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Part 002 – Polity & Constitution Previous Year Questions

Q1. The term “Greater India” denotes
(a) Political unity
(b) Cultural unity
(c) Religious unity
(d) Social unity
Ans: (b) Greater India was the historical extent of the culture of India beyond the Indian subcontinent. This particularly concerns the spread of Hinduism in Southeast Asia, introduced by the Indianized kingdoms of the 5th to 15th centuries, but may also refer to the spread of Buddhism from India to Central Asia and China by the Silk Road during the early centuries of the Common Era. To the west, Greater India overlaps with Greater Persia in the Hindu Kush and Pamir mountains. The term is tied to the geographic uncertainties surrounding the “Indies” during the Age of Exploration.

Q2. The two forms of democracy are
(a) Parliamentary and Presidential
(b) Direct and Indirect
(c) Monarchical and Republican
(d) Parliamentary and King
Ans: (a) Parliamentary democracy is a representative democracy where government is appointed by representatives as opposed to a ‘presidential rule’ wherein the President is both head of state and the head of government and is elected by the voters. Under a parliamentary democracy, government is exercised by delegation to an executive ministry and subject to ongoing review, checks and balances by the legislative parliament elected by the people. Presidential Democracy is a system where the public elects the president through free and fair elections. The president serves as both the head of state and head of government controlling most of the executive powers. The president serves for a specific term and cannot exceed that amount of time.

Q3. The Constitution of India contains
(a) 340 Articles
(b) 395 Articles
(c) 400 Articles
(d) 404 Articles
Ans: (b) Although the last article of the Constitution is Article 395, the total number, as of March 2012 is 448. New articles added through amendments have been inserted in the relevant location in the original constitution. In order not to disturb the original numbering, the new articles are inserted with alphanumberic enume-rations. For example, Article 21A pertaining to Right to Education was inserted by the 86th Amendment Act.

Q4. Which was described by Dr.
B.R. Ambedkar as the ‘heart and soul’ of the Constitution ?

(a) Right to Equality
(b) Right against Exploit-ation
(c) Right to Constitutional Remedies
(d) Right to Freedom of Religion
Ans: (c) Dr. B R Ambedkar, the chairman of the Drafting committee, cal led the fundamental right to constitutional remedies as the heart and soul of the Indian constitution. Right to constitutional remedies empowers the citizens to move a court of law in case of any denial of the fundamental rights. The courts can issue various kinds of writs. These writs are habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, quo warranto and certiorari.

Q5. In India, the concept of single citizenship is adopted from
(a) England (b) U.S.A.
(c) Canada (d) France
Ans: (a) The Indian Constitution borrowed such features as parliamentary form of government, introduction of Speaker and his role, the concept of single citizenship, the Rule of law, procedure of lawmaking, etc from England. The Indian citizenship and nationality law and the Constitution of India provide single citizenship for all of India.

Q6. The Drafting of the Constitution was completed on :
(a) 26th January, 1950
(b) 26th December, 1949
(c) 26th November, 1949
(d) 30th November, 1949
Ans: (c) A Draft Constitution was prepared by the committee and submitted to the Assembly on 4 November 1947. Draft constitution was debated and over 2000 amendments were moved over a period of two years. Finally on 26 November, 1949, the process was completed and Constituent assembly adopted the constitution. 284 members signed the document and the process of constitution making was complete.

Q7. Who was the President of the Constituent Assembly?
(a) Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru
(b) Sardar Patel
(c) Dr. Rajendra Prasad
(d) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar
Ans: (c) The first temporary 2-day president of the Constituent Assembly was Dr Sachidanand Sinha. Later, Rajendra Prasad was elected president of the Constituent Assembly.

Q8. The method of Impeachment of the President of India is adopted from
(a) U.S.A. (b) U.K.
(c) U.S.S.R. (d) France
Ans: (a) The Indian Constitution has borrowed some features from the U.S Constitution. Those features are: fundamental rights, independence of judiciary, judicial review, impeachment of the president, removal of Supreme Court and High Court judges and post of Vice-President.

