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(Part-1) UPSC Previous Year Papers – 41 Years Subjectwise Solved Papers – General Studies GS CSAT Paper 1 Prelims for UPSC IAS Civil Services Exam

Chapter 1 History Ancient India (UPSC Previous Papers)

1. Which one of the following is not a Harappan Site?
(a) Chanhudaro (b) Kot Diji
(c) Sohagaura (d) Desalpur
Ans. (c) Sohgaura Copper Plate: The earliest known copper-plate, known as the Sohgaura copper-plate, is a Mauryan record that mentions famine relief efforts. So it can’t be a Harappan site, answer is C.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2019]


2. Consider the following :
1. Deification of the Buddha
2. Treading the path of Bodhisattvas
3. Image worship and rituals Which of the above is/ are the feature/ features of Mahayana Buddhism?
(a) 1 only (b) 1 and 2 only
(c) 2 and 3 only (d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (d) The Mahayana followers believe in idol or image worship of Buddha. The concept of Bodhisattva is the result of Mahayana Buddhism.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2019]


3. With reference to forced labour(Vishti) in India during the Gupta period, which one of the following statements is correct?
(a) It was considered a source of income for the State, a sort of tax paid by the people.
(b) It was totally absent in the Madhya Pradesh and Kathiawar regions of the Gupta Empire.
(c) The forced labourer as entitled to weekly wages.
(d) The eldest son of the labourer was sent as the forced labourer.
Ans. (a) A History of Ancient and Early Medieval India by Upinder Singh, page 508: Forced labour (Vishti) became more common than before in this Gupta period. The fact that it is mentioned along with the taxes in the land grant inscriptions suggest that Vishti was considered as source of income for the state, a sort of tax paid by the people. The fact that most of the inscriptions referring to Vishti come from Madhya Pradesh and Kathiyawar regions may suggest this practice for more prevalent in this areas. So, A is right B is wrong.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2019]


4. With reference to Indian history, who among the following is a future Buddha, yet to come to save the world?
(a) Avalokiteshvara (b) Lokesvara
(c) Maitreya (d) Padmapani
Ans. (c) Answer: Maitreya, is the future Buddha, whose coming was said to have been prophesied by the historical Buddha and who in years to come, would purify the world with his teachings. let’s also learn about the wrong options, lest they’re asked in future exams: Avalokitesvara (watchful lord), also called Padmapani (lotus-bearer), whose attribute is compassion, which reaches down even to Avichi, the lowest Buddhist purgatory. Loksesvara is also used as a synonym for Avalokitesvar(a)
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2018]


5. With reference to the religious history of India, consider the following statements:
1. Sautrantika and Sammitiya were the sects of Jainism.
2. Sarvastivadin held that the constituents of phenomena were not wholly momentary, but existed forever in a latent form.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only (b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2
Ans. (b) Sautrantikas and Sammtiyas as Buddhism sects. So first statement is wrong. And Sarvastivadin sect of Buddhism believes that all things exist, and exist continuously, in the past and the future as well as in the present. So second statement is right.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2017]


6. The painting of Bodhisattva Padmapani is one of the most famous and oft-illustrated paintings at
(a) Ajanta (b) Badami
(c) Bagh (d) Ellora
Ans. (a) Padmapaniboddhisattva at ajanta Cave no. 1
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2017]


7. With reference to the difference between the culture of Rigvedic Aryans and Indus Valley people, which of the following statements is/are correct?
1. Rigvedic Aryans used the coat of mail and helmet in warfare whereas the people of Indus Valley Civilization did not leave any evidence of using them.
2. Rigvedic Aryans knew gold, silver and copper whereas Indus Valley people knew only copper and iron.
3. Rigvedic Aryans had domesticated the horse whereas there is no evidence of Indus Valley people having been aware of this animal.
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (c) All the gold jewelry found at Harappan sites was recovered from hoards. So, second statement is wrong, which eliminated b and d. But then depending on which history book you refer, Harappans were aware or unaware about the horses. So the experts were divided between option a and option c. UPSC chose ‘c’ as the official answer- meaning Harappans did not know about the horses.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2017]


8. Which one of the following was a very important seaport in the Kakatiya kingdom?
(a) Kakinada
(b) Motupalli
(c) Machilipatnam (Masulipatnam)
(d) Nelluru
Ans. (b) Academic books on medieval history mention that Ganapati was the most powerful of Kakatiya sovereigns. Motupalli, now in Krishna district, was an important seaport in his kingdom, frequented by foreign merchants. So, “B” is the answer.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2017]


