NCERT Solutions for Class 12 Political Science Chapter 2 The End of Bipolarity

NCERT Questions

102. Which among the following statements that describe the nature of Soviet economy is wrong?

  • (a) Socialism was the dominant ideology
  • (b) State ownership/control existed over the factors of production
  • (c) People enjoyed economic freedom
  • (d) Every aspect of the economy was planned and controlled by the State
  • Ans. (c) People enjoyed economic freedom

103. Arrange the following in chronological order:

  • (a) Soviet invasion of Afghanistan
  • (b) Fall of the Berlin Wall
  • (c) Disintegration of the Soviet Union
  • (d) Russian Revolution
  • Ans. I. (d) Russian Revolution (1917)
  • II. (a) Soviet invasion of Afghanistan (1979)
  • III. (b) Fall of the Berlin Wall (1989)
  • IV. (c) Disintegration of the Soviet Union (1991)

104. Which among the following is NOT an outcome of the disintegration of the USSR?

  • (a) End of the ideological war between the US and USSR
  • (b) Birth of CIS
  • (c) Change in the balance of power in the world order
  • (d) Crises in the Middle East
  • Ans. (d) Crises in the Middle East

105. Match the following:

Column-A Column-B
(i) Mikhail Gorbachev (a) Successor of USSR
(ii) Shock Therapy (b) Military pact
(iii) Russia (c) Introduced reforms
(iv) Boris Yeltsin (d) Economic model
(v) Warsaw (e) President of Russia

Ans.

Column-A Column-B
(i) Mikhail Gorbachev (c) Introduced reforms
(ii) Shock Therapy (d) Economic model
(iii) Russia (a) Successor of USSR
(iv) Boris Yeltsin (e) President of Russia
(v) Warsaw (b) Military pact

106. Fill in the blanks.

(a) The Soviet political system was based on _______ ideology.

Ans. socialist

(b) __________ was the military alliance started by the USSR.

Ans. Warsaw Pact

(c) ___________ party dominated the Soviet Union’s political system.

Ans. Communist

(d) _________ initiated the reforms in the USSR in 1985.

Ans. Mikhail Gorbachev

(e) The fall of the _________ symbolised the end of the Cold War.

Ans. Berlin Wall

107. Mention any three features that distinguish the Soviet economy from that of a capitalist country like the US.

Ans. The three features that distinguish the Soviet economy from that of a capitalist country like the US, are :

  1. The Soviet Union was a socialist state where the major means of production, resources and property were owned by the state only, whereas in capitalist countries like US, there was private ownership of property. The Soviet economy emphasised on equality of wealth and its equal distribution among the people.
  2. The Soviet economy experienced a complex communications network, vast energy resources and an efficient transport sector to connect its remotest areas.
  3. The Soviet domestic industries produced every domestic product from pins to cars, whose quality might not match with that of the West technology.
  4. Soviet Union ensured a minimum standard of living for all its citizens. Consequently, Government subsidised basic necessities including health, education, childcare and other welfare schemes.
  5. There was an absence of unemployment in Soviet Union. (Any three)

108. What were the factors that forced Gorbachev to initiate the reforms in the USSR?

Ans. Mikhail Gorbachev had became the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1985, and was the last leader of the USSR.

  1. He sought for reforms to keep the USSR abreast of the informtion and technology.
  2. To Normalise the relations with that of the West.
  3. To democratise the Soviet system.
  4. East Europeans started opposing him, but Gorbachev didn’t intervened.
  5. This escalated the crisis that hastened disintegration, then he initiated two reforms – PERESTROIKA means Reconstruction of political and economic system established by the Communist Party. GLASNOST means Openness for participation of citizens and their view in the government working and to give more rights and freedom upon them.
  6. But soon his own party members started opposing it. In 1991, a coup (violent sudden change in power) happened and Boris Yeltsin became President.

3. Why did the life of common people under the Communist rule in the USSR become difficult?

  • (a) The Soviet system became very bureaucratic and authoritarian.
  • (b) The Soviet system gave too much freedom to its people, which led to anarchy.
  • (c) The leadership under the Soviet rule was constantly changing, thus creating instability.
  • (d) There was too much emphasis on pop culture.
  • Ans. (a) The Soviet system became very bureaucratic and authoritarian.