Q9. Who was the Chairman of the Constituent Assembly ?
(a) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar
(b) Dr. Rajendra Prasad
(c) Jawahar Lal Nehru
(d) Vallabh Bhai Patel
Ans: (b) The Constituent Assembly of India was elected to write the Constitution of India. Following India’s independence from Great Britain, its members served as the nation’s first Parliament. Dr. Sachchidanand Sinha was the first president (temporary chairman) of the Constituent Assembly when it met on December 9, 1946. Dr. Rajendra Prasad then became the President of the Constituent Assembly, and would later become the first President of India.

Q10. The Constitution of India describes the country as a
(a) Union of States
(b) Federation
(c) Unitary State
(d) Confederation
Ans: (a) Part I of the Constitution of India describes the nation that is Bharat, shall be a Union of States. It also mentions that the states and the territories shall be specified in the First Schedule.

Q11. The concept of Constitution first originated in
(a) Switzerland (b) Britain
(c) U.S.A. (d) Japan
Ans: (b) England is treated as the place where the constitutional concept germinated, though the ancient Greek and Roman Republics, too, had such a facility. In England, Henry I’s proclamation of the Charter of Liberties in 1100 bound the king for the first time in his treatment of the clergy and the nobility. This idea was extended and refined by the English barony when they forced King John to sign Magna Carta in 1215. The most important single article of the Magna Carta, related to “habeas corpus”, provided that the king was not permitted to imprison, outlaw, exile or kill anyone at a whim—there must be due process of law first.

Q12. The provisional President of the Constituent Assembly was
(a) Dr. Sachchidananda Sinha
(b) Dr. Rajendra Prasad
(c) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar
(d) Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru
Ans: (a) Dr. Sachidanand Sinha was the first president of the Constituent Assembly. Later, Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected president of the Constituent Assembly while B.R. Ambedkar was appointed the Chairman of the Drafting Committee.

Q13. The Chairman of the Drafting Committee of the Indian Constitution was
(a) Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru
(b) Dr. Rajendra Prasad
(c) Mahatma Gandhi
(d) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar
Ans: (d) On the 14 August, 1947 meeting of the Assembly, a proposal for forming various committees was presented. Such committees included a Committee on Fundamental Rights, the Union Powers Committee and Union Constitution Committee. On 29 August, 1947, the Drafting Committee was appointed, with Dr B. R. Ambedkar as the Chairman along with six other members assisted by a constitutional advisor.

Q14. Who was the Chairman of the Constituent Assembly of India?
(a) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar
(b) Dr. Rajendra Prasad
(c) Dr. B.N. Rau
(d) Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru
Ans: (b) Dr. Sachchidananda Sinha was the first president (temporary chairman) of the Constituent Assembly when it met on December 9, 1946. Dr. Rajendra Prasad then became the President of the Constituent Assembly, and would later become the first President of India.

Q15. “Persons may change but rules should not change” is the principle of
(a) Absolute Monarchy
(b) Constitutional Government
(c) Unwritten Constitution
(d) Republic
Ans: (b) Constitutional government is defined by the existence of a constitution—which may be a legal instrument or merely a set of fixed norms or principles generally accepted as the fundamental law of the polity—that effectively controls the exercise of political power. Persons do not call the shots or frame rules in such governments. Everything that is to be governed is dictated by set of rules enshrined in the constitution.

Q16. The Constituent Assembly of India was set up under the
(a) Simon Commission proposals
(b) Cripps proposals
(c) Mountbatten plan
(d) Cabinet Mission plan
Ans: (d) The Constituent Assembly of India was elected to write the Constitution of India. The Constituent Assembly was set up while India was still under British rule, following negotiations between Indian leaders and members of the 1946 Cabinet Mission to India from the United Kingdom.

Q17. The two basic principles of the liberal theory of democracy as emphasised by John Locke, are
(a) Universal Adult Franchise and the Right to Property
(b) Representative Democracy andWorkers’ Rights
(c) Popular Sovereignty and constitutional government
(d) Women suffrage and popular sovereignty
Ans: (a) John Locke’s “Two Treatises on Government” of 1689 established two fundamental liberal ideas: economic liberty (meaning the right to have and use property) and intellectual liberty (including freedom of conscience). According to Locke, the individual was naturally free and only became a political subject out of free choice. Without the consent of the people there could not be formed a civil society/ community. Secondly, Locke emphasized that all men were equal. There was a perfect state of equality with all the power being reciprocal and no one having more than the other. This is a fundamental principle of present day democracy. From it, flows the democratic principle of universal participation. That no man shall be excluded from the political process.