9. Regarding the taxation system of Krishna Deva, the ruler of Vijayanagar, consider the following statements :
1. The tax rate on land was fixed depending on the quality of the land.
2. Private owners of workshops paid an industries tax.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only (b) 2 Only
(c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2
Ans. (c) in Vijaya Nagar empire: 1. Land revenue varied according to nature of cultivated land. So, 1 is right. 2. There were taxes on various professions. So 2 is also true.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2016]


10. Who of the following had first deciphered the edicts of Emperor Ashoka?
(a) Georg Buhier
(b) James Prinsep
(c) Max Muller
(d) William Jones
Ans. (b) James Princep was indologist, who deciphered Brahmi Script first time in 1873.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2016]


11. Which one of the following books of ancient India has the love story of the son of the founder of Sunga dynasty?
(a) Swapnavasavadatta
(b) Malavikagnimitra
(c) Meghadoota
(d) Ratnavali
Ans. (b) The Malavikagnimitram is a Sanskrit play by Kalidasa in 4th c. A.D. The Sunga dynasty came into power after dethroning the Mauryans. It is his first play.(kalidasa’s malavikagnimitram is based on some events of the reign of Pushyamitra Shunga.) The play tells the story of the love of Agnimitra, the Shunga Emperor at Vidisha, for the beautiful hand-maiden of his chief queen.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2016]


12. In the context of the history of India, consider the following pairs : Term Description
1. Eripatti Land, revenue from which was set apart for the maintenance of the village tank
2. Taniyurs Villages donated to a single Brahmin or a group of Brahmins
3. Ghatikas Colleges generally attached to the temples
Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?
(a) 1 and 2
(b) 3 only
(c) 2 and 3
(d) 1 and 3
Ans: (c) Eripatti, was a village or a village panchayat not land revenue. Taniyurs were the villages donated to Brahmins’ by kings or rich people. The ghatikas were the most important educational institutions attached to temples during early and late medieval period and the most important ghatika of the pallavas was located in Kanchipuram. Inscriptions reveal that many of these kings looked after this institution with great care.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2016]


13. With reference to the religious history of India, consider the following statements:
1. The concept of Bodhisattva is central to Hinayana sect of Buddhism.
2. Bodhisattva is a compassionate one on his way to enlightenment.
3. Bodhisattva delays achieving his own salvation to help all sentient beings on their path to it.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 2 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (b) Theravada or Hinayana Buddhism embraced the concept of the Bodhisattva, or “one who achieves perfect attainment.” Theravadan Buddhists saw this as merely a guide or a model to the journey of individual enlightenment. But Bodhisattva was seen merely as a teaching tool, only as a part of the individual’s path in reaching Nirvana. It would not reach beyond this until the formation of the Mahayana Tradition. Mahayana Buddhists take a vow not to enter Nirvana, even though they too strive to reach enlightenment. Instead their vow is to return to the world of suffering and assist all others in reaching Nirvana first, thus casting the role of Buddhists as compassionate protectors and saviors.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2016]


14. With reference to the cultural history of India, the memorizing of chronicles, dynastic histories and epic tales was the profession of who of the following?
(a) Shramana
(b) Parivraajaka
(c) Agrahaarika
(d) Magadha
Ans. (d) Magadha was the courtier in Ancient India. As historians points out, memorizing of chronicles, dynastic histories, or epic tales was the work of different group of the people, the Suttas and Magadhas.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2016]


15. Which of the following Kingdoms were associated with the life of the Buddha?
1. Avanti 2. Gandhara
3. Kosala 4. Magadha
Select the correct answer using the code given below.
(a) 1, 2 and 3 (b) 2 and 4
(c) 3 and 4 only (d) 1, 3 and 4
Ans. (c) Buddh born in Lumbini, in Kosala kingdom.→ 3 must be included. Buddh died in Kusinara, in Magadha kingdom→ 4 must be included. If you eliminate answer choices that donot have 3 and 4 together → still we are left with C or D. Once Buddha was invited by King Pradyota of Avanti, but he declined to go because of his old age, and deputed Maha Kachchayana, a native of Avanti to impart his teachings there. → 1 Avanti is wrong. This eliminates option A and D. Avanti lay outside the area visited by buddha, and was converted to his teaching by his disciple Mahakaccana.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2014]


