NCERT Solutions for Class 12 Political Science Chapter 5 Contemporary South Asia

NCERT Questions

100. Identify the country:

  • (a) The struggle among pro-monarchy, prodemocracy groups and extremists created an atmosphere of political instability.
  • (b) A landlocked country with multiparty competition.
  • (c) The first country to liberalise the economy in the South Asian region.
  • (d) In the conflict between the military and pro-democracy groups, the military has prevailed over democracy.
  • (e) Centrally located and shares borders with most of the South Asian Countries.
  • (f) Earlier the island had the Sultans as the head of state. Now, it is a republic.
  • (g) Small savings and credit cooperatives in the rural areas have helped in reducing poverty.
  • (h) A landlocked country with a monarchy.

Ans. (a) Nepal

(b) Bhutan

(c) India

(d) Pakistan

(e) India

(f) Maldives

(g) India

(h) Nepal

101. Which among the following statements about South Asia is wrong?

  • (a) All the countries in South Asia are democratic.
  • (b) Bangladesh and India have signed an agreement on river-water sharing.
  • (c) SAFTA was signed at the 12th SAARC Summit in South Asian politics.
  • (d) The US and China play an influential role in South Asian politics.
  • Ans. (a) All the countries in South Asia are democratic.

102. What are some of the commonalities and differences between Bangladesh and Pakistan in their democratic experiences?

Ans. Bangladesh has been the part of Pakistan itself. Both of these countries bear some similarities and differences as follows:

Commonalities:

  1. Both Bangladesh and Pakistan were under a military rule.
  2. At both the places, the struggle for democracy took place in their own way.
  3. Pakistan’s administration began under the command of General Ayub Khan and gave up due to dissatisfaction among people giving way to Yahya’s military rule and continued with the army rule though elections were held by military rulers to give a democratic shape to their own rule.
  4. In the same way, Bangladesh drafted its own constitution to begin with democracy. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman formed presidential setup by abolishing all the parties except Awami Legue. But after his assassination the new military ruler Zia-ur-Rahman formed his own party and won elections in 1979. Later on he was also
    assassinated and another military leader Lt. Gen.

H.M. Ershad took over. Differences:

  1. In Pakistan, military, clergy and land-owning aristocrats dominated socially to overthrow elected government whereas in Bangladesh the leaders and their party members dominated for the same.
  2. Pro-military groups have become more powerful due to conflict with India in Pakistan whereas in Bangladesh, pro-military groups are powerful due to friendship and encouragement of India.

103. List three challenges to democracy in Nepal.

Ans. At present Nepal has its constitution which came into effect on 20th September 2015. It defines Nepal as having multi-ethnic, multi-lingual, multi-religious, multi-cultural characteristics with common aspirations of people living in diverse geographical regions.

So the key challenges of the new government or the democracy of Nepal would be as :

  1. Monarchy- Until 2008 Nepal was ruled by Kings and for the civilians, a King is admired as God but in the past few decades they became unpopular, so it would be challenging for the government to build new confidence among the masses
  2. Continuous threat from Maoist Communist insurgence.
  3. New constitution- it took political parties seven years to complete the task.

104. Name the principal players in the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka. How do you assess the prospects of the resolution of this conflict?

Ans. The principal players in the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka were Sinhala and Sri Lankan Tamils. After its independence politics in Sri Lanka was dominated by the interests of the Sinhala community who was hostile to Tamils who migrated from India to be settled there. Sinhalese presumed Sri Lanka to have belonged to them
only hence no concession should be given to Tamils. This created militant Tamil nationalism i.e., ‘Ethnic conflict’. Despite the revenge of internal conflict Sri Lanka has maintained the democratic political system and registered considerable economic growth and a high level of human development.

105. Mention some of the recent agreements between India and Pakistan. Can we be sure that the two countries are well on their way to a friendly relationship?

  • Ans. (a) The two countries have agreed to undertake confidence building measures to reduce the risk of war.
  • (b) Bus diplomacy initiative by India has led to opening of number of bus routes between the two countries.
  • (c) Social activists and prominent personalities have collaborated to create an atmosphere of friendship among the people of both countries.
  • (d) Leaders have met at summits to understand each other better and to find solutions.

106. Mention two areas each of cooperation and disagreement between India and Bangladesh.

Ans. Cooperation:

  • (a) Both the countries are working to improve the economic relations with each other.
  • (b) Bangladesh is a part of India’s Look East (Act East since 2014) policy that wants to link up with Southeast Asia via Myanmar.
  • (c) On disaster management and environmental issues, the two states have cooperated regularly.
  • (d) Efforts are on to broaden the areas of cooperation further by identifying common threats and being more sensitive to each other’s needs.
  • Disagreement:
  • (a) The sharing of the Ganga and Brahmaputra river waters.
  • (b) The Indian government has been unhappy with Bangladesh’s denial of illegal immigration to India, its support for anti- Indian Islamic fundamentalist groups.
  • (c) Bangladesh’s refusal to allow Indian troops to move through its territory to northeastern India.
  • (d) Its decision not to export natural gas to India or allow Myanmar to do so through Bangladeshi territory.

107. How are the external powers influencing bilateral relations in South Asia? Take any one example to illustrate your point.

Ans. The external powers influence bilateral relations in South Asia because no region exists in the vacuum. It is influenced by outside powers and
events no matter how much it may try to insulate itself from non-regional powers:

  1. China and the US remain key players in South Asian politics.
  2. Sino-Indian relations have improved significantly in the last ten years, but China’s strategic partnership with Pakistan remains a major irritant.
  3. The demands of development and globalisation have brought the two Asian giants closer and their economic ties have multiplied rapidly since 1991.
  4. The US enjoys good relations with both India and Pakistan and works as a moderator in Indo- Pak relations.
  5. Economic reforms and liberal economic policies in both the countries have increased the depth of American participation.
  6. The large South Asian economy remains in the US and the huge size of population and markets of the region give America an added stake in the future of regional security and peace.

108. Write a short note on the role and the limitations of SAARC as a forum for facilitating economic cooperation among the South Asian countries.

Ans.  A Role of SAARC

The states of South Asia recognise the importance of cooperation and friendly relationship, among themselves. The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) is a major regional initiative by the South Asian states to evolve cooperation through multilateral means. SAARC members signed the South Asian Free
Trade (SAFTA) agreement which promised the formation of a free trade zone for the whole of South Asia. SAFTA aims at lowering trade tariffs.

Limitations of SAARC

There is different view about the limitations of SAARC and SAFTA some of our neighbours fear that SAFTA is a way for India to ‘invade’ their markets and to influence their societies and politics through commercial ventures. On the other hand, India thinks that there are real economic benefits for all from SAFTA and that a region that trades more freely will be able to cooperate better on political issues. Some in India think that SAFTA is not worth the trouble since India already has bilateral agreements with Bhutan, Nepal and Sri Lanka.

109. India’s neighbours often think that the Indian government tries to dominate and interfere in the domestic affairs of the smaller countries of
the region. Is this a correct impression?

Ans. It would be incorrect to say that the Indian government tries to dominate and interfere in the domestic affairs of the smaller countries. It is because of the size and population of India that makes the smaller countries suspicious of its intentions. There has been instances when the Indian government feel exploited by its neighbours. Since India is at the centre of South Asia. It has boundaries with almost all the countries of the region and also has some unsolved differences and problems with some neighbours. However, India intention has always been to solve the problem in peaceful manner.