NCERT Solutions for Class 12 History Chapter 10 - Colonialism and The Countryside Exploring Official Archives

Q. What were some of the reasons due to which the ryots became angry with the moneylenders?

Ans. Some of the reasons due to which the ryots became angry with the moneylenders were:

  1. The moneylenders outrightly refused to extend the loans to the ryots during the time of their crisis after the end of the Civil War in America.
  2. The ryots got into deeper debt and became completely dependent on the moneylenders for their survival. However, the moneylenders showed an insensitive attitude towards their plight.
  3. The ryots felt that the moneylenders were violating the customary rule of the countryside.
  4. Moneylending was a widespread practise before the beginning of the colonial rule and was operated on the basis of some norms.
  5. There was a norm that the interest charged on the principal could not be more than that. However, this norm was broken down and the moneylenders charged very high rates of interest. All these reasons made the ryots angry with the moneylenders.

Q. Why was the Deccan Riots Commission formed? What were some of the things included in the Commission's Report?

Ans. The Deccan Riots Commission was formed to hold an enquiry about the riots caused in Bombay by the ryots.

  1. The Commission produced a report and submitted it to the British Parliament in 1878.
  2. This report acted as the source of information for historians to study the causes and nature of the Deccan riots.
  3. The Commission held several enquiries in the region where the riots took place.
  4. The Commission also recorded the statements of several ryots, sahukars and moneylenders and other eyewitnesses of the riots.
  5. The Commission also prepared statistical data on the revenue rates, interest rates and the prices of several regions. They also analysed the reports of the collectors.

Q. How did the Paharias respond to the coming the of outsiders?

Ans. The Paharias were those people who were the original residents of the hills of Rajmahal. The British people started interacting with them and later the Santhals began to settle down there. The response of the Paharias to the new settlers was as follows:

  1. The Paharias resisted the settlement of the Santhals initially, but they had to accommodate them with the passage of time.
  2. The Paharias shifted to deeper areas into the hills.
  3. They were confined to increasingly barren and rocky areas of the hills in due course of time.
  4. The Paharias performed shifting cultivation. Now, shifting cultivation became more and more difficult as proper and stable settlements came into existence.
  5. As forest began to be cleared, the Paharias could not depend on it for their livelihood. Thus, the lifestyle of the Paharias underwent a huge change due to coming of the outsiders

Q. Why were Jotedars a powerful figure in many areas of rural Bengal?

Ans. Jotedars were rich peasants of Bengal who owned big plots of land. Sometimes they owned thousands of acres of land and controlled local trade and commerce including the money-lending business. Thus, they were regarded more powerful than the zamindars. Some of the reasons which ensured their high status are:

  1. The Jotedars controlled trade and commerce including money-lending business at the local level.
  2. In order to weaken the zamindars, the Jotedars would mobilise ryots not to pay or delay payment towards land revenue.
  3. The Jotedars opposed the moves of the zamindars to increase the Jama of a village.
  4. The Jotedars lived in villages only. Hence, they were in a better position to interact with and influence the peasants.
  5. The Jotedars were rich and owned big areas of land under cultivation. Many time they would buy the estates of the zamindars which were auctioned due to non-payment of land revenue.