Ruling the Countryside

NCERT Solution

Question 1: Match the following

Column AColumn B
(a) Ryot(1) Village
(b) Mahal(2) Peasant
(c) Nij cultivation(3) On ryot's land
(d) Ryoti cultivation(4) On planter's own land

Answer: (a) → 2, (b) → 1, (c) → 4, (d) → 3

Question 2: Fill in the blanks:

  1. Growers of woad in Europe saw __________ as a crop which would provide competition to their earnings.

    Answer: Indigo
  2. The demand for indigo increased in late eighteenth- century Britain because of __________.

    Answer: Increased cotton textiles production
  3. The international demand for indigo was affected by the discovery of __________.

    Answer: Synthetic dyes
  4. The Champaran movement was against __________.

    Answer: Indigo planters

Question 3: Describe the main features of the Permanent Settlement.

Answer: According to the Permanent, the rajas and taluqdars were recognized as zamindars and were given the responsibility of revenue collection from the peasants. The amount to be paid was fixed permanently and hence the name Permanent Settlement.

Question 4: How was the mahalwari system different from the Permanent Settlement?


Mahalwari systemPermanent settlement
Village headman was responsible for revenue collectionRaja or zamindar was responsible for revenue collection
Revenue demand was to be reviewed periodicallyRevenue demand was fixed and was not to be increased in future.

Question 5: Give two problems which arose with the new Munro system of fixing revenue.

Answer: The revenue officials wanted to increase the income from land. Hence, they fixed very high revenue demand. Peasants were not able to pay the revenue. The ryots fled the countryside and villages became deserted in many regions.

Question 6: Why were ryots reluctant to grow indigo?

Answer: The planters paid a very low price for indigo. The ryot was not in a position to even recover his cost, earning a profit was a far-fetched idea. This meant that the ryot was always under debt. Hence, the ryots were reluctant to grow indigo.

Question 7: What were the circumstances which led to the eventual collapse of indigo production in Bengal?

Answer: The ryots began to refuse to grow indigo. They were supported by the village headmen and some zamindars in their fight. The scale of protest was so much that the government had to intervene. The Indigo Commission of set up to enquire into the problems. The Commission accepted the faults of the planters and allowed the ryots to grow whatever they wished. This led to eventual collapse of indigo production in Bengal.

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