16. Which of the following characterizes/ characterize the people of Indus Civilization?
1. They possessed great palaces and temples.
2. They worshipped both male and female deities.
3. They employed horse-drawn chariots in warfare.
Select the correct statement/ statements using the codes given below.
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 only
(c) 1, 2 and 3
(d) None of the statements given above is correct
Ans. (b) Statement 1 is incorrect as temple construction only started in Gupta Kings. Statemet 2 is correct as Lord Shiva and Mother Goddess were prayed by the people. Statement 3 is incorrect as horse-drawn chariots in warfare were used by Vedic people not by Harapans. Horse is little known to Harappans.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2013]


17. Which one of the following describes best the concept of Nirvana in Buddhism?
(a) The extinction of the flame of desire
(b) The complete annihilation of self
(c) A state of bliss and rest
(d) A mental stage beyond all comprehension
Ans. (a) Statement b and d can be eliminated as these statements are absolute & extreme. Statement b uses word ‘the complete’ and statement d uses phrase ‘beyond all’. Aspirants should be careful while choosing such statements. As per Budha root cause of sorrow are desires. If we eliminate root cause i.e. desires we can attain Nirvana
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2013]


18. The Chinese traveller Yuan Chwang (Hiuen Tsang) who visited India recorded the general conditions and culture of India at that time. In this context, which of the following statements is/are correct?
1. The roads and river-routes were completely immune from robbery.
2. As regards punishment for offences, ordeals by fire, water and poison were the instruments for determining the innocence or guilt of a person.
3. The tradesmen had to pay duties at ferries and barrier stations.
Select the correct answer using the codes given below.
(a) 1 only (b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only (d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (b) Statement 1: incorrect ‘completely’ immune not possible. Absolute statement eliminate it.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2013]


19. Which of the following statements is/are applicable to Jain doctrine?
1. The surest way of annihilating Karma is to practice penance.
2. Every object, even the smallest particle has a soul.
3. Karma is the bane of the soul and must be ended.
Select the correct answer using the codes given below.
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (d) Statement 2 is obviously correct. Other statements are also correct as Jainism starts with the premise that the soul is found entangled with karma since eternity. It is the primary function of religion to stop the influx and mitigate the presence of karma with the soul and to show the path of the liberation and the methods through which the soul could achieve perfection.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2013]


20. Lord Buddha’s image is sometimes shown with the hand gesture called “Bhumiparsha Mudra”. It symbolizes
(a) Buddha’s calling of the earth to watch over Mara and to prevent Mara from disturbing his meditation
(b) Buddha’s calling of the earth to witness his purity and chastity despite the temptations of Mara
(c) Buddha’s reminder to his followers that they all arise from the earth and finally dissolve into the earth and thus this life is transitory
(d) Both the statements a and b are correct in this context
Ans. (d) Bhumisparsa Mudra: The left hand lies in the lap, palm upward. The right hand bends over the right knee, with fingers slightly touching the ground. This gesture symbolizes enlightenment, as well as steadfastness (imperturbability).
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2012]


21. With reference to the guilds (Shreni) of ancient India that played a very important role in the country’s economy, which of the following statements is/are correct?
1. Every guild was registered with the central authority of the state and the king was the chief admin authority on them
2. The wages, rules of work, standards and prices were fixed by the guild
3. The guild had judicial powers over its own members.
Select the correct answer using the codes given below:
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 3 only
(c) 2 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (d) Guilds had their laws, based on customs and usage, regarding organization, production, fixation of prices of commodities, etc. Each sreni had its own professional code, working arrangements, duties and obligations and even religious observances. • Matters relating to wider areas of dispute were sometimes settled by srenis among themselves.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2012]


22. The religion of early Vedic Aryans was primarily of
(a) Bhakti
(b) image worship and Yajnas
(c) worship of nature and Yajnas
(d) worship of nature and Bhakti
Ans. (c) The religious life of the Aryans was simple and plain. They worshipped various manifestations of nature such as the sun, the moon, the sky, the Dawn, the thunder, the wind and the Air. Vedic hymns were composed in praise of nature.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2012]


23. With reference to the history of ancient India, which of the following was/were common to both Buddhism and Jainism?
1. Avoidance of extremities of penance and enjoyment
2. Indifference to the authority of the Vedas
3. Denial of efficacy of rituals
Select the correct answers using the codes given below :
(a) 1 only (b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only (d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (b) Statement 1 is incorrect as Budhism emphasis on moderation (middle path) of life while Jainism emphasis on severe penance practices to attain ‘kaivalya’. Other statements are correct.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2012]


