlike the Assembly, the membership of the Council is limited to 15 countries only, out of which five are permanent members.

The Council can use extraordinary power to deal with wars or threats of war between countries. In such an event, the Council can determine who the aggressor is and can call for necessary steps to restore peace. These steps may include, at the discretion of the Council, economic sanctions like freezing of assets abroad, banning of exports and imports, or military action by land, sea or air. Notably, whenever the Security Council takes such steps, they are binding not only on the states directly involved in the war but also on all members of the United Nations. Once, the Security Council takes a decision, it is the duty of the member countries to carry out decisions. Obviously, the Council can take such important decisions only with the agreement among the permanent members. In the recent years, after the end of the cold war, the Council has frequently used its binding powers to deal with various problems of international peace and security. The role of the Security Council in discharging its functions depends on the specific circumstances of each case and the existence of broad agreement among the five permanent members. It is important to note that the Security Council has imposed varying sets of economic and diplomatic sanctions against 25 countries so far. These sanctions included cutting off diplomatic relations, stopping of oil imports and exports, banning weapons supplies, freezing of assets abroad, etc.

24. Assess the role of complaint forums to deal with public complaints.               2

Ans. A complaint can be made in person or by any authorised agent or by post. The complaint can be written on a plain paper duly supported by documentary evidence in support of the allegation contained in the complaint. The complaint should clearly specify the relief sought. It should also contain the nature, description and address of the complainant as well as the opposite party, and so also the facts relating to the complaint and when and where it arose.

25. Why is it said that Union Public Service Commission has corporate mode of functioning? Highlight any three advantages of it.                          2+3=5

Ans. The fathers of the constitution were perhaps guided in their decision by the fact that the task requires experts and longer specialized knowledge also and that facilitates collective deliberation by a group of experts who are able to pool their knowledge and experience to arrive at informed and objective decisions. Such a method of making decisions collectively is described as corporate mode of functioning or decision making.

Three advantages of Union Public Service Commission are:-

(a) A plural body like public service commission consisting of experts in parts professional and technical weight age in the process of decision making.

(b) When several heads combine for deliberations, biases are eliminated and objectivity is ensured.

(c) A commission functions outside the normal governmental machinery, hence greater flexibility and innovativeness of approach is possible. Bureaucratic rigidities and delays, which characterize government departments can thus be avoided.

26. What is the major difference between the functions of the Directorates and the Secretariat at the State level? List any five functions of the Head of the Directorate.               3+5=8

Ans. The directorates function under the state secretariat. A secretariat is concerned with policy making, while a directorate is concerned with policy execution. Thus, directorates are the executive arm of the government. Their duty is  to translate into action the policies which are framed by the secretariat. The directorates are located outside the secretariat.

The functions of the Head of the Directorate are:-

1. To provide technical to the Ministers.

2. To prepare the budget of the department.

3. To inspect implementation of work by the departmental district staff.

4. To render advice to the State Public Service Commission regarding promotions and disciplinary actions.

5. To organize in service training programmes for departmental officers.


Describe the major sources of stress for the bureaucracy in India. Suggest any two measures to reduce this stress.                   8
Ans. There are five major problems with bureaucracies: red tape, conflict, duplication, imperialism, and waste.

(a) Red tape is the existence of complex rules and procedures that must be followed to get something done. Any large organization must have some way of ensuring that one part of the organization does not operate out of step with another.

(b) Conflict exists when some agencies work at cross-purposes with other agencies. The Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service pays farmers to grow fewer crops.

(c) Duplication occurs when two government agencies seem to be doing the same thing, such as when the Customs Service and the Drug Enforcement Administration both attempt to intercept illegally smuggled drugs.

(d) Imperialism refers to the tendency of agencies to grow without regard to the benefits their programs confer or the costs they entail.

(e) Waste occurs when an agency spends more than is necessary to buy some product or service.

Two measures to reduce this stress are:-

(a) Eliminate some excessive bureaucracy by reducing the hierarchy of the organizational structure. An organization with a number of layers between top management and front-line employees can slow communications and the flow of information and increase the number of “hands” an issue must pass through before being resolved. The flat organization structure is less encumbered by authority, with fewer managers required to review work.

(b) Encourage an increased value for customer-orientation among employees. Bureaucratization can lead to depersonalization because an employee’s job title defines and limits her authority and responsibility with set rules and procedures for every contingency. The more customer-oriented a bureaucracy becomes, the more its corporate culture evolves into one that focuses on meeting customer needs and wants and less on the specific role of the individual worker.


Leave a Comment

error: Content is protected !!