Karala Plus Two Political Science Chapter Wise Questions and Answers Chapter 2 Era of One Party Dominance
Choose the correct option to fill in the blanks.
a. The First General Elections in 1952 involved simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and …………………
(The President of India / State Assemblies / Rajya Sabha /The Prime Minister)
a. State Assemblies
b. The party that won the second largest number of Lok Sabha seats in the first elections was the (Praja Socialist Party / Bharatiya Jana Sangh / Communist Party of India / Bharatiya Janata Party)
Communist Party of India
c. One of the guiding principles of the Swatantra Party was …, (Working class interests / Protection of Princely States / Economy free from state control / Autonomy of states with in the Union)
Economy free from State control
Match the following leaders listed in List A with the parties in List B.
List “A” List “ B”
|List “A”||List “ B”|
|1||S.A.Dange||A||Baratiya Jana Sangh|
|2||Shyama Prasad Mukherjee||B||Swatantra Party|
|3||Minoo Masani||C||Praja Socialist Party|
|4||Asoka Mehta||D||Communist Party of India|
1-D; 2-A; 3-B; 4-C
Four statements regarding one party dominance are given below. Mark each of them as true or false.
A) One Party dominance is rooted in the absence of strong alternative political parties.
B) One Party dominance occurs because of weak public opinion.
C) One Party dominance is linked to the nation’s colonial past.
D) One – Party dominance reflects the absence of democratic ideals in a country.
a. true b. false c. true d. false
In one of the following states, for the first time in history, the communist party came to power through
election. Identify the state.
The following are the hints about a particular party.
a) The party was formed in 1951 by Syama Prasad Mukhargee.
b) BJP is said to be originated from this party.Identify the political party.
Bhartiya Jan Sangh
Choose the name that does not go along with others. A.K. Gopalan, EMS Namboodiripad, Syama Prasad Mukherjee, S.A. Dange.
Shyama Prasad Mukherjee
Institutional Revolutionary Party is associated with Myanmar, Cuba, Mexico, China
Find out the Political Parties associated with the following leaders.
b) S.A. Dange
c) Shyama Prasad Mukherjee
d) Asoka Mehta
e) SardarVallabhai Patel
Communist Party of India, Indian National Congress, Bharatiya Jana Sangh, Praja Socialist Party, Swathanthra Party
a. Masani – Swatantra Party
b. S.A. Dange – Communist Party of India
c. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee – Bharatiya San Sangh
d. Ashok Mehta – Praja Socialist Party
e. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel – Indian National Congress
“Swathanthra Party” has its own ideological features. One of its ideologies is given below. Find out any other four ideologies.
1) ………….. 2) ……………
3) …………. 4) …………….
1. Economy free from State control.
2. No Central Planning
3. The Public Undertakings should not be nationalized.
4. Encourage Private sector and maintain good relations with the USA.
Match the following.
|C. Rajagopalachari||Communist Party of India|
|Deen Dayal Upadyaya||Praja Socialist Party|
|Acharya Narendra Dev||Swatantra Party|
|SA. Dange||Bharatiya Jana Sangh|
|C. Rajagopalachari||Swatantra Party|
|Deen Dayal Upadyaya||Bharatiya Jana Sangh|
|Acharya Narendra Dev||Praja Socialist Party|
|SA. Dange||Communist Party of India|
Match the items of column A with B.
|Sukumar Sen||Plutaroo Elias Cailes|
|1951 .||EMS Namboodiripad|
|Aoharya Narendra Dev||Bharatiya Jana’Sangh|
|Mexico||Congress Socialist Party|
|Communist government||Chief Election Commissiner|
|Sukumar Sen||Chief Election Commissiner|
|1951 .||Bharatiya Jana’Sangh|
|Aoharya Narendra Dev||Congress Socialist Party|
|Mexico||Plutaroo Elias Cailes|
|Communist government||EMS Namboodiripad|
Link column A with appropriate items from B.
|a) S A Dange||Swathanthra Party|
|b) Acharya Narendra Dev||Bharathiya Janasangh|
|c) Minoo Masan||Congress Socialist Party|
|d) Syamaprasad Mukherjee||CPI|
b. Congress Socialist Party
c. Swathanthra Party
d. Bharathiya Janasangh
The following are some facts related to different political parties in India,
a) Formed in the year 1948
b) Believed in the ideology of democratic socialism.
c) In the first general election it won seats and emerged as the largest opposition party.
d) Formed in the year 1951 with Syama Prasad Mukherjee as its founder president.
e) A.K. Gopalan, S.A. Dange, E.M.S. Namboodiripad etc. were the notable leaders of this party.
f) It emphasised the ideology of one country, one culture and one nation. Categorise them into three and arrange them in the given table.
|Name of the Political Parties||Features of Political Parties|
Kerala, in India, is different in many aspects. To a large extent we are obliged to the first communist ministry in Kerala. Write a short note on the first communist ministry in Kerala.