24. With reference to the scientific progress of ancient India which of the statements given below are correct?
1. Different kinds of specialized surgical instruments were in common use by 1stcentury AD.
2. Transplant of internal organs in the human body had begun by the beginning of 3rdcentury AD.
3. The concept of sine of an angle was known in 5thcentury AD.
4. The concept of cyclic quadrilateral was known in 7thcentury AD.
Select the correct answer using the codes given below
(a) 1 and 2 only (b) 3 and 4 only
(c) 1, 3 and 4 only (d) 1, 2,3 and 4
Ans. (c) We don’t have (most probably) the sources that write about ‘internal’ transplant.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2012]


25. Regarding the Indus valley civilization, consider the following statements ?
1. It was predominantly a secular civilization and the religious element, though present, did not dominate the scene.
2. During this period, cotton was used for manufacturing textiles in India.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only. (b) 2 only.
(c) Both 1 and 2. (d) Neither 1 nor 2.
Ans. (c) There are no patterns or well established signs of religios strutres are found in Indus Valley. Though division of society may present at initial level but Indus valley can be considered ‘predominantly’ secular. Statement 1 is correct. Further, the cotton provided the growth of textile industry for which the Indian subcontinent has long been famous.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2011]


26. The Jain philosophy holds that the world is created and maintained by ?
(a) Universal law
(b) Universal truth
(c) Universal faith
(d) Universal soul
Ans. (a) The Jain philosophy holds that the world is created and maintained by Universal law.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2011]


27. The “dharma” and “Rita” depict a central Idea of ancient vedic civilization of India. In this context, consider the following statements :
1. Dharma was a conception of obligations and of the discharge of one’s duties to oneself and to others.
2. Rita was the fundamental moral law governing the functioning of the universe and all it contained.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only. (b) 2 only.
(c) Both 1 and 2. (d) Neither 1 nor 2.
Ans. (c) Dharma derived from the Sanskrit root dhr, “sustain, support, uphold,” dharma has a wide range of meaning: it is the essential foundation of something or of things in general, and thus signifies “truth”; it is that which is established, customary, proper, and therefore means “traditional” or “ceremonial” • Rita, Sanskrit rta (“truth” or “order”), in Indian religion and philosophy, the cosmic order mentioned in the Vedas, the ancient sacred scriptures of India. As Hinduism developed from the ancient Vedic religion, the concept of rita led to the doctrines of dharma (duty) and karma (accumulated effects of good and bad actions). • Rita is the physical order of the universe, the order of the sacrifice, and the moral law of the world.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2011]


28. Mahamastakabhisheka, a great religious event, is associated with and done for whom of the following?
(a) Bahubali (b) Buddha
(c) Mahavir (d) Nataraja
Ans. (a) The Mahamastakabhisheka (lit. grand consecration) is an important Jain festival held once every twelve years in the town of Shravanabelagola in Karnataka, India.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2009]


29. Anekantavada is a core theory and philosophy of which one of the following?
(a) Buddhism (b) Jainism
(c) Sikhism (d) Vaishnavism
Ans. (b) Anekantavada , meaning “non-absolutism,” is one of the basic principles of Jainism that encourages acceptance of relativism and pluralism. • According to this doctrine, truth and reality are perceived differently from different points of view, and no single point of view is the complete truth. • The word anekantavada is a compound of two Sanskrit words: Anekanta ”manifoldness” and vada ”school of thought.”
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2009]


30. With reference to the invaders in ancient India, which one of the following is the correct chronological order?
(a) Greeks- Sakas- Kushans
(b) Greeks -Kushans -Sakas
(c) Sakas -Greeks -Kushans
(d) Sakas – Kushans -Greeks
Ans. (a) The Greeks invaded India several times, starting with the conquest of Alexander the Great between the years 327 to 326 B.C.E. • The Indo-Greek rule in India was primarily destroyed by the Sakas. Sakas were the Scythians, which refer to ancient Iranian people of horse-riding nomadic pastoralists. The 2nd century BC saw an upheaval in the Central Asia. The invasion by the Central Asian nomadic tribes and tribes from the Chinese region was responsible for the migration of the Sakas towards India. The rule of the Indo-Scythians in northwestern India was shattered with the rise of the Indo-Parthian ruler Gondophares in the last years of the 1st century BCE. • Kujula Kadphises (30-80 AD) established the Kushan dynasty in 78 AD by taking advantage of disunion in existing dynasty of Pahalava (Parthian) and Scytho- Parthians, and gradually wrested control of southern prosperous region, which is the northwest part of ancient India, traditionally known as Gandhara (now Pakistan).
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2006]