Q18. ‘Cabinet system’ and ‘Collective responsibility’ are the contributions of
(a) Ireland (b) United States
(c) India (d) Britain
Ans: (d) Cabinet system and its collective responsibility is constitutional convention in governments using the Westminster System that members of the Cabinet must publicly support all govern-mental decisions made in Cabinet, even if they do not privately agree with them. This support includes voting for the government in the legislature. In the United Kingdom, the doctrine applies to all members of the government, from members of the cabinet down to Parliamentary Private Secretaries.

Q19. Direct Democracy is a system of Government in which
(a) People choose the Civil Servants
(b) People directly elect their Representatives.
(c) People take part directly in the policy making and administration of the country.
(d) Government officials consult people on various appointments.
Ans: (c) In general, the term “direct democracy” usually refers to citizens making policy and law decisions in person, without going through representatives and legislatures. Direct democracy is a form of democracy in which people vote on policy initiatives directly, as opposed to a representative democracy in which people vote for representatives who then vote on policy initiatives.

Q20. In India legal sovereignty is vested with
(a) the President
(b) the Judiciary
(c) the Cabinet
(d) the Constitution
Ans: (d) Legal sovereignty represents the lawyer’s conception of sovereignty. It is associated with the supreme law-making authority in the state. The body which has the power to issue final commands in the form of laws is the legal sovereign in a state. This power may be vested in one person or a body of persons. It may be a king or dictator or parliament. Legal sovereignty is organized and re-organized by constitutional law.

Q21. Who was the President of the Constituent Assembly of India?
(a) Dr. Br. Ambedkar
(b) Jawaharlal Nehru
(c) Dr. Rajendra Prasad
(d) Shri K. M. Munshi
Ans: (b) Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected the President of Constituent Assembly on 11 December, 1946. On January 26, 1950, the Constitution of independent India was ratified and Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected the nation’s first President.

Q22. Who was the Chairman of the Drafting Committee of the Constituent Assembly ?
(a) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar
(b) C. Rajagopalchari
(c) Dr. Rajendra Prasad
(d) Jawaharlal Nehru
Ans: (a) Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected president of the Constituent Assembly while B.R. Ambedkar was appointed the Chairman of the Drafting Committee.

Q23. What is meant when the Constitution declares India a “Secular State” ?
(a) Religious worship is not allowed
(b) Religions are patronised by the State
(c) The state regards religions as a private affairs of the citizen and does not discriminate on this basis
(d) None of these
Ans: (c) Secularism is the principle of separation of government institutions, and the persons mandated to represent the State, from religious institutions and religious dignitaries. India is a secular country as per the declaration in the Preamble to the Indian Constitution. It prohibits discrimination against members of a particular religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth. Every person has the right to preach, practice and propagate any religion they choose. The government must not favour or discriminate against any religion. It must treat all religions with equal respect. All citizens, irrespective of their religious beliefs are equal in front of law.

Q24. January 26 selected as the date for the inauguration of the Constitution, because
(a) it was considered to be an auspicious day
(b) on that day the Quit India Movement was started in 1942
(c) the Congress had observed it as the Independence Day in 1930
(d) None of these
Ans: (c) The Indian constitution was adopted by the Constituent Assembly on the 26th November, 1949 and it came into force after two months on 26th January, 1950. The day January 26 was chosen because it was this very day when the Poorna Swaraj resolution was made in Lahore in 1930 and the first tricolor of India unfurled.

Q25. The Unitary System of Government possesses which of the following advantages ?
(a) Greater adaptability
(b) Strong State
(c) Greater participation by the people
(d) Lesser Chances of authoritarianism
Ans: (b) A unitary system of government, or unitary state, is a sovereign state governed as a single entity. The central government is supreme and any administrative divisions (sub-national units) exercise only powers that their central government chooses to delegate. Lower-level governments, if they exist at all, do nothing but implement the policies of the national government.

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