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Kerala Plus Two History Chapter Wise Questions and Answers Chapter 7 Peasants, Zamindars and the State (Agrarian Society and the Mughal Empire)
Writer of Ain-i-Akbari.
What does ‘Muzarian’ mean?
The king that banned tobacco
What does ‘mandal’ mean?
What does ‘jungli’ mean?
A forest produce hat was exported to foreign countries?
Resin from trees.
Private lands of zamindars.
Head of the revenue department during the Mughal period.
Who brought mansabdari system?
The person who translated Ain-i-Akbar.
Arrange the following incidents in chronological order:
a. The First Battle of Panipat
b. The British exile Bahadur Shah II
c. Reign of Akbar
d. Nadir Shah attacks India
a. The First Battle of Panipat
c. Reign of Akbar
d. Nadir Shah attacks India
b. The British exile Bahadur Shah II
What are the four names used in the Indo-Persian sources to indicate farmers?
Raiyat, Muzarian, Khud Kashta and Pahi Kashta.
Who are Khud Kashta and Pahi Kashta? What are their differences?
Khud Kashta had their own farmlands in the village. They stayed there permanently and did agricultural work. In short, they are permanent dwellers in the village.
Pahi Kashta did not have lands of their own. They did agricultural work on a contract basis. They did not do agricultural work permanently or stay permanently in the village.
Mention the 4 things that helped agricultural growth in the Mughal period.
- Limitless land
- Availability of plenty of labourers
- Mobility of the farmers
- Irrigation facilities
Name two crops that were related to the seasons.
Agriculture was done in two seasons – Spring and Autumn. The Spring crops were called Kharif and the Autumn crops were called Rabi.
Mention the two important responsibilities the Mandal (Head of the Village) had. Were the Mandals corrupt?
The main responsibility of the Village Head was supervising the income and expenditure. A Patwari (accountant) helped him in this duty.
In Eastern India, all marriages were conducted in the presence of the Mandal (Village Head). In other words, he had the responsibility to observe the behaviour of people so that they did not breach the Jati laws.
Mandals often misused their powers. With the help of the Patwari, they often falsified accounts. They showed a lesser income from their property but they charged more from smaller farmers.
There were Jati Panchayats during the Mughal period. What were the things they did?
Apart from the Village Panchayat, each Jati had its own ‘Jati Panchayat’. They had considerable authority in the village community. They had the following responsibilities.
- In Rajasthan, they settled civil differences among the members.
- They worked as mediators in land disputes.
- They judged if marriages were conducted as per Jati laws.
- They decided the protocol to be followed at village functions.
- Except in criminal cases, the decisions of the Jati Panchayats were accepted by the government.
What is meant by ‘jins-i-kamil’? Why did the Mughal rulers encourage it?
It means perfect crops. It referred to cash crops. Since they brought income to the country, Mughal rulers encouraged farmers of cash crops. The most important jins-i-kamil were cotton and sugar cane. Cotton was cultivated in Central. India and the highlands of Deccan. Bengal was famous for sugar cane. Pulses and oil.seeds like mustard also were considered cash crops. It shows there was mixture of food crops and cash crops in the country.
Going away from the village (Abandoning) was a way of protest in the Mughal period. Explain
Often farmers of the Lower castes complained against officials of the government and zamindars. The decision of the Panchayats would depend on the type of case. Where the case was related to excessive tax, Panchayat often suggested some kind of reconciliation between the parties. If the settlement did not come, farmers often protested. Sometimes they went away, abandoning the village. Land lying without cultivation was available everywhere. Moreover, labourers were in great demand. In the circumstances, leaving the village was a good way of protest by farmers.
The agriculturists of the Mughal period were also artisans. Comment.
In a village community, it was not easy to distinguish between agriculturists and artisans. People often worked as both. Even agriculturists and their families dyed clothes did embroidery, made earthenwares, made agricultural implements and repaired them. The leisure period between the stages of agriculture – the period between sowing and weeding, between weeding and harvesting, etc. – was used for manufacturing small useful items.
What is Jajmani system? What are its main features?
The artisans received their remuneration in different ways. Jajmani was an Indian system of interaction between upper castes and lower castes. It was an economic system where lower castes performed various functions for upper castes and received grain in return. In the Jajmani system, the artisans and owners of the land discuss things and come to an agreement regarding payment. For example, the zamindars in Bengal paid the ironsmiths, carpenters and goldsmiths some money and the remaining in grains.