In the Assembly Election of March 1957 in Kerala, the Communist Party obtained the largest number of seats. Out of 126 seats, 60 were won by the Communist Party. They also got the support of 5 Independent Members. Therefore the then Governor invited EMS Namboodiripad, the leader of the Majority Party in the Legislature, to form the Government This was the first Communist Government in the world that came to power through ballot.
The Congress Party declared a Liberation Struggle against the Communist Government. According to the Communists, this protest was organized with the support of some religious leaders and other interested groups to prevent the Communist Government from making reforms for the welfare of the masses. In 1959, using Article 356 of the Constitution, the Central Government dismissed the Communist Government of Kerala. Many people criticised this action by the Centre. They thought that this was a misuse of the powers entrusted to the Centre by Article 356.
A: “Gorbachev was the only person responsible for the disintegration of the Soviet Union”.
B: “I don’t think so, there are so many other factors including the inborn drawback of the Soviet System”.
Analyse the above comments.
The reforms like Glasnost and Perestroika which Gorbachev introduced definitely quickened the disintegration of the Soviet Union. But it would not be right to say that Gorbachev alone was responsible for the fall of the Soviet Union. There were some other reasons also. They included political, economic reasons and things related to the independence of the constituent parts of the Soviet Union. The Soviet System was not entirely free from defects. It was against democratic principles. The ruling was done by the Communist Party and the officials. There was . rampant corruption. Because of all this, the government lost the support of the people.
Secondly, there was a serious economic depression in the Soviet Union. Because of this, the availability of everyday goods became less. In technology also, Soviet Union went behind the USA. The entire revenue of the country was spent on defense and to improve the conditions in the East European countries. Thirdly, the members of the Soviet Union wanted to secede from the Union and become independent. The Baltic countries, Ukraine, Georgia, etc. wanted to be free. This was another reason for the downfall of the Soviet Union.
Therefore, we can safely say that it was not merely Gorbachev that caused the downfall of the Soviet Union. There were other reasons, too. The reforms of Gorbachev gave people more freedom which helped them to voice their grievances openly. All this culminated in the break-up of the Soviet Union.
As the elder member of your family, you are very much surprised, when you cast your vote through Electronic Voting Machine. Can you explain your voting experience from the first general election to the younger members of your family?
In the first election, the authorities, who were responsible for conducting it, would give a ballot paper to the voter. He could drop it in the box of the candidate of his choice. In the polling booth there would be boxes on which the signs (symbols) of varipus candidates were prominently displayed. In those days many people were not literate. India had adopted the system of universal adult franchise.
After the first two elections, this system of voting was changed. The later ballot papers contained the names and signs of various candidates. The voters had to place a mark against the candidate of their choice. For nearly 40 years, this practice continued. By the end of the 1990s, electronic voting machines were introduced. Since 2004, the entire country has been using this electronic voting system. This system is easier and it can be used even by illiterate people.
Most of the newly independent states adopted non democratic rule to protect national unity. To them democracy will introduce differences and conflicts. But the leaders of newly independent India decided to adopt democracy because our freedom struggle was deeply committed to the idea of democracy. So we decided to conduct elections on the basis of Universal Adult Franchise. An Indian editor called it “ the biggest gamble in history”. In the light of this comment can you try to analyze the process of the first General Election in India.
Hints: – Biggest democratic state.
Largest illiterate population.
Little experience with the concept of election and democracy.
Most countries, on independence, preferred to have a government under a single ruler. This ended up either in party rule, dictatorship or military rule. They felt that such a rule was the best for national security. But the leaders of India gave preference to democracy. There were many reasons for that. First of all, our independence struggle was based on democratic principles. Secondly, our leaders looked at politics not as a problem, but as a means of finding solutions to problems.
At the time of independence, an ad-hoc government was ruling the country. Therefore it was necessary to have a democratic form of government. The First Election Commission came into existence in 1950 with Mr. SukumarSen as the Election Commissioner. The first election also was expected in 1950.
In a country like India a free and fair election was not easy to conduct. We had 3 major challenges – the formation of electoral constituencies, the making of the voters’ list, and participation of the people. For all this, a lot of time was required.The first voting was a really big event. Such a huge event had never taken place anywhere in the world before. The people with voting rights were nearly 17 crores, but only 15% of them were literate. Therefore the Commission had to think about the system of voting. The Election Commission trained nearly 300,000 officials and polling officers.
