Test: Nationalist Movement Phase 1(1905-1918) - 1

15 Questions MCQ Test History for UPSC CSE | Test: Nationalist Movement Phase 1(1905-1918) - 1

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Which of the following about the partition of Bengal is incorrect?

  • In July 1905, Viceroy and Governor-General Lord Curzon (1899-1905) ordered the partition of the province of Bengal supposedly for improvements in administrative efficiency in the huge and populous region. It also had justifications due to increasing conflicts between Muslims and dominant Hindu regimes in Bengal.

  • However, the Indians viewed the partition as an attempt by the British to disrupt the growing national movement in Bengal and divide the region's Hindus and Muslims.

The Bengali Hindu intelligentsia exerted considerable influence on local and national politics. Widespread agitation ensued in the streets and the press, and the Congress advocated boycotting British products under the banner of Swadeshi. The Bengal partition was annulled in 1911.


The partition of Bengal by Lord Curzon intended to

1. Curb Bengali influence

2. Divide people based on religion

3. Achieve administration convenience

Which of the above statement(s) is/are correct?

  • The partition that was officially announced was that the Bengal province was too large to be administered by a single governor and so it would be partitioned on administrative purpose.


    The real reason behind the partition was political and not administrative. East Bengal was dominated by the Muslims and West Bengal by the Hindus. Partition was yet another part of the divide and rule policy.









The Swadeshi movement that spanned over several decades in India

1. Followed ‘moderate’ methods as well as boycotts of institutions.

2. Was also called the Vande Mataram movement.

3. Was based on Gandhian ideals.

Select the correct answer using the codes below.


L. M. Bhole identifies five phases of the Swadeshi movement

1. From 1850-1904: Developed by leaders like Dadabhai Naoroji, Gokhale, Ranade, Tilak, G.V. Joshi and Bhaswat K. Nigoni. This was also known as the first Swadeshi movement.

2. From 1905-1917: Began with and because of the partition of Bengal in 1905 by Lord Curzon.

3. From 1918-1947: Swadeshi thought shaped by Gandhi, accompanied by the rise of Indian industrialists.

4. From 1948-1991: Widespread curbs on international and interstate trade. India became a bastion of obsolete technology during the licence-permit raj.

5. From 1991 onwards: Liberalisation and globalisation. Foreign capital, foreign technology, and many foreign goods are not excluded, and export-led growth doctrine resulted in modern industrialism.

The second Swadeshi movement started with the partition of Bengal by Viceroy Lord Curzon in 1905 and continued up to 1911. It was the most successful of the pre-Gandhian movement.




Bhagat Singh and B.K. Dutt threw a bomb in the Central Legislative Assembly on 8th April 1929 as a protest to which of the following Bill/Act? 


On April 8, 1929, Bhagat Singh, along with freedom fighter Batukeshwar Dutt, hurled two bombs inside the Central Legislative Assembly in New Delhi to protest against an unfavourable Bill.


How is the word ‘Swadeshi’ different from ‘boycott’ as far as the Indian freedom struggle is concerned?

1. Swadeshi was essentially an economic movement; a boycott was not.

2. While Swadeshi attracted the lower strata of Indian society; boycott attracted the higher strata.

Which of these is/are correct?

  • The people had adopted the twin programme of ‘boycott’ and ‘Swadeshi’ as parts of the same movement. These two words are two sides of the same coin, and both were used as economic and political tools.

  • Boycott referred to the boycott of British goods to register the British public protest against the grave injustice inflicted on Bengal.

  • The boycott was a seemingly negative programme and Swadeshi as its positive corollary was accepted. Swadeshi meant the use of and encouragement to native products as against foreign goods. Thus, the boycott and Swadeshi movements brought all classes of Indian society, particularly in Bengal, to a common platform for a national cause.


Which of the following is/are feature/features of the Swadeshi movement?

1. Emphasis on self-reliance

2. Extensive participation of the peasantry

3. Cultural revivalism

Select the correct code:

Solution: Among the several forms of struggle thrown up by the movement were

1. Boycott of foreign goods: This included boycott and public burning of foreign cloth, a boycott of foreign-made salt or sugar, refusal by washermen to wash foreign clothes. This form of protest met with great success at the practical and popular level.

2. Public meetings and processions: These emerged as major mass mobilisation methods and simultaneously as forms of popular expression.

3. Corps of volunteers or ‘samitis: Samitis such as the Swadesh Bandhab Samiti of Ashwini Kumar Dutta emerged as a prevalent and powerful mass mobilisation method.