The activities of the forest dwellers for their livelihood were connected with the seasons. Do you agree with this statement? Do these activities are connected with their mobility?
The forest dwellers who earned their living by collecting forest produce, hunting and rotating cultivation were called jungli. All these activities were based on seasons. For example, the Bhills in Uttar Pradesh collected forest produce during Spring. They did fishing in Summer, agriculture in the rainy season and hunting in Autumn. Naturally, they could not – continue living in the same place for long. They moved from place to place to carry on with their various activities. Mobility was an important factor for the Junglis.
Describe two reasons which brought the Zamindars high status.
The first reason is Jati. All the Zamindars belonged to the higher caste. The second reason is the services (khidmat) they rendered to the country.
The weaker sections of the society had some ways to acquire the status of Zamindars. What were they?
The Zamindars got united in different ways. These include the colonization of new lands, the exchange of land rights, older of the government, and the purchase of the land. Using some of these ways the lower class people could rise to the status of Zamindars. Zamindaris (lands of the zamindai) were often bought and sold.
Although Zamindars were generally exploiters, their relations with the agriculturists were those of mutuality, paternal affection and patronage. Examine the truth of this statement.
There is no doubt that the Zamindars were an exploitative tribe. They exploited peasants in different ways. But their relations with the agriculturists were often those of mutuality, paternal affection and patronage. Two things prove this.
- Firstly, we see that the Bhakti ascetics did not show Zamindars as exploitators of persecutors. These ascetics had strongly criticised the discriminatory measures on Jati basis and the tortures and other repressive measures used against the lower classes by the upper classes. They criticized the revenue officials but not the Zamindars. It shows the relation between Zamindars and farmers was good.
- Secondly, in the 17th century, there were a number of agricultural uprising in North India. Most of them were against the state and not against Zamindars. Sometimes Zamindars got the support of the peasants when they protested against the state.
What do the words ‘Jama’ and ‘Hasil’ show?
The first step in the land revenue system is the determination of the amount of tax to be given by the farmer. This amount is called Jama. The collection of the tax is the second stage. Hie amount collected is known as ‘Hasil’.
When was the writing of “Akbar-nama” by Abut Fasal completed? How many books are there? Explain.
In 1598, the 42nd year of Akbar’s reign, Akbar-nama v was completed. Ain-i-Akbari is part of the Akbarmama.
Akbarnama has three books; The first two books art historical writing. The first book deals with the Mughal history before Akbar. The second book deals with the rule of Akbar until 1602. Ain-i-Akbari is planned as a collection of royal laws, and a description of the geography of the empire.
How did the coming of external powers influence village life?
External powers came into village life. The most important of them was the Mughal power The majority of the income of the Mughal ruler came from agricultural products. Therefore, the agents of the government tried to control the village community. These officials included tax assessors, tax collectors and keepers of records. They made sure that work was going on regularly and taxes were received.
- Village communities were connected with urban centres.
- Farmers produced a lot of things for the market Naturally trade, money and markets came into the village and thus connected them with the cities.
Describe the agricultural technologies and irrigation methods used during the Mughal period.
The government gave all kinds of support to farmers for irrigation projects. The government took the responsibility of making canals (Nahr and nala) in North India. Old canals were repaired. It was during Shah Jahan’s reign that the Shahnahar Canal in Punjab was repaired. For irrigation, even well-water was used Water Was drawn from wells using wheel and bullocks. Babar describes the various methods used in irrigating the land in his memoir ‘Babar-nama’. He points out that people used Persian wheel, bucket and rope to get water from the well.
Agriculture depended on the efforts of people, they also used animal power. There were wooden ploughs in use. Using iron ploughshares on wooden ploughs made it easy to make furrows. But the furrows would not be deep dry grounds. There they used drills They spattered the seed by hand – They, also used an iron blade for digging and weeding.
What is Mansabdari system?
This was a special feature of the Mughal rule. It was Akbar who put it into operation, It is a system which joined the civil and military positions. Mansab means status or position. The official who got the position of. mansab is called mansabdar. Akbar gave all officials this status. These officials were to keep a certain number of cavalrymen under them. ThusAkbarwas able to combine civil and military duties in an official. Some mansabdars were given money as their salary. But many were assigned lands in place of money. These lands were called jagirs. From these jagirs, the mansabdars could collect taxes equal to the amount of their salary. Mansabdars were frequently transferred.