The election of this country with such a huge amount of illiterate people was very unusual. It was a really big experiment. Until then only developed nations had democratic governments, notably North America and Europe. In Europe, women had no voting rights. In such circumstances, Universal Adult Franchise in India was really a great adventure. Many criticized it. The first election in India took place between October 1951 and February 1952. Election propaganda, voting, and counting the votes took more than 6 months. There was tough competition. For each seat, an average of 4 candidates competed. More than 50% of the people voted. When the results were declared the winners and losers accepted the ver diet. Thus the Indian experiment was a success and India was able to contain the evil tongues that pre.dieted disaster.
“ In the first three General Elections Congress Party dominated the Indian political scene”. Prepare a seminar paper showing the nature of Congress dominance in India.
My dear teacher, my dear students, the seminar paper I am presenting today is about the “Dominance of a Single Party in Indian Politics”, in all the 3 general elections after independence, the Congress won brutal majorities. There were some reasons for that.
- Congress had led Independence struggle.
- Congress was the only party which had spread all across India.
- The popularity of Jawaharlal Nehru
Because of all these reasons, Congress had expected victory. When the final results came, the astounding success of the Congress Party surprised everyone. It made all other parties lag much behind. It won 364 out of the 489 seats. The same was the case in the States. The exceptions to this were Travancore-Cochin, Madras and Orissa.
In the later two elections (1957,1962) also Congress repeated its success. Some people thought the victory of the Congress Party was because of the system of our election. This system was pro¬Congress. Although 3 out of 4 seats were won by the Congress, it did not have even the support of 50% of the voters. The votes polled by other parties were more than the votes polled by Congress. Now in this seminar, we examine how the votes and dominance of Congress became a landmark in the history of the country.
The dominant nature of Congress:
The dominance of Congress in India was an unusual event in world history, in many other countries democracy was not allowed to take roots. In countries like China, Cuba and Syria the Constitution envisaged one-party rule. But in India, the Congress stood firm on the democratic principles and was able to form governments. Although different parties competed in the free and fair elections, Congress came out first. There were some reasons for the unusual success of Congress.. It had the leadership in the freedom struggle. Secondly, it was the leaders who fought for freedom that stood as the candidates for election. Thirdly only Congress had a good organizational set up at that time. Only Congress had its presence in all the States of India and all this helped in Congress having the upper hand.
Congress as a social and ideological fellowship:
Another reason for the success of Congress was its social and ideological stands. In 1885, when it was formed, it included different social groups and ideologies. It grew as an organization of the intellectuals. But by the 20th century it became an organization for all kinds of people. It used to be a party of the English-speaking elite in the cities. But with the coming of the Non-Cooperation Movement, its membership spread into the masses. Industrialists, city-dwellers, villagers, labourers, capitalists, etc. became members of the Congress Party. Thus it became a party representing people at different levels, religions and languages.
Many groups integrated themselves with the Congress. Thus Congress became a fellowship of ideologies. It included revolutionaries, peace-lovers, moderates, radials, and people of the left and right ideologies. The first election results itself showed the popularity of Congress.
Tolerance and attitude towards various groups:
These two factors made Congress stronger. It had the character of a coalition. Two good things came out of this. First it became a party where all people could join. Amicable settlements to problems became the trademark of the party. Even during the Freedom Struggle itself the party had different leaders with different opinions but they could continue to work together in a spirit of give and take. Even when a group did not get a post or position which it deserved, it stayed inside the party and fought for its rights without coming out of the party opposing it. They were called groups. This policy created problems for the Opposition. The things the Opposition was trying to highlight were pointed out by the Congress members themselves.
In short, the dedication the Congress had to democracy, its ability to include differing opinions within itself, and its tolerance of various groups enabled Congress to remain in the number one position for quite a long time. Its leadership during the freedom struggle and the popularity of Nehru proved big assets to the Party. As the functions of the Opposition Parties were carried out within the Party by the different groups, the Opposition became weak.
In a democracy the opposition party plays a vital role along with the ruling party. Prepare an assignment note showing the development of the opposition parties in India.
India had more opposition parties than in any other democratic country. But in the first 3 elections the opposition parties were very weak. Even then historically they performed some important functions. Even before independence, there were political parties other than Congress. In the period 1960-70, they played a big role in the growth of India. The coming of the present non-Congress parties is related to the Opposition Parties of the 1950s. They could win only very few seats in the Parliament and the Assemblies. Still they were able to maintain the democratic process ‘ in the country. It also helped the ruling party not to move into undemocratic one-party rule.