31. Who among the following laid the foundation of Rashtrakuta Empire?
(a) Amoghavarsha I (b) Dantidurga
(c) Dhruva (d) Krishna I
Ans. (b) Rashtrakuta was a royal dynasty ruling large parts of the Indian Subcontinent between the sixth and 10th centuries. • The founder of the Rashtrakuta power was Dantivarman or Dantidurga was contemporary of Chalukya King Pulakesin II. • Dantidurga occupied all territories between the Godavari and Bhima river. He is said to have conquered Kalinga, Kosala, Kanchi, Srisril, Malava, Lata etc. He annexed Maharashtra to his kingdom by defeating Chalukya King Kirtivarma.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2006]


32. Consider the following statements:
1. The Ikshvaku rulers of southern India were antagonistic towards Buddhism.
2. The Pala rulers of Eastern India were patrons of Buddhism.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only (b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2
Ans. (b) Andhra Ikshvakus were one of the earliest recorded ruling dynasties of the Guntur-Krishna-Nalgonda regions of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. Although the Ikshvaku rulers practiced the Vedic religion, they were also great patrons of Buddhism. Most of the kings and their household donated to the Buddhist cause. • Pala dynasty, ruling dynasty in Bihar and Bengal, India, from the 8th to the 12th century. The Palas were supporters of Buddhism, and it was through missionaries from their kingdom that Buddhism was finally established in Tibet.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2006]


33. Who among the following was not a contemporary of the other three?
(a) Bimbsara (b) Gautama Buddha
(c) Milinda (d) Prasenjit
Ans. (c) Menander I known in Indian Pali sources as Milinda was an Indo-Greek King of the Indo-Greek Kingdom (155 –130 BC). Menander was also a patron of Buddhism, and his conversations with the Buddhist sage Nagasena are recorded in the important Buddhist work, the Milinda Panha (“The Wisdom of Milinda”; panna meaning “wisdom” in Pali). All others are contemporary of Budha around 5th/6th BC.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2005]


34. Consider the following statements:
1. The Chinese pilgrim Fa-Hien attended the fourth Great Buddhist Council held by Kanishka.
2. The Chinese pilgrim Hiuen-Tsang met Harsha and found him to be antagonistic to Buddhism.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only (b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2
Ans. (b) The Fourth Buddhist Council was held at Kundalvana, Kashmir in 72 AD under the patronage of Kushan king Kanishka and the president of this council was Vasumitra, with Asvaghosa as his deputy. • In his early life, Harsha was a devout Saiva but later he became an ardent Hinayana Buddhist. Hiuen Tsang converted him to Mahayana Buddhism. Harsha prohibited the use of animal food in his kingdom and punished those who kill any living being.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2004]


35. Which one of the following four Vedas contains an account of magical charms and spells?
(a) Rig-veda (b) Yajur-veda
(c) Atharva-veda (d) Sama-veda
Ans. (c) Atharvaveda is the fourth of the Vedas. • The Veda contains many mystic chants, spells and prayers meant to either heal or harm or seek protection against harmful forces.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2004]


36. With reference to ancient Jainism, which one of the following statements is correct?
(a) Jainism was spread in South India under the leadership of Sthalabahu
(b) The Jainas who remained under the leadership of Bhadrabahu were called Shvetambaras after the Council held at Pataliputra
(c) Jainism enjoyed the patronage of the Kalinga king Kharavela in the first century BC
(d) In the initial stage of Jainism, the Jainas worshipped images unlike Buddhists
Kharavela is believed to be a follower of Jainism.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2004]