4. Imaginative use of traditional popular festivals and, melas: The idea was to use such occasions to reach out to the masses and spread political messages. For instance, Tilak’s Ganapati and Shivaji festivals became a medium of swadeshi propaganda in western India and Bengal. In Bengal also, the traditional folk theatre forms were used for this purpose.

5. Emphasis is given to self-reliance or ‘Atma shakti: This implied reassertion of national dignity, honour and confidence and social and economic regeneration of the villages.

6. There was limited participation of peasantry.


Consider the following statements concerning the Benaras session of Congress 1905

1. It was presided over by Gopal Krishna Gokhale.

2. Congress decided to initiate Swadeshi and. Boycott movement.

3. It was decided to extend the Swadeshi and Boycott movement to entire India.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

Solution: It was decided to limit the Swadeshi and Boycott movement to the Bengal region only.


Why did the Swadeshi movement fizzle out? Pick out possible reasons from the choices given below:

1. There was severe government repression.

2. It rejected the techniques that later came to be associated with successful Gandhian politics such as noncooperation and passive resistance.

3. Peasantry did not take part in large numbers, and the movement was largely restricted to the upper social and economic classes.

Select the correct answer using the codes below.

Solution: By 1908, the open phase (as different from the underground revolutionary phase) was almost over. This was due to many reasons

1. There was severe government repression.

2. The movement failed to create an effective organisation or a party structure. It threw up an entire gamut of techniques that came to be associated with Gandhian politics— noncooperation, passive resistance, filling of British jails, social reform and constructive work—but failed to give these techniques a disciplined focus.

3. The movement was rendered leaderless with most of the leaders either arrested or deported by 1908 and with Aurobindo- Ghosh and Bipin. Chandra Pal retired from active politics.

4. Internal squabbles among leaders, magnified by the Surat split (1907), did much harm to the movement.

5. The movement aroused the people but did not know how to tap the newly released energy or find new forms to express popular resentment.

6. The movement largely remained confined to the upper and middle classes and zamindars, and failed to reach the masses—especially the peasantry.

7. Non-cooperation and passive resistance remained mere ideas.

8. It is difficult to sustain a mass-based movement at a high pitch for too long


The partition of Bengal was annulled in 1911 by the British because

1. They wanted to curb revolutionary terrorism.

2. Muslim leaders had protested sharply against a division of Bengal.

3. A divided Bengal was becoming difficult to administer.

Choose the correct statements using the codes below.

  • Partition sparked a major political crisis along religious lines. Hindu resistance exploded as the Indian National Congress began the Swadeshi movement that included boycotting British goods and public institutions, meetings and processions, forming committees, propaganda through the press and diplomatic pressure.

  • Moreover, revolutionary terrorism was also on the rise. The British needed to control all this. Because of the protests and terrorism, the British had to annul the partition in 1911 finally. On the other hand, the Muslims in East Bengal hoped that a separate region would give them more control over education and employment; hence, they opposed those movements.

  • In 1911, Delhi became capital of India, headed by a Commissioner and then known as ‘Chief Commissioner’s Province.’ In key legislations of that era, in 1919 and 1935, Delhi was seen as a centrally- administered territory.

  • In 1950 Delhi became a Part C state, but in 1951 this category was abolished. All C-states got their own Legislative Assembly.

  • It is administered under Article 239 AA. Article 239 AA was incorporated in the Constitution in 1992. It creates a ‘special’ constitutional set up for Delhi.

  • It has provisions for popularly elected assembly, a council of ministers responsible to the assembly and a certain demarcation of responsibilities between the LG and the ministers' council.

  • As per Article 239 AA (3) (a), the Delhi assembly can legislate on all those matters listed in the State List and Concurrent List as apply to union territories. The public order, police and land are reserved for the LG.

  • This special setup worked well mainly because the same party held office at the centre and Delhi for much of the time. Things changed when different governments ruled the city and the centre.


Regarding Swadeshi movement and use of Khadi during the freedom struggle, consider the following statements:

1. During the Swadeshi movement, the change of fabric to Khadi appealed largely to the upper castes and classes rather than the poor.

2. The use of Khadi appealed to the masses, and even after the Swadeshi movement, Khadi was used by both the upper and lower classes of people.

Which of the above statement(s) is/are correct?

  • The use of Khadi was made a patriotic duty.

  • Women were urged to throw away their silks and glass bangles and wear simple shell bangles. The rough homespun fabric was glorified in songs and poems to popularise it.

  • The change of fabric appealed largely to the upper castes and classes rather than those who had to make do with less and could not afford the new products. After 15 years, many among the upper classes also returned to wearing European clothes.

  • Though many people rallied to the cause of nationalism at this time, it was almost impossible to compete with cheap British goods that had flooded the market.