In those days the democratic state of our country was exemplary. The Congress leaders and the Opposition leaders had mutual respect for one another. When an adhoc government was formed, leaders of the Opposition parties like Dr Ambedkar and Shyanra Prasad Mukherjee were in the Ministry. Nehru had invited the Socialist leader Jaya Prakash Narayan into his Ministry. But slowly all this changed. Since the Congress Party could not satisfy the needs of its own groups, it led to disunity in the Party. This made other parties strong. Here are some of the major parties that became prominent during this period.
Communist Party of India: This came into existence in the 1920s. The prominent leaders were A.K. Gopalan, SA. Dange, EMS Namboodiripad, P.C. Ghosh and P. Sundarayya. In the beginning it worked in the shadow of the Congress Party. A change came when the Communist Party supported Britain against Nazi Germany. Different from the other non-Congress Parties, the Communist Party was well-organized and the members were highly devoted to the Party and they were willing to undertake fresh activities. The Party was of the opinion that the independence the country got in 1947 was not real independence.
Although it gave support to the Telangana Revolts, it did not get enough popular approval. In 1951, they abandoned the principle of armed struggle, and decided to participate in the elections.. In the first election they won 16 seats. It thus became the largest Opposition Party in the Lok Sabha. The Party had strong bases in Andhra, West Bengal, Bihar and Kerala. Because of the ideological rift between the Soviet Union and China, in 1964 the Communist Party of India was split into two. One was known as the Communist Party of India and the other was known as CPI (Marxist). They continue to work as CPI and CPM.
Bhartiva Jan Sanqh:
It was founded in 1951. The important leaders were Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, Deen Dayal Upadhyaya and Balraj Madhok. BJS is different from other political parties because of their ideas and schemes.
- They stress the ideology of one country, one culture and one nation.
- For India’s progress and growth, they want to fall back upon its culture and traditions.
- They want he reunification of India and Pakistan. Thus they have the concept of a greater, undivided India.
- They organized many protests insisting that Hindi should be the only official language of India.
- They do not want to give any kind of concessions to religious and cultural minorities.
- They want India to have atomic weapons.
In the first two elections, the BJS could get only very few votes. In 1952 and 1957 they gained 3 and 4 seats respectively. In the beginning their supporters were mainly from the Hindi-speaking States – Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, and UR The BJP originated from the BJS.
It was established in August 1959. Prominent leaders were C. Rajagopalachari, K.M. Munshi, M.G. Ranga and Minoo Masani. The Swatantra Party was formed in the light of the economic policy declared by the Nagpur Conference of the Congress. This Party was formed mainly to solve the economic problems of the country. The following were its policies:
- The Government should not make economic controls.
- Progress will come only through individual freedom.
- Governmental interference in economic matters, Central Planning, Nationalization, Public Sector Undertakings etc. will be against national progress.
- Encourage Private Sector.
- In the agricultural sector, the Party is against land ceilings, and trading with government interference.
- It is against increasing income tax and licensing of industries.
- It is against Russia and the Non-Aligned Movement.
- It wanted to establish more cordial relations with America.
As the interests of many groups were voiced by this Party, it received some strength. Many rulers of various Principalities, landowners, industrialists and businessmen supported this Party. They were not in favour of nationalization and land reforms. But because of its narrow social base and lack of sincere efforts from its members, it never grew into a popular party.
Explain briefly why we call the congress party as the center of Indian politics.
Indian National Congress is the oldest Political Party of India. It is difficult to distinguish between the history of India and the history of the Congress Party. Even after independence, the Congress Party became the centre of Indian politics. It was Congress that laid the foundation for the industrial development of India. It was because of all these reasons that Congress is called the centre of Indian politics.
What was the method of voting in the first general elections?
In the first general election, in each polling booth, each candidate had a box with his election symbol on it. Each voter was a given a white ballot paper and he was to deposit it in the box of his choice.
Mention any three characteristics of the party system in India. .
- In India there is multiparty democracy.
- The presence of provincial parties is something special here.
- The dominance of the Congress Party is another feature.
When was the Election Commission set up in India? Who was the first Chief Election Commission?
The Election Commission was set up in India in January 1950. The first Election Commissioner was SukumarSen.
Did the prevalence of a one party dominant system affect adversely the democratic nature of Indian politics?
In India there was a multi-Party system. Many political parties contested in the election. But the Congress had dominance in the Centre as well as in the States, especially priorto 1967. The dominance of one party adversely affected Indian democracy. In the absence of a strong opposition, the Congress Governments did not fulfill many of the promises it had made to the people. The administration became weak and corrupt.