Civil Services Mains Exam 2020: History Optional Paper-I
Baljit Dhaka

Civil Services Mains Exam 2020: History Optional Paper-I

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Civil Services Mains Exam 2020: History Optional Paper-I

Marks-250                                                                                                Time: Three Hours

Question Paper Specific Instructions:

Please read each of the following instructions carefully before attempting questions.

  • There are EIGHT questions divided into two sections.
  • Candidate has to attempt FIVE questions in all.
  • Questions no 1 and 5 are compulsory and out of the remaining, THREE are to be attempted choosing at least ONE from each section.
  • The number of marks carried by a question /part is indicated against it.
  • Word limit in questions, wherever specified should be adhered to.
  • Attempts of questions shall be counted in chronological order. Unless struck off, an attempt of a question shall be counted even if attempted partly. Any page or portion of the page left blank in the answer book must be clearly struck off.


Q1. Identify the following places marked on the map supplied to you and write a short note of about 30 words on each of them in your Question-cum-Answer Booklet. Locational hints for each of the places marked on the map are given below seriatim. 50 marks

(i)Paleolithic Site                                                          (xi) Ancient Capital City

(ii) Paleolithic Factory site                                            (xii) Place of Shaiva Temple

(iii) Neolithic Site                                                          (xiii) World heritage centre of temple complex

(iv) Early and Mature Harappan Site                             (xiv) An Inscriptional site

(v) Chalcolithic site                                                        (xv) Place of Jain Temple

(vi) Site of Coin and Seal Moulds                                  (xvi) Largest Buddhist Monastery

(vii) Ancient Administration Centre                               (xvii) Ancient Temple Complex

(viii) Ancient Political Headquarter                                (xviii) Place of Oldest Mosque

(ix) Ancient Temple site                                                 (xix) Temple Complex dedicated to Shiva

(x) Pre and Proto Historic site                                        (xx) Ancient Education Centre

Q2. (a) Purans were the innovative genre of literature to popularise and revive Vedic religion. Elaborate with examples. 15 marks

(b) Discuss the factors that played an important role in the process of urbanisation after the Later- Vedic period. 15 marks

(c) Throw light on the nature of religion and classification of gods mentioned in the Rigveda. 20 marks

Q3. (a) Evaluate the significant political features of the Post Mauryan Northern India. What are the main source of it? 15 marks

(b) A number of scholars considered Alexander as ‘The Great’, although long term impacts of Alexander’s invasion on India need to be re-evaluated. Comment. 15 marks

(c) Discuss the salient features of cultural traditions of South India as reflected in Sangam Literature. 15 marks

Q4. (a) ‘Sanskrit literature of classical Gupta Age set standards for the early medieval India’. Evaluate the statement with representative examples. 15 marks

(b) Trace and identify the changing pattern of Tantrism in Ancient India with examples. 15 marks

(c) Describe the evolution and development of regional temple architecture of South India with special reference to Pallavas. 20 marks


Q5. Answer the following questions in about 150 words each: 10x5= 50 marks

(a) Critically evaluate the Muslim Nobility during the period of tughlaq dynasty.

(b) Describe in detail about the foreign travellers accounts which gave information of Vijayanagar Kingdom.

(c) How did international trade support urbanisation in North India during the 13-14th century CE.

(d) Evaluate the aim and impact of the translation of Sanskrit scriptures into Persian language during Mughal period. 

(e) Examine the sources of the history of Chhatrapati Shivaji with special reference to Shivabharat and Sabhasad Bakhar.

Q6. (a) Assess the cause of the defeat of Northern Indian States against the Turkish invasion. 15 marks

(b) Amuktamalyada dwells much upon the relationship of fort, Brahmanas and dispersed tribal groups. Comment. 15 marks

(c) Elaborate upon the agrarian reforms of Alauddin Khilji. 20 marks

Q7. (a) Describe village polity and economy of medieval Deccan. 15 marks

(b) Some new crafts production were introduced by the Turks. Comment. 15 marks

(c) The mission of Kabir was to preach a religion of love which would unite all castes and creeds. Explain. 20 marks

Q8. (a) Evaluate the contribution of Sher Shah towards trade and commerce, administration, and agricultural reforms. 15 marks

(b) Make an estimate of the development of paintings under Mughal rulers with special reference to colours, technique, themes and influences on them. 15 marks

(c) Critically evaluate history of the Eighteenth century India with reference to culture and economy. 20 marks

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