Dadabhai Naoroji declared at the ‘X’ session of Indian National Congress that self-government or Swaraj was to be the Congress's goal. X is

  • The Extremist Programme Emboldened by Dadabhai Naoroji’s declaration at the Calcutta session (1906) that self-government or Swaraj was the Congress's goal, the Extremists gave a call for passive resistance in addition to swadeshi and boycott.

  • This would include a boycott of government schools and colleges, government service, courts, legislative councils, municipalities, government titles, etc. to, as Aurobindo put it, ‘make the administration under present conditions impossible by an organized refusal to do anything which will help either the British commerce in the exploitation of the country or British officialdom in the administration of India.

  • At the Calcutta session of the Congress in December 1906, the Moderate enthusiasm had cooled a bit because of the Extremists' popularity and the revolutionary terrorists and because of communal riots. Here, the Extremists wanted either Tilak or Lajpat Rai as the president, while the Moderates proposed the name of Dadabhai Naoroji, who was widely respected by all the nationalists.

  • Finally, Dadabhai Naoroji was elected as the president and as a concession to the militants, the goal of the Indian National Congress was defined as swaraj or self-government of the United Kingdom or the colonies’.


Regarding the Congress split in 1907, consider the following statements.

1. The moderates supported the resolutions on Swaraj, Swadeshi and Boycott of foreign goods as proposed by extremists but differed in the approach to implement these ideas.

2. In the Surat Session, extremists wanted Lala Lajpat Rai or Bal Gangadhar Tilak as a presidential candidate of congress whereas Moderates supported Dr Rashbihari Ghosh.

Which of the above is/are correct?

  • The Indian National Congress was established in 1885 got divided into two groups of extremists and moderates at the Surat Session of Congress in the year 1970. With the end of Banaras Session of Congress, the split between the two became outward in 1905.

  • Deliberately settling down minor issues with the government was the Moderates' policy whereas the extremists believed in boycotts, agitation and strike to force their demands.

  • The moderates opposed the resolution on Swaraj, a boycott of foreign goods and National Education and pleaded to withdraw from the policy laid down in the Calcutta session. But extremists denied doing so.

  • In Surat Session (1907), extremists wanted Lala Lajpat Rai or Bal Gangadhar Tilak as a presidential candidate of congress and Moderates supported Dr Rashbihari Ghosh to be the President.

But Lala Lajpat Rai stepped down, and Dr Rash Behari Ghosh became the President. The British Government immediately launched a massive attack on the extremists and the Extremist newspaper was suppressed. Lokmanya Tilak, their main leader, was sent to Mandalay jail for six years.


Which of the following is/are related to the relationship between the faction of moderates and extremists as far as the Indian national movement is concerned?

1. Surat Split 1907

2. Lucknow Pact 1916

3. August Declaration 1917

4. Lahore Session Congress 1929

Choose the correct answer using the codes below.

  • Surat split: This happened after the Swadeshi movement when the Indian National Congress split into extremist and moderates.

  • Lucknow Pact: The moderates and extremists joined together.


What was the main reason for the split in the Indian National Congress at Surat in 1907?

  • The Surat split was a turning point in the history of the nationalist movement in India.

  • The main reason for the split in the Indian National Congress was the lack of faith that the extremists had in the moderates' capacity to negotiate with the British government.

  • Why the question came: Factual questions on modern Indian history are expected. Also, anything related to communalism, political divides and extremism from history can be potential candidates for questions in today’s charged global and national political environment.


Which of the following was/were the difference(s) between the moderates and the extremists?

1. Boycott of legislative councils.

2. Boycott of government institutions and strikes.

3. Self-government for India.

Choose the correct answer using the codes below.

  • The moderates wanted to achieve self-government; they did not aim for total independence. They demanded certain reforms and concessions from the British government because they wanted to develop India under the guidance of a benevolent British rule.

  • On the other hand, extremists wanted Swaraj, total independence. Moderates were loyal to British rule and the English crown. They considered British rule a gift for India.

  • The extremists were not loyal to British rule, and they considered it a curse and wanted to uproot it from India. ‘Swaraj is better than the best form of foreign rule’-Bal Gangadhar Tilak.

  • The moderates believed in adopting constitutional and peaceful methods to achieve their objective. They had full faith in the British sense of justice. Extremists believed in non-cooperation and adopted the boycott method against foreign goods and propagation of Swadeshi and national education.

  • They believed in Indian culture, civilisation, religion and tradition, whereas moderates believed in British culture. Moderates believed that Indians were not fit to rule. Under the moderates, the national movement was not popular, it had no touch with people. While under extremists, people came under them.