109. What were the major consequences of the disintegration of the Soviet Union for countries like India?

Ans. The major consequences of the disintegration of the Soviet Union for countries like India are: In the past 70 years, the relationship between India and the Soviet Union, and now Russia, has historically been stable and mutually beneficial.

  1. During the Cold War, India and the Soviet Union (USSR) had a strong strategic, military, economic and diplomatic relationship. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Russia inherited its close relationship with India which resulted in both nations sharing a special relationship.
  2. Bilateral trade between USSR and India got impacted after the disintegration,but now bilateral ties with Russia are a key pillar of India's foreign policy. Russia has played a significant role in its economic development and security.
  3. After the Second World War, where no single power could prevail and dominate over another, NAM countries could play an important role in world politics, of which India was also a part. In new world order, nuclear powered countries became more powerful.
  4. India and USSR had a healthy trade of economic and military goods. The USSR was like a ‘parent state’ to India. Therefore, during the Cold War when the USSR was defeated, not only did it weaken the Soviet Union but also cast its weakening effect upon India.
  5. More than 80 bilateral agreements have been signed between India and Russia as part of the Indo Russian Strategic Agreement of 2001. Russia is important for India’s nuclrear energy, military power and scientific projects.

110. What was shock therapy? Was this the best way to make a transition from communism to capitalism?

Ans. Shock therapy was a process of transition from an authoritative socialist system to a democratic capitalist system after the collapse of communism. The model of transition in Russia, Central Asia and East Europe came to be known as shock therapy.

Certainly, this shock therapy was not the best way to convert from communism to capitalism because:

  1. Changing from communism to capitalism should be a step by step process. But after the disintegration, every country was required to make shift to a capitalist economy. It meant that state controlled ownership to be rooted out replacing private ownership of land and industries. These industries were undervalued and sold at throw-away prices. This was referred to as the ‘largest garage sale’ in history.
  2. Though all citizens were given vouchers to participate in the sales, most citizens sold their vouchers in the black market because they needed the money.
  3. Each state was now linked directly to the West, the Western capitalist states now became the leaders of the world economy. This transistion proved to be disaster for the former Soviet Union countries.
  4. The old system of social welfare was systematically destroyed. The withdrawal of government subsidies pushed large
    sections of the people into poverty.
  5. The high inflation rate resulted in loss of savings. Moreover, disintegration of collective farming brought about food
    insecurity in the country.
  6. The social welfare system collapsed, with the withdrawal of state-led subsidies creating widespread inequality.
  7. The construction of democratic institutions was not given the same attention and priority as the demands of economic transformation. Dissent or opposition wasn’t allowed.

Therefore, the transition has to be gradual,so that everybody has time to adjust accordingly and also the countries have contingencies plan ready in case of some mishap.

111. Write an essay for or against the following proposition: “With the disintegration of the second world, India should change its foreign policy and focus more on friendship with the US rather than with traditional friends like Russia.”

Ans. India has always been a neutral country. Therefore, it would be wrong to say that India should change its foreign policy and focus more on friendship with the US rather than with traditional friends like Russia.

  1. India was born in a world that was bipolar and witnessing a cold war between two superpowers but it has been a non-aligned nation. In such a situation, it was imperative for India as an infant nation to maintain its neutrality in order to preserve its sovereignty and independence.
  2. In the years after its independence, India gained industrially from the USSR which provided a base for its future growth. Russia is and always has been a friendly nation for India, right from technology to nuclear and energy resources.
  3. Indian military continues to depend on Russian hardware although the dependence is reinventing itself to one of partnership and joint production than the usual supplierclient relation.
  4. Countries like the US aspire to be India’s defense supplier as India is one of the world’s most lucrative arms market. Of late, Russia has turned to Pakistan for arms sales but nothing serious has materialised yet.
  5. Even after the Russian invasion on Ukaraine, India hasn't criticised Russia directly but it's not that India has turned a blind eye to the suffering of Ukrainians. It has adopted a balanced approach.

Therefore, it wouldn’t be wise for India’s foreign policy to neglect Russia and favour the US. For that matter, India should not incline more towards any of the two powers, just like it has been doing since independence. Therefore, India must pursue a diplomatic approach and not abandon its traditional friends like Russia.