37. Consider the following statements:
1. The last Mauryan ruler, Brihadratha was assassinated by his commander-in-chief, Pushyamitra Sunga.
2. The last Sunga king, Devabhuti was assassinated by his Brahmana minister Vasudeva Kanva who usurped the throne
3. The last ruler of the Kanva dynasty was deposed by the Andhras.
Which of these statements is/are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 (b) Only 2
(c) Only 3 (d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (d) Here all the three statement is correct therefore the correct option is (d) • Emperor Brihadratha Maurya was the last Mauryan King of Mauryan Empire. He was killed by Pushyamitra Sunga, a military General in the Mauryan Army. • Devabhuti was the last Shunga Ruler who was killed by his own minister Vasudeva Kanva in around 73 BC. Vasudeva Kanva thus assassinated the last ruler of Shunga Dynasty and founded the Kanva Dynasty. • According to the Vayu Purana the Kanva was a minor dynasty having only four rulers: Vasudeva, Bhumimitra, Narayana, and Susarman • The rulers of Kanva Dynasty ruled for 45 years i.e., 73 to 28 B.C. Susarman, the last ruler of Kanva dynasty was killed by the Andhra King Simuka.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2003]


38. Consider the following statements :
1. Vardhamana Mahavira’s mother was the daughter of Lichchavi chief Chetaka.
2. Gautama Buddha’s mother was a princess from the Koshalan dynasty.
3. Parshvanatha, the twenty-third Tirthankara, belonged to Banaras.
Which of these statements is/are correct?
(a) Only 1
(b) Only 2
(c) 2 and 3
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Ans. (c) Statement 2 and 3 are correct so the answer is option c. • Mahavira was Kshatriya of the Jnatri clan and a native of the (Kshatriya) Kundagram, a suburb of the town of Vaishali (near Patna). He was the second son of Siddhartha and Trishala, a highly connected lady. In fact Trishala was the sister of king Chetaka of Vaishali whose daughter Chellana was married to Bimbisara king of Magadh. • Gautam Buddha was born in 563 BC in Sakya kshatriya at Lumbini, Kapilavatsu. Gautam father king Suddhodana, seems to be have been the elected ruler of the Kapilavastu and headed the republican clan of the Sakyas. His mother, queen Maya Devi was princes from Kosalan dynasty. • Parshvanatha, also known as Parshva was the twentythird Tirthankara of Jainism.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2003]


39. Emperor Harsha’s southward march was stopped on the Narmada river by:
(a) Pulakesin-I (b) Pulakesin-II
(c) Vikramaditya-I (d) Vikramaditya-II
Ans. (b) Here option (b) is correct. • It is supposed from the descriptions of the Aihole Inscription that the battle between the opposing armies was fought somewhere between the Vindhya Mountains and the river Narmada. • In that great battle, Pulakesin II successfully resisted the army of Harsha and did not permit the invaders to advance towards the south.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2003]


40. Match List I (Ancient site) with List II
(Archaeological finding) and select the correct answer using the codes given below the lists :
List I : List II
(Ancient site) : (Archaeological finding)
A. Lothal : 1. Ploughed field
B. Kalibangan : 2. Dockyard
C. Dholavira : 3. Terracotta replica of a plough
D. Banawali : 4. An inscription comprising ten large sized signs of the Harappan script
Codes:
A B C D
(a) 1 2 3 4 (b) 2 1 4 3
(c) 1 2 4 3 (d) 2 1 3 4
Ans. (b)
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2002]


41. The ancient Indian play Mudrarakshasa of Visakhadutt has its subject on
(a) a conflict between Gods and Demons of ancient Hindu lore
(b) a romantic story of an Aryan prince and a tribal woman
(c) the story of the power struggle between two Aryan tribes
(d) the court intrigues at the time of Chandragupta Maurya
Ans. (d) Mudrarakshasa of Visakhadutt deals with the court intrigues at the time of Chandragupta Maurya. Mudrarakshasa (The Minister Signet’s Ring) is a Sanskrit drama written by Vishakhadatta. The Minister Signet’s Ring centers around the schemes of the Chankya to frustrate the plots of Raksasa, the minister of Dhana Nanda, the last ruler of the Nanda dynasty. Consequently Chankya was able to place Chandragupta on the throne of Patliputra (modern day Patna), the capital of Magadh.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2002]


42. In ancient Indian Buddhist monasteries, a ceremony called Pavarana used to be held. It was the
(a) Occasion to elect the Sanghaparinayaka and two speakers one on Dhamma and the other on Vinaya
(b) Confession by monks of their offences committed during their stay in the monasteries during the rainy season
(c) Ceremony of initiation of new person into the Buddhist Sangha in which the head is shaved an when yellow robes are offered
(d) Gathering of Buddhist monks on the next day to the full moon day of Ashadha when they take up affixed abode for the next four months or rainy season.
Ans. (b) On Pavarana Day, it is the tradition of Buddhist monks to confess any misdeeds that they have done over the previous months of the rains retreat, when they have been primarily practicing in the confines of a monastery and not traveling. • This is usually a positive occasion for the monastic community when they let go of recent shortcomings and start afresh in their practice of the Way.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2002]