Assess the role of women in agricultural production.
In the agricultural community of the Middle Ages, women played an important role. They worked alongside men in the fields. When men ploughed the land and made furrows, women sowed seeds. Later they weeded, harvested and separated the chaff from the grain.
- In the Middle Ages, in agricultural communities, all human efforts and resources were used for production. Naturally, there was no gender discrimination here.
- Even then women were given some special considerations because of their childbearing nature. In Western India, women who were having their periods were not allowed to touch the plough or the potter’s wheel. In Bengal, menstruating women were not allowed into the betel leaf farms.
- Things, like spinning, making the clay ready for pot making, stitching etc., were mainly done by women. With the commercialization of products, the role of women began to increase. Women worked not only in their homes and fields but also in the households of their employers. Sometimes they even went to the market for selling things.
Land tax was very important in the economic system of the Mughals. Justify the relevance in this statement.
The basis of Mughal economy was land. Land tax was the main source of the government’s income. Because of that to ensure that taxes came in, the government appointed a number of officials to assess the land tax and to collect it. The head of the revenue department (Daftar) was Diwan. He supervised the economic system of the Empire. To help the Diwan there was an Amil-Guzar (Revenue Collector) and many other officials. These officials went around the villages to ensure that taxes came to the Treasury. They became a Strong power in formulating agricultural relationships with the government.
Before fixing the tax, the state collected all the information regarding the agricultural lands and their products. There were two stages in the tax system of the Mughals: Fixing Tax and its actual collection. The first step in the land revenue system is the determination of the amount of tax to be given by the farmer. This amount is called Jama. The collection of the tax is the second stage. The amount collected is known as ‘Hasil’.
Farmers could pay their tax in cash or in goods. The government preferred cash. The government had tried to raise the tax to the maximum. But often it could not collect the fixed tax. Regional circumstances often prevented the government from collecting the entire tax.
Write an essay assessing the position women had in the agricultural sector and in society during the Mughal period.
In different communities, men and women played some special roles in the field of production. In the agricultural community Of the Middle Ages, women played an important role. They worked alongside men in the fields. When the men ploughed the land and made furrows, the women sowed the seeds. Later they weeded, harvested and separated the chaff from the grain.
In the Middle Ages, in agricultural communities, all human efforts and resources were used for production. Naturally, there was no gender discrimination here.
Even then women were given some special considerations because of their nature. In Western India, women who were having their periods were not allowed to touch the plough or the potter’s wheel. In Bengal, menstruating women were not allowed into the betel leaf, farms.
Things, like spinning, making the clay ready for pot making, stitching etc., were mainly done by women. With the commercialization of products, the role of women began to increase. Women worked not only in their homes and fields but also in the households of their employers. Sometimes they even went to the market for selling things.
Village communities depended on work for their livelihood. There was a need for more hands to work in the fields. As persons who brought forth children, women were seen as an important group. But the death rate among women was high. Lack of nutrition, regular childbirth, death during delivery, etc. were the reasons for their higher death rate. As a result, there was a considerable reduction in the number of married women. In the agricultural and artisan communities, this caused the rise of some special social customs. These customs were different from those practised by the upper classes. In some communities, instead of getting a dowry, men started giving bride-price. Laws also permitted remarriage of widows and divorced women.
Women had this importance of being the sources of producing children. Society was worried if their importance would make society lose control over them. By the established social laws, man was the head of the family. The male members of the family and the community imposed strict laws on women. Women who were suspected of cheating were severely punished.
Women could complain to the Panchayat against the misbehaviour of their husbands. From the documents received from Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra, we can see complaints of women sent to the Grama Panchayats seeking justice. Women protested against their men’s cheating (marital infidelity). They also complained against the negligence of their husbands towards their wives and children. Infidelity of men was not often punished. But the state and the higher communities tried to bring comfort to their families. Generally, names of the complaining women were not written in the Panchayat records. Instead, the complainant was referred to as the mother of a certain person, his sister or his wife.
The condition of the wives of the landowners was much better. They had the right to get ancestral property. In Punjab, women, including widows, were actively involved in the market to sell the properties they received as heritage. Hindu and Muslim women got zamindaris as hereditary property. They had the freedom to sell them or mortgage them. In the 18th century, there were a number of known zamindaris in the name of women in Bengal. One of the biggest and most famous zamindaris, Rajshahi, was in the control of a woman.