43. Assertion (A): Harshavardhana convened the Prayag Assembly.
Reason (R): He wanted to popularise only the Mahayana form of Buddhism.
(a) Both A and R are individually true, and R is the correct explanation of A
(b) Both A and R are individually true, but R is NOT a correct explanation of A
(c) A is true, but R is false
(d) A is false, but R is true
Ans. (b) The Prayaga Assembly was an assembly of universal character for offerings of royal charities to all classes of people. It was known as the Maha Moksha Parishad. Harsha was at his best in the Prayaga Assembly as a generous monarch and an admirer of all the major faiths of his country. • In the later part of his reign, however, Harsha became an exponent of the Mahayana form of Buddhism. It is suggested that his strong liking for Mahayanism was due to his close association with Hiuen Tsang, famously described as the Chinese ‘Master of the Law’.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2001]


44. Which one of the following animals was NOT represented on the seals and terracotta art of the Harappan culture?
(a) Cow (b) Elephant
(c) Rhinoceros (d) Tiger
Ans. (a) Cow was not represented on the seals and terracotta art of Harappan civilisation.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2001]


45. Assertion (A): The Aham and Puram poems of the Padinen Kilukanakku group formed a continuation of the Sangam composition.
Reason (R): They were included under the Post-
Sangam works as against the Sangam works proper.
(a) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation of A
(b) Both A and R are true, but R is not a correct explanation of A
(c) A is true, but R is false
(d) A is false, but R is true
Ans. (a) On the basis of interpretation and context, the Sangam literature can be described into two types viz. Agam (inner) and Puram (outer). The topics of Agam are related to personal and human aspects such as love and sexual things. The topics of Puram are related to human experiences and emotions such as Heroism, Valor, Ethics and Philanthropy. The poems have also been classified on nature themes which are known as Thinai. Patinenkilkanakku is the post Sangam work that is of Agam as well as Puram context.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2000]


46. Assertion (A): The origin of feudal system in ancient India can be traced to military campaigns.
Reason (R): There was considerable expansion of the feudal system during the Gupta period.
(a) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation of A
(b) Both A and R are true, but R is not a correct explanation of A
(c) A is true, but R is false
(d) A is false, but R is true
Ans. (d) The sources of the Gupta period suggest that certain important changes were taking place in the agrarian society. Feudal development surfaced under the Guptas with the grant of fiscal and administrative concessions to priests and administrators. Started in the Deccan by the Satavahanas, the practice became a regular affair in Gupta times.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2000]


47. Assertion (A): The emphasis of Jainism on nonviolence
(ahimsa) prevented agriculturalists from embracing Jainism.
Reason (R): Cultivation involved killing of insects and pests.
(a) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation of A
(b) Both A and R are true, but R is not a correct explanation of A
(c) A is true, but R is false
(d) A is false, but R is true
Ans. (a) Agriculturists were prevented from embracing Jainism because cultivation involves killing of pests and insects which was against the principle of nonviolence (ahimsa) of Jainism.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2000]


48. Which one of the following dynasties was ruling over North India at the time of Alexander’s invasion?
(a) Nanda (b) Maurya
(c) Sunga (d) Kanva
Ans. (a) Dhana Nanda was the last king of Nanda Empire. When Alexander the Great invaded India, the ruler of Magadha Empire was Dhana Nanda. Alexander and his army heard the glory of the army of Nanda Empire.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2000]


49. Assertion (A): Ashoka annexed Kalinga to the Mauryan Empire.
Reason (R): Kalinga controlled the land and sea routes to South India.
(a) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation of A
(b) Both A and R are true, but R is not a correct explanation of A
(c) A is true, but R is false
(d) A is false, but R is true
Ans. (a) Moreover since its independence Kalinga became an arch enemy of Magadha and allied itself with Chola and Pandya countries of South against Magadha. Thus, Ashoka invaded Kalinga. • Kalinga had a vast army and could be detrimental for the security of the Maurya Empire. It was also true that due to her commercial relation with Malay, Java and Ceylon Kalinga had enormous material prosperity. Possibly this had also provoked Asoka to invade Kalinga.
IAS UPSC Previous Papers GS General Studies Paper-1 [